Month: April 2013

30 Day Shop My Closet Challenge: Day 7: Back In Black

Sure, it’s spring, and it’s the season of bright colors and pastels…but I rock black year-round. It’s my go-to when I just don’t feel good or don’t want to put effort into choosing an outfit. My little quickie tricks to make it look more stylish: my cheetah print flats, a scarf, a simple bun, and a red lip. All very quick and easy to do, and I can do the bun while my hair is still wet–no need to dry and style first!

I also added the red Betsey Johnson clutch that I picked up this winter for an additional pop of color. You don’t have to do red and cheetah print; you could use cobalt blue or turquoise with an Aztec print, or any other color/print combo you’re really crazy about. The point is, adding pops of color in your makeup, bag, shoes, and jewelry take a plain black outfit from boring to Parisian-model-off-duty in five minutes flat…perfect for the days you’re running late for an important event. (Moi? Never. I don’t know what you’re talking about.)

Better pic of my makeup. If I’m doing red lips I avoid using pencil eyeliner because it can look way too “done”; shadow is much softer, especially if you’ll be out in the daylight. I used a taupe shadow over my lids and a little chocolate brown shadow to softly line my eyes, curled my lashes, and added a few coats of Physician’s Formula Organic Wear Jumbo Lash Mascara.

For hair: I comb through a leave-in conditioner/smoother, flip my head over, and finger-comb my hair into a high loose bun. A few spritzes of light-hold hairspray keep my bangs in place and make sure everything stays nice and smooth without looking stiff or crunchy. I like my hair to be touchable and soft, even if I am wearing it up!

Here’s one more pic with Jiao, being her glamorous self:

Now it’s your turn to show us how you’re shopping your closet this month! Use the widget below to link up your posts and remember to use the hashtag #30dayclosetshop across your social media accounts (Twitter, Instagram, etc.) to show off your style!

Please follow your cohosts (Mandy and Martha) and visit a couple of other bloggers via the linkup to leave a comment! “I don’t like comments” said no blogger ever! :P

Product review: Julep One Step Polish Remover Pads

These little sealed polish remover pads have arrived as extras in a couple of my Julep Maven boxes, and somehow I just never got around to using them. I guess since I’m happy with my Zoya Remove Plus, I just didn’t feel the need. But like the good little beauty blogger that I am, I finally opened up one of the pads to try it out just for the sake of review.

The product: Julep One Step Polish Remover Pads; $9.99 for a pack of ten; at Julep.com

The claim: No-mess, lint-free pad is infused with aloe vera to moisturize and condition your nails.

I tried it: These pads are neither dry nor dripping in polish remover, and the scent isn’t harsh, so the “mess-free” part is true. That said, I feel like these aren’t the sturdiest cloths. They do seem to shed and shred just like cotton balls if you’ve got rough edges or hangnails.

I didn’t feel like one pad was enough to fully clean all ten nails. It’s true that I usually have three coats of polish on each nail, plus base and a coat or two of topcoat; but even so one cotton ball soaked in Remove Plus is usually enough to do the trick; I’ll use two if I was using dark polish. This pad just seems to dry out before I’m really done with it.

My verdict: Unless I was going on vacation and really wanted to bring along polish and polish remover for a mid-vacay manicure change, I probably wouldn’t buy these. That said, if you’re traveling, they’d be a great alternative to a leak-prone bottle of remover and a baggie of cotton balls. They’re just not worth the price for every day use, especially if you have a much nicer bottle of removal and a sink at hand.

30 Day Shop My Closet Challenge! Day 6

This is what fashion bloggers wear on the weekends, right? Or at least, what I think they wear: rolled up jeans, a white shirt, bright pumps, and a bright bag. I’ve been seeing rolled up jeans everywhere–the flash of ankle is supposed to be very spring 2013–but I’m just not sure if I like it or not!

(BTW–since I’m doing this daily fashion challenge and a nail art challenge throughout April, I’m temporarily suspending Inspiration Saturdays. Don’t worry, they’ll be back in May!)

Now it’s your turn to show us how you’re shopping your closet this month! Use the widget below to link up your posts and remember to use the hashtag #30dayclosetshop across your social media accounts (Twitter, Instagram, etc.) to show off your style!

Please follow your cohosts (Mandy and Martha) and visit a couple of other bloggers via the linkup to leave a comment! “I don’t like comments” said no blogger ever! :P

30 Day Shop My Closet Challenge: Day 5

Whew! Are you guys glad it’s almost the weekend? My week just started and Friday is my day to run errands. That’s a combo that calls for comfy clothes and no makeup if at all possible, but I still want to look cute. When my wonderful hubby came home he offered to snap some candids on the porch. I think his new trick is to try to make me laugh while he takes the pictures, because then he’ll get plenty of shots where I’m making really goofy faces.

(Hopefully this weekend I get a chance to take a look at the PicMonkey deets Mandy e-mailed me, so I can do more than just crop & watermark! In the meantime…zoom! I’m off on another errand.)

And this is what Mandy wore today! ZOMG those flats! I’ve never liked neon yellow and this year it’s calling to me from EVERYWHERE.

Now it’s your turn to show us how you’re shopping your closet this month! Use the widget below to link up your posts and remember to use the hashtag #30dayclosetshop across your social media accounts (Twitter, Instagram, etc.) to show off your style!

Please follow your cohosts (Mandy and Martha) and visit a couple of other bloggers via the linkup to leave a comment! “I don’t like comments” said no blogger ever! :P

30 Day Shop My Closet Challenge: Day 4

It was rainy and grey here today. Blah. The weather matched my mood. Luckily I didn’t have to look far for outfit inspiration–I matched my outfit to the nail art I did today for the Totally Doable April nail art challenge that I decided to link up with throughout the month. Hence, the floral patterns!

When it’s chilly I’ll pair florals with my cowgirl boots, but I’d also wear this outfit in warmer weather with flip-flops.

Now I’ve got to show you what Mandy wore the past couple of days, because this girl loves pink as much as I do! I fell in love with that pink blazer when she showed it off in her JC Penney haul video last month, and now a similar one is definitely in the cards for me once my spending ban is up.

I think it’s kind of funny that we both wore nude heels on Day 1 and florals on Day 4! I didn’t even think of that until just now. Great minds think alike, eh?!

 

Now it’s your turn to show us how you’re shopping your closet this month! Use the widget below to link up your posts and remember to use the hashtag #30dayclosetshop across your social media accounts (Twitter, Instagram, etc.) to show off your style!

Please follow your cohosts (Mandy and Martha) and visit a couple of other bloggers via the linkup to leave a comment! “I don’t like comments” said no blogger ever! :P

The Totally Doable I Have A Life April Nail Art Challenge: days 1 and 4

I’ve always loved those daily nail polish challenges that float around the blogosphere, but I’ve never had the time to join in on a daily basis…which was why when I saw this challenge over on Beauty by Arielle, I immediately wanted to join in. This was originally posted on Instagram by Beauty By Krystal, but since I’m not on Instagram I’ll just post my shots on Twitter!!

I’m a day late to the challenge so like Areille, I’m combining days one and four. Day 1 was “flowers” and Day 4 was “swatch”. I made little accent nail flowers using Flower Beauty Nail Lacquers in Gorgeous Gerbera and Thistle Or That? and Zoya nail polish in Marley.

The swatch is L.A. Colors Color Craze polish in Fiji Purple, which I picked up at a local dollar store. I have to admit, I’m not loving this polish. It was thin and runny, and it took forever to dry, even with reasonably thin coats; I smudged multiple nails on my fingers and toes and had to redo them. I’ve had other L.A. Colors polishes that haven’t given me this much trouble, but it was only $1, so que sera. Next time I’ll grab a Wet n Wild polish.

Random Thursday: A Day in the Life

Once again I’m linking up with Em, Lin and Meg or Random Thursdays! My life is not all that interesting, IMO, but I’ll walk you through it anyway!! Feel free to click on if you get bored. You’ve been warned.

If you follow my blog you might have picked up that I work overnights and through the weekend, with my days off falling in the middle of the week. That means that my schedule is crazy-inverted against everyone else’s! My week starts at 9PM Thursday, when I slide out of bed like a slug, slug my way into a work-appropriate hoodie, grab some coffee and a granola bar, and run slug out the door to work. I’m pretty sure I leave a trail of slime behind me.

I have to have some music to wake me up. Right now I’m hooked on Mumford and Sons, but I listen to everything from the Beatles to Deadmau5.

If I’m lucky work flies by fairly quickly, and I get home around seven. The hubby will usually be at work, so it’s just me and the cats. Max and Jiao have a relationship that could best be described as “disdainful”; I can’t embed this video but if you have a few minutes to watch Simon’s Cats in “Double Trouble” (link here), you’ll get a perfect idea of their relationship. (I love these cartoons and can’t get enough of them! They’re hilarious!)

Max is older and calmer and just wants to be fed before going outside to lay on the porch and survey his domain. Jiao, meanwhile, is a screaming meemie of hyper paranoia and ballistic energy. If you could capture her energy levels and sell them in pill form the FDA would ban them. She’s only a year old, so I’m hoping this will improve. She also wants to go outside but since everything out there scares her half to death, sometimes she settles for sitting in the window while I cook dinner, do a few chores, answer e-mails–whatever needs to be done.

Max is diabetic so he needs to be fed and given an insulin shot around 9:30 AM. No matter if he’s inside or out, no matter what he’s doing, he inevitably wanders back to me around that time as though he knows he’s due for his medicine. I don’t know how he knows this, but he does.

By this time I’m ready to work on my blog. I try to keep a running week or two of scheduled posts ready to go, so depending on what’s on deck, I might write new posts, take pictures, film a video, or just open up Bloglovin’ and browse through the day’s entries with a cup of tea. In the summer the cats will still be outside but otherwise, they prefer to sleep on the desk while I work. (Both of my cats are rescues, which I think has influenced the level of clinginess they exhibit–they have to be where I am.)

I usually wrap up with the blog by 11AM or maybe noon. By now all of the stores in town are open, even if it’s the weekend, so if I want to go shopping or need to run errands I might do that if I’m not too tired. In the summer I can ride my bike to run errands, which is awesome! I also love reading and have a few hobbies like painting and photography that I might play around with if I’m in a creative mood. If I’m really grumpy I’ll just look at Pinterest, my other major addiction. There’s no woe a few LOLs can’t cure, especially if there’s a cat involved.

Source: sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net via Martha on Pinterest

If I’m good I go to bed by noon. If I’m really bad I stay on the internet until four or five!! The cats, of course, have to come sleep with me…and wake me up at periodic intervals to remind me of their presence.

Source: 9gag.com via Martha on Pinterest

In the summer my routine changes because I have to go to bed as soon as I get home, while the house is still cool and my neighborhood isn’t noisy. That’s the only thing about night shifts that really bothers me: the levels of noise outside. The winter is better because no one wants to go out, but the summers can get pretty bad. I have a couple of neighbors who like to rev their ATVs up and down the street while their kids run wild screaming at the top of their lungs. Those are no-sleep days, and then I’m glad for iced coffee and energy drinks! If I realize sleep is a hopeless enterprise I’ll pop a movie in that makes me laugh. RocknRolla is one of my fave solely for the long chase scene between One Two and the Russians. It never fails to make laugh.

My “weekend” has a totally different routine because my hubby is home. Tuesdays I take a nap after work and then we have dinner and hang out for the rest of the day; usually we watch a DVD or otherwise lounge around the house because we’re not up to going out on our first day off. On Wednesdays we try to go out for our “date” night. In the colder months we’ll do dinner and a movie or just stay in to watch movies and play games if it’s too cold to go outside.

Now that summer is coming, we can go out hiking or wander around downtown and look at art in the gallery windows, maybe get coffee and walk through the park, or just sit by the lake and talk. I’m definitely ready for warmer weather. We’re lucky enough to live in an area where a short drive lands you in the great outdoors, surrounded by hills, meadows, trees and rivers.

Thursdays neither of us is in a great mood because we’re anticipating the start of the workweek and not seeing each other hardly at all for several days. So I’ll make some sort of comfort food, like pasta and a yummy dessert, and we do something lazy around the house. This is usually when I bust out a baking recipe to try out. If I’m feeling ambitious I might run a few errands. If I need the hubby to take any photos for the blog, we try to squeeze them in on this day.

It’s hard to explain to someone who doesn’t work nights and who doesn’t have a spouse working an opposite shift (he works days) just how hard it is to finish out the week with a smile. Now that I’ve been forcing myself to sleep at night and stay up all day to see the hubby, my brain won’t shut off for me to go to sleep on Thursday afternoon. Sometimes I’ll turn on an ambient YouTube mix from Mr. Suicide Sheep to lull me to sleep.

Still, that first night back is pretty rough. I’m surprised I don’t have more fails like this:

20 Things That Will Make You Say NOOOOOOO!

And then the week starts all over again!! Hope that didn’t bore you to death too badly!!!

30 Day Shop My Closet Challenge: Day 3

Today I went with basic black and white, since that’s supposed to be one of the big trends this spring. I like to switch it up a little by wearing white on the bottom and black on the top, which is a little less expected and also helps avoid that maitre d’ look!

I forgot to add this in here earlier (the one downside of scheduled posting!). Mandy linked up yesterday with stripes on stripes: what do you guys think of her pattern mixing? She said she wasn’t sure about it but I love it! And seriously…how cute is that tribal bag?!

 

Now it’s your turn to show us how you’re shopping your closet this month! Use the widget below to link up your posts and remember to use the hashtag #30dayclosetshop across your social media accounts (Twitter, Instagram, etc.) to show off your style!

Please follow your cohosts (Mandy and Martha) and visit a couple of other bloggers via the linkup to leave a comment! “I don’t like comments” said no blogger ever! :P