Month: October 2013

Ten on Tuesday: I can’t even…

1. I just got back from my mini weekend road trip, and I can’t even pick my brain for anything coherent today. So here are a bunch of random “I can’t even” bullet points instead!

2. Have you guys seen those ads for Poo-Pourri? I can’t even…apparently this is a real product? How does that girl do the ads without turning beet red from suppressed laughter? Who actually came up with this?

3. And then there’s Ylvis. Spoiler alert: these guys make music videos that pretty much spoof everything we love to hate about music videos: the fake “deep” lyrics, the slow-mo shots, dance parties in odd places, scripted stories against the dramatic backdrop of the music. It’s comedy. But if you were foreign to earth and stumbled on this video, you would surely get back in your spaceship and exit ASAP. Who would want to risk catching whatever it is we’ve apparently got?

4. This is so me I can’t even…though to be fair, half the time I’m leaping over a cat and not from some sudden inner burst of delight.

5. I can’t even. Oh my gosh. Dying.

Lolcats: O_o
(via Pinterest via
6. I can’t even drink an opaque liquid now. Oh my gahd Tumblr WHY.
(via Pinterest via
7. Speaking of which…do you guys remember that news story about the family who all fell mysteriously ill, and then they found the giant ball of mold in the bottom of their orange juice carton? I know I just put you off orange juice forever. Me too.

8. I can’t even explain why, but I was doubled over laughing for five minutes straight when I saw this picture. Someone please tell me I’m not the only one.

St. Elmos
(via Pinterest)
9. For some reason I recently remembered how badly I wanted to dye my hair pink or burgundy when I was younger. Now I can’t even explain why.

10. I can’t even wrap my mind around this. M.C. Escher. Wow. The amount of talent here is mind-blowing!

MC Escher
(via Pinterest)

$100 Sephora gift card giveaway from Beauty By Arielle!

Yay, it’s giveaway time once again! This month Beauty By Arielle is marking her blog’s second anniversary, and to celebrate she’s created a group giveaway for a $100 Sephora e-gift card! I thought it would be fun to do something a little different this month so I was thrilled when she asked me to join in. :)

The giveaway is open internationally and closes October 21st. All you need to do to enter is use the Rafflecopter widget below! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Product review: Hard Candy Shadowholic Waterproof Eye Crayons

Happy weekend everyone! Today I’ve got a review from the vault, as it were, for one of the items I picked up as part of my birthday makeup haul. Hard Candy products have always been kind of hit-and-miss with me but I was really curious to see how these jumbo shadow pencils would stack up, and at just $6 apiece they seemed like a worthwhile gamble. Read on for the review and swatches!

The product: Hard Candy Shadowholic Waterproof Eye Crayons; $6 at Walmart stores

The claim: Twelve hours of waterproof wear. Creamy color that won’t budge, fade, or crease.

Ingredient notes: I don’t have the packaging for these, but I do remember that they contain beeswax, so they are not vegan. However, Hard Candy does not test their products on animals, so they are suitable for some vegetarians.

I tried it: I’ve been searching for hot pink and purple shadow pencils for a while, but didn’t really want to plunk down the cash for Urban Decay’s pencils. I was hoping that these would be a suitable dupe at a lower price point, and from the swatch on my arm (above) they look gorgeous! A little skippy perhaps, but pigmented and very budge-proof. The purple is, thank heavens, on the warm side–not the standard bluish-purple, which is fine I guess but just not really up my alley.

I decided to create an exaggerated wing with After Hours all across my lid, and use Pink Lady as a liner and accent on the lower lid. Right away, I ran into problems: these pencils skipped and dragged horribly, and there was virtually no color payoff. It took a lot of work to get a decent amount of color onto the lid, and good grief it hurt. I’ve never had to press so hard with a pencil that it left my eyelid sore! Obviously from the look I posted here, working out the edges of this color was difficult and in the end I was left with a pretty oddball look. Oy.

Once the color is on, it stays put, which is awesome…but it’s so hard to get the color on in the first place, it’s just ridiculous. These pencils are beyond dry, even after sharpening off the top layer. I just don’t get it, because I’ve seen other bloggers use them with better results. These are the polar opposite of the NYX shadow pencils; whereas those are so creamy they smudge and crease like no tomorrow, these are so dry you can barely apply the color.
My final thoughts: I really hesitate to say that these are bad pencils per se, because as I said–other bloggers whose reviews I trust seem to have not had the same issues that I did. So with that in mind, I’m willing to say that perhaps I got old pencils or pencils with a bad formula. But I definitely wouldn’t repurchase or recommend these. I’m thinking I will find some way to use them, perhaps by crushing up the crayon and mixing with another formula to create something creamier, and then applying with a brush. But man, what a disappointment! I guess my search continues…

Random Thursday: Art that inspires me

I don’t think I could really call myself an art connoisseur. I just know what reaches out and grabs me. I like photos or drawings that evoke a sense of place or mood, or tell a story. I also love photos or drawings that look at something from a different angle. When you look at a drawing or photo–of a person, a place, or an object–and immediately think, “I wonder what the story is here?”–that’s a good piece of art. It draws you in and holds you.

I think it can be really hard to explain why a piece of music inspires you, but I have always loved Beethoven’s Ninth. I never get tired of hearing it. I think the fact that he was deaf when he wrote it just makes it all the more amazing; it’s a reminder that amazing things can happen even when life doesn’t look so bright.

Also: this song. I feel like M83 really writes soundtracks, not just singles, so naturally I was thrilled when they wrote the score for Oblivion. Their albums already sound like movie soundtracks, so it was a perfect fit. But you might also know them because “Outro” was used in the trailers for Cloud Atlas.

I feel like there are some movies that could be considered works of art, because they were just amazing from a visual standpoint, or because of the writing: Inception, Looper, and The Tree of Life all spring to mind. From a storyteller’s point of view these are an amazing one-two punch of putting together all the layers of a story and presenting it in a way that’s more than merely actors standing front of a camera.

Books that are masterpieces: well obviously, we have to start with The Lord of the Rings; this story has to be one of the most epic tales of courage and friendship ever written. I actually like the movies better than the books, because I think Peter Jackson and his team did a lot to refine Tolkien’s clunky writing and bring everything to life in a way that the novels didn’t necessarily do. And I think that Pride and Prejudice is one of those stories that will be referenced, copied, and parodied until the end of days. We all want to find our Mr. Darcy!

Fashion definitely counts as an art form. I hate to see people go with whatever is trendy just because they want to look “good”, as in “popular”. I think fashion should be a way to express yourself.

I also drool over the beauty of really lovely gowns (like every girl, I suppose). I’m inspired by the thought it takes to make something beautiful and different from the rest of the crowd.

Makeup, too, can be art. I love watching movies or flipping through magazines for makeup to recreate. It’s a way to set the mood and say, “This is who I am today!”


So what pieces of art inspire you? They can be visual, music, books–anything and everything. Art comes in lots of forms, not just paintings! Tell me in the comments!

Product review: ELF Studio Concealer Pencil & Brush

Happy hump day everyone! For me, this is actually day two of a much-needed vacation. This is my last break for a few months, since the madness of the holidays has already begun, so I’m trying to build up my reserve of scheduled posts once again! Today I wanted to share a review of a concealer that I bought this summer. What makes this concealer different is that it’s a) a pencil, like an eyeliner and b) it’s specifically formulated for covering breakouts! Best of all, it’s vegan-friendly and bargain-priced…so read on to see what I thought of it!

The product: ELF Studio Concealer Pencil & Brush; in three shades; $3 at

The claims: Salicylic acid and tea tree oil treat blemishes; the brush helps blend the concealer on the skin to create a flawless finish.

Ingredients: Salicylic Acid 2%, Synthetic Beeswax, Microcrystalline Wax, Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Paraffinium Liquidum (Mineral Oil), Bis-Diglyceryl Polyacyladipate-2, Isopropyl Myristate,, Petrolatum, Mica, Melaleuca Altenifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil BHT, Benzyl Alcohol, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Iron Oxides (CI 77491 CI 77492 CI 77499), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891).

I tried it: This is a unique way to deliver concealer: it’s in a chubby pencil that can be sharpened like an eyeliner crayon (there’s a sharpener on the lid); on one end of the pencil is a super-soft synthetic brush that blends the concealer once it’s on the skin. I’ve tried acne concealers before and have either disliked the liquid formula or found that they lacked staying power, so I wasn’t sure what to expect from this.

Surprisingly, this has a nice opaque coverage and the brush feels much nicer than what you would expect on a bargain makeup product. It blends well and can be built up for more coverage. The wear time is impressive too: I can get several hours without fading or budging.

I do feel that the combo of salicylic acid and tea tree oil helps to diminish the severity of breakouts. It’s nice to have these ingredients in the concealer rather than trying to layer a regular concealer over a spot treatment, since this typically results in the concealer sliding away.

My final thoughts: This is such a steal! Lately I’ve been dealing with those awful stress-related breakouts around the mouth and chin, and this has been a lifesaver–it covers everything up so I don’t feel so self-conscious, but doesn’t further irritate my skin or cause any dryness in the surrounding area. If you struggle with occasional breakouts and want a quick and lightweight way to hide them, I would definitely recommend buying this pencil!