My Custom XL Z Palette – With Swatches!

When I first bought a Z palette a few years ago, I went a little crazy on depotting everything, thinking it would change how the makeup I used i.e. everything would be more accessible. While that is true, the act of actually depotting and then organizing was still won over by Urban Decay, Lorac, and Too Faced palettes that I used more often.

But now that I’ve gained a decent amount of single eye shadows from Mac, Makeup Geek (MUG), and a few Anastasia Beverly Hills (ABH) singles, my XL Z palette finally has a place among my most used palettes.

In deciding what to write about now that I’ve begun (again), I thought that sharing my custom palette would be an easy choice. I have some very well-loved shadows in here and you can quickly get an idea of the range of colors I love on my brown eyes.

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As you can see, I love me some serious matte browns and red tone shadows, as well as the warm, rusty colors, and of of course green shimmers for my brown eyes.

I’ll list them in order of rows (top –> bottom).

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Let’s call this the highlight/transition row because that’s pretty much all I use these shadows for.

Starting on the left we have Orb (Mac), Rice Paper (Mac), Soft Brown (Mac), Creme Brulee (MUG), Peach Smoothie (MUG), Desert Sands (MUG), and Saddle (Mac).

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This might be my favorite row. Not sure. It might be a tie with another row you’ll see soon.

Left-Right… Mythology (Mac), Cosmopolitan (MUG), Expensive Pink (Mac and also identical to the previous shadow!), Sable (Mac), Country Girl (MUG), Antiqued (Mac & a personal favorite of mine for all over the lid as a one-shadow look), and finally Twinks (Mac).

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This row I tend to use as colors to deep my look in the outer corner or through my crease. I can get away with these dark shades in my crease thanks to my hooded eyes. Perhaps I’ll do a pictorial blog on how I doΒ  my shadows for hooded eyes? Thoughts

Left-Right… Amber Lights (Mac), Cocoa Bear (MUG & another personal favorite), Brown Script (Mac), Swiss Chocolate (Mac), Tolie (Mac), the 6th shade I’m not sure the name but I know it’s from Mac! and finally Sketch (Mac)

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This row is in tie for first place with my second row. I love the coppery shades here. omg do I love to put these all over my lid…

Left-Right… Not sure of the first shade but it’s Mac, Brown (Mac), Cranberry (Mac), Coppering (my first ever Mac shadow & another personal favorite), Flame Thrower (MUG foiled eye shadow. Do you SEE the shimmer in it??), Glisten (ABH), and Burnt Orange (ABH).

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How pretty and opposite is this row from the rest? Haha.

Left-Right… Not sure of the first shade but, again, it’s Mac! Sumptuous Olive (Mac, and it’s swatching great, sorry), Sure of this third shade but it was in a palette with the first from Mac, Ash brown (ABH), Red Earth (ABH), and Truffle Glitter (ABH). This row doesn’t get nearly as much love as the others, because I’m so drawn to reds and coppers, but these greens do bring out that pretty mossy colors that brown eyes have.

Sorry if the swatches aren’t the best! I’m a little rusty in that area, as you can tell… But I hope you enjoyed seeing this custom palette of mine! I bought it at IMATs back in January and am so glad I have a place for all of my single eye shadows.

Please let me know what other blog posts you’d like to see! I have a few ideas for some future posts but would love your input πŸ™‚

xo, Briana

FTC: This is not a sponsored post.

5 Things I Have Been Loving Lately

July has been a good month. Busy, but good. So I’m gonna go ahead and share a few materialistic things I’ve been enjoying πŸ˜‰ This is a beauty blog (mostly) after all! Haha. I’ll also throw in a few awesome moments, too.

1) Becca Cosmetics & Jaclyn Hill’s collaboration, their Shimmering Skin Perfector in Champagne Pop.

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It’s a wonderful peachy gold highlighter that is just, in a word, phenomenal. and dare I saw, on fleek?! Haha. If you follow Jaclyn Hill, then you’ll know that the phrase #highlightonfleek has become quite the trend. Normally I would never say anything is on fleek, but omg I love this highlighter. It’s just perfect.

2) NYX brow pomade and even better, their brow pencil.

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These have both been compared to the Anastasia Beverly Hills products, and while I have never tried them, I really do love them. They have totally changed how I do my brows. Before I used the ELF brow product and while I liked it, I always felt like my brows were too… put on. But with these, and I only use one at a time, I feel like my brows are a bit more natural looking now. Love them!

3) My Kindle Paperwhite. Even though I’m working fulltime, in school again, and still have every other social activity that I had before, I’ve been reading more and it’s been so great. I think I’ve read 3 books in the last two weeks, the latest being All The Bright Places, which made me feel all the feelings when I finished. Ugh. I also read today that they’re making a film adaptation of it and I am so excited. Although scared because I will cry and I will need Bub there with me to hand me tissue.

4) My new grown up Kate Spade purse that I got as a treat to myself with my first nurse paycheck πŸ™‚

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I saw this purse style a year ago and have wanted it so much ever since. It’s the kind of purse I happily I use every day but can also wear it dressed up. I love it so much and am so happy I bought it. I also got it at an outlet so I scored big on the cost πŸ˜‰ The style is Newbury Lane Small Loden, they have various colors and while I debated between this and a gray, I finally chose the black as I do not have a nice black purse and it’s just so classy looking.

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It has three large pockets, as well as a shoulder strap.

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Here’s a picture of the size comparison to me.

5) This is my favorite thing and also quite possibly my favorite moment of the year thus far.

For our one year anniversary on the 13th, my sweet hubby surprised me with a wonderful wedding band.

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Sorry it’s so fuzzy.

It was sweet when he gave it to me, too. We were alone on our golf green with the lights on where we had our first dance and he very slyly put the ring on my finger without me even seeing it. But of course I felt it.

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Before I was wearing a simple band with it and while it was nice, this band is just… awesome. It’s so pretty and just really fits so well with my engagement ring. I find myself staring at my ring again like I’m engaged all over again. I had told my hubs a few months before that I wanted a band and he at first he was like, eh… But then when he surprised me with this… Oh, I fell in love again.

So those are my five favorites of July.

In other news, my hubby is currently away in northern California fighting fires and saving California. He’s been away for a week now and could be gone for at least another week. This is his first campaign of the season and was so excited to finally get a call away.

Thank you for reading everyone!

xo, Briana

FTC: This is not a sponsored post.

May Favorites!

June! We’re halfway done with this year! Can you believe it?

There were a lot of favorite moments from May, which I plan to write about soon. Let’s just say someone close to myself and bub is engaged and I helped plan it… πŸ˜‰

Besides that, though! Let’s talk about some of my favorite products from May!

Last month was a kind of a blur for me, what with traveling and then staying between my house and my parents house a lot, since Bub was busy a lot with work. When it came to makeup, I wanted to make things simple and quick, whether it’s something that sets fast or I can double up on the product.

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Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze & Glow palette. Gorgeous, isn’t it? Now I’ve had this for a while, thanks to a Nordstrom gift card from Christmas, but haven’t really talked about it much because I wasn’t Wowed by it and I prefer other bronzers and highlighters that I own. However, with my now more tan skin, I find it matches well. But really, my favorite way to use it? Eyeshadow!

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It’s a bit of the taupey brown side, with slight satin finish. Very slight. But as a single shadow or transition shade, I love it. On days where I use minimal makeup or anything, I find that this is great as a single shadow and a bronzer as well.

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Milani Luminoso blush. I’m sure you’ve heard of this, yes? Well, for good reason. It’s a beautiful coral peachy color that has a beautiful sheen and finish to it. For my skin tone and the eye looks I like to wear, this is a color I can wear with almost anything.

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It also easily fits in my makeup bag, as all of my other blushes are in a mac palette πŸ˜‰

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I just got this about two weeks ago because I want something light for summer but still has decent coverage. One of the bridesmaids at my cousins wedding had this and it look gorgeous on her. So I thought I’d try it for those reasons!

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And I love it! I’m in shade medium-tan. It blends so easily with a brush and fast. I do set it with a powder and setting spray, as any BB cream on me will get shiny. But this manages to last as well as a regular foundation but sits on my skin like moisturizer. It has that silicone feel though, so if you don’t like that feeling, you may want to avoid this.

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If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll know that I like a brown liner on my top lid, rather than a black. I prefer a brown because it’s not as harsh as a black and just appears more natural to me. At least, as natural as liner can look. Ha.

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The tip is a brush and is so smooth on the lid without any bleeding. It sets fast and lasts for a super long time. It’s so unbelievably easy to work with. I love it!

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Speaking of Kat Von D…. Yes, I bought it. And I love it.

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Now the main reason I bought it? Those far right, warm shadows… specifically the reddish brown one. It is everything I had hoped it to be.

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And these paired with the liner? Ugh, so pretty. They’re like butter, they’re all matte, and they’re just gorgeous. I mean, really. Perfect.

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And finally, my favorite brushes of the month.

The far left is a Real Techniques blush brush that I have actually been using for bronzer! For my cheek size, I find that it’s a good size and dispenses product evenly.

The middle brush is fairly new and is actually called a sculpting brush, meant for contour. But it’s so dense, I actually like to use it for foundation or my BB cream! The shape is also great for getting along my nose and eyes.

The far right is a MAC 221. I bought this in preparation for Lindsay’s wedding, since she and I both have hooded eyes. The MAC girl that convinced me to get it also has hooded eyes and she swore it was better than the MAC 217 for getting in the crease because it’s smaller. And ooh was she right.

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You may compare the size differences. I miiiight need a second. Because it’s just that good.

Well that was all! I had a lot of other awesome things that performed great for me, but these are the things that just really stood out to me and that I used a lot. I hope you enjoyed!

xo, Briana

FTC : This is not a sponsored post.

 

MAC’s Cremesheen in Shanghai Spice – A Nude for Olive Tones?

So I’m going to Hawaii next week…. I’m a bridesmaid in my cousin’s wedding and I’m super excited for a few reasons…

1) Hawaii. Duh.

2) Mini vacation!

3) I get to do her makeup πŸ™‚

She was a bridesmaid in my own wedding and I’m so excited to be sharing this special time with her. When she asked me to do her makeup, I immediately said yes and I plan to surprise her with a few gifts for the day of. In the process of finding her a few special things, I found myself a wonderful summery nude lipstick for myself! haha.

This might be a classic for some, but for me, it’s new and I am loving it.

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In person, Shanghai Spice is a bit darker but you can definitely see the peachy tones in it. When you look at it, it’s a soft peachy nude with brown undertones as well, perfect for someone like me where most nudes tend to wash me out. But on my skin tone, it’s perfect!

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It’s peachy but on the lips it gives a good soft look without looking too pink or like you’re trying too hard to have nude lips. Like I said, it helps give me a simple, nude look without washing me out. That’s the funny thing with nudes on my skin tone. A regular nude can give me the “I’m sick” or “I’m dead” look, which is not cute.

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I’m hoping to wear this for the wedding, but my dress is a fun coral color and I might need something with a bit more depth to. Maybe a lip liner will help though, as the formula is extremely comfortable on the lips. It’s also the kind of lipstick where I don’t necessarily need a mirror to apply it.

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Yeah, I think it’ll work with a darker lip liner underneath πŸ™‚

What do my fellow tan/olive/yellow-toned girls think? Have you tried this? Or anyone really! It’s such a pretty peach…

xo, Briana

This is not a sponsored post.

My [simple] Hair Care Routine

Something I never really talk about much on here is my hair care routine, which is funny because I do consider this a [mostly] beauty blog. That being said, I should probably mention what I use on my hair. I also have a few girls on the GlamLifeGuru app asking what I do, so I thought I would bring it up on my blog!

Before I go into the details of my very few products, let me give you a little hair history…

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Here is my current hair though! Haha. It’s considered a long length with balayage highlighting. Before this, I did an ombre at home, highlights myself and/or at the salon, had bangs (side-swept and straight-across), long hair, short hair, layers, less layers, etc. So I basically have tried everything.

I’m the type of girl that every 6 months or so, I get bored with my current hair and must try something “new”, something “different.” I used to love side-swept bangs until they got to that point where you couldn’t decide to trim them or let them grow. It requires a lot of patience. The length of your overall hair also requires patience. I want it long but ooh how I must wait months for it to grow when I coooould try some cute new hair style instead.

This last year, I have finally reached the point of length where I am satisfied and probably will not cut off any length for a long, long time. I love my long hair. And I want it longer. Like, down to my butt long.

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Curent length, with slight wave in it.

Right now, it’s about my mid-back but if you’re looking at me from the front, it’s right about where it covers the ladies. Haha. As you can see, though, the ends of my hair are lighter since I had it colored with the balayage style, right before my wedding in July. I think this is the longest I’ve gone without coloring it. It’s also the easiest way to maintain my hair color! haha.

So, let’s get to what I use!

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This line was released I believe last year? They have a variety for straight hair, curly hair, colored hair, voluminous, etc. I find that this works the best for me and doesn’t weight my hair down nor make it greasy after one day. Pantene and Herbal Essence do that to me. Now I know some people will look at this and say I need to use sulfite free. However, that stuff does not work for me. I’ve tried. I’ve even tried Wen. It doesn’t work. My thing is, “if the wheel ain’t broke, don’t fix it” So I stick to what I like.

I wash my hair about every 2-3 days. If I wash it every day, it gets greasy within a day. So I wash it less frequently, though I do take a shower every day. I just don’t wash my hair that often.

After I wash my hair,Β I like to use “It’s A 10” which you can find at pretty much any drugstore, Target, or Wal-Mart. But lucky me… I found this ginormous bottle at Sam’s Club for $20! At Target, where I normally buy it, it’s about $13.99 for only 4 oz. This big bottle is 10 oz. and is going to last me for soo long.

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It’s a leave-in conditioner and makes such a difference on my ends. I love it. It’s also a great detangler.

On the days I don’t wash my hair and if I think I need it, I’ll use Batiste dry shampoo on it. I haven’t tried many other dry shampoos but I do find that this one is okay and works for me.

When I do remember, I’ll use a hair mask on my hair. My favorite one is the one that accompanies my shampoo and conditioner. I have yet to try the oh-so-hyped up macadamia one. You know the one I’m talking about, don’t you? The one in the green and brown tub. The $30 tub of deep conditioner? Yeah, that one. I prefer the $6 tub from L’Oreal.

Finally, here are a few things I find that helps with my hair care…

I let it air dry on most days. I do not blow dry it every time I wash my hair. I blow dry it maybe one a week and when I do use a blow dryer, I let my hair air dry while I do my makeup and go about my day; I will then blow dry if I feel like styling it.

Which I will then use a 1-inch curling wand or a straightener. I also go through that process quickly so as to use the least amount of heat on my hair. I curl my hair in large sections. And before I apply any heat, I use Tresemme Heat Protection.

I also find that putting my hair in a braid instead of a bun or ponytail is better for my ends, because I do in fact have split ends. A bun is actually the worst on my hair, especially since the ends of my hair have been lightened with bleach. My favorite braid to wear is the Katniss braid, which is also a regular Dutch braid.

Anyhow, that’s about it! It’s very simple and an affordable way to keep my hair healthy. And I also don’t like to mention how in-frequently I get my hair cut, which is about every 3-4 months. Haha. I am verrrry protective of my hair. And when I do get it cut, I only get maybe 2 inches cut off. Maybe. Haha.

I hope you enjoyed this post! I know it was a bit more talky then a few of my other posts, but it is very simple what I do.

xo, Briana

FTC : This is not a sponsored post.

February Favorites

I know on my blog, I don’t consistently post my monthly favorites.

Let me rephrase that. I don’t ever post my monthly favorites. Ha. I have on occasion but I usually focus on just one product and maybe the end of the year I’ll post my favorites. I’ll sometimes do a seasonal favorites. Anywho, this month I would like to show you what I’ve been loving! So! Let’s get to it!

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Tea! I’ve always loved drinking tea and especially in the cooler months. But I have been especially loving this green tea by Yogi Tea. I’ve always loved their line of teas because they’re full of flavor and never weak. They have a variety of teas for anything, from bedtime (also a favorite) to digestion to whatever. Ha. The thing I love about their tea as well is the fact that you don’t need to add any sweetener. I used to always had agave or sugar to my tea but you don’t need to with these.

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The brand new L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte foundation. I’m in shade 104 Golden Beige and it’s a pretty darn good match for my winter color, haha. I haven’t mentioned this yet but I am falling in love with it. At first I didn’t think it was anything spectacular but the more I use it the more I love it. It sets quickly and is very light weight. It’s a medium coverage but I don’t feel the need for concealer with it. It isn’t completely matte either, which I also like. It’s a more natural finish. It lasts for quite a while, too. Not all day, but it’s still pretty good.

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Clinique Bottom Last mascara! How cute is this packaging? It’s so pretty and feminine.

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You can’t tell but the bottle itself is pretty small, probably as big as my index or middle finger. So the wand is very tiny, like a finger nail. But it makes for applying to your lower lashes great. And the best part? It doesn’t smudge or flake on me! and for someone who struggles with even waterproof mascara on the lower lashes, I freaking love it.

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I never really talk about specific makeup brushes, but these two right here are essential for my eye makeup. I do believe these are part of a limited edition set (Nic’s Pick by Real Techniques) but I think it’s still available. You also get 3 other brushes in the set but these two have become a part of my daily makeup routine.

The one on the left is the angled shadow brush and I use it first to apply my transition shade, usually a soft tan or brown color. The brush on the right is the base shadow brush, which is also available in the regular eye set. This specific one though I used for highlight or blending. I love them.

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My favorite face brushes!

On the far left is my Real Techniques buffing brush, which I have been going back to for foundation application. I still use my beauty blender but I find this brush works better for certain foundations and is also faster then the BB.

The middle left is an ELF mineral powder brush, which I found at Target and have been using specifically for contour. It fits perfectly in my contour area and blends the powder so well.

The middle right brush is a MAC 168 large angled contour brush, which I use for blush. I am able to sweep my blush on and it not go on patchy, which is something I’ve been dealing with with a few of my other blush brushes. This one, though, works like a dream. It’s my first MAC brush and is definitely a splurge, but I do love it.

The far right is a Real Techniques setting brush which I use for highlight after bronzer/contour/blush. It’s just the right size highlight. and yes, all of these brushes are soo soft, its like massaging your face when you use them.

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I already talked about this the other day, but I wanted to mention it again because I have been using it almost daily now. Haha. I don’t do a deep contour, but I have been loving the look it gives to my more oval face.

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A blush I have been liking to pair when I do a contour is MAC’s Pinch Me, which is a sheertone blush and is described as a dirty rose coral, which I have to agree. On my medium olive tone skin, it creates a pretty flush of color that looks pretty natural.

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I was wearing it my KVD post, if you’re wondering.

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Anastasia Beverly Hills Tamanna palette. I think I purchased this over the holidays when I had a 20% off coupon for Sephora and decided to buy it when I saw Casey Holmes on YouTube use it a lot. She and I both have a love for orange shades and this has one that is gorgeous.

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Pretty colors with a fun teal that I have yet to use. Haha.

Honestly, the colors I reach for the most are Bengal (transition shade that adds such warmth to any look), Gilded all over my lid, and Chocolate & Sangria to deepen up my look. Those 4 together are soo pretty. I also use Fresh as a highlight.

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So that’s it! I hope you enjoyed this post!

What have you been loving this last month?

xo, Briana

FTC : This is not a sponsored post.

A Sunday List

Heya guys,

I’m coming at ya with fresh nail polish on my nails (duh) and just feel like sharing a few random things πŸ™‚

1) Homemade granola. Yum.

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Growing up, my mom would always make some sort of granola and it could be eaten alone or on yogurt, which is the only way I eat mine. In nursing school, some sort of Greek yogurt and a granola topping was my go-to snack and sometimes the only thing I had time to eat during a clinical.

I was recently inspired by a new found friend and decided last week to make my own granola once again. I made a yummy Almond Joy granola that I found via Pinterest. I omit the chocolate though. I then eat it on honey Greek yogurt and ohmygoodness is it delicious. I made the first batch here at home and my dear in-laws actually ate it all within the week, while I only had one serving of it. I made another batch at my parents house though so my mom could enjoy some and I could too when I’m working there. It’s also one of my favorite post-workout snacks.

2) I got a hair trim today.

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I saw “trim” rather than “cut” because she only took off like an inch and a half. I could definitely use a little bit more than a trim, but I am way to protective of my hair and refuse to part with any more of it. For now. She totally understood though (thank you!) and said that one it does get to my desired length, then we can really work on getting rid of all the dead. I really like it when they understand. Ha.

C) I found a coconut water I can actually enjoy.

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Do you like coconut water? I think it’s an acquired taste. I avoided it for a long time because I couldn’t stand the taste of it and I tried a lot. Then I saw this one and decided to give it another go. I chugged that entire liter down pretty quickly. Even my husband (who hates coconut water) was impressed. Haha.

Speaking of water, since I’ve been more active and cut out a lot of soda and sugary drinks, I am drinking so much more water. Which means frequent trips to the loo. Like every hour. Gotta keep those kidney’s working! Sorry, nurse TMI.

IV) Remember that post I did on the Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy? I liked the actual polish itself but decided that the top coat was lacking in shine and finish. I loved the staying power of it, as it certainly lasted a bit longer than a regular top coat.

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However, I have found a way to make it work! I simply add a different top coat on top of that! Ha. I also am showing you the base I prefer. So my system is a)base coat,Β  b) nail polish, c) diamond top coat, and d) the quick dry top coat.

I find that most of the time, my polish will last for about 4-5 days without a lot of chipping and the shine is pretty decent. I wash my hands frequently and am just using my hands a lot throughout the day so most polish doesn’t stand a chance. But I do like this current system I’m using!

g) Last week Bub and I spent every other night watching the LOTR trilogies and have been enjoying them. We decided to watch them again because I’ve been reading The Hobbit and it got me interested in the other series again. I forget how much I love those movies. I was also reminded of how much I like the rugged look on a guy (hello Aragorn…) and how much I love it when Bub does not shave… πŸ˜‰

We watched a different movie every other night because on the other nights, we’ve been watching the Netflix series Marco Polo and it’s the kind of series that totally drags you into the next episode with a cliff hanger. Lots of nudity (goodness, how did they not have more kids then they really did?) but overall it’s entertaining and is making me interested in that era of history again.

Anyhow, I hope you are all doing well!

Enjoy this last bit of weekened!

xo, Briana

FTC: This is not a sponsored post.

My Best of Beauty [2014]

2014 is coming to an end and so I thought it would be a fun idea to do my best in beauty for the year! Now this can include the things that have come out this year, things I’ve purchased this year, or just the things I have used the most for the entire year!

Also, I don’t plan to go in-depth with each product, but I’ll be quick about it as there is a lot to show πŸ˜‰ I hope you enjoy!

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Good ol’ chapstick! And my favorite has been the newest versions by EOS, specifically the coconut milk one. Oh soo yummy.

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It’s a 10 has been a life saver for my hair! I stopped using it for a few months (it’s pricey!), and I could really tell a difference in my hair, especially the ends! I also recently switched from Aveeno’s Positively Radiant moisturizer to this one. I don’t plan on going back because I think it was breaking me out! Ever since I switched, I haven’t gotten any of those nasty, huge, deep pimples on my chin or jaw area. I’ve been plagued with them for months now but haven’t gotten any since I started using this moisturizer.

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Now I haven’t started using MAC shadows until the last few months but I do love’em and am so glad I’ve invested in them.

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My Urban Decay Naked 3 was a huge part of my life in the beginning of the year. It’s just so pwitty and rosy gold.

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This is not only a beautiful palette but it smells divine! Believe it or not, my favorite shades in this are the matte neutral shades, with maybe a shimmery one thrown in. Ha.

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Jordana Fabuliner in black or brown on my upper lid while lining my lower lid with NARS helps define my eyes yet doesn’t make them look small, which is odd for hooded eyes like mine. Both brands are pigmented and very long-wearing! Great for my oily lids.

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My beloved (and now dried up) YSL Babydoll and it’s near dupe Maybelline Lash Sensational, which is a new purchase but I already love it so much! Before I bought this, I was using Too Faced Better Than Sex, which is okay, but not my favorite. However, both the YSL and Maybelline are great at lengthening, adding volume, and a curl. They last all day without flaking (on me at least) and are super black.

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In the summer or when I need my makeup to last all day, I would use either of the Maybelline color tattoos to help my shadow last. I use Barely Branded or Bad to The Bronze, depending on the look I’m going for.

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For my brows, which I finally feel like I’m getting the hang of after two years of doing them, I use the ELF brow kit. I use a Real Technique brow brush and only use the shadow on the right. The left is a wax that I barely touch, only when a random hair is being stubborn. I have yet to find a brow gel I really like.

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I know I’ve raved about all of these before but NARS is by far absolute favorite! Ugh, I’m so glad I bought it after avoiding it for so long. The only thing that stopped me from getting it was the cost! And how sweet is my hubby… he bought me a backup bottle for my birthday last month? I love him.

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I know I’ve talked about this a bunch, too! My MAC Mineralize Skin Finish. When applied on top of my foundation, it creates a perfect finish while still looking like skin and not being too cakey.

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My favorite blushes! Mac Peaches (not in a case), Mac Make You Mine (limited edition, sorry!), Wet N Wild Pearlescent Pink and Mellow Wine. Make You Mine has been my staple for winter time. It’s a rosy peach with a sliiiight sheen to it. Pearlescent Pink was my most used during the summer and I plan to use Peaches a lot this spring and summer.

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Swatches of mah blushes!

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I never thought I’d be so into highlighters as much as I have the last few months! I got Mac’s Soft N Gentle then the Hourglass Ambient Lighting palette with a recent Sephora promo. They’re. So. Pretty.

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No flash.

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With flash! As you can see, Soft n Gentle has a definite shine to it, while the Hourglass powders don’t. I know you can use them as an all over powder, but I’m already pretty oily so no extra shine for me! I use them as your basic highlighter. So pretty though.

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I have been using this for about a year now and use it nearly every time I do my makeup. Do you see how long it lasts? It’s amazing! It’s Physician’s Formula Bronze Booster for medium to dark. It has a slight sheen to it as well, but you can’t really tell once applied.

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Lip liners! Can’t believe I use lip liners now, but that’s because I actually use lipstick now! Haha.

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IΒ also realize I spelled MilaniΒ wrong in the picture. Oops!
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and here are my favorite lipsticks! L-R : Too Faced La Creme in Pink Chocolate, MAC’s Mocha, Retro, and Del Rio. If you had to ask, Del Rio might be my favorite and I would wear it every day if my hubs liked it. Haha. It scares him, because it is a bit dark one applied on the lips but I looove it for winter! Retro is a gorgeous red/brown, Mocha has been my go-to nude, and Pink Chocolate is something I can put on without a mirror.

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This is Del Rio on my lips. Isn’t it so pretty??

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Obviously wearing Retro πŸ˜‰ This was a photo I posted on the new GlamLifeGuru app. Have you tried it? I love her channel and was so excited to download her new app!

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and finally, my beloved Beauty Blender. This is my backup. I didn’t want to show you the one that very much needs a wash. Ha. I love this with any of my foundations. It creates a perfect finish and just blends like a dream. If you haven’t already, please do try it! It is seriously worth it!

So I believe that is it πŸ™‚ What have been your best beauty products this year?

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and that it’s filled with friends, family, and love! My hubby and I are celebrating Christmas Eve tonight with his family and then tomorrow will be our Christmas morning with them. Then we’ll be with my family on the real Christmas Eve and then the real Christmas day! Got it? Haha.

xo, Briana

FTC : This is not a sponsored post

I Have A New Strategy. For My Makeup.

As you know, I love makeup. Too much love? Never. Do I have enough makeup for more than one person? Uh, yeah. My husband can back me up on that. Ha. But do I want more? Always.

But I’m not here to brag or say, “ooh, look at everything I have!” I’m here to say that with this obsession of mine, I have a problem and I think many of you fellow makeup lovers can relate to and that is… I never use it up or use one thing enough.

I tend to get in a set way with one thing for a few weeks then move on to the next and so on. With that, I tend to leave quite a few things left untouched, my money going to waste. I’m constantly trying new things but never allowing myself to go back to things I know and love. My beloved Naked palettes go untouched and good mascaras dry up.

So today I came up with a plan and I want to share it with you.

Starting today and from now on, I shall use a different a) eye palette, b) mascara, c) lipstick, and d) foundation every day.

Does this make sense? Basically, I have to use a different item every day.

My makeup ruts lately (things I have been sticking to) include : Using my Nars foundation every day and ignoring my Estee Lauder DW and my CG Stay All Day, both of which I love. I have also been using my MAC eyeshadows constantly, ignoring my new UD Vice 3 palette and of course my other UD palettes, as well as my Lorac and Too Faced palettes. Eyeshadows are the hardest ones for me! I have too many, but all of which I love! I’ve also been stuck on various mascaras while ignoring other perfectly good ones. Getting stuck in a rut can also include how you apply your makeup. Lately I’ve been using a brush rather than my BB blender to apply foundation. It’s a bit faster and also more full coverage.

So today, the first day of my challenge, I used my Estee Lauder DW, my original Naked palette, a nude lipstick, but I stuck to my new favorite Maybelline mascara. Tomorrow I may continue to use the Estee Lauder or perhaps my Covergirl and then use one of my other Naked palettes.

What do you think of this random plan? Do you get in a makeup rut? What do you do to change things up?

Hope you’re all doing well and that your holiday plans are coming along wonderfully! I’m so excited for Christmas this year! I still need to share Hubs’ and my little Christmas tree, plus our adorable stockings. I love them πŸ™‚

Until next time…

xo, Briana

They Made Me Do It!

There was a tag on YouTube, perhaps last year, called “YouTube Made Me Do It!” and it was essentially the person doing a show & tell of certain items that they purchased because of others that they followed on YouTube or even blogs! You know you have a few items because of your favorite gurus and bloggers, right? I know I do!

So here’s my list of items that I’ve purchased because of my favorites! πŸ˜‰

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Let’s just go ahead and state ALL three of the above… Haha! And I love them all!

I purchased the NYX setting spray thanks to EmilyNoel83. It doesn’t necessary help makeup last all day, but it helps take away any cakeyness (cakieness? Cakie-ness?) away that powder might give.

The NARS Sheer Glow foundation is from various YouTubers πŸ˜‰ Tanya Burr, Tati aka GlamLifeGuru, Zoella, etc… Same goes with the Beauty Blender! Although Tati and Casey Holmes aka itsbl0ndie definitely helped me go for it even more. But I cannot do my makeup without it now. A brush or my fingers will never compare to it. And there will never be an equivalent dupe; I know this for a fact.I have tried them all.

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Too Faced Chocolate Bar

I avoided this for as long as possible. I literally avoided it for months. As you know, I have nearly every single neutral eyeshadow palette and really do not need another one. However, I went ahead and bought it, thinking if I wasn’t too impressed with it, I would simply return it. But, and a big but, I really like the matte shadows in it, and the green, and the reddish ones. Okay, I like them all. And it smells yummy…

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Now I had every intention of using this for my wedding when I purchased it, which I did, but I was also spurred on to buy it thanks to EmilyNoel83 and Casey Holmes. Those two, I tell ya. I trust them way too much. But I do adore them. Haha. It is a beautiful, full coverage foundation. And really does last all day. My goodness, it was perfect for my wedding, which was blazing hot!

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My faaaaaaavorite mascara. For ever. My current tube is about dried up, which I’m not looking forward to because I really don’t want to spend money on an expensive tube of mascara. But I do love it. So much. I did an entire blog post about it.

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Real Technique brushes, including the eye set. They are so soft; they work great; and they’re a decent price. Fantastic! I have yet to try Sigma brushes. That would be something else on this list if I tried/liked them. Ha.

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It’s A 10

This is something I saw for a long time that many gurus were using, as well as the macadamia deep repair hair mask. While I have yet to purchase the hair mask, I’m on my second bottle of this product. It definitely helps with detangling and I also noticed a difference in my ends when I use it. I went about 1-2 months without and my ends were super dry without. I repurchased it and my hair is much happier with it!

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Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara.

The name alone cracks me up. I’m sure you’ve seen this floating around the Interwebs, either on YouTube or blogs. While it certainly doesn’t replace my beloved YSL Babydoll, it does a decent job of volumizing. I’m not a big fan of the traditional mascara wands, but I I have to say I am impressed with this one. Maybe it’s the hourglass shape, I don’t know.

So that’s my list for now! What have you purchased because of one of your favorites on YT or blogs? Let me know in the comments below!

xo, Briana

FTC – All products mentioned were purchased by me and these are my own honest opinions.