Thursday, June 25, 2015

CND Vinylux Weekly Manicure Review!

I have been taking care of my nails since I was a young girl.  I have always wanted them pretty and painted.  I have also always been someone who rarely goes for a professional manicure.  I went through a six month stint, 5 years ago, where I got gel manicures.  The process of removing the gel polish destroyed my nails!  It took several months of horrible breakage before they were back to normal.  I haven't had a gel manicure since.

A few weeks ago, while visiting my longtime hairstylist, she gave me a bag of goodies.  Inside were two Vinylux polishes and top coat.  I had never heard of this product, and was excited to try them to see how they compare to the salon gel manicures that I used to get. Vinylux claims to be a weekly manicure very similar to a gel/shellac manicure, but without the nail light.

No base coat is needed.  Application is the same as if you were doing a traditional manicure.  I applied 2 - 3 coats (which I always do).  It applied very smooth and even.  I had no streaking or bubbles!  Bubbles are something that I am always dealing with, and get very frustrated by.  The brush is a great sized that allows me to apply to the cuticle without getting any on the cuticle, which just looks so sloppy.  The coats dried quickly, quicker than traditional polish, and I then applied two layers of top coat.  The top coat dried and set as quickly as the polish.  My nails looked so smooth, shiny, and just as great as if I had went to the salon!!

Vinylux in Tropix

So, how long did my manicure last??

8 days after application

13 days after application

As you can see, I had NO CHIPPING, just grow out.  I am so happy with the at home gel manicure that I can't wait to purchase more.  I spend so much time on skincare, makeup, fitness, haircare, and nails.  I am ecstatic to find something that will cut back on some of my beauty time!  

You can purchase vinylux at Ulta or, and  They retail for around $10 a piece, and they offer 90 colors to choose from!

This week's mani and pedi in Crushed Rose

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

My May Beauty Favorites!!

- Lamora Makeup Brushes

I wanted to add a few more face brushes to my collection, but not spend a fortune doing so.  I searched amazon for quality, inexpensive brushes, and after reading many reviews, decided on these. I am so happy I decided on these!  They are 6 high quality (in wear and performance), with an excellent price tag.  In this kit, you receive a flat top kabuki brush, angled detailer brush, blush brush, blending brush, small shadow brush and a brush cup holder.  They are vegan friendly and cruelty free.  I have used these for at least 8 weeks, and have washed them several times with no loose bristles or breakdown.  I think these are perfect for an experienced makeup lover looking to expand their collection, a makeup beginner, or as a gift for a fellow beauty lover.  The case makes these easy for storage or travel.  If you are interested in these brushes or want to learn more, Click Here!

- NYX Tame & Frame Brow Pomade 

 I recently lightened my hair, and wanted a color that was a little lighter for my brows.  I own the Anastasia Brow Pomade and love it, but wanted to see how this product compared.  Both products really perform the same.....long lasting waterproof formula, and a gel/mousse consistency.  They look the same on my brows, except the NYX is in a lighter shade.  The only difference that I can see is that the NYX formula is lighter, has more of a mousse like texture, and is a little easier to work with because it isn't as heavy.  I reviewed the Anastasia one awhile ago, and mentioned that there is a learning curve when it comes to the product.  I do think if you are starting out with a brow pomade, the NYX one is a bit easier for a beginner.  Because the Anastasia product is a bit heavier, that you do get a more dramatic brow.  I like them both.  It really just comes down to personal preference or your budget.  The Anastasia is $18, while NYX is less than half.  One thing that is necessary with both of these products is a good angled brush for application.  It needs to be thin enough to be precise.  At first, I used what I had in my collection, but went back and bought the Anastasia Beverly Hills angled brush, because my brushes just weren't working well.

-  NYX Micro Brow Eye Brow Pencil

I wanted a brow pencil that would be quick and give a more natural look, yet not lean too red.  As a brunette, it is very hard to find a more ashy pencil.  So many of them have a tendency to look red.  This one is a great brown color, with no hint of red.  It is a very skinny, retractable pencil with a spooly at the end.  I line the bottom edge of my brow, the top edge, and then fill in the middle.  Using the spooly to brush the brows after product is applied, really disperses the color and gives a more natural look.  This is more of a waxy formula, which I prefer.  I find that if a brow pencil is too creamy, it is easy to apply too much product.  Plus, it can easily wipe or sweat off.  I have heard that this formula is a dupe for Anastasia Beverly Hill's Brow Whiz.  I don't own that product, so I can't be sure of that, but it costs less than half the price and I am very happy with it, so I feel no need to purchase a more expensive pencil.

- Mac Minerlized Blush: Gentle

This is my second mineralized blush from Mac.  This is such a gorgeous formula, that is a beautiful pinky rose color.  If you like a glowy blush with a little shimmer (not glitter), this is for you!  It is a great everyday product, because it is a blush and highlighter in on.  It's smooth, blendable, pigmented formula gives that angelic glow without being overpowering.  Perfect for those lighter summer makeup days!

- Mac Blush: Sunbasque 

 This is my newest purchase from Mac.  I have been obsessed with blushes this year, and this one is soooo BEAUTIFUL!  So much so, that it is one of my very favorites EVER!  It is so perfect for spring and summer.  It's classified as a sheer tone shimmer blush, but I don't consider this color sheer.  It gives a shimmery bronze look to the cheeks, but is not too shimmery or overpowering.  I wear this on it's own, in conjunction with other blushes, and also with bronzers.  My mom also bought this shade and loves it, so it looks good on even more mature skin.  If you like the summer, bronzy look, this blush is exactly what you are looking for.  A summer must have!!

- Sephora Sun Disk (limited edition)

This is my first Sephora Sun Disk.  They are released every year in the spring.  I saw this and knew I would love it!  It is definitely a warm toned bronzer with just  hint of shimmer, that provides a bit of a glow to the cheeks.  This is another two-in-one type of product (except it's like a three-in-one), because there is no need for blush and highlighter.  On those lighter makeup days, pop this on the cheekbones, and you instantly have a warm, bronzed summer look.  I use this on my forehead and jaw line as well.  It just balances out the face, and gives a more natural, "I was just at the beach" look.  If you doing a full face makeup look, this is beautiful paired with Mac's Sunbasque.  I have been wearing this combo over and over again.  This is a limited edition product, so once it is's gone.  This cannot be purchased in store.  You can only find it at

*TIP - Bronzing is different than contouring.  It is all about the application and color of bronzer that you are using.  If you are doing a bronzing technique, you want to apply the bronzer where the sun would naturally tan your skin (the high points of your face).  You will want a bronzer with a warmer undertone to mimic a sun tan.  Many bronzers have some shimmer or sparkle, which add a nice highlighted touch.

If you are wanting to contour, you have to look at things a bit differently.  First, contouring is a technique that sinks in or recedes a part of the face.  Which is why many people contour under the cheek bones.  The contour will give a shadow which recedes that area to make the cheek bones pop.  If you have a high or wide forehead, contour the areas you want to recede.  The same for the nose and jawline.  When choosing a color to contour with, you want a matte finish and a brown shade that has a bit of gray in it, as opposed the the warm brown color of bronzing.  Shadows lean towards a grey or cooler undertone.  That's essential what you want to create on your face, a shadow.

- Sephora Lip Cream: Strawberry Kiss

I rarely wear red lipstick, but I saw this color on one of my favorite youtube beauty girls and thought it was just a beautiful color.  It is a pink/red color that isn't too dark or overpowering.  The is my first Sephora Lip Cream.  These are definitely a long wearing formula.  It has a doe foot applicator and applies smooth and feels creamy until it dries.  It dries to a matte finish, which is why it is so long wearing.  I rarely wear these types of formulas because they make my lips so dry, uncomfortable, cracky, and peel leaving behind a patchy mess.  This formula doesn't wear like that on me.  It isn't moisturizing by any means, but it also doesn't crack or wear funny.  I use a lip balm before applying, and it wears comfortably.  I would definitely like to try more colors in this formula.

- JLuxe Perfume

I received this perfume as a Mother's Day gift.  I love the Jennifer Lopez line at Kohl's.  This is my third perfume of her, and like the others that I have, I love this scent!  I didn't even realize that she had a new fragrance out.  I really couldn't find anything in the store that I wanted, and at the last minute saw this by the register.  I HAD to have it!!  It is very different from the other fragrances of hers that I own (I have Glowing & JLove), and also my favorite of the three.  This one is definitely more of an evening scent, like for a date night or girl's night out.  Kohl's website describes this fragrance as an oriental floral that includes key notes of juicy pineapple, soft violet, and warm amber. It has more of a musk feel to it, and isn't super light and florally.  If an oriental type musk isn't your thing, you won't like it.  If it is, you will LOVE IT!!  This perfume has received the highest reviews of all her scents on