spring is still coming right? no one called it off?

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e.l.f. nail polish in Fire Coral ($1)

It's so sad when the only thing you can do to remind yourself of nicer weather is change your nail polish...

Happy Birthday Lucy!

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I'm a day late and a dollar short but dammit, I'm gonna wish Lucy Lawless a belated Happy Birthday!!!



Cause you know what my childhood would have been without Hercules and then Xena back to back on Saturdays and Sundays? Much less kick ass. And with much less eye candy in the form of the late (and very much missed) Kevin Smith.

up on the housetop

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I know one shouldn't wear full Forever21 outfits. But that doesn't mean I won't :)

Forever 21+ (plus size) dress, sweater, & earrings ~ Steve Madden boots ~ Urban Outfitters belt

This posing business is hard work - and I've just started!

And it was too cold and too chilly to be up on the roof without a coat [[brrrr]]

I mentioned that I liked Forever 21 right?

grr

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This makeup was supposed to look like something specific. 

And it has now turned out quite specifically wrong.

Sigh. 

Keeping it Curl-icious

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Soooo. My hair. My hair that for most of my younger years was the bane of my existence. I just didn't know what to do with it! It frizzed out most of the time and if it wasn't in braids in highschool that meant something spectacularly special was going on. Cause that girl with the pony tail braid everyday? Totally me. 

Luckily in college I read in a magazine somewhere the following advice : 

"Like how another woman is styling her hair? Ask her how she does it."

This might seem obvious but to me, in college, it was mind blowing. I feel like we're always taught to admire other people but not attempt to aspire to the same greatness. It's like we're all so afraid that someone's going to get offended if we tell them how great they look and that we'd love to try it ourselves. But armed with this 'revolutionary' guise to hair care I went out into the world - and conquered (though I have to admit I primarily stuck to my friends/fellow students when asking).

The first thing I learned?

1) Unless you're going to be straightening your curls, put down the brush.

Brushing your curls just encourages frizz and destroys every natural curl your hair is trying desperately to form. If you have to use anything use a wide toothed comb, but I recommend just your fingers - that's all I use. 

2) Less is more - and gel is usually the enemy.

I hate to say any one product is the enemy, and I'm sure gel has undergone some drastic changes since when I used it, but you know what I think gel is good for? Nothing. It ends up making your curls crunchy and if god forbid you use too much? White flakes. Not pretty.

3) Try clipping your curls to the top of your head while they dry - or washing the night before and letting the curls dry horizontal.

I know it sounds ridiculous, but 90% of the time I wash my hair at night. Then when I lay down to sleep I scoop all of my hair up and over my pillows so that I don't crush anything. If all goes well and I didn't move too much during the night, I wake up with beautiful volumized curls that need little to nothing from me to wear out. Sometimes I get the same result from using a big clip and gently holding everything on top of my head while it dries, but as curly hair has a mind of it's own, nothing is guaranteed.

I'm sure someone out there is going to want to talk to me about a diffuser, but I've been there and tried that. I don't really like it and I don't think my curls look all that great when I'm forced to do it. 

4) And now on to products....

For my shampoo and conditioner I swear by Pantene. I'm currently using the Dry to Moisturized curl line, but I really think it's just a matter of preference. Pantene is in the budget and has never let me down so if you're in the market for something new I highly recommend it.

After washing my hair first I use my fingers and comb through Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Leave in Conditioning Creme. It's anti-frizz and I much prefer a cream over a serum. Next I pour a little Bumble and Bumble Bb Curl Defining Creme into the palm of my hand, emulsify it, flip my head over and scrunch it into my hair from root to tip, bottom of my hair to the front. This makes sure that everything gets a bit of product but the top bits, the curls you definitely don't want to over-product, get the least.

**Now I know the Bumble and Bumble creme is not cheap. $28 from Blue Mercury in fact, but I consider it worth. One bottle lasts me months, which means I don't feel ripped off. Still looking for a cheaper alternative? Try Pantene Curls Anti Frizz Creme - it gives me very similar results for about half the price. BUT I think it might be discontinued so if your local drugstore doesn't carry it I'm sorry for recommending something you can't get! :( **

5) Let air dry and that's it!

I hope this hasn't been too 'duh' for people and maybe one or two of you have actually discovered a few products you'd like to try for yourself! It's definitely been a matter of trial and error to get my hair to work for me so I always say try to buy products from places with a good return policy and never over look the value of a good hair cut!



Questions? Leave them in the comments and I'll answer what I can!

day to night

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In case you haven't noticed, if the time is right and you're over at my house I'm probably going to ask you if I can do your makeup. Even if I never end up doing it professionally or part-time I still enjoy working with other people and seeing what I can do. And luckily my friends are cool enough that they let me play around without judging. Cause you know what sucks? Judging.

This time around I decided to do a day to night look at Tanya. I have to admit though that this is definitely a day look with some OOMPH. I didn't construct it thinking of whether Tanya would do it herself or not, but with an eye to what I thought would emphasize her features and still look appropriate for day.

For evening believe it or  not, not a lot of extra products where used. I went back in with the Cocoa Puff eyeshadow from the Too Faced duo and deepened the crease and outer 'v' of the eye. Bringing the bottom shadow a bit further in and then lining the eye with black kohl pencil is definitely enough on its own. But me being me I jazzed with up a bit more with a bit more blush and red lips.

Day


Products Used:
~~e.l.f. Mineral Face Primer
~~e.l.f Flawless Finish Foundation in Porcelain
~~e.l.f. Studio Concealer in Beige
~~UDPP
~~Estee Lauder Double Wear creme shadow in Golden Apricot
~~Too Faced eyeshadow duo in Cocoa Puff & Honey Pot
~~Sally Girl eyeshadow in Champagne
~~e.l.f. cream eyeliner in black
~~Black Radiance Mascara
~~Sephora kohl eyeliner pencil in 01 keep black
~~Black Radiance blush in Spiced Ginger
~~e.l.f. High Definition Powder

Night


Big thanks to Tanya for being my model and being willing to put up with me when I'm like 'Oh wait - let me take another picture. That one didn't turn out right.'

chambray my way

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Hmm. I hesitate to post these anymore as one of the blogs I follow just had her own chambray shirt post today and it's a much more put together outfit than mine.

F*ck it.

I'm still working on the OOTD (outfit of the day) thing and if you don't try you never get better right? At least I'm able to say that with my new camera these day pictures turned out well - especially the close-up macro shots. The only problem I have now is that close-up shots using the flash (of makeup or whatever) turn out strangely orange-toned. I've still got some kinks to work out I think.

AT Factory chambray shirt ~ AT Factory pencil skirt (navy blue) ~ shoes from TJ Maxx

Apparently my favorite post is instinctive, hair up or down

I snatched up this bracelet from a booth at Eastern Market

It's been about a week since I applied it and I don't love how it crackled this time, but here's the OPI Black Crackle from the Katy Perry collection

Why not? A Sailor Moon Tribute

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So in case you haven't heard the news let me just go ahead and share this greatness with you: after 6 years Kodansha USA is going to release brand new deluxe editions of the Sailor Moon manga! Starting in September you're going to be able to get your hands on new copies of this very much iconic anime, a show and character that's well known to pretty much everyone. I mean, who doesn't recognize good ole 'meatball head' these days? Even at it's worst you have to admit it's a great representation of the type of global marketplace that was being created at the time. American consumers wanted Japanese cultural product, even if had been totally white washed.


And yes I recognize that the original American release of the show was very much white washed. Plots were changed, sexes were unchanged - all to try and make it a little more 'palatable' to the American audience. But you know what? At least it was a start and to my little untrained middle school eyes it was hot shit. 

To commemorate it's return I thought really nothing would be better than a little looksie at what I consider to be some of the top moments - American, Japanese original, movie - whatever. It's my favorite list so I get to do whatever I want.

P.S. - In case you were wondering I always wanted to be Sailor Jupiter. Always. She was so kick-ass!




5. Episode 81 - "Final Battle" (I only really like the part from 5:26 on)



4. Episode 30 - "A Crystal Clear Destiny"


3. Episode 200 - "Usagi's Love! The Moonlight Lights Up the Galaxy"


2. Sailor Moon R Movie - Ending


1. Episode 40 - "Day of Destiny"



And that's it. A quick look at some of my very favorite Sailor Moon episodes. Though don't get me wrong - I could totally name more. Believe me I could name more. But I try to save people from that unceasing dorkitude. Though if someone wanted to host a Sailor Moon sing-a-long (in English OR Japanese), I'd totally be down.

It's that time again -

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Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

While I (due to job stuff) was not able to work green into my outfit day, I hope each one of you out there in cyber land is keeping Ireland in your hearts! One of my most favorite life experiences are the 6 weeks I spent there one summer in college. I learned a lot and saw so much more than I could have ever expected. 

To help everyone commemorate this grand day though I thought it couldn't hurt to share the recipe to my favorite shooter. That I had for the first time in Ireland. The...

BABY GUINNESS


This great little drink is made with two ingredients (traditionally) -  Tia Maria (a coffee flavored liquor) and Bailey's. To make:

1) Pour the Tia Maria into your shot glass about 3/4 of the way full
2) Slowly (!) pour in the Bailey's down the side of the glass attempting to not mix the two so that the Bailey's sits on top of the Tia Maria
3) That's it! If done correctly you should have a small shooter that looks like a dark glass of Guinness with a perfectly settled foam head. 

Hope you get to have one or two of YOUR favorite Irish-influenced drink today!

Hit or Miss Weekend

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Hit: I think I found a new concealer from Sephora - Kat Von D's Tattoo Concealer in Almond (I'm still trying the sample - I'll let you know)

Miss: The SA (sales associate) who helped me in Sephora had SERIOUS bitch-face which made my shopping experience less enjoyable.

Miss: The SA at MAC was also annoying. Who tells a customer that 'MAC products are made to work best only with other MAC skin care products'? That's bullshit and unrealistic. As an informed shopper why don't you just tell me you can't help me before you waste my time?

Hit: I managed to get my hands on two of the new 8-pan palettes from Wet 'n Wild!

Miss: Red Riding Hood. MASSIVE miss. I'm gonna review it soon but please learn from my mistake and DON'T SPEND MONEY ON THIS DRECK.


Hit: Happy hour at Thunder burger & bar in Georgetown. Even though I can TOTALLY tell that they've suddenly started giving 2 mini corn dogs and sliders instead of the usual 3. Yes Thunder bar - I can tell.

Hit: I got a black maxi dress from Filene's - AND had a coupon! It's too dressy for day but I can't wait for summer nights to show it off :)

To summarize? 4 Hits and 3 Misses. Not bad, not bad at all.

Why I Love YouTube

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1. This is the first time I've done bottom lashes.
2. This is the first time I've tried to create a mask over half my face.
3. This look required so many products it just wasn't worth it to me to list them all.

Just in case you guys think that last point is a joke, let me just tell you I'm completely serious. I was basing this of LetzMakeup's carnival mask (see embedded video below) and it turned into a huge amalgam of just using what I had around me. I mixed bases, shades of purple - there was a lot of trial and error for a look that if things had gone well I would have worn in public. 

Hmph.

Probably not a good idea to repeat that. Kind of like how I said 'Oh this won't take too long, I'll give myself an hour or so'. Yeah. Not happening. TWO FULL HOURS. I might have been exaggerating for the Black Swan look but for this one, because I'd originally had an event to go to, I actually timed it. 

I do have to say though that I'm kind of proud of myself for finishing it. I've never done anything like it before and I think it shoes that even if you're not sure in the beginning things can turn out great - or at least not so sucky - in the end. Hope you enjoy!


choose happiness

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In My Inbox (Daily Deals)

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~Ann Taylor Factory (outlet): 40% off your dress purchase from March 9 - 22
Fine Print: Sale valid March 9-22, 2011, only at Ann Taylor Factory stores. Reduction is taken at checkout. Taxes, shipping and handling fees, purchases of gift cards, charges for gift boxes and payment of an Ann Taylor or LOFT Credit Card are excluded from any discount. 

~Banana Republic: 35% off of up to two full priced items (free shipping with $50 purchase). Enter code: JNM3PTXNXC44
Fine Print 1: Offer valid on regular-priced Banana Republic merchandise purchased online only between 12:00 AM ET and 11:59 PM ET on March 8, 2011. 35% off discount valid on up to two (2) items per customer. Offer not valid at Banana Republic stores, Edition by Banana Republic, Banana Republic Factory Store, or international shipments.

Fine Print 2: Promotion excludes Banana Republic men's and women's shoes, Chan Luu bracelets, and short sleeve Timeless Vee Neck, short sleeve Timeless Tee, Sleeveless solid Timeless Tank, and long sleeve Timeless Tee.

~Stila sale on HauteLook: 3/8 @ 11am EST
Fine Print: shop "color wheels, gloss collections and more makeup"

Add a dash of green...

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I think it was Mimi from Makeup Withdrawal who suggested pairing lime green with my new favorite blue shadow, MAC's Clarity. I hadn't thought of it truthfully, because who really thinks about lime green and bright blue?

It doesn't really matter I guess, because either way I said screw it and a few weekends ago played around and came up with this look. A bit random to say the least, and probably not something you'd wear without a specific event, but still I like it a lot!



Products Used:
~~UDPP
~~Jane eyeshadow in Rock Star
~~MAC eyeshadow in Soft Brown
~~MAC Shadestick in Sea Me
~~e.l.f. cream liner in Black
~~Giorgio Armani maestro eye liner in black
~~Sephora kohl eye liner in keep black
~~Stila eyeshadow in sajama
~~Stila eyeshadow in makalu
~~Paula Dorf eyeshadow in Hussy
~~MAC eyeshadow in Clarity
~~Rimmel Soft Kohl eye liner pencil in White
~~NYX Jumbo eyeshadow pencil in Lemon
~~NYX eyeshadow in Lime Juice