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Friday, April 29, 2011

Ottlite Makeup Mirror

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Some of you may have already seen my video on the Ottlite Makeup Mirror, but thought i'd also do a post on it. It's available at Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, Amazon, JoAnn's Craft Store, as well as a few other places. It's basically a makeup mirror that mimics natural daylight, to give you the most accurate color and lighting when applying your makeup. Tungsten (yellowish light) gives a wash of yellow to everything, so your perception of foundation color for example could be a few shades off. With the Ottlite, what you see, is what you get! The con is that it shows every detail, pores and all LOL.

It retails for $99.99 in some places but $69.99 on the Ottlite website, and I got it on the clearance rack at JoAnn's for $29! Such a frikkin' steal! LOL. JoAnn's has it on sale online for like $54-60, and even with a 40% coupon, it's still pricey, so if you are interested, definitely check out your local JoAnn's to see if there are any on clearance. It has one button which is the on and off switch (no dimmer), the mirror swivels, so you have a magnified version and a standard mirror. The base/stand reclines back and forward so you can achieve your desired level.

It also comes in different colors, such as pink, white, black, and teal with brown.

PROS: Nice, bright light, really gives you accurate representation of color so you never look weird
CONS: It can be TOO bright, no dimmer. For the retail price, the mirror part itself seems cheap, it has a cheap looking fake metal looking plastic on the border of the mirror, I would just expect more if I had to pay full price for this. Price itself is a bit much imo.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Eco Tools Alicia Silverstone Spring Collection

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Just a follow up post on the Eco Tools Traincase, this is the newest collection from Eco Tools' Spring Line from Alicia Silverstone. As you can see they have re-vamped the design of these bags. They are of course made of eco-friendly materials such as natural hemp, non-toxic inks, and tree-free paper. Also made of bamboo, recycled plastic, steel and aluminum, soybean oil, and crushed walnuts.

Best part? 1% of eco tools annual sales is donated to the 'For the Planet' organization.

I love Eco Tools, incorporating beauty with helping the environment all at the same time! Not to mention their stuff is great for those on a budget, and great quality! They put a lot of thought into their products and constantly come up with new things, and I can appreciate that.

The 2011 Spring Collection additions are:
- Deluxe Pencil Case ($7.99) which are designed to hold all your Eco Tools brushes. Has a removable interior case and storage pockets.
- Hanging Valet ($15.99) which is great for hanging in a hotel room when you travel, or for storing beauty must-haves. The tri-fold bag has three zipper compartments, including a removable bag and a secure hanging hook.
- 4-piece Backstage Vanity Set ($12.99) comes with a convenient countertop brush holder stocked with a Finishing Brush, Angled Eyeshadow Brush, and a Lash and Brow Groomer.
- Revised 6-piece Brush Set and Bag ($14.99) holds even more of your favorite brushes, and comes with a Blush Brush, Mini Foundation Brush, Mini Powder Brush, Spoolie Brush, and a Detailed Eye Shading Brush.
- Cosmetic Bag ($8.99) Great for keeping in the purse for on-the-go touch ups. (It's the one I have)
- Traincase ($14.99) Similar to my last Eco Tools Traincase post, just with the new design.

The Hanging Valet Bag is ideal when I am staying in a hotel, because I can just hang it on the hook on the back of the bathroom door and have all my essentials, moisturizers, toothbrush, etc. easily accessible to me and have everything organized in one spot. I love that they are see-thru too (instead of the mesh that some other valet bags have) because it makes it easier to see your things. The removable second pouch also comes in handy when you don't want to bring the entire thing with you.


The cute little cosmetic bag is what I am toting around in my purse right now, it's the perfect size but stores a lot!


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Sigma MAXBag Winners!

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Congrats to Lauren, Jenna, and SmashinBeauty- Winners of a Sigma MAXBag in the color of their choice!

Please email me with your shipping address and the color you would like.

Will be doing more giveaways soon! Thanks to everyone that participated!

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Eco Tools Traincase (Alicia Silverstone)

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*New design*
Eco Tools has added super cute bags and traincases to their popular collection from Alicia Silverstone (this particular style that I have is different from the new Spring 2011 collection (bottom pic) because it's the original version,  but I will be reviewing other bags from the new collection in my next post), but wanted to show the original first for comparison purposes. They are the same in terms of style and function, just a different design.

I bought this one at Walgreens for $11.99, and it has a removable clear zippered compartment underneath the lid on top to store more essentials like a toothbrush/toothpaste. makeup brushes, etc., and it's fastened with velcro. The traincase itself is pretty spacious, it fits a lot of things; however I don't like that there's no shell or liner to keep the case upright and sturdy, instead it flops around and potentially your stuff can fall off if you're not careful because it feels so flimsy.

Two of the popular cosmetic cases from the older version have been revamped with a very feminine floral design: the traincase ($14.99) and the cosmetic bag ($8.99) which carry all your necessary beauty accessories and can fit in any suitcase to make traveling a breeze.

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Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sigma MAXBag in Violet (& Giveaway)

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Happy Easter everyone! I recently received the Sigma MAXBag in Violet ($29, www.sigmabeauty.com), and this baby is not your normal makeup bag- it's HUGE! I love it! It comes in 2 other colors: Black and a light blue. My baby sister is graduating Junior High in June, and I will be flying up for the event, so when I travel- I always have the intention of packing light, and never do....but this bag eliminates me having to carry more than I need. Especially if I am at the airport, I hate bringing a makeup box because it's bulky and just causes a headache at the security point, so this bag is just a nice simple carry-on, in addition to my purse.

It is very spacious and it fits a lot of large items you can't normally fit in a regular makeup bag/box, I was able to fit my Sigma Make Me Up Brush Kit, a large eyeshadow palette, my Z Palette, my NuMe Flat Iron, and my hairbrush, and still had some room left for other things. It has a silky quilted pattern on the outside, (but be careful with this material, it tends to scratch or run easily if it gets snagged with something sharp, and can stain easily too), it has a handle on the side of the bag, and has a Sigma heart logo on the lower corner, it zips up top and has two separate compartments inside of the bag, and a zippered compartment on the other.

GIVEAWAY!!!  Want a chance to win a Sigma MAXBag? Sigma Beauty is kind enough to give away 3 of my readers a MAXBag in the color of their choice, no need to enter as I will randomly pick 3 winners who follow me on Twitter and/or has liked the Facebook page. (I want to avoid people having to put their emails down to enter due to spam.) Winner will be announced on Wednesday April 27th and winner will be contacted for the color of their choice and address to ship to. Winning item will be shipped from SigmaBeauty.com. Must be at least 18 years old to enter. US and International participants welcomed.

Disclaimer: All product reviews and honest opinions on this site are solely that of my own and I am not endorsed, affiliated, or paid for this review unless otherwise specified. These products were given for review consideration by www.sigmabeauty.com.
 

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Saturday, April 23, 2011

[Storage Solution]- 60 Tube Lipstick Organizer

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So part of my storage series, is of course storing and organizing my all-time favorite....lipsticks! Check out the video above to see it in action. If you have been a long time reader of my blog from way back in the day, you'll remember I used to store my lipsticks using a few acrylic lipstick holders and a clear storage case with clear dividers: CLICK HERE and HERE to see my older posts on these lipstick holders.

I eventually ran out of space and invested in a 60 tube lipstick holder with a tester row from www.azardisplays.com (which I will be using to hold my most frequently used lipsticks so it's easy to reach for). This particular lipstick holder is $12.50 on the actual site, it's also available on eBay, but there are a few sellers that are charging double with shipping (almost $40!), and I only paid like $24.80 total including tax and shipping buying it straight from the site. I love that it stores all my lipsticks, and I even had room to store my NYX Round Lipsticks, as well as other lippies from Avon, Revlon, etc.

It fits many brands, even fat lipstick tubes like my Avon one fit perfectly. It even held my lipglosses nicely. You can even store MAC lipsticks that are still IN the box (such as backups you bought) in this holder and it still fits!

It is not completely flat at the bottom, so if you are looking for something completely flat, then I suggest getting lipstick holders that are similar to my older lippie storages, the tiered acrylic holders, because the tester row is designed to hang off of a bathroom counter, table, or a vanity. You can still place them on a table top if you can't hang them off the edge of something, it will just be slanted but it's still sturdy, so if you don't mind that it slants on a flat surface, it works just as a great.

Because these have a deeper well than my old one, I am able to store them upside down without them wobbling around (since MAC lipsticks have a rounded top they move around when stored upside down), and it allows me to easily see the lipstick shades. It even fits my MAC backups that are still in boxes!

Old lipstick storage box:
 Previous lipstick holder (which held 24 lipsticks):

Holds lipglosses nicely too!

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Friday, April 22, 2011

Sephora Airbrush Brushes #57 and #55

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***I will be doing a tutorial and video series soon!!! Covering the following: How to mix liquid and cream foundations and how to apply concealer and foundation using these Sephora brushes.

I bought a couple of Sephora brushes a few weeks ago from their Professional Platinum Airbrush Series: The #57 Airbrush Concealer Brush ($24), and the Airbrush Foundation Brush in #55 (#34). These brushes are designed to work flawlessly with creams and liquids to give an impeccable airbrush looking finish, as the bristles are of synthetic Taklon. I like that you can also build up your desired coverage.  I have been using these brushes in my recent looks, so to get an idea of how they perform you can just take a look at my most recent FOTD's. :)

I love that the concealer brush isn't flat like many concealer brushes out there, it's a round fluff brush that really covers a lot of area and gives a nice airbrush look and finish when used with liquid concealers or even to blend and smooth out cream concealers.  
***[Tip]***- The trick is to swipe a tiny bit of your liquid or cream concealer under your eye once to cover the area, then DAB and PAT the foundation gently into your skin to avoid streaks and to give the airbrush look, then finish off by applying a translucent finishing/setting powder to ensure long lasting wear and prevent any creasing in fine lines and truly give that matte look.

The foundation brush is a wide headed fluffy brush, it's great for covering large areas such as the neck, cheeks, and forehead. There is also a smaller foundation brush (#56) also at Sephora that can cover smaller areas if desired. I apply my liquid foundation by putting one pump onto my makeup palette (flat metal pan I have by Graftobian) to allow me to mix (if necessary) and to easily apply it on my brush; then using circular motions, I apply all over my face, then dab and pat into my skin all over to get rid of any streaks. I then apply a finishing/setting powder to set my look and get rid of any shine.

I took a pic of the concealer brush head next to my camera's SD card to show you a size comparison side by side so you can get an idea of how big it actually is.

Price? These brushes are pricey but trust me, I think they are well worth it because the results are amazing. Honestly, if you are on a budget and I had to pick one, I would pick the concealer brush over the foundation brush because the concealer brush is unique and there's not a lot of concealer brushes out there that are quite like it. Many concealer brushes are flat and don't really allow you to blend your concealer to give you a flawless look. The foundation brush gives a nice airbrush look, but I think it can easily be replicated using other brushes or techniques, even my beauty blender sponge gives me a nice finish. Sephora also has tons of sales and discounts so it's best to buy these then. :)


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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

[Storage]- Ring Organizer Tray from Michaels

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Since I have been on a storage kick, I thought id also share this nifty ring organizer tray I found at Michaels craft store for $7.99, but Michaels always has 40% off coupons, etc so you can even nab it at a cheaper price. I love accessories, so I have an eclectic mix of rings, necklaces, and bracelets; and I used to just store all my rings in one big drawer and found it hard to find a certain ring sometimes since they were all pretty much just jumbled together. So I thought id get one of these ring trays to keep things more organized and make it easier to choose a ring to wear.

It's the same type of display trays you see at flea markets, or stores, has velvet cushioned rows that snugly hold onto your rings. The only con about this tray is that if you have larger banded rings, they will not fit, so you would have to store them separately. But I like that it stores a majority of my rings, at least the ones I usually wear the most.

They also have display holders for bracelets and necklaces too at Michaels.

This is how I used to store my rings, sorta just dumped it in a drawer:

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

[Storage Idea]- Circo Hearts Storage Container

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After Christmas last year, hubs and I went to Target to stock up on Christmas decorations since they are the usual 75% off, and came across these Circo Hearts Storage Containers. These are really storage for a little girls room (as the Circo brand caters to kids), however I thought they were cute to store some of my "most reached for items" when I get ready in the morning because they are deep and big enough to store a lot! Not to mention it makes it easy to have everything in one spot.

They have different sizes (like a longer, rectangular shaped one), and they are really cheap, I think I got each one for like $2.50 or $2.99, and they have them with lids as well but I opted not to have a lid. They are made out of plastic, similar to other storage containers, and it has a clear see-thru bottom.

Also....I went wedding dress shopping on Sunday, found one I am in love with (NOT this one), of course I won't post the one I love, that would be next year when I am actually married! LOL. But this is the dress my mom wanted me try on, and it was nice but it didn't wow me. :( 
I am still gonna try on a few more and see how those go. I realized that I suck at walking in heels. No joke. Since I am already tall, I am always in flats because wearing heels makes me feel like a giant, so hmmm maybe I can figure out a way to wear my chucks without mom knowing....HAHA, I kid, I kid!

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