Follow Me!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Nailed it or Failed it?: The Dogwood Tree you all requested

Here is another look that I have tried to duplicate. Click HERE for the step by step tutorial. 
Hope you like this look! 

Here is my inspiration:
Photo credit: original look by @Venomousvanity on Instagram 
Here is the finished look:

Obviously not exact but you tell me... Did I Nail it or did I Fail it?  

Hope you like what you see and as always,

Thank you for stopping by The Messy Vanity

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Instajunction, what's your function?

I was recently given the opportunity to try out and review a new website called Instajunction. After checking out the site and placing an order, here are my overall thoughts.

The Concept:  To easily create beautiful calendars, key chains, ornaments, mugs and more by using the photos you have posted on your Instagram account. 

The Site: The site itself was basic and simple. Nothing that really jumps out and "wows" you and definitely not anything that is really memorable to me. There is no way to log in from the main page. In fact, you can't do anything until you choose a product that you would like to make.  This to me was a bit aggravating. 

The Process: In one word, FRUSTRATING! After choosing a product and signing into my Instagram account, I was given a selection of 10 of my Instagram photos at a time to choose from. There were arrows to the left and right of the photos to be able to select the ones you would like to use. Sounds easy right? WRONG. While scrolling through my over 2000 Instagram pictures, I discovered that each time I chose a picture or pressed the back button, I was taken all the way back to the beginning. This was extremely frustrating! When you have scrolled through about 50 pictures and accidentally pass one you want, going all the way back to the drawing board is extremely time consuming. In fact, I had originally chosen a calendar as my Instajunction item but changed my mind after getting so frustrated with the process and decided to go with a set of key rings which only needed 4 pictures instead.  Even after choosing the key rings, I didn't have the patience to really choose my best pictures because I didn't want to continue to scroll over and over and over again. In the end, I chose 4 of my most recent photos and called it a day. I was also a bit sketchy of the fact that I never received a tracking number.  Knowing that it was coming from Europe, I expected it to take longer than usual. But after a while with no tracking number, I began to think it was never going to get here. 

The Product: The prices were reasonable and the product turned out really nice. The pictures themselves were larger than I expected which was a pleasant surprise and the colors were vibrant and clear. I only wish the site was easier to navigate so that I could have used some of the better pictures. 

Overall: I'm pleased with the end product and I think that if some of the site "kinks" are ironed out, Instajunction could really be onto something. So many of us are proud of the "Insta"photographers that we've become and to be able to have our "art" in our homes or to give as gifts is a wonderful way to make it more personal and meaningful. 

Nailed it or Failed it- How to create a Purple Smokey Eye

Last week I posted 4 looks that I was going to try to replicate. My first was the smoky purple eye on the top right, it's not as dramatic as the picture but I think it turned out great. Whatcha think?

Did I Nail it or Did I Fail it?

My Inspiration (Top Right)

My Result

For a full step by step tutorial on how I created this look, 





Let me know what you think in the comments below or on Facebook!

Thanks for stopping by The Messy Vanity!

(Again, it's just me and my iPhone people, I'm no photographer) 

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Old Hollywood Waves

Using the Bed Head Reverse Wand to curl your hair making sure each curl is curling in the same direction. Use the Tresemme Curl Activator Spray to set each curl. Brush out with a paddle brush until you have perfect Old Hollywood Waves.

Essentials for an Overnight Stay

During the holidays, you find yourself traveling to places you ordinarily wouldn't go. Most of the time it's to find that perfect gift, visit family or in my case, a company Christmas dinner. My husbands company is based a few hours away from home so we decided to make it an overnight stay. I mean really, who wants to drive hours home after eating a huge meal? The answer ... Nobody! Driving on a full belly and dressed in stuffy clothes is no ones idea of a fun night. So while I was packing for this quick overnight stay, I decided to put together a few essentials that get the job done, yet, keep the packing to a minimum.

1. A medium sized weekender bag.
2. Prepping is a must. Since I knew we were going to be getting to our destination around 3 and dinner was at 5 I had to come up with a plan to make my getting ready process a bit shorter. So before I left the house, I washed my hair. I didn't use any conditioner because I didn't want my hair to be weighed down. I lightly sprayed my hair down with my Loreal Dry Oil and ran a small amount of Big Sexy Hair Blow Dry Volumizing Gel through before grabbing my blow dryer. After blow drying, I sprayed my Tresemme Thermal Creations Curl Activator Spray lightly over all of my hair and combed it through. My hair was now prepped and ready for styling a few hours later. I applied some face moisturizer and was on my way. 
3. For the ride there: A broken in pair of boyfriend jeans, a plain white fitted tee, a comfy cardi (cardigan for those of you who don't use the word cardi for short ;)) and don't forget a cozy pair of moccasins. (Mine are a couple of years old and probably should have been thrown out long ago BUT I CANT LET THEM GO! They're just too cozy.)
Sorry for the shaky picture. I'm literally writing this on my ride home. 

4. Two organizer bags: 
         •one for hair and toiletries
In the first pouch:Toothbrush, deodorant, a small makeup bag of bobby pins and accessories. 
In the second pouch: Hairspray, paddle brush and a hair tie. 
In the third pouch: Hair Tools. I brought a reverse wand and my curl perfect curling iron just in case I wanted looser curls. Hey, just because you pack minimally doesn't mean you can't have options... Amirite??!!!

         •one for makeup
With a bag like this, you can easily pack everything you will need for a full face of makeup and organize your brushes so that they don't get ruined in you bag. 
5. A versatile eyeshadow palette
I brought my Lorac Pro palette 1) because I love it. 2) because it has a nice selection of matte and shimmer 3) because it's compact and easy to store and 4) it contains a range of colors that can be used for day or night looks. 
6. In your weekender bag: A long T-shirt to sleep in. A pair of yoga leggings and an oversized sweater for the ride home. Your organizer bags. Phone charger. 

Last but not least, the reason for the whole trip...

7. A garment bag with a classic little black dress and matching shoes. You can use the cardigan you wore on the ride up to complete the look.
**unfortunately I completely forgot to take pictures**

Throw it all in the car and you are on your way!  

Hope you liked the tips! 

Thanks for stopping by The Messy Vanity,

Friday, December 13, 2013

4 Looks

4 looks that I am going to try to Nail or Fail on The Messy Vanity. Which do you think I should try first?

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Who needs summer beachy waves when you can have slushy winter rain waves? Lol

My Big Birthday Haul!

It's finally here! The birthday haul I've been talking about for weeks. There are so many amazing products to go over I don't know where to begin. So I'll start with the first gift I received. I came in a big bag filled with Girhardelli  chocolates and Benefit Cosmetics! Let's begin...

I haven't tried either of these yet. There are quite a few of these "birthday haul" products that I am saving for a relaxing spa day at home. These are just a couple that are being reserved for that day.

Next up... Not one but TWO of my favorite Benefit Mascaras

  • Groovy Kind-a Love Make up Kit- This kit is filled with amazing Benefit products like the POREfessional face primer, Benetint, 4 beautiful neutral eyeshadows, They're Real Mascara, 2 shimmery cheek powders and a double sided sponge tip applicator. I'm not gonna lie, I'm kinda disappointed, I mean c'mon Benefit...A SPONGE TIP APPLICATOR!?!? Why not a brush? I just don't understand it.
And finally, a super cute Benefit Travel bag. This is going to come in handy for the occasional weekend getaway. 

Now onto another great brand... NYX
From (a great site to get all of your beauty needs PLUS they have great sales!) I got a couple of things I've been wanting to try out. The first is the Highlight and Contour Powder. 
I've got to admit, I my high hopes were quickly shot down with this one. The contour shade was just way too sheer and the highlight did nothing. Bummer :( That's ok. It will be on standby for emergency situations.
Again, another product I have high hopes for. I haven't given this one a try yet. My fingers are crossed.
From , I bought 2 NYX Glam Shadow Sticks. One in Wicked Onyx and the other in Elegant Marble
Wicked Onyx is a deep slate gray and Element Marble is a rose gold. I used the Wicked Onyx on my lids to help create a smokey eye. Throughout the day, it ended up leaving crease lines on my lids but next time, I'm sure setting it with a similar shadow will help to set it into place.

Next up....


Some of my best friends pitched in and  got me the gift of all gifts! It came complete with 2 bottles of wine, a gift card, Victoria's Secret bra and a few great "spa" items.
The first items are from Burt's Bee's. Its the Mango & Orange Sugar Scrub. It smells so good and I can not wait to use this. I've used sugar scrubs before and I absolutely love the way they make my skin feel. Being that this one is Burt's Bee's brand, I'm pretty sure it's going to be what I expect and more.

Next up from Burt's Bee's is the Baby Bee's Skin Cream . I tried to link to the Burt's Bee's site but couldn't find this product so it is.
I am loving this cream! Its the perfect remedy for my "winter skin".

I was also gifted a product that I've been interested in trying for a really long time now and that is a solid shampoo. If you don't know what a solid shampoo is you can find a lot of information here
I was given a Dr. Bronner Magic Soap. 
This is an all in one head to toe all natural soap. I've used it once on my face and thought it was great. Left my face smooth, clean and not at all dry. I'm really interested to see how it will do on my hair.
Speaking of hair, also in my gift bag there was a super cute aztec print paddle brush. 

While doing some online shopping at Ulta, I noticed that they had all of their Sexy Hair products on sale... JACKPOT! So I took this time to get a few products that I hadn't yet tried. Healthy Sexy Hair, which is a great leave in conditioner that I love, love, love! Silky Sexy Hair shampoo which smells amazing and I was really impressed with how my hair felt after using it. Finally, I picked up the Curly Sexy Hair Curl Powder Spray Foam. I haven't used it yet and am wondering how something can be a powder, spray and foam all in one. Needless to say, lookout for a review on this one for sure.

Also from Ulta, I got the Lorac Rockin' Red Hot Pro Set. I had been dying to get the Lorac Pro Palette and when I saw it on sale, I knew it was a sign that NOW was my time to get it. It looks like it is no longer available on so I will link it to the Lorac website where I purchased the new Rockin Red Hot Liquid Lustre set. Four gorgeous shades that come in little dropper bottles. What can I say, it intrigued me. I had to know what these are all about. The colors go great with most of my go to shades so I'm hoping this product does what it promises and turns my look up a notch.
I was able to create this fall looking using the Lorac Pro palette which comes with an entire row of matte shades and an entire row of shimmer. PERFECT for Mixing and Matching.

My final stop online was at Sephora. I'm not going to lie, I got some pretty amazing items here. There was the amazing Buxom Serial Kisser  mini lipstick palette. It has 5 beautiful, creamy and wearable shades that are buildable to create the color deepness that will complete your look.

I had been wanting to try Eyeko brand liner, so as I was looking for it, I came across something that I had forgotten all about, the Draw-The-Line Sephora Favorites kit. What's not to love about 6 new high end liners. Seemed like a no brainer to me.

Some of the other products I picked up from Sephora were the Lorac POREfection Mattifying Primer, Tarte Amazonian Clay Airbrush Foundation and the Bare Minerals Stroke of Light mini kit.

And I certainly cannot forget the gorgeous Too Faced A Few of My Favorite Things Palette which I have already done a tutorial on. I bought it from Sephora but since it was limited edition, they are no longer offering it. Here is another look I created with this palette.

Last but not least, I was off to Target!  Where I picked up one of the new Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in Showy and a Loreal True Match Concealer Crayon

Well guys, that's all for my BIG BIRTHDAY HAUL! I hope you enjoyed it and would love to hear if you have tried any of these products and what you thought of them. Leave your feedback below or Like The Messy Vanity on Facebook and leave your feedback there.

As always, Thanks for stopping by The Messy Vanity,

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Another look created using the @toofaced A Few of My Favorite Things palette. Also using the @urbandecay  24/7 pencil and @Revlon Colorburst matte balm.