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Saturday, July 27, 2013

These are a few of my favorite things...

So often I am asked about products I use and recommendations. So I decided that since its been a while since I posted a "These are a few of my favorite things" blog, now would be a great time. Its crazy to see how different the first one was compared to now. I only use 1 of the products on the first list regularly and that is the Milani Brow Fix Kit. I don't use the Line Stiletto as much anymore simply because I have been trying out so many different liners, I haven't really thought about picking another one up. It's still a great liner and I almost always recommend it when someone asks for a felt tip liner recommendation. This just goes to show how fast things can change. With so many products out there, it's bound to happen... and often.

These are a few of my favorite things to use right now. Things I use almost everyday no matter what look I am creating. My "go-to" products  (at least for now) and here's why:

    •  Con Air Detangling Hairbrush - I never thought I would love a hairbrush as much as I love this one. My daughter had basically hoarded all of my brushes for herself when I decided that I was going to get a new one and keep it under lock and key. This one is definitely the best spur of the moment buy that I've gotten in a while. It can be used on wet or dry hair. What I really want to say is "cuts like butta" (in my best mob guy voice). I never feel it snag or pull and it does a great job of removing any loose hair. I've definitely noticed my "shedding" is down to a minimum and I credit it to this brush for sure! I got it at K-Mart for less than $10!

    • Essence I Love Extreme Volume Mascara - Now you all know how much I love Avon's SuperShock Max Mascara and I'm not saying I don't still love it but I have found myself passing up my SuperShock and heading towards this I Love Extreme Volume Mascara. I mean seriously... who doesn't love extreme volume on their lashes? This mascara has a perfectly balanced formula, not too thin, not too thick, not too wet, not too dry and best of all NO CLUMPS! The brush is fat in some places and thin in others making it pretty versatile. It separates your lashes and coats each one without clumping or getting too thick. It dries pretty quickly so if you are like me and like to put on multiple coats while it's still tacky, you kinda gotta work fast. I bought this online at for only $4.99! 

    • Wet n Wild COLOR ICON™ BLUSHER in Mellow Wine - I try lots of blushes all of the time but no matter what look I'm creating, this blush seems to do the trick. The COLOR ICON™ BLUSHER line comes with 4 shades to choose from (Pearlescent Pink, Heather Silk, Mellow Wine & Berry Shimmer). I've tried all but Pearlescent Pink only because it seems too light for my skin tone. I'm convinced that the 3 colors that I have tried are pretty much perfect for any skin tone depending on the look you are going for. Mellow Wine seems to be perfect for my light skin in the winter and my tan skin in the summer. 

    • Mirabella Colour Sheer Lipstick in Daydream - I love love love this color! I got this in my May Ipsy Bag and I love it! I use it almost everyday. The texture is so smooth and it wears almost all day. It actually has a Mango Butter base which makes it feel light on your lips. It looks like its a purpley pink color but actually goes on looking like a natural pink that enhances your actual lip color.

    • Mica Beauty Gel Eyeliner - You guys have all heard me talk over and over again about how much I love this liner. Whether you're creating a thick wing or a skinny line to enhance your lash line, this was another Ipsy bag favorite that I got in February and I've been using it ever since. Highly recommend this to everyone!

    Last But not least. This is the product I use multiple times per week. I've tried tons and tons of others but these are, in my opinion, the absolute best. They are the:
    • Revlon Compact Slant Tip Tweezers - Are you surprised I didn't say  TweezerMan  or Sally Hansen? I've tried em both and neither does the job that these Revlon tweezers do. You all know how obsessed I am with getting the perfect brows and these tweezers are the ones that do it! They grip even the finest of hairs without making me bleed and they get up and under the hairs to help me get the best arch I can without completely massacring the rest of my brow. Each time I misplace them, which is often, I immediately run out to get new ones because the others I have just won't do. I'm not even sure why I keep those other tweezers around.

    Thursday, July 25, 2013

    Keeping Up Appearances

    Electronic Devices.

    Parents! HOW DO YOU DO IT?
    As a parent of a teen and a tween, I'm really having a hard time keeping up with the trends. I find myself wondering how in the world some parents do it? I am by no means wealthy. We are just ordinary, hard working parents with full time jobs and bills to pay.We live in a 3 bedroom home with no special bells or whistles, the predictable "mommy" mini van and 2 dogs. To me, were an ordinary family. But after paying all of the bills and paying a little over $300 a month on cell phones (I know. It makes me cringe just thinking about it) , we have little money to spend on dozens of pairs of Levi's or the latest Jordans and Vans! HOW DO YOU DO IT?

    It seems every week, my 10th grader comes to me asking for money for shoes or clothes or new phone cases and it seems every week I tell him "We don't have it right now" and do you know what his response is? Its, "well my friend is getting it" or "C'mon mom, they're cool now!" And I think to myself, "Geeze! That kid has it made!, how does his mom pull that off?" Now, my kids are pretty good kids. They help out around the house, make good grades, they're involved in school activities, and they really do deserve to be rewarded for things. With that said, a reward in my eyes is, a trip to the movies or 20 bucks, not a pair of $200 shoes or $50 Levi's. I feel like this generation feels a sense of entitlement and as much as I try to teach my kids that they have to earn what they want and the value of a dollar, I can't help but feel bad for not being able to get them the things they really want. It's like wanting a Snickers but all you can afford is a Hershey's Kiss. They're both good but that Snickers really would have made your day. I'm not saying I don't "splurge" for my kids every once in a while, I'm just simply wondering, how do some of you other parents manage to buy the latest and greatest every time? Between the clothes, shoes, gadgets and activities with friends, I'm having a hard time figuring out what to buy and when to buy it. It makes my head spin! 

    Kids these days can be so cruel and I try to teach my kids that its not what you have, it's the kind of person you are when you have them. Lets be realistic though, kids don't care about that sentimental crap, my kids could be the nicest kids on earth (which they're not) but if others aren't, its going to cause a problem. The pressure is on once children get to middle and high school and being "cool" is a big deal to them. So it's no wonder they want those new shoes or most high tech cell phones, their happiness within their peer groups depends on it. For goodness sake, you can barely even communicate anymore without a complete data package on your cell phone. 
    So I ask you, how do you keep your kids and your wallet happy at the same time? 

    Sunday, July 21, 2013

    How To: Dooby, Dooby, Doo! (Heatless Hair Straightening)

    When I was a kid, there were only 2 ways to get really straight hair.... Ironing (like with a  real iron) which is not only damaging to your hair but it's also extremely awkward. You either do it yourself leaving you to guess if you're going to burn yourself or not or have someone else do it for you. Either way, you will walk away achy and with a crazy neck cramp. The second way is a bit time consuming but safe for your hair and well worth it. I'm not sure what the actual name is but in my family, we called it a 'Dooby'.

    Here's what you need:
    • Bobby Pins
    • Detangling brush or comb
    • Smoothing brush

    Here's How:

    Put 1 side of your hair in a ponytail for later.


    I didn't use a hairnet or wrap because I didn't have any on hand, plus I was too lazy to go get a scarf but that is why....

    My hair looked like this in the morning! :/

    Nevertheless, After unpinning my hair, applying a bit of smoothing serum and brushing it through. The end result was a smooth, straight look that was shiny and healthy and the best part is that it's safe for your hair!
    Hope you liked the look and try it out for yourself! Let me know if you've tried this before. Post your result
     pics on The Messy Vanity.

    Thanks for stopping by The Messy Vanity,

    Monday, July 8, 2013

    2 Looks, 2 Tutorials, 1 Face

    Yes, I actually named this post "2 Looks, 2 Tutorials, 1 Face". I really need to come up with better titles if this is what it's come to. No matter what the title is, I am excited to bring you these tutorials. They're 2 completely different looks. One bold and retro, One a bit more subtle yet makes a statement.

    I was racking my brain trying to figure out what look I wanted to create or recreate next so I decided to just do two. Even that was difficult. There are so many possibilities and looks, it's hard to decide. I knew I wanted to do two drastically different looks and I think I accomplished that with these. I bring you RETRO CHIC (look 1) and SUNKISSED SUNRISE (look 2).

    Lets start with the supplies I used for these looks (you can adapt the look using the items you have on hand).
    Ok, Ok. I know it seems like a lot but when ya think about it, it's two completely different looks so it's really not that bad.

    So let's get started shall we?

    You're gonna begin with prepping your face. After priming my face with a Pixi Primer and eyes with Essence I Love Stage Eyeshadow Base & NYX Eye Shadow Base in White , I used Revlon Colorstay Foundation in medium beige and started buffing it in with my stippling brush using circular motions to really get into my pores.  Then using my Coastal Scents Concealer Eclipse Palette, I concealed any small imperfections or redness. I used the same palette to contour my face. Using an angled brush I used the next to darkest shade and applied it on the outer edge of my forehead, slightly below my cheekbones, on my temples and down the sides of my nose . I also used it under my chin to define my jawline a bit.

    After contouring, I used my NYX Born to Glow Liquid Illuminator in Sunbeam to highlight my under eye/upper cheekbone area. The T section of my face was highlighted and I also applied a dab on my chin. I used Cover Girl Loose Powder in Translucent Medium to set it all and used my angled brush again to apply the powdered contour shade on my lower cheek. The light pink blush went on the Sunkissed Sunrise side of my face.
    (sorry this image is so small, I could get it to be bigger for some reason. Click the photo to enlarge the pics)

    Next, I applied NYX Cream Blush in Orange lightly (a little goes a long way) on my Retro Chic side. 

    Now to begin the Retro Chic look. 

    At this point you can use whatever brushes you feel will get the job done. My brushes don't have names or numbers. I used the lightest matte white shade in my Coastal Scents Mirage Palette and dabbed it all over my lid working it up to my brow line. I then went back in and reapplied the white several times on just the lid building the color so that it really pops.( brush a small amount in your inner tear duct area to make your eyes appear bigger). I went back in to my palette with a fluffy crease brush and worked a taupe color into my crease area. I used a slightly darker brown on the outer corner.

    Next, It was time for the key component to a retro look... The Eyeliner! I used my newest liner, which I quickly fell in love with, the Essence I Love Punk Jumbo Eyeliner Pen. Start at the inner corner of your eye and work your way to the outer corner using small, smooth strokes along your lash line. Once you get to the end of your lid, draw a line up and outward as far as you'd like. This will create the guideline to your "wing". From the outer most point of your "wing", start drawing a line back towards your lash line. All you do next is fill it in and smooth out any lines that don't look clean. You really can't mess it up and if you feel you did, just keep building that line until you get it right. Go over your line with a black shadow to set the liner.

    Take a slightly lighter shade of black and connect your lower lash line to the upper. Smudge the black out halfway across your lower lash line. Line your waterline with a white liner. I used Rimmel ScandalEyes Shadow stick in Witness White. Grab your best mascara... we're almost done.

    Essence I Love Extreme Volume Mascara is what I chose for this look. It creates length and add the right amount of volume for this look. I felt like this was the perfect chance to try out the Lash Cards that I got in one of my Ipsy Bags. It really helped eliminate any clumps that I may have gotten and also separated my lashes. I was really impressed. I then lightly coated my lower lash line with Avon SuperShock Max Mascara.

    After filling in and shaping my brows, my eyes were done!

    My lips were simple yet BOLD. I don't have any red lip liner so I skipped that step, filled in my lips with Wet n Wild Silk Finish Lipstick in Cherry Frost 514A and coated them with BeaBombshell Lipgloss in Hot Mess. This created the perfect shade of red with just the right amount shine.

    The finished look.

    Retro Chic

    Saturday, July 6, 2013

    How to TWEEZE your TWEEN!

    Let's face it, there comes a day in every girls life when its just time to turn those fuzzy caterpillars over your eyes into beautifully arched eyebrows. Today was the day for my daughter. I never thought that she would want me to be the first to do them, I thought she would want me to take her to get them waxed or even threaded! So naturally I was thrilled when she asked me to give her brows a little plucking. Actually, I probably got too excited. The look on her face said "Calm down, Mom. It's not that serious." and I'm sure she was rolling her eyes on the inside. Maybe even on the outside but I was so happy that I didn't notice. Oh well, moving along.

    Despite what my daughter may have thought, I decided this would be a great opportunity to turn this into a tutorial. Now I'm sure there are some moms that are gonna scoff at the fact that I'm tweezing an 11 year olds brows. I'm also sure there are people who are going to judge me as a mother. To those women (or men) I say this... You do what you want for your daughters, I'll do what I want for mine.

    My daughter is going to middle school and if this is something that is going to make her feel good about herself, so be it! I'm not saying to fill them or color them, I'm just saying to shape em up and keep them tamed. We all know by that age it can be A JUNGLE UP THERE! So with that said I give you....

    How to TWEEZE your TWEEN.

    Step 1. Make sure the area is cleaned with your tweens usual cleanser. Also, good lighting is crucial.
    Step 2. Brush the brows several time following the natural hair growth pattern.
    Step 3. Once they are brushed, you will see a natural arch within the chaos. Follow that natural line.                   Everything else must go.
    Step 4. Begin above the brow and clean up the fine hairs that tend to grow on your upper browline. This will help you to form the arch. Make sure that you're pulling in the direction of the hair growth. It's less painful.
    Step 5. Once you're done with the upper browline, begin plucking the outer, lower area of the brow and work your way to the inner brow following the natural arch that you noticed in Step 3. 
    Step 6. Shape the inner most part of your brow so that it aligns with their nostril. (follow the diagram below if you need more direction)
    Step 7. Clean up between the eyes and take one more look to make sure you didn't miss anything.

    The result is a youthful and tamed brow.

    Thanks for stopping by The Messy Vanity,