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Saturday, January 31, 2015

What's in my School Bag?

Hello all! It's been a real minute since I've posted, and I apologize for that! Heading back to school can be a real killer, what with trying to get ahead on reading, making sure you get all the classes you need, and readjusting to waking up at 7 am. As such, I thought today I'd make a quick post showing you guys what I like to carry in my school bag!



I purchased my bag from ASOS probably about a year ago, and it's held up beautifully. Unfortunately, it's sold out, but they have an extremely similar one on sale currently here! It's got two main compartments, along with a zippered pocket on the inside of the bag where I like to keep my keys. Here are some of my essentials:

Wallet- A given. Even if you're trying to resist the pressures of spending money on food on campus (which I always am), it's still a good idea to have your wallet! You never know when you'll need your ID or even just a dollar to buy a few scantrons last minute!

Snacks- Returning to that first point of trying not to spend money on food, I like to have a snack that I can munch on continuously throughout the day. At our campus market, you can buy a 10 oz bag of yogurt covered pretzels for $2.99. I probably buy one bag of these a week because they're sweet, salty, filling, not exuberantly unhealthy, and can last me a whole week :)

Calculator- A necessity for me as I'm taking intermediate statistics this semester, but if you don't need one, then I'd definitely save the space in your bag. Your phone probably has all of the functions you'll need day to day!

Notebook- I'm very notorious for not taking notes, so I manage to make one notebook last for a variety of classes. Additionally, I like to just keep articles I'm reading tucked into my notebooks, so I can keep them together with my notes. Obviously, this isn't going to work for everyone. Some people really like to take notes during lectures, and if that's the case a binder or numerous notebooks may  work better for you!

Kindle Fire 7- For a long time I debated getting a tablet, and after last semester when I finally got sick of lugging my laptop around, I finally splurged this year. I honestly love it, I wish I'd made the switch sooner! I especially love that it's small enough to fit in my bag. I use mine to pull up lectures, so I can follow along but still have room for my notebooks (I'm really a hard-copy kind of note girl), and I also have come to really like reading on it. If nothing else, it saves me a bit of room in my bag that would have traditionally been taken up by a physical book. Lastly, when I need it to function more like a laptop, I did also get a little detachable keyboard, but I would definitely say this isn't necessary at all, and just the kindle itself is phenomenal value. 10/10, would recommend!!

The two ways I like to use my kindle: 1) for lectures and 2) reading for pleasure!

I thought I would also show you very quickly the little bits and bobs I like to keep in the smaller pocket of my bag :)


Headphones- I need headphones on my person at all times. If I don't have them, it's reason enough to drive home and come back. I wish I was kidding. Mine are falling apart, and I'd love to pick up some new ones, so if you know of a more budget option with good sound quality, let me know down in the comments!

Pens, Pencils, and Highlighters- I don't honestly think you can call it school without these three things!

Lip Balm- Just something that's nice to have on hand. The Maybelline Baby Lips formula is probably one of my all time favorites!

Perfume Rollerball- Sometimes, after being on campus for 10 hours, you feel like you reek of school. That's why I like to keep a rollerball in my bag, just so I can keep feeling like I smell pretty! The one I have currently is Wonderstruck by Taylor Swift, which is a very sweet scent with notes of sandalwood and golden amber. 

Hand Cream- Really just another comfort product. Dry hands are never a good time. The one I've got with me is the Strawberries and Cream scent from the be Delectable line from cakebeauty, which I recieved in an Ipsy bag.

And that's it! I really hope you enjoyed this post, and if you're back in school (or not) be sure to leave me a comment letting me know what are your handbag essentials :)

Stay beautiful!!!
- Whitney

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Winter Empties!

Hello all! Funny how it feels like I haven't posted in forever, when in reality it's only been four days. I hope you have all been doing well, and if you are back in school or about to go back to school, I hope that all goes well for you :) I've been collecting all of my empties for awhile (probably since November?) and have accumulated a pretty good-sized bag's worth, so let's get on with it!


I love empties posts because I feel like they're sort of like checkups, you tend to get a snapshot of a review for a product you may have heard about awhile back. So for today, I've separated out my empties into a few different categories, and there's a handful of products in each!

Makeup


1) Maybelline the Falsies Mascara ($6.99)- I think this mascara is well known in the beauty blogger community as a staple mascara. It's easy to apply, consistently beautiful, lengthens, volumes, and holds a curl. True to it's name, it really does make it look like you're wearing false lashes. This is at least the second tube of this mascara I've gone through, and I will definitely be repurchasing it (as soon as I've used up a few more of the mascaras I own!).

2) Benefit Gimme Brow in the color Medium/ Deep ($22)- If you've been following me for awhile you're probably sick of me talking about this product, so I won't go on too much about it. All I'll say is this is the best brow product I have tried to date, and I will definitely be repurchasing it in the near future. And I can now officially say I've tried other brow gels, and this one still comes out on top.

Skincare/ Bath


1) Bath and Body Works Wild Honeysuckle Body Lotion ($11)- I can't seem to find a link to the body lotion online, but I'm fairly certain you can find it in stores. I love the scent of honeysuckle, it's definitely one of my favorites. I just think it's so pretty and delicate. Bath and Bodyworks lotions are awesome, they sink in pretty quickly and they're very fragrant, so I think I would definitely repurchase this scent, especially now as it'd be perfect for spring!

2) The Body Shop Early Harvest Raspberry Body Scrub ($10)- I can't find this product online, but I know for a fact that it's in stores and it's on sale. I mentioned this product in my 2014 favorites, and unfortunately our time together has come to an end :( I loved this scrub, it's gentle enough for everyday use and the scent is just so lovely, it's not overwhelming at all (and I don't even like raspberries!). The only thing keeping me from running out and purchasing it is that I would like to try a different scrub, so if you have a recommendation be sure to leave me a comment letting me know!

3) Lush Flying Fox Shower Gel ($9.95)- I picked up this travel size over the summer for when I went to the east coast, and then realized it was silly of me to be saving this product specifically for travel, so I went ahead and finished it up. The scent is EXTREMELY jasmine heavy, to the point where by the time I was nearing the end of this shower gel I was over it, despite loving jasmine. I do really like the gel and I would repurchase it, but I don't think I would ever purchase a full size or even a mid size bottle, just because the smell can get to be very overbearing. It really does leave you smelling nice after a shower, though!

Haircare


1) L'Oreal EverSleek Shampoo and Conditioner ($6.99 each)- I really like the L'Oreal shampoos and conditioners, I think they're incredible, especially for the price point. I did like the EverSleek branch a bit more than I liked the EverCreme range, as I just felt like my hair was healthier and looked shinier. However, this branch is a bit heavier, so if you're someone who maybe uses a lot of product in your hair this may leave you with a bit of buildup, and it also has more of a chemical smell than did the EverCreme range. I would definitely repurchase though!

2) Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask ($26.00 for a full size)- I really liked this mask!! I received a sample in my Ipsy bag back in September, and promptly used it all up. It smelled awesome, it's very sweet and almond-y, and honestly left my hair light and shiny after just one use. I would absolutely recommend it! I'm not really one for hair masks, but I think that if I had a dollar to spare (which, let's be honest, as a college student I don't) I would definitely spoil myself with this one!

3) Bvlgari Ea Parfumee Au The Vert Conditioner ($45 for a full size)- I received this product in my mystery glossybox (link here!) and, I'll be honest, this was the worst conditioner I've ever used in my life. It was a super watery consistency, and it never seemed to make any difference, I never felt like my hair was healthier or shinier or even easier to manage. I suppose if you liked the scent of the conditioner it may be worth it, but for me, it was overly peppery and just really not my taste. I wouldn't recommend or purchase this product, and for $45 per bottle, I was extremely let down. Save your money.

Candles


1) Bath and Bodyworks Mini Candles in the scents Spiced Cider and Pumpkin Caramel Latte ($4.50 each)- Because these are seasonal scents, I don't think they're online or in store anymore. I burned these around Thanksgiving/ the beginning or December, and really liked them both. The Pumpkin Caramel Latte was very sugary, while the Spiced Cider smelled (in my opinion) like Thanksgiving in a candle. That is literally the only way I can describe it! As you can see, I typically burn them until you can see they've burnt all the way down to the little metal nub at the bottom. If there's a way to burn them past there, be sure to let me know!

That's it for all of my empties guys, I hope you enjoyed this post! I'll talk to you all soon :)

Stay beautiful!
- Whit

Friday, January 16, 2015

January Glossybox!!

Hello all! I hope you're having an amazing day! I wanted to start off by saying thank you, my blog hit 200 followers today, and it honestly just means so much to me. It's crazy to think that that many people care what my opinions are or like what I post. I mean, that's like a whole lecture hall. Insane. In other news, because I posted my Ipsy review for this month yesterday (link here!) I thought today I would follow it up by reviewing the January Glossybox :) Glossybox is another monthly beauty subscription, and it is a bit pricier at $21 a month, but they tend to send out a larger variety of items and include more full size items as well.


The Glossybox packaging is so cute!!!

1) Kueshi Pure and Clean Revitalizing Face Toner (About $18?)- I'm not sure that this product is currently available in the US, so I approximated the value. That's really unfortunate, because in the brief time I've had this toner, I've grown quite fond of it. It smells really crisp and clean, and slightly sweet and fruity, but not in the typical way (strawberry, citrus, etc) but maybe something less common (lychee?). I really like the effect it's been having as well, it really evens out my skin tone and leaves my skin looking plumper and very moisturized. If things keep going the way they are, it's possible this product will become a staple in my skincare routine!


2) Teeez Trend Beautiful Flat Stiff Brush ($23.50)- I'm really having trouble finding links today! I'm not entirely sure how you would go about purchasing this product, and I approximated the value as well. I haven't tried this brush yet, but I love the design, I think it's really cool and edgy, and the bristles are rather stiff so I imagine it'll be good at packing on eyeshadow. The suggested tip is to try using it to apply eyeliner, so maybe I'll give that a shot and get back to you!


3) Lollipops Eye Pencil in the shade Goodbye Moon ($8.10?)- Another product I don't think is available in the US, I approximated the value as it is on sale, and I had to do the euro to dollar conversion. I think the packaging of this product is incredible, it looks really similar to something that Too Faced would put out. The product is incredibly black, which is awesome, and smudges out really nicely for a lazy smokey eye. My only problem with it is the staying power- I've got it on today and I've had it on for almost 5 hours, and it's come almost entirely off. Still, for the price point, I think it's a pretty good product. And it's really really adorable.


4) Vichy Purete Thermale 3-in-1 Step Cleanser ($19.50 for a full size)- I haven't given this cleanser a shot yet, but as it claims to cleanse, tone, and remove eye-makeup all in one, I think it'll be awesome for travel or to keep in an overnight bag. Should be great for nights where I'm feeling too lazy to go through my skincare routine (although I'm hoping to not have too many of those).


5) Skin&Co Roma Truffle Therapy Serum ($75 for a full size)- I am not a serum girl. I feel like they're usually very sticky, I don't particularly think they help much, and I find they're usually unnecessarily scented. Fingers crossed that this product changes my mind? If you have a serum that you really like, be sure to let me know down in the comments! From where I stand though, this is definitely my least favorite product in the box.


 And that was all! It was a bit annoying this month that so many of the products were unavailable in the US. However, I was impressed that the majority of the products were full sized, and I know that I'll get use out of at least 4/5. I did get a lot of skin products to try out, which is nice since my 2015 resolution was to take better care of my skin! If you have any skin products (toners, cleansers, or serums!) that you really like, be sure to let me know so I can check them out!

That's it for me, I'll talk to you guys soon! Thanks again for following and sticking it out :)

Stay beautiful!!
- Whit

Thursday, January 15, 2015

January Ipsy Bag!!!

Can you believe we're already midway through January? Feels like just yesterday was Christmas. On the bright side, mid-month is typically when my makeup subscriptions come in, and this month was no different! Ipsy is an awesome makeup subscription service, and for $10 a month you get 5 full/deluxe size makeup products in the mail. I'll have a link down below in case anyone is interested! The theme this month was "fresh start", so this month there were several skin care products mixed in as well. :)


1) Pacifica Eye Shadow in the shade Ethereal- This eye shadow is typically only sold as part of a larger palette, but Ipsy subscribers were lucky enough to receive a full size single shadow this month. Ethereal is a slightly shimmery nude color, almost like a very pale champagne. The color payoff is pretty awesome, it looks the same on as it does in the pan. I've tried Pacifica eye shadows before and have quite liked them, and this color is right up my alley, so I think I'm going to quite like it! 

I think the Pacifica packaging is so cute!

2) Elizabeth Mott All Over Shadow Brush ($9.99)- This is probably one of the cutest eye shadow brushes I've ever seen. Some people may be put off by the bright pink, but I adore it!!! I think it's so sweet and bright, and it brings a bit of joy back to my morning when I use it. As far as utility, it's not really anything new or extraordinary, and I do have better brushes in my collection; but it's bright pink and that makes me stupidly happy.


3) Hikari Eye Liner in the shade Storm ($13)- I quite like the design of this eye liner, it's mechanical, and it's really creamy and smooth. My only problem with it is that it's a gunmetal silver. In all honesty, if I had gotten a black shade, it would have been a home run product. And I'm sure there are a ton of people that are pleased to not have received black- but my problem with silver is that it's hard to wear. If you have a way to make silver work for everyday wear be sure to let me know down in the comments, I'd love to hear any ideas!






4) L.A. Fresh Eco-Beauty Good Day. Day Moisturizer ($40 for a full size)- Is it just me, or is L.A. Fresh the brand you can find in hotels? Like, the complimentary makeup wipes? Well, regardless, I was excited to receive a deluxe size of their moisturizer, especially as my Pur moisturizer is about to run out. I'll keep you guys posted on how I get on with it! I really enjoyed the fact they included a screw cap, I feel like so often when you receive these sample sizes in the squeeze tube, you can only get one use out of them because they get so gross so quickly.


5) Probelle Nail Lacquer in the shade Into the Blue ($6)- At first, when I saw I'd be receiving this I wasn't excited, because I felt like I wasn't going to get a lot of wear out of this color, but honestly? Let me tell you, when I saw it in real life, I was astonished at how stunning it was in the bottle. It is the prettiest, creamiest sky blue I've ever seen. I'm going to actually paint my nails with it when I wrap up this post, and if things go right, I'll hopefully be rocking it for a while!


And that was it! This month there was a lot of variety in the products and I quite liked that :) If you're interested in checking out Ipsy, you can check it out here! In all honesty, I love Ipsy, I recommend it to all my friends, just because I think it's an amazing way to try new products while also saving money you'd spend on makeup otherwise. I hope you guys enjoyed this post and I'll definitely be talking to you soon!

Stay beautiful!!!
- Whit

Monday, January 12, 2015

My Skincare Routine!

Hey guys! I hope you're all doing well and that you're enjoying 2015! This year, as one of my resolutions, I've decided to really try to stick to a better skincare routine. Last year was honestly a bit of a mess when it came to taking care of my skin, particularly at the end there I was especially lazy. As such, I thought it might be nice to make a post detailing the products that I've been using and liking so far. Fingers crossed putting it out there on the internet makes me more motivated to stick to it, haha!


1) Beauty Without Cruelty A.H.A 3% Facial Cleanser* ($2.99)- This is the cleanser that I use first thing in the morning. I actually just received this item in my December Ipsy bag (post here!) but I've come to really like it. It's a really gentle gel cleanser, which makes it nice for morning use. Honestly, the best way I can describe the scent is it smells like the soft drink Sprite, but it's definitely not unpleasant, and it's actually nice that it's not sickeningly citrus-y or anything like that. I mean, I'm typically half asleep and it's a struggle to wash my face at all! It's pretty inexpensive as well, so I think I probably will repurchase this. 


2) Sephora Triple Action Cleansing Water ($20)- I think a day or two after I purchased this, Sephora started doing 2x points for skincare purchases, which was incredibly annoying. Anyway, this is a new purchase for me, because generally I used to combine makeup removal/ cleansing into one step. But since this year I'm committing to taking better care of my skin, I thought I would try to separate the two. As such, my first step when I'm ready to end my day is to take my makeup off. I'll hold off on saying too much as I haven't really tried this product much, but so far, I quite like it! The packaging itself is pretty cool, it's one of those products where you open the top and place on a cotton swab and press down, and it dispenses the perfect amount.


3) The Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing Facial Wash ($7.20)-  The second thing I do after taking off my makeup is to wash my face. I picked up this cleanser back in November in a haul because at the time I'd been dealing with a lot of redness/ splotchiness, and I can happily confirm that I no longer face this issue! Tea tree oil is kind of like a cure-all product for skin, as it clears it up acne, removes dirt and impurities, and also (in my opinion) just tends to even out complexion overall. It does smell quite strongly and is one of those products  that feels tingly for a moment after you've used it (like, minty?) which may be a turn off for people with more sensitive skin.


4) dr. brandt Microdermabrasion Skin Exfoliant *($78 for a full size)- On Fridays I also like to exfoliate my face, which is good to do as it helps scrub off dry or dead skin and reveal the cleaner, newer skin underneath. I received a sample size of this in an Ipsy bag (all my Ipsy products are asterisked) and I really like it! I feel that the microbeads (or whatever the technology behind this product is) makes for a less harsh exfoliant, and doing it just once a week leaves my face feeling healthy and clean, rather than like, scrubbed and raw.


5) GlamGlow PowerMud Dual Cleanse Treatment* ($69 for a full size)- On Tuesdays I like to follow up with a mask, and the mask I've been using is a deluxe size from GlamGlow. GlamGlow is a brand that got a lot of hype in 2014, and I definitely think that there's some validity behind it. What I've found is with this mask, it's not so much that my skin looks significantly better after one use, but more that as the week goes on (and farther from Tuesday) I'll find that I start noticing little spots or a bit or redness around my nose that I didn't see on the days immediately following my mask day (like Wednesday/ Thursday). It's a sleeper product, if you will. I'm also just not really crazy about cream masks because I dislike the way they feel while drying (I much prefer paper ones) but I do honestly think this is a good one.


6) Pur ~ Lisse Pur ~ Moist Moisturizer* ($55 for a full size)- After I've finished washing my face, I like to follow up with a moisturizer. In all realness, I'm a little surprised that I didn't put this moisturizer in my 2014 favorites! I received a sample size in my Ipsy bag and I am literally squeezing every single last drop of this, dreading the moment I'll have to put down $55 for a full size. But honestly, it's that good. It's super light weight, sinks in beautifully, and just really leaves my skin feeling refreshed. 


I did originally intend for this post to be a skincare/ night routine post, but it has gotten quite wordy so I think I'll end it here. For the most part, this is my night routine, I just also like to follow up with the Lush Popcorn Lip Scrub, a bit of lip balm, and a bit of hand cream. I hope you've all enjoyed this post, and be sure to let me know what products are your skincare favorites! In particular, I'd love to hear what your favorite moisturizer is, since mine is not cheap. 

Have a lovely Monday all! Stay beautiful!!
- Whit

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Whoopie Pie Recipe and Voxbox Opening!!

Hello all! I hope you've been having a lovely 2015 thus far!! Today I thought I'd do something a bit different on my blog, and post a recipe. I don't pretend to be any kind of baking/cooking master (I'm actually kind of a disaster) so these whoopie pies are honestly super easy to make and probably only take a half hour or so!


For those who don't know what a whoopie pie is, it's very similiar to a macaron, in the sense that it's a cookie base (two cookies) with a cream filling. Typically the cookies are fuller and more fluffy, and the cream filling is a smidge thicker!

Before we jump into the recipe, I wanted to take a second to thank Influenster for choosing me for their Reese's Spread Voxbox. Honestly, this spread tastes like you've taken a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup and threw it into a blender. It's amazing. It was also the inspiration for this recipe!


I couldn't stop eating it straight from the jar!

Now what you've all been waiting for- the recipe!! I imagine if you don't like peanut butter, you could easily substitute Nutella or almond butter. Also, if you would like to just bake cookies and not whoopie pies, this recipe should also work just fine :)

Reese's Spreads Whoopie Pies!

Ingredients (for 16 cookies)
- 1/2 cup (or a little over) flour
- 1/2 cup Reese's Spread (or similar spread)
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- a smidge of almond milk (especially if you are making cookies)

1) Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Also, line a cookie tray (or two) with wax paper.

2) Throw all your ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. 


3) Once all your ingredients are all mixed, roll the dough out into balls about an inch in diameter and place them on the cookie trays. I found a good measure for this is to use the midsection of your index finger as a measuring tool! If  you are simply making cookies, you may want to make the balls a bit larger or squish them down.


4) Place the cookies in the oven for about 11 to 12 minutes. Once finished, let them sit in the oven for another minute, and then take them out and let them cool!


5) Once cool, spread a bit of Reese's Spread (about a spoonful) on the flat edge of a cookie, and then top with another cookie.


And there you have it! You can either pre-make the whoopie pies, or make them as you're ready to eat them. I hope you've all enjoyed this post, and let me know if you try to make these! I really enjoyed coming up with this recipe for you guys, and I'd love to know if you're able to recreate them!

Talk to you all soon, stay beautiful!!
- Whit

Disclaimer: I received this product complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.
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