Saturday, June 30, 2012

Favorite Items of June

Here's an end of the month recap of my favorite makeup and skincare products.

You can check out my YouTube video and hear me ramble about these items.

-Boscia Detoxifying Black Cleanser: A black, cleansing gel that when rubbed between your fingers has a warming effect that deeply cleans and detoxifies your complexion.  I use this every or every other night as part of my PM skincare routine.

-Boots No.7 Total Renewal Microdermabrasion Exfoliator: An intense, at home exfoliating treatment that's great to use as it works to remove dead skin cells, revealing radiant skin.  I use this once a week on a Friday night.  Since this is an intense treatment, it's advise to use this at most twice a week.

-Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream SPF 35 (medium): A beauty balm (or "bb") that moisturizes, primes, perfects, protects and controls oil all in 1.  I use this as my daily foundation and don't need much product.  This is light to medium coverage since it evens out your complexion and it can be worn by itself or under foundation or powder for more coverage.

-Maybelline Dream Matte Powder (medium/beige): A pressed powder that's super soft for a smooth application.  I press this on my T-zone or in areas that are oily to set my foundation.  Since this powder is matte, it won't leave your face looking duey.

-Urban Decay All Night Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray: A weightless, setting spray that keeps your makeup from melting away throughout the day and night, whether it's hot and humid or cold and windy outside.  I spray this over my face once I'm done applying all my makeup.  There's no fragrance and it doesn't feel sticky once misted over your face.

-Urban Decay NAKED Palette: A shadow palette that everyone can use for that neutral, everyday look.  The 12 shades range from glitter to shimmer to matte.  What can I say- I use this regularly and love this!

-Benefit CORALista: A blush powder that is a beautiful pink coral color with gold shimmer.  This smells amazing and the packaging is so cute.  You won't find any blush compact like this!

-Korres Mango Butter Lipstick SPF 10 (natural pink-13): An ultra-conditioning lipstick that's sheer and moisturizing.  This is my go-to lipstick since there's SPF protection and a hint of color with a glossy finish.

Thanks for reading this.  Until next month's favorite items...

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Meal of the Day: Chicken Cacciatore

What a beautiful day to spend time at the beach.  My little family took a small trip to Sandy Hook, NJ and enjoyed the waves and cool water at the shore.  Since I live right next to the George Washington Bridge, I knew that I'd be too tired to whip up dinner once returning from the shore.  Plus we're trying to cut out fast-food.  So I decided to make use of my favorite kitchen appliance, the slow cooker.  I picked out an easy recipe from the small cookbook that was provided.  I already had most of the ingredients for this dish.  I did a quick run to ShopRite last night and prepped everything so that once we headed out of the door this morning, I could throw everything into the slow cooker and let it cook.  I think that's the best thing about the slow cooker: you can walk away from this appliance and let it do all the work.

If you like to make dishes that doesn't leave you in front of your stove for hours, scroll down for the ingredients and how to make this.  This filling dish will leave you happy and content that it only took you 10 minutes to put together, but 8 hours (or 4 hours) to cook.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Little Black Bag

I want to share this new website called Little Black Bag (or #LBBag) that is loosely based on a Japanese tradition known as "Lucky Bag Sale".  You fill out a small questionnaire of your likes and dislikes of certain styles, designers, etc.  Based off of your answers, the stylists compile a list of products from accessories including jewelry to beauty products that will sit in your bag.  You choose one item that you like and the stylists will surprise you with 2, 3 or even 4 other items that you don't know of until checkout.  The price of these items are shown, but what's nice with this website (in addition to others similar to this such as Birchbox, myglam, justfab) is you pay a membership fee which you opt to be either monthly or one time only.  Once paid, you find out what your surprise items are and get to exchange any items for a total of 7 days.  Once the 7 days have past, your items in your bag are locked in and shipped to you within 3-8 business days.

The concept is pretty simple, but was kind of intimidating to me at first.  I signed up for Little Black Bag last month and never had the courage to continue through with it because I didn't have a full understanding of the concept.  So I searched on YouTube to see other people's reviews on the website and what products they received in the mail.  I ended up caving in and told myself to just do it.  Once I paid my fee (which I opted for the one time only), I was amazed with how addicting exchanging items can be.  My husband was impressed with the amount of time I've spent on my Macbook (or "Andre") in just the past 48 hours.  I currently have 4 items in my bag.  I have 5.5 days left until I can't exchange anymore.  But, I know once my time is up, I can't wait to receive these items in my cute Little Black Bag package.

If you are really interested in joining this website, I highly suggest going to YouTube and read up on what people are saying about it.  Some beauty gurus that I follow are among their pool of stylists.  I will link below their reviews on the Little Black Bag concept and items they received in the mail.

If you plan on joining, don't forget to search for me!

sccastaneda "New Obsession!!!"

ThatsHeart "My Little Black Bag + Rose Gold Watch Giveaway"

AprilAthena7 "Little Black Bag & Giveaway!"

RAEview "UPDATE 2.0 + GIVEAWAY: The Little Black Bag Haul + Handbag [$328 Value] Giveaway"

Monday, June 18, 2012

Revamping Your Leftovers

Everyone has their likes and dislikes about leftovers.  Either it's enough to feed 1 mouth or not enough to feed 3 hungry mouths.  But this is where you dive into your creative side of cooking.  Even if you don't have that, everyone is creative with their appetite.  When your tummy starts grumbling and wants you to put something in your belly, you start to imagine what will satisfy your taste buds.  You want to fill that void of hunger and make some use of your leftovers before they get thrown into the garbage.  There's no need to waste food if there are people who can't afford to eat a meal everyday (just saying).

So, what I had in my fridge was roughly 2 cups of white rice and 1 strip of pork belly.  Luckily, I did a quick run to the supermarket to pick up some essential produce that I always have in stock.  I ended up making torta (tour-tah) or an omelette with ground beef and fried rice with vegetables.

Torta (on left) and fried rice with veggies (on right)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

My Debut on YouTube

I'm excited to share that I have made my first appearance on YouTube with my makeup routine.  After watching all makeup artists and gurus on YouTube, they've all inspired me to follow their footsteps.  I've spent plenty of time watching other artists apply and review a ton of cosmetics and have learned a thing or two from them.  Since this is my first video, I know I have much improvement.  I plan on making more videos with different formats and layouts until I'm satisfied with a certain video style.

For now, click here to watch my video and enjoy.  Suggestions are appreciated :)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

HAUL: Makeup & Other Beauty Products

It's been a while since I've blogged.  My (lame) excuse is that I've just been completely lazy & have been uninspired with some of my cooking last week.  But, I've accumulated a lot of items in the past few weeks that I wanted to share with all of my viewers.  I tried doing a YouTube video last Friday while my husband was out of town and my daughter was in school.  I did roughly 5 takes & realized I'm not meant to be in front of the camera.  Just doing a small introduction to the video was painful to watch.  I'll try a different approach some time soon where I'll just do a voice over.

Anyway, the following products that I'll share below are from Ulta(1), and

If you are a happy consumer of any of these products, please share your experience with it.

(1) From L to R: John Frieda Root Awakening Nourishing Moisture Shampoo & Conditioner for Dry Hair, Benefit Cosmetics B. Right It's Potent Eye Cream, 2 Benefit Cosmetics freebies, OPI nail polish in DS Glow & Melon of Troy, Tarte Maracuja Divine Shine Lipgloss in Tipsy.
*I purchased the eye cream just so I can get the sample of the Cha Cha Tint which I'm pretty psyched to try.  With the Tarte lipgloss, I was suppose to get a Deluxe Sample of Maracuja Oil which I assume the store ran out of.  Instead they gave me another Benefit sample which is the skincare So Radiant.  I heard great things about the maracuja oil so I guess I'll have to purchase it next time I step into Ulta.

(2) From L to R: NYX Eye Glamifying Set, NYX Blush Set in Pretty Natural, NYX Haute Jersey- Leopard Couture Set
*I purchased these items on because it was one of their special deals.  If you itemize these products, you definitely are saving 40% or more when purchasing them on this website.  With the eye set, it came with the Provocateur Boudoir Mascara, Collection Noir Liquid Black Liner, Collection Noir Skinny Black Liner & Slide On, Glide On, Stay On & Definitely A Turn On Water Proof, Extreme Shine Eye Liner in Black Sparkle.  Annoying that the name of this product is long but that's what's on the pencil.  With the blush set, the 3 blushes are Mocha, Angel & Mauve.  My last item of the bunch is this leopard makeup palette that screams Jersey girl (which I am- well I'm from Jersey but definitely not a "Jersey Shore" Jersey girl if you get my drift.)

When you open the book, there are 24 eyeshadows on your left with 4 eye applicators & a mirror on your right. 

When you flip the mirror, you get another mirror but on the left side.  On the opposite side are 2 lip glosses, 4 bronzers & 2 blushes.  This palette will come to use whenever I want to head down to Bar A or DJais.

(3) From L to R: The New Black Runway- Color Barometer 8-Piece Nail Polish Set, Sephora Collection Marbling & Dotting Nail Tool, Josie Maran Made with Love Kit, Korres Goddess Lip Collection
*The nail tool was on sale online and lately I've been purchasing nail polishes as if I was a kid in a candy store.  A new tool deserves new polishes to go with.  I had a sample of Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil & wanted to try other products of her line.  Korres is a Johnson & Johnson product which my sister works for.  She has a couple Korres makeup products & is happy with them.  I hope I can be happy with these.