Beauty Goals for 2019

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I have always heard that writing down your goals is the best way to keep them. Maybe sharing them with all of you on my site will keep me extra accountable for them.

When it comes to beauty being stagnate is a huge fear of mine. I feel like this is where pictures such as me from my senior prom where I still didn’t know how to do brows come from. Trying new things was scary so I just didn’t do it.

Seriously where were my eyebrows in this pic? Maybe hiding behind my beautiful mother.

Be more creative with my eye makeup

I have pretty much stuck to the same routine when it comes to eye color for the past few years. I really want to try to mix things up and see what bright colors and maybe even fake lashes look like on me. Essentially my goal is to be able to look back on pictures of myself and know that I tried everything that I wanted to try.

I think the pallet I want to try is this Morphe pallet.  The colors are so pretty and not too crazy for someone who is a bit of a beginner like me when it comes to colors that aren’t nudes. The colors will also nicely compliment my green eyes.

Try more natural brands

One of my personal goals for the last few months has been to be more eco-friendly. I want to try more brands that are natural so that I am not creating more waste that cannot be used. On top of knowing that my skin reacts really well to natural products, I think that this will really help me to keep this goal of being more natural overall.

One brand that I am exited to try is Alaffia. It is a super affordable brand with eco-friendly packaging. I have heard all good things about it so I’m really excited to get my hands on some.

Wear makeup more often

This sounds super weird considering there are probably people who have the exact opposite goal. Mostly wearing makeup helps me to see the things about my face that I really like and how to highlight them. I also love trying products and I have a whole box of products that I have purchased that I haven’t tried yet.

Be nicer to my hair

This goal has a lot with the fact that my hair is still recovering from going blonde. Before I colored my hair it was so healthy. The stylist told me that it was some of the healthiest hair she had seen in her 12 years of working in salons. Now I have it colored and it is pretty dry and dead. With blowdrying it everyday and occasionally curling it, my hair doesn’t feel like it used to so I really want to get it back to feeling shiny and new.

These are my biggest beauty goals for the new year and I am really excited to let you guys know how they go. Let me know what you guys think and what your new years goals are!

What I Have Learned From Going Blonde

This post contains some associate links. That just means that if you click the link and purchase something I will receive a portion of the proceeds. 

My wonderful husband gave me a fantastic early Christmas present and funded me getting a balayage. I have wanted to dye my hair for a long time but I put it off until after the wedding. I didn’t want to be uncomfortable with my hair or unfamiliar with it on the day when my hair needed to be the lesser of my worries.

I have been blonde for just over a two weeks and I am in love with the way it looks. This is something that I had been warned before that it might wash me out but I took the chance and I absolutely love it. Sometimes I still get confused at the blonde hairs on the couch but I’ll get used to it.

To help combat the dry and sometimes frizzy hair that is super different from what I’m used to; here are a few products that I use to help it look and feel a little healthier.

Shampoos and Conditioners

When you color your hair you have to change up your hair care routine a bit. For me, I have found that I need to wash my hair a little less than I normally do and I condition my hair every single day.

Paul Mitchel Extra-Body Shampoo and Conditioner

This shampoo-conditioner set is not specifically for color treated hair so it doesn’t have some of the benefits that those shampoos do but it helps when my hair is starting to get frizzy. The shampoo doesn’t create the best suds to wash your hair but the conditioner helps the frizzy ends when the dryness starts to get to my hair.

As far as cost goes this is not the most wallet-friendly product but I get mine at JCP where they usually have a good sale going on. These ones I bought on black Friday when it was buy one get one half off so I got them for about 20$ total.

Maui Moisture Color Protection + Sea Minerals Shampoo and Conditioner

This is a shampoo-conditioner set that is meant for colored treated hair so it has ingredients that help your hair to stay healthy with color. I like this brand a lot because it is a more natural brand that is vegan, sulfate free, and made with pure coconut water. It is also pretty kind on your wallet and works like professional salon brands.

This shampoo and conditioner have some great minerals that help to protect your hair color and bring some moisture back into it. They bring some natural shine back into my hair so that it doesn’t look dull or dry. As far as cost these are pretty good. Depending on where you get them they can be between 8 and 9 dollars. I got the ones I have right now from Ulta Beauty for 9 but I know that Walmart also carries the same product.

Matrix Total Results Brass Off Color Obsessed Shampoo and Conditioner

So if you, like me, have decide to go blonde then your hair has needed toner. However, toner fades over time and the way to keep it a little longer is to use special shampoo like this one. It is usually a deep purple/blue color that you don’t have to use very often at first but you increase frequency as you time goes on. This shampoo does make my hair really soft and it suds really well. However, if you use it too soon after ding your hair it can turn it a little blue so the general rule is to wait about two weeks.

As far as cost these shampoos and conditioners are a bit more pricy but my recommendation is to invest in something good. It is going to be less expensive than getting a touch up more often because the toner fades. Invest in your hair color and you will see results. I also got these from JCPenny for about 13$ each but I have found it to be a good investment.

Leave in Treatments

Living in as dry of a climate as I do leave in products are a must. They keep my hair soft and smooth between washes and help my hair to hold in moisture better.

It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In Product

So weather or not you have colored hair I still recommend this product.  It does amazing things for your hair that you can’t really get anywhere else. It is a spray but it is the consistency of conditioner. It makes my hair so soft and also helps with being a heat protectant. It adds a lot of moisture to my hair so I have to be careful with how much I use or it will start to feel like there is a lot of product in it. It helps to detangle hair a lot so that when you brush it you aren’t ripping out enough hair to create a wig for yourself. The next time you’re running to Target or Walmart or wherever you like to run errands pick up a bottle and look at the list of things that it does for your hair on the back. They are all 100% true for me and my hair type.

The best way to use it, for me at least, is to spray 3-4 sprays on towel dry hair and use a comb to brush it through all of my hair. I usually blow dry it after because I am a morning shower person and if I leave the house with wet hair in winter it will literally freeze before I get to my car.

As far as cost this is not the most friendly to the wallet, I’m not going to lie. It is an amazing product but the next leave in product I’m talking about is just as good and I recommend just as much and it is more budget friendly if that is what you are looking for.

Wet Brush Time Release Detangler 

This is a product that the stylist recommended to me when I got my hair colored as a good leave in product to use. The first thing I noticed when I used it is how good it made my hair smell and the smell lasted all day. This is definitely something that I reach for super often because it helps my wet hair to be detangled and it also has heat protectant in it so I can blow dry my hair after using it as well. It has keratin that helps my hair to be stronger to help the wet noodle feeling that I talked about earlier. I also don’t notice the feeling of hair feeling like it has too much product in it like I do with the previous product. I think this is because it is not as thick like that one is.

As far as price this one is a little lighter on the wallet. And honestly I think it is amazing and I reach for it just as often as I do the It’s a 10 product.

Pharm to Table Coconut Argon Hydrating Leave-In

This was something that I picked up at TJMaxx and I have really fallen in love with it. It smells amazing and the coconut oil in it really helps my hair to have some great shine and moisture. It also has argon oil and bamboo extract in it which are things that my hair always really loves. It makes it really soft and helps to repair some damage. It doesn’t have heat protectant in it so I will use it on days when I don’t have to go to work in the morning or when I am staying home for the day and when I can let my hair air dry.

Coconut Oil

So for this one I don’t think that it really matters what brand you use. Sometimes I will use whatever I find at the grocery store in the jars with the cooking stuff but the one that I am loving at the moment is the Shea Moisture Coconut Oil.

The way that I use this is at night I will coat all of my hair in it and put it in a towel with a towel on my pillow and sleep with it in my hair. I wash it out in the morning like I would normally wash my hair and it helps give my hair so much life. I heard of this when I was watching some interview with Kim Kardashian and she mentioned that this was something that she did with blonde hair to keep it healthy. I figured why not give it a shot and it really works.

 

Products I use for a Treat Yo Self Night

I don’t know about you guys but I definitely love having a night to myself where I can just treat myself and focus on relaxing and treating myself. Usually I go for a nice bath, some skin and hair treatments, and a relaxing evening in. So here are a few things that I like to use for a treat yo self night:

(bonus points to anyone who has seen the Parks and Rec episode I am referring to)

I love starting out with a nice bath. This usually means that I like to start with candles and maybe an episode of old trash reality show reruns. My first ingredient is usually a bath bomb.

I always love to buy bath bombs from local places and farmers markets. These places always seem to have amazing products that are really unique. These ones I have gotten from a local shop and from a farmers market type booth on campus. They all smell really unique and I am super excited to use them.

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Local Bath Bombs

As far as commercial places to get great bath bombs I love Lush. I like to use bath bombs that are meant to calm and relax so I usually go for something with lavender or chamomile in it. So far the one I have really liked from Lush that I have repurchased is the Ickle Baby Bot. I know that this is usually meant for kids but I really like it. It really helps me calm down with the lavender and chamomile in it and I also feel like it makes my skin really soft as well. The other one I have really wanted to try is The Big Sleep. Keep your eye out for a future post about this one!

My next ingredient for a treat yo self night is some bath salts. I love ones that tend to have lavender in them because they help me relax so much. The one I have now I bought at Winco and it smells really good and goes with my bath bomb really well so I feel extra relaxed. I have found that I really like natural scents and I really love most things that contain essential oils.

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Petal Fresh Bath Salts

Just before I hop in my bath I like to grab either a book to read or I set up my laptop with an episode of the newest show that I’m watching. (This usually means reruns of ANTM on Hulu.)

Once I am in the bath I like to use a sugar scrub on my legs to make them extra soft. Sugar scrubs are some of my favorite products to use on my skin but I only use them when I do a treat yo self night. I dont know why I don’t do it more often but it makes them last a little longer. I use another local brand right now that I don’t really like as much as some of the commercial brands that I have used but it smells good so I haven’t felt the need to replace it yet.

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Local Sugar Scrubs

My favorite commercial brands for sugar scrubs are Tree Hut and Soap & Glory. For the Tree Hut one I really like the Coconut Lime scent because it isn’t too sweet and sugary. I love that I feel like it really gets the dead skin off my legs and it makes them so ridiculously soft after I shave them. If you can’t tell by the pic this one has been well loved by me.

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Tree Hut Sugar Scrub

 

As far as the Soap & Glory scrub I love the Sugar Crush Body Scrub. The scent of this is so unique and I fell in love with it the first time I used it. I can’t quite describe it so I just recommend going and getting some to fall in love with yourself. I love that this has a lot of moisturizing elements to it. On top of getting the dead skin off, it makes the fresh skin feel so healthy when I’m done.

After I am content with how much time I have spent in the bath I will drain the water and take a quick shower to be able to wash my hair and face. I know that this isn’t the most effective water saving technique but I never really feel like my hair can get clean in a bath.

Next comes the masks.

As far as a hair mask I have been trying a bunch but the one I always seem to go back to is the OGX Argon Oil Intense Moisturizing Treatment. I talk about this to everyone when they ask me how I get my hair so soft. For me it really has the best of all worlds when it comes to hair treatments. It smells amazing and I have never tried anything that makes my hair feel so good and so healthy and soft.

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My favorite hair treatment

The other hair masks that I have been trying are the Love Beauty and Planet Murumuru Butter & Rose Blooming Strength and Shine mask. Honestly I don’t really see a ton of benefit from this mask but it is one of the best smelling products that I have used. For a treat yo self night I love things that smell good so sometimes I lean toward this one.

I don’t tend to be a big face mask person because I tend to just go straight to my prescriptions after I wash my face and I kind of forget about them. When I do remember that face masks are an option I still love The Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing Face Mask because it makes my skin feel really good. Before I started the prescriptions that I am on, products that have tea tree oil in them seemed to be the only things that were making my skin show any kind of improvement. It really helps my skin to feel like it is clean and refreshed.

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Tea Tree Skin Clearing Mask

 

I also have enjoyed finding local shops that have face masks just like I do with bath bombs. Right now I have one on that is from a brand called TreeBee and I am really liking it. It kind of has the consistency of yogurt but it is making my skin feel great so if you can find a local shop, try them out!

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I also wanted to mention another mask that I put on but I usually wait until the very end to put it on because it is a sleeping mask. It is the SOO AE Donkey Milk Sleeping Mask. This is the most moisturizing product I have tried so far and every time I use it I don’t wake up with flakey spots around my eyes and mouth.

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Donkey Milk Sleeping Mask

 

After I have rinsed out my hair mask and taken off the face mask I get to my last few steps in treating myself. I usually like to moisturize my whole body. I don’t really like moisturizers that make my skin feel sticky or that feel like they just sit on top of my skin and stick to my PJs.

My go-to lotion has been the Vaseline Intensive Healing Moisturizer. It makes my skin feel so good and I am in love with the really light scent. I used to have really dry patches on my legs that would burn and this was the only product that would help so I have sworn by it ever since. I definitely recommend this if you are feeling a bit overwhelmed by scents at this point in your evening.

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Vaseline Intensive Care Lotion

(Chris also uses this and he loves it as well. Just a side note for any guys that happen to follow my blog.)

However if you are still really loving all the creative and new scents then try another locally made product! At the moment I am loving some body butters that I have that I have found at farmers markets and some little boutiques around that are my go-to.

If you are looking for a really commercial deep moisturizer try out the Johnson & Johnson Baby Oil Gel. This stuff gives some of the deepest and longest lasting moisture that I have ever experienced. It also smells great and you really don’t have to use much to get a really great feeling for your skin.

My final step of the evening is tea. I love calming tea to end a really good night. I think that there are a lot of really great brands out there that I have tried. The one that I am currently obsessed with is a German brand that I can’t even really try to spell. I do know that it has lavender in it and that is one of my favorite tea components.

These are some of my favorite items that help me to have a really relaxing night. Weather I have just had a particularly tough day or if I am feeling extra anxious, I love using these to help me have a night to treat myself.

If you want to read more about what I do that also helps me relax when I am feeling anxious them check out my last blog post here.

Let me know what you guys like to use when you feel like treating or pampering yourself for an evening or if you’ve tried any of the products mentioned above!

Instagram: @kateboswelll

Twitter: @5678_kate


Dealing With Period Skin

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Basically periods suck all around. I think the only benefit I ever saw from having one was freshman year gym class when I didn’t have to swim for that week.

On top of the many things that I dislike about my period my skin falls within the top 3.

I used to think that hormones only effected your skin right around your period but I have come to the conclusion that I can tell where I am at in my cycle based on what my skin is doing. Generally around the time of my period is my least favorite stage.

2 weeks before: My skin starts to break out just a little bit. Usually just a couple little pimples in the really sensitive areas of my face like the crease of my nose or my hairline.

2-3 days before: My skin starts to get really dry. It gets to the point where it burns to put on moisturizer and is constantly flaking and getting red. The worst areas for me during this time are right around my mouth and right next to my eyes along my cheekbones.

During: I don’t really have any complaints about my skin during my period. This might be the one time that I feel like its not getting too oily or dry and my breakouts have cleared up for a bit.

As far as tips for dealing with trouble skin during different times of your cycle here is what I do:

For oily days: On the days when my skin is more oily I still use moisturizer but I go for a more water based moisturizer. My go to has been the Simple Hydro-Boost moisturizer. I also am pretty adamant about drinking lots of water.

For makeup on these days I use the Maybelline Fit Me foundation and the Flower setting powder. I also make sure that I carry setting powder around with me so that when my skin gets a bit more oily during the day.

For dry days: On days when my skin is dry and flakey I don’t tend to wear a lot of makeup because it flakes off. I still use the same Soap and Glory face wash during these days. It is a bit more drying but it seems that if I change my face wash it only makes it worse.

I make sure that I use the Loreal Skin Active moisturizer over my whole face and an oil based skin serum around my eyes and mouth where my skin is the flakiest.

For breakout days: I have a lot less breakouts now that I’m on these prescriptions but on the days when I have a few more trouble spots the Tarte Shape Tape is my best friend. I do the normal skincare routine but when I do my makeup I make sure that I use some color correction with the Shape Tape on top of trouble spots.

 

Let me know what you guys do to help your skin for your period and the best tips and tricks you have for different parts of your cycle.

 

Dying My Hair!

So I have wanted to dye my hair for a while and I am finally going to do it in a couple weeks. I know that when my hair is colored it will take a lot more maintenance but right now I want to make sure that my hair is as healthy as it possibly can be as to not cause more damage than normal.

I’ve already talked in a previous post about what I do to care for my hair and now that I am getting ready to color it I want to make sure that its extra healthy.

I still use the same Herbal Essences Rose Hips Shampoo for washing my hair. I stick with my schedule of washing every other day or every two days depending on how much I sweat when I work out. (Also it’s summer so that is a bit more often.)

I also started using a new Coconut Water conditioner. It is the Renpure Professional Coconut Water Hydrating Conditioner. I am in love with the way this smells, first of all. When I first used it I didn’t think that it would be that great because it isn’t as thick as other conditioners I’ve used.

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I was definitely pleasantly surprised by it. My dead ends feel hydrated and healthy and it doesn’t leave any gross residue. Overall 10/10 would recommend for any dry or damaged hair.

The other thing I use more often is hair treatments. These I do pretty often and I love to try some new ones. My go to is the OGX Renewing + Argon Oil of Morocco Intense Moisturizing Treatment. I have been in love with this product for a long time and I SWEAR BY IT. It makes my hair so silky soft and it feels so healthy. I think the best thing is that it smells great and works even better. I will put this on after the shower and put my hair all up in a clip to let it soak in and then rinse it with lukewarm water.

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The other new thing that I have been trying is hair masks. Some of them I have found are really great and some of them are just so-so.

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(Sorry these are all in plastic bags I just never use the whole package all at once.)

Over the past couple weeks I have been trying three different ones: HI-PRO-PAC Coconut Oil & African Shea Butter, Love Beauty and Planet Murumuru Butter & Rose Blooming Strength and Shine 2 Minute Magic Masque, and the Shea Moisture Peace Rose Oil Complex, Nourish & Silken Treatment Masque w/ Date Palm & Camelia Extracts.

I like using each of these for different reasons so I use them interchangeably. The HI-PAC-PRO makes my hair really soft and it smells so good. My hair feels thicker and it feels healthy.

The Love Beauty and Planet one is one of the best smelling products I have ever used. I seriously cannot get enough of it. It makes my hair really shiny and it adds some much needed nutrients that make my hair feel better for days after using it.

The Shea Moisture one is probably my least favorite only because it is really heavy. My hair doesn’t feel flowy the next day and it gets really oily really fast after using it.

Once I color my hair, my routine will definitely change so keep your eye out for my post about it!

Let me know what you guys do to help prep your hair for color and what you do to care for it after it’s colored.

Wedding Planning: Some of the Things You Don’t Think About

So we are getting closer and closer to the wedding date but I wanted to write a post about general planning for being married that comes along with the wedding.

The biggest stressor for Chris and I has been finding a place to live. We have found a house that we love and our offer has been accepted! Its close to his work and I absolutely love everything about it. We’ve had some hiccups with the loan but so far we are looking forward.

The struggle with finding a place for the two of you in a place where families are pretty big is that most houses are big and also a bit out of our price range.

We definitely thought about renting and we looked at lots of places but we weren’t finding anything we liked. We decided that if it was possible to buy then we would. It’s a really great investment and we can rent it out later to college kids in the area. We found a great 4 bedroom place (which is more bedrooms than we need but its kind of the best we could do) which is pretty new and its within our price range.

It has a small backyard and a great little kitchen that I can’t wait to move into.

So we bought it. Hopefully I’ll be able to move in before we get married and then Chris can move in with me after we get married. That way I can get everything set up so that when we get back from our honeymoon we can hit the ground running and get back to work and school.

This will also give me a chance to get used to driving to places like the grocery store and find the best routes for us to work before we have to step into actually getting married. (Those seem silly but its the little things that can stress me out.)

There are also a lot of legal things to take care of after you change your last name other than your Instagram handle or your signature. I haven’t done any of this yet so keep your eye out for a post in September about it.

I think the other big thing I didn’t really think about is that getting surprises for Chris is going to be really hard when we share a bank account. He will be able to see how much I spent and where I spent it so I’m not really sure how I’m going to deal with that.

If anyone has any tips on how to best surprise our spouse when you share accounts let me know because surprising Chris is one of my favorite things to do.

Full Face of Makeup: What I do and How I do it

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On a day-to-day basis I don’t wear a full face of makeup. This is mostly due to the fact that I work at 8 am and I like sleeping in almost as much as I like Chris (my fiance).

However, I do love doing a full face of makeup. I think its so fun and creative. So, here is what I do and how I do it.

(This is also going to be a really long post so sorry about that.)

The first step for me is always primer. For primer I use the Milani Prime Perfection. I like the way this makes my skin feel and its great for my makeup to go on. I don’t feel like it makes it too oily or dry. The consistency is a bit like sunscreen but it helps set my skin up for foundation really well.

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My next thing is always eye primer. I use a tinted primer because for me I think it makes my shadow look really good as well as makes it stay in place really well. I use the Ulta Beauty Tinted Primer in Satin Blush. This is a really creamy formula but I think sometimes I don’t even need to put on shadow because I love the color so much.

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Next I do color correction. Because I have some red pigmentation on my skin from acne scarring I use green color correction to offset it. I use the Maybelline New York Coverstick Corrector Concealer. It goes on really well and I feel like it has a really good balance of color that covers my pigmentation.

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Then I color in my brows. My eyebrows are basically non existent until I put them there so this is probably my favorite step. I use the No. 7 Beautiful Eyebrow Pencil. I have used this forever and I absolutely love it. Pencils are definitely my favorite way to color by brows in because I have never had much luck with powders or gels.

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Than I start with eyes. For my shadow I use an Ulta Beauty brand pallet I got for free a little while ago. Since this is a sample size instead of a normal one I don’t know exactly the palette is called. It has some great colors in it and you can definitely tell that it has been well loved.

The eyeliner I am currently using is the NYX Skinny Eye Marker. I love that NYX has such a wide variety of sizes and styles for liner. This one is the only one I have tried so far but I love it.

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For mascara my go to is usually the Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara but right now I am loving the Maybelline New York Lash Sensational Mascara for my top lashes and the Sonia Kashuk mascara for my bottom lashes. The Maybelline mascara makes my lashes look so big and full and long and is definitely a more affordable mascara option.

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Next is foundation. This one is a little trickier to nail down because I use something different depending on the time of year. Right now I use a combination of the Flower Cosmetics Light Illusion Foundation and the NYX Total control drop foundation. I combine these two mostly because one is a bit too light and the other is a bit too dark. I like the way they go on and I love the way they last all day. The Flower Foundation is a really light coverage foundation but it feels really good. It doesn’t feel heavy and it doesn’t end up looking cakey on my skin.

Other foundations that I like to use are the Maybelline Fit Me as well as the Rimmel 25 Hour wear foundation. Both of these I like for different reasons but I definitely always have a bottle in my makeup bag.

After foundation comes concealer. I apply concealer under my eyes, down my nose, and on the scarring on my cheeks. My staple concealer is the Tarte Shape Tape. I have talked about this a lot before but it is still hands-down my favorite.

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Then I do contour. I use the Flower Lift & Sculpt Contour Kit. I apply highlight down my nose, on my cheekbones, and a touch on my chin. I contour under my cheekbones, the sides of my nose, and on my forehead. I love how pigmented these are and how well they go on over foundation.

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For setting powder I use the Flower Miracle Matte Universal Finishing Powder. I have used colored finishing powders but I think I like the translucent ones the best. It helps my makeup stay in place all day and it helps my skin to look extra flawless.

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Lip color is by far my favorite part of makeup. I have too many colors to count but I’ll just share a few of my current faves. There is the NYX Lip Lingerie in the color Exotic, the Ulta Beauty Lasting Lip Color in the color Crown, Ulta Beauty Matte Lip Cream in the color Stirring, and the Ulta Beauty Matte Lip Crayon in the color Engagement.

The final and last step of this whole process is setting spray. While the Urban Decay All-Nighter setting spray will always be my favorite I am currently trying out the Flower Seal the Deal Matte Finish Setting Spray. I honestly don’t know if this is any better or worse but it smells so good that I almost don’t care.

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So this is the basics of my makeup routine. Keep an eye out for upcoming posts that go into a little more detail about how I do it and how I change it up. Also, let me know what your favorite products are and what order you do your makeup in!

All About Me!

So I realized that I have never really introduced myself to you guys. So here it goes!

My name is Kate and I am currently living in Idaho and going to school for communications with an emphasis in public relations. I also work on campus in the IT department in the communications office.

I am also currently engaged! My fiance’s name is Chris and he is my favorite human being.

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We met on campus and we are planning to get married in September! You can go check out my latest post about wedding planning here.

I also really love makeup and beauty. I started struggling with my skin a little over a year ago and I tried every remedy under the sun. Eventually I broke down and went to a dermatologist here. They gave me not one, not two, but three prescriptions to attack the issue. Albeit my skin definitely struggled a bit at the beginning and eventually came out better and clearer on the other side.

The prescriptions made my skin dryer than the Sahara desert. They also made my skin BURN so much. There were nights I would open the window (during winter when it was below 0 and snowing) so that I could feel the cold air on my face while I laid in Chris’ lap trying not to cry because it made my skin burn more.

My skin has gotten a little better since then and now it only gets dry and burns right around my period.

(Here’s a side by side of my skin 8 months ago and my skin now)

I have also really fallen in love with makeup through this whole process. When I had really bad skin I hated makeup because I didn’t feel like it was covering up enough. Now I have come to the realization that I don’t like to use makeup to cover my skin up but rather to show off my skin. (I know that sounds cliche but whatever.)

I work in a professional environment so the first few times I went to work with pizza face it was a huge struggle. Then I realized that not only was it helping my skin to get better but it was also helping me be more confident.

Now I love that I can wear makeup to show off my skin and I feel so much better about it. I think that not wearing as much makeup now helps me to feel more confident in my skin and realize that no one thinks my skin looks as bad as I do.

I started watching beauty vloggers in high school and I thought they were so cool. I always thought they were these really cool girls who were so pretty and had this really awesome talent. Around this time was when I started really getting into beauty but I had no idea what I was doing. It wasn’t until a little over a year ago when I started to get somewhere and to a point where other people started asking me for my advice.

So that is kind of how I got to where I am now.

Let me know how you guys started to be interested in beauty and blogging in the comments!

Sephora vs. Ulta Beauty

For me the two biggest stores for beauty and makeup have been Ulta and Sephora. I have spent all my life living in California and Idaho and these were always the stores available to me for higher end makeup.

Sephora

Pros:

I have always liked that Sephora is very centered on makeup. They carry a lot of really great brands that I don’t find anywhere else. I love that they cary brands like NARS and Kat Von D and Fenty that aren’t available in many other stores.

I think the sales representatives are also really knowledgable. They know the products really well and can generally suggest something for whatever random suggestion I happen to come in with.

Cons:

Personally, for as many good experiences as I have at Sephora I think I have just as many bad ones. Whether it be a rude sales representative, the products not being in stock, or not having a product I’m looking for. Some of their selection seems to be limited even though they carry many brands.

Ulta Beauty

Pros:

I like that Ulta is centered around general beauty. I like that they carry everything that you need beauty related. I like that you can really start from the bottom up and build your way up. Like i like that you can start with face wash and work all the way to setting spray. I like that there is such a wide variety of skincare items and beauty tools. For me this makes it a really great store.

Sometimes I do struggle with the fact that they don’t carry a lot of the higher end brands but this also keeps me from spending my entire paycheck all at once so maybe it isn’t really that bad of a thing. They carry almost all of my favorite brands and they also have a lot of other drugstore brands that I love like NYX that I don’t find in a lot of other stores.

I also LOVE the small samples that are next to the checkout stand.

Cons:

Some of my favorite brands like Kat Von D and NARS aren’t carried here. I don’t really have any other complaints here.

Conclusion:

I think that for me I am more willing to go to Ulta but Sephora still hold a very special and very large place in my heart. I see so many great things about both of these stores and I love that they are a little different. With my wedding coming up (92 days!!!) I am looking for some good makeup and trying to get a really good routine down for myself so that I don’t have to pay anyone else to do it.

Let me know what stores you guys shop at and where you but your beauty products!

Some Products are Worth the Splurge

I am 100% for beauty on a budget. There are a lot of drug store brands that just seem to get it when it comes to beauty products.

However, some items there just aren’t replacements for. Most of these products you can find a pretty good replacement for but it still doesn’t perform at quite the same level as higher end products. These are a few of the products that I really love (and can justify splurging on.)

  1. Better Than Sex Mascara – I think that there are definitely some other great mascaras out there, don’t get me wrong. In my experience it takes a lot more coats to get the same effect. With this mascara I spend the least amount of time trying to make sure my lashes aren’t clumped and they still look like I’m wearing fake lashes. I feel like it really stays on all day and it doesn’t flake off. I think the price is worth every cent.
  2. Shape Tape – I don’t know that I have ever tried a concealer that is quite as pigmented as this. If there are days where I am running late, I can dab this on under my eyes and over some problem areas and be ready to head out the door. It also is a great highlight for under my eyes and on the bridge of my nose when I am doing a full face. For me, that definitely constitutes the price.
  3. Primer- For me personally, primer makes all the difference. I don’t really have a specific product in mind because there are such different kinds of skin. I use a Two Faced primer because I feel like it holds my makeup in place really well and it helps the texture of my skin to be closer to the matte that I like. Honestly, finding a good primer that compliments your skin type is really key.

Also, if you don’t like to splurge on things without being sure then try out places like Sephora that will give you samples of what you’re looking for before you commit to the price. (I just learned today that Sephora gives samples so my life is forever changed.)

As far as a few other things that I will occasionally splurge on there aren’t many. Sometimes I will treat myself with a really nice face wash or a great moisturizer but for the most part I enjoy the hunt for beauty on a budget.