Sunday, December 30, 2012

Spot check

When I called my dermatologist to make a routine appointment back in November, I think I spaced it when they told me my appointment was going to be on December 31, 2012. Who schedules a dermatologist appointment on New Years Eve? Well, apparently me.

I have a couple spots that have been worrying me. I'm sure they're nothing, but it's hard not to be a hypochondriac after one of my seemingly harmless moles turned out to be skin cancer.

Post-appointment, it's Les Mis with my mom, and a low-key NYE. Do you have anything fun planned for tomorrow night?

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Give yourself a break

A few weeks ago, I was sitting around a table with seven  women I went to high school with about ten years ago. After years of feeling like I'm the youngest person in the room and a novice at being a grown up, I had an epiphany: Somewhere along the way, we turned into adults. Real adults. We're no longer in entry-level jobs, we're getting married (well, not me, but several of my friends) and starting familes (also not me, but you get the idea), buying cars and houses, and paying for our own cell phone bills.

Although things seem great on the surface, one of the things I think I've struggled with most since graduating from college in 2008 is striking the right balance between my inner child and becoming a responsible adult. Recently, I discovered a gem of a TV show on the CW called Emily Owens, M.D., that reminds me of first-season Greys Anatomy. The main character, Emily a.k.a. Dr. Owens, a huge geek in high school, draws parallels between her first year of medical residency and her teenage years. To make things worse, she matches at the same hospital as her high school arch nemesis and the boy she has a crush on sees her as "just a friend." No matter how old I get, I think I'll still be able to relate to this predictable but endearing storyline. Rumor has it that the CW is cancelling it, which breaks my heart, especially because the most recent episode had a couple great lines that I heard and immediately knew I'd be sharing with you.

As Emily berates herself, her adorable male coworker/friend/crush interrupts her by saying: "No one's judging your flaws except you."

Later on in the episode, as Emily is celebrating her birthday, she takes her friend's comment to heart. She says to herself:

"It's hard not to try and judge your flaws because we're aware of every mistake. We know our inner doubts, our hidden motivations. So my wish for next year is to be easier on myself. Focus less on the bad and more on the good. Really just give myself a break."

Leave it to me to find inspiration from a soon-to-be-canceled sitcom. But there's something about this quote that really resonates with me. As I reflect on 2012 and start making plans for next year, "giving myself a break" is probably going to end up somewhere on my resolutions list this year.

I mean think about it. It's so easy to hate on ourselves. Just today, I've had the following thoughts: my legs are gross and pasty (yes, I am still self conscious about my winter white legs), I need to tone up before I go on vacation in April, I wish I was a better cook, I should be spending more time being productive over my Christmas break than vegging out on trashy TV... the list goes on. We are always are own worst critics.

What are you most critical about? Have you found a way to cope with negative self talk?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The many days of Christmas

Just turned on my computer for the first time in days. It's been nice to have a little holiday hiatus. Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! Here are a few snippets from mine:

Peanut butter reindeer cookies from our annual cookie exchange.
Ugly sweater party!
This picture brings me much happiness. Image: Pinterest.
Nothing like home for the holidays :)
Holiday hair and makeup!
Too much eggnog?
I promise a more substantive post soon. Cheers!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Ipsy Glam Bag Review - December 2012

Last month, I posted a review of my first glam bag from Ipsy just for fun. It ended up being one of my most popular posts, so here are my thoughts on what they sent me for December.

Mai Couture Highlighter Paper - $14 value
At first glance, I thought these were oil blotting sheets. Then I realized they were highlighter papers. Cool idea, in theory, but they turned my face orange. The color of the powder on these papers is more of a blush than a highlighter for my light skin tone. I wish these came in more than one shade. Bummer.

Be a Bombshell Lip Gloss in Hot Mess - Full Size - $14 value
I had never heard of this brand before, but I love red lip glosses, so I was excited to give this product a try. Turns out, it's fantastic. You can apply a thin layer for a sheer pop of color or apply more heavily for a high-shine red finish. It wears longer and more evenly than other red lip glosses I've tried. I've worn this several times already - both at work and for play.

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-on Eye Pencil in Zero - $14 value
I've purchased this eye liner before. It glides on super smoothly and stays on forever. Pretty sure it made my day when I found out this liner was coming in my December box.

Mirabella Prime for Face and Eyes - Full size - $29 value
I don't typically wear liquid foundation, so this has been fun to try, but not something I'd use on a daily basis. Feels similar to the Smashbox Photo Finish primer. I've used it a few times on my eyelids, but I can't tell if it helps my shadow wear longer or not.

Nyx Loose Pearl Shimmer - Full size - $3 value
On Ipsy's website, they showed this in gold. I would have much rather gotten a gold powder than this charcoal. It's messy, so I don't love it. Again, I think I may have liked it better if I tried it in a lighter color.

Here's a look at what some of the colors look like on my skin. From left: highlighter (eh hem, bronzer), eye liner, lip gloss, and loose power eye shadow. Even though I didn't love all the products, the lip gloss and the eye liner are a total hit. For $10, I received about $74 worth of product. Ahhh-mazing.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

"It's OK" Thursday

Today I'm linking up with Amber and Neely for my first "It's OK Thursday." Here we go.

It's OK...
  • That I've eaten at least 2 dozen Christmas cookies in the past week
  • That I can't stop Christmas shopping for myself
  • That I've been humming along to Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift
  • That I watched the entire first season of HBO's Girls in less than 24 hours
  • That I drove to work instead of taking the bus because it was snow/raining
  • That I wore rain boots and big fuzzy socks to work (and then refused to put on "real shoes" because my toes were cold)
What kind of shenanigans have you been up to this week?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Skin-friendly stocking stuffers

I don't know how this happened, but I am *done* with my Christmas shopping. Still looking for a few extra goodies? Treat the people you love to a gift that's both fun and practical. Here are a few skin-friendly favorites that are sure to please (cough cough, hint hint).

Coola Liplux SPF 30 Lip Balm
Coola is an EWG-approved sunscreen company that uses mostly organic ingredients in their products. Don't neglect your lips! They burn, too.

Juice Beauty CC Cream with SPF 30
This product came in my December Birchbox. It's like a BB cream--moisturizer, tint, sunscreen, etc. all in one--and full of skin-loving antioxidants.

Supergood City & Sand Travel Tote
This kit is so, so cute! It's loaded with four different types of sunscreens so that you can try multiple formulas from this brand. I've had this one on my wishlist for a while. Might have to treat myself!

Tea Forte Skin Smart Teas
If you are what you eat, then you are what you drink! I first discovered these teas at a salon last year. Swiss Apple is my favorite flavor. The antioxidants in these teas are essential for repairing skin damage. It doesn't hurt that they taste amazing and that the box is too dang cute.

Boots N7 Hand Cream with SPF 15
Sneak a little SPF into your daily hand cream to help ward off age spots later.

Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 40
Argan oil is a beauty staple these days. This argan-infused moisturizer nourishes and protects skin. Bonus: it comes in a mini-size that's perfect for Christmas stockings.

Peace, love & Christmas cookies!

Monday, December 17, 2012


I've had such a hard time blogging since the shooting in Connecticut last week. In the days following something so horrific, the normal things we gossip about, complain about, and joke about feel so trivial. Instead of prolonging my silence, I wanted to join others from across the nation who have already expressed condolences to the families impacted by the shooting. I admire the bravery of the teachers and administration at Sandy Hook Elementary, and hope that all the beautiful, young souls lost may rest in peace.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Who said it? "Don't Be a Paleface"

Did you know that good 'ole Coppertone's slogan used to be "Don't Be a Paleface"? How crazy is that? I wonder what people will be saying 50 years from now about some of our advertising campaigns.

H&M's infamous too-tan advertisement.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Cosmo VoxBox Review 2012

The 2012 Cosmo VoxBox.

This fall, I was selected to receive a VoxBox from Influenster. Basically, the premise is this: companies send you freebies in exchange for your feedback.  Instead of doing something productive on this chilly, Monday evening (laundry, working out, save the world, etc.), I thought I'd blog about my new goodies. I realize this has nothing to do with skin cancer, but sometimes a girl just needs a place to chill out and relax. This blog is my zen :)

FriXion by Pilot Pens - $4.50 for a three pack
I've been out of school for almost five years, but I still get excited about buying new pens and other office supplies every fall. Yes, I'm a nerd. I know. I'm probably going to use these for Christmas cards.

Gillette Venus Embrace & Venus Olay Razor Refill - $3.50 to $4.50 for blade refills
Is it just me or does dry skin make wintery white legs look even whiter? I'm excited to try these (especially the Olay one) because it seems like it's more moisturizing than a normal razor. We shall see.

Forever Red Eau de Parfume Spray from Bath & Body Works - $10 for small size, $44.50 for full size
I loved Bath & Body works when I was younger, but I don't think I've shopped there in years. Most of their scents are too fruity, etc. I didn't think I was going to like this fragrance at all, but this actually smells REALLY good. It's very rich and earthy and surprisingly sophisticated. This could easily become my new daytime scent.

Ghirardelli Gourmet Milk Sea Chocolate Escape - $2.79
I hope I fooled you into thinking there is chocolate in this pretty little box--because I ate it already. Whoops! Salted chocolates are my absolute favorite right now. I would have preferred dark chocolate, but lets be real. Chocolate is chocolate. Yum!

Not too shabby of a haul right? If you're not member of Influenster yet, feel free to shoot me and email and I can give you an invite code.

Disclaimer: I received these treats for free in exchange for providing reviews of the products. Opinions contained in this post are my own.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

On beauty

Saw this image on Facebook today. The photographer was listed as unknown, but I love it. Isn't it the truth? Test yourself. Which of these models would you rather trade bodies with:

Model #1. Image: Indy Fashion Marketplace
Model #2. Image: Chictopia

Monday, December 3, 2012

My fingers are famous!

Creepy blog post title, I know. Sorry, guys! But how cool is this: My manicure is featured as Julep's Nail of the Day. This pale girl is rockin' it! Happy Monday, all :)