5/5 FAB & Bite Beauty

22 September 2014

bespectacled, new in, skincare, September's Five, First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads,

And rounding off my five are another beauty and another skincare piece - both from brands I actually really enjoy. Originally the pixi Glow Tonic was on my list as my acid toner of choice but it kind of boiled down to convenience & accessibility for me. The First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads is readily available at my Sephora (which is literally less than 2 miles away - both convenient and dangerous) whereas the pixi Glow Tonic is only available online. If this ever finds its way to Target this will definitely be in my basket pronto! Like I said, FAB is a brand that I've tried and really enjoyed but the FAB Facial Radiance Pads weren't really in my radar until Tasha of Shiwashful's review on it. Unlike the Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Liquid which I instantly liked and saw a difference with, I think this one is definitely something that needs a bit of time for me to really form an opinion on. I do have to say that this has been pretty gentle on my skin - no irritation to be seen even on my more sensitive areas like my cheeks. I've even used this around my eyes with no problem at all!

And lastly, the Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick in Tannin. I adore Bite Beauty - the formula is amazing and their packaging has a good weight to it, nothing ever feels flimsy or cheap and they're really starting to become a brand that I covet. And now I've finally gotten my hands on the their Luminious Creme Lipstick line and so far so good! Tannin is described as a "poppy red" and I don't know if mine was mis-labeled because it looks nothing like the swatches I've seen online. This is more of a berry-leaning red to me but I guess you can't really tell from the bullet alone. I'll include swatches of all of the beauty stuff in my round up for this month's five and you'll see what this actually looks like then (I suck at taking photos of swatches). Regardless, this is a gorgeous color that's perfect for this upcoming fall season. I haven't really gotten a chance to wear it out too much but the formula is very pigmented but because it's dark you do need to be more careful. Plus it does show every little dryness so a lip scrub is a must. I'm not sure if I'll ever have the courage to wear this to work as is but I do think it looks lovely sheered out over some lip balm as well!

Have you guys tried anything from these two brands? What have you bought recently?

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most used lippies

18 September 2014

bespectacled, most used, beauty, MAC See Sheer Lipstick, Clinique Chubby Stick 05 Chunky Cherry, Korres Mango Butter Lipstick, NARS Dolce Vita Lipstick, pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm,

After concealer, lip products are my most used makeup product (and eyeliner after that I think!). I think I've amassed a decent collection of lipsticks but with the new NARS Audacious line that everyone seems to be raving about and those absolutely gorgeous Charlotte Tilbury lipsticks out I think I could always add one or two more.

But the ones I tend to gravitate towards and use the most happen to be the ones that are sheerer or easy-to-wear formulas - things that I don't need a mirror for, because sometimes I don't have the time or patience to apply lip liner and then lipstick properly. I reserve the bolder shades for the weekends and will try to get a post up on my favorite bold lipsticks later on! But on to the lipstick:

MAC See Sheer is a peach-pink shade that I think really works with a lot of different eye looks. Out of the ones here it would be the second most worn. Next to it is the pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm in Natural Rose is one that's talked about here a lot on this blog (it was in my drugstore faves post!) so I'll spare talking about it any further other than it is very comfortable to wear and makes me look done up without having to do very much!

The Clinique Chubby Stick in Chunky Cherry is another much loved lippy and is my most worn lipstick in my collection. As a sheer red I do think this works with everything and if you're looking for a sheer moisturizing wash of color I do think the chubby sticks are the OG of chubby sticks - highly recommended! Next to that is the Korres Mango Butter Lipstick in Coral. The formula is lightweight but moisturizing and I managed to snag this one on sale! I think it's the lightweight sister to my first non-drugstore lipstick - the Korres Lip Butters!

And last but not least is the NARS Dolce Vita Lipstick! Some days my lips can be very pale especially first thing in the mornings and I can look a bit sickly without some hint of more color. On me this is definitely a my-lips-but-better kind of color. This isn't a long wearing shade on me but I can apply it without a mirror with no issue. The weirdest thing about this product is the smell - does anyone else think this smells a bit weird? Like some sort of strange spice.

Other than the NARS Audacious line, on my wishlist is several Bite Beauty lipsticks that Ashley of MakeupTIA mentioned in her last Fall Lip Favorites video - oh Bite Beauty I wish you were a bit more affordable! What lip products are the most used in your collection? And, what's on you lipstick wishlist at the moment?

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lately #12

15 September 2014

bespectacled, life, lately

1. I always complain about the weather but oh my god is it freaking hot over here. We have a high heat advisory up until the end of Tuesday. One day I'll be able to move to a country that doesn't have a typical summer - one day. But I am always a bit worried whenever it gets dry & hot around here - we've already had one major fire this year already and I would much rather not have a repeat of that.

2. Braved the heat this weekend & returned the MAC Woodwinked which I talked about not working for me in my last post - honestly guys I think I picked up one from a bad batch! But instead I picked up what I had originally wanted - a NARS Eyeshadow Duo - but rather than Cordura, I picked up the shade Brousse and am in love! I wanted to try a pair a little outside of the box but still wearable everyday and I think this works for me. The NARS website describes this duo as sable/black violet - and while I don't actually know what the color "sable" is (sable means "sand" right? but when I think of sand I think of something much lighter!), they both work for me I think! I'm actually really pleased with this pick!

3. When I was at Sephora I was so sorely tempted by the NARS Audacious Lipstick line that's now available there. The packaging feels weighty and luxurious and all the colors I swatched were opaque in one pass and the texture was nice. Plus the reviews on it are really really good so far! UGH. Sorely tempted!

4. Beauty things aside I'm also working on a skirt/jacket co-ordinating pair in a lovely purple bouclé. I've got the skirt mostly finished - I just need to sew the facing down and finish the hem. And I have a pattern ready for the jacket which will hopefully be started sometime over this week. I don't know when I'll be able to wear it without dying from heat stroke, but I have really liked the look of matching pieces. But does anyone else have trouble wearing purple clothing? I can never find a shade that really suits me!

5. I'm planning on buying a new camera at the end of the month! I've been eying one of the mirrorless DSLR from Sony for quite a some time now. And while it might seem like a bit of a downgrade from my Nikon D60, I honestly think I prefer something a lot more compact and convenient. I'm not looking to do any professional photography - if I need it I can always use my dad's super fancy camera - so I'm actually pretty excited for this new one.

6. Can't really say much about what's going on in my life - it's actually mostly work nowadays, but I actually like being busy. I can't tell you how extremely dull it was when I was still looking for a job, plus your funds have a way of disappearing when you're bored.

bespectacled, life, lately

I'm on Topshop website by the way, there's one opening up in San Diego in October which I'm super excited for!

7. Also, did you know that Häagen-Dazs Tiramisu Gelato is a real thing? It tastes like real tiramisu (in my opinion) and actually has lady finger pieces in it.

So how was your weekend? Is the weather in your area more typical September weather or are you boiling hot like I am?

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3/5 Urban Decay & MAC

11 September 2014

bespectacled, beauty, new in, mini-haul, Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Pencil Liner Whiskey, MAC Woodwinked Eyeshadow

My monthly five is going well so far, but not exactly what I had planned. Originally I was planning to buy the NARS Cordura Eyeshadow Duo but upon swatching it in stores I realized I would most likely only use the lighter shade regularly. And I hate the idea of not using a shade, which is why I'm absolutely afraid of eyeshadow palettes. So I opted for the MAC Eyeshadow in Woodwinked.

Which, honestly, is a bit underwhelming. When I swatched it in stores this was such a gorgeous shade but this doesn't actually show up very well on my lids, which are a bit dark because of my eczema. I don't know if it's the brushes that I'm using or if I just got one from a bad batch but I'm really disappointed by this pick. Luckily I still have the receipt so I will most likely be returning this sometime during the week. Which sucks because I was actually really looking forward to my first foray into MAC eyeshadows. I had just expected a lot more than what I got, but I think Urban Decay or NARS might be the way to go for myself.

But onto the good: the Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Whiskey. When they say "glide-on" they actually mean it - the formula for this is excellent, this glides on the eyes like a dream (which was my biggest problem with other eyeliners), smudges easily but doesn't budge when it sets plus it lasts all day. I went with a bit of a boring shade - a matte dark brown - but I think it makes an excellent makeup basic, in my opinion. I do enjoy a good colored eyeliner as well and am definitely eying some more in the line.

So have you tried either of these products? What do you think about MAC eyeshadows - are they your favorite or do you enjoy something different?

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drugstore faves

07 September 2014

bespectacled, drugstore favorites, beauty, Rimmel Stay Blushed Liquid Cheek Tint, Revlon Colorstay Liner, Milani the Multitasker Face Powder, Maybelline Color Tattoo, pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm

I did a bit of makeup clean up - throwing out things that have expired, giving away some things I wasn't a fan of, doing swatches - and have rediscovered a few favorites. I know I've been focused a bit more on the higher-end side of beauty, but I do want to give a bit of a shout out to the drugstore products that really got me through the early days of beauty blogging, like this oldy-but-a-goody: the Rimmel Stay Blushed! Liquid Cheek Tint. This is a cream blush that leaves such a lovely natural-looking flush to the cheeks. I think this got me really considering blush as an everyday item -

Not really an old product (I think I bought it only a few months back) but how gorgeous is the Revlon Colorstay Eyeliner in 208 Topaz? The shade topaz (which is also my birthday stone - woo November!) is a warm bronze shade that, like others in the line, has excellent staying power, does not budge after is sets and is opaque in one stroke. I personally like this smudge underneath the eye since I think it's a bit too light to be my regular eyeshadow. But I also own the emerald & black brown shades and adore those as well!

The Milani Multitasker Face Powder has become such an essential in my makeup bag for setting my concealer. The powder is really finely milled and never looks cakey. I can't really say how good at it is for blotting but I think this is an excellent product for setting makeup into place. I use it sometimes to set cream blushes as well. If I'm wearing makeup that day, I'm probably wearing this.

The days here are getting shorter, which means fall is slowly creeping upon us (despite the pretty much consistent summer-weather). Which means I can start pulling out this little piece - the Maybelline Color Tattoo in Pomegranate Punk. This shade is my absolute favorite in the line, and I'm sad to hear that they might discontinue it! But I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts. "Pomegranate Punk" is a light shimmery burgundy-purple shade with small glitters in it, which is great as a one-shadow look (which is how I like to wear it).

I don't need to go on about how much I love the pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm - I always have one somewhere in my bag! They're such an easy to wear lip product - they're moisturizing, give decent color and have a pretty good lasting power for a tinted lip balm. I'm hoping that they'll release a few more deeper shades to this line - a red and a berry shade would be perfect for this upcoming fall season!

So those are some of my drugstore favorites, what are some of yours?

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1/5 Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Starter Kit

02 September 2014

bespectacled, skincare, new in, mini-haul, Dr Jart+ Ceramidin Start Kit

Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Starter Kit, Sephora

Starting the month off right with a good old skincare pick. Sticking with my monthly five, I started off with the Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Starter Kit. Originally I was going to go for the full sized Ceramidin Liquid but was convinced my sister to try both products out in this little line.

I haven't really had a chance to try out the Ceramidin Cream yet (I want to try them out separately first) but oh my god I am already in love with the Ceramidin Liquid. Normally it takes me a while to form an opinion on skincare stuff but this was love at first application. Basically the Ceramidin Liquid is touted as a "liquid skin saver" which is supposed to "plump & seal dull + dry skin" - which is exactly what I need for my skin which is prone to just looking ashy and dry sometimes. I use this with my regular mosturizer - the FAB Ultra Repair Cream - and I think it's been giving it just the boost of hydration my skin has been needing lately.

This has a bit of a medicinal smell to it and has a pretty water consistency for a serum but wow does it work. I've used it a handful of times and I've been seeing a difference with my skin. It definitely feels more plump and has been doing an excellent job at keeping the dry spots at bay. Plus no hint of sensitivity or irritation at all when I use this! I didn't think a serum was something I'd add to my skincare regime but the Ceramidin Liquid has been absolutely amazing. Plus it's at a rather budget friendly $7.80/oz (full size: 5oz for $39). I imagine I'll be getting quite a lot of use out of it once things cool down around here as well.

So far so good, eh? I'm really pleased with this purchase so far! But I'm curious to know if you guys have tried this out before? Otherwise, what have you been buying lately?

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august 2014 favorites

31 August 2014

bespectacled, monthly favorites, beauty, skincare, eos lip balm summer fruit, bobbi brown pot rouge 10 rose, Weleda Skin Food, NARS Dolce Vita Blush, Herbivore Botanicals Hydrate Ylang Ylang + Rose Face Toning Elixir

For some reason I really struggled with coming up with favorites for this month for some reason. Maybe it's the fact that I've limited my beauty purchases this month and so don't really have a lot of new stuff to talk about. I know that you could totally blog without adding too many new products to your repertoire but I'm still getting used to that, you know? I hope you guys will continue to bear with me as I figure everything out!

Anyway, my favorites are a bit on the boring side this month. I've been battling a bad eczema flare up for most of the month and believe me, itchiness + dry heat is an awful combination. But like before I've really enjoyed the Weleda Skin Food for not only helping with hydrating my skin but also doing that without irritating it at all. This has gotten a glowing review from me and I highly recommend it.

Another product I've been using for combating the heat is the Herbivore Botanicals Face Toning Elxir which I picked up earlier this month. I tend to gravitate towards sprays like this in the summer - last year I was obsessed with the Caudalie Beauty Elixir - and this year it's this product. I really can't say anything about it's toning properties but it does feel nice on the skin without drying it out.

The eos Lip Balm in Summer Fruit is a new flavor of an old favorite. I adore the eos lip balms mostly for their adorable packaging but they have a good formula that makes an excellent base for lipsticks I think. This "summer fruit" one smells exactly like these lychee gummies to me!

And lastly I've been really enjoying these two blushes lately: the NARS Dolce Vita Blush & the Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in 10 Rose. Funny enough these look very similar on the cheeks, but I do enjoy both for different reasons. Both are extremely pigmented and you only need a small amount for it do it's job. The NARS blush is a bit more effortless for me though - I just dip my brush into it once and blend on the cheeks and then it's done. While the Bobbi Brown pot rouge needs a bit more effort. I prefer to use it with my e.l.f. small stippling brush but once set it does not budge and it lasts really well. I thought I would enjoy the Pot Rouge because of it's cheek & lip abilities but on the lips I find this a bit lacking. It applies well but as it wears it dries and it is not the most comfortable feeling on the lips. But otherwise on the cheeks I really enjoy this. But because it's been so hot lately I am noticing the product start to separate which is not fun. But despite all of my complaints 'fall' here in SD will arrive eventually.

And because I do want to inject more non-beauty stuff into this blog I wanted to Matt Bernson Sterling Shoes as well! Every time I look at them my heart flutters a little - I am in absolute love with them. I guess it does pay to wait for something because while I'm happy to have these now I certainly would've felt bad about getting them for full price then! I've received a lot of compliments about these shoes as well, which is always nice. They're pretty comfy to walk in too but I do have to say that they don't have a lot of traction (I think that's the right word for it?) On smoother surfaces like kitchen floors and such I can sometimes slip. Not the biggest issue but if you're thinking of picking these up that might be something to consider.

Anyway, how was the month of August like for you? What were some of your favorites for this month, beauty and non-beauty?

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the fall wardrobe

27 August 2014

bespectacled, fall, pre-fall, autumn, wardrobe planning

It's apparently that time of year again - pumpkin spice latte season.

So you can say that fall is kind of upon us here in San Diego, what with the consistent 80+ degree weather. I'm kind of at a loss wardrobe-wise because I want to dress one way but the weather here isn't really cooperating with me. So at the moment I'm trying to find more of a balance between what I want to wear and the actual weather here.

I think the key is to find pieces that are lightweight but can be easily layered up in the event we get some weather around here. Everlane's Boat Neck Sweatshirt has been on my wishlist for quite some time now and it looks like the perfect piece to layer with or wear on it's own. And because it's such a basic piece it would work seamlessly into my wardrobe I think. And I'm always on the look out for new gray sweaters or tops - they're my go-to pieces year round really.

Whenever I'm in H&M I always try on their coats and man do I really want one. All of the fabrics are way to thick and on top of that usually lined so I'm hoping to actually DIY my own lightweight coat. I'm deciding between the Cocoon Coat or Three-Quarter Sleeve Coat patterns from Burdastyle as the base for my coat. I'm leaning more towards the latter, but we'll see! But I do the coat to be in some kind of dark gray fabric (I'm in a very gray-obsessed mood as of late).

And last on my list are midi-length culottes! I'm all about practical pieces and adore shorts that look like skirts - they're still pretty feminine while still being able to move around in without worrying about flashing your underwear everywhere. I'm experimenting with different lengths and think that a midi-length piece would work for me (if not I could always hem them shorter myself). I think culottes are the perfect transitional piece - still breezy enough for the summer but still fall-appropriate even without tights (which I have a tendency to ruin really quickly).

Another kind of general wishlist on my part, but what about you guys? How is fall like where you live & what's on your fall wardrobe list? Do you find yourselves wanting to dress for one kind of weather only to get something else?

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