Hello Pretty Bird! - A beauty and not-so-glamorous lifestyle blog: April 2015

30 April, 2015

April 2015 (not-just-beauty) Favorites

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Happy end-of-April! Boy, this month sure went by fast for me. Time flies when you're having fun (or are just kind of busy, blah).

Today I'll be sharing a few things that I posted about or discovered earlier in April that are extra-special or that I've just been using a whole lot. I guess that makes them favorites? Sure, let's go with favorites.

29 April, 2015

Weekly Poll | Sizzle Crunch

Happy Wednesday, everybody! Hope you've had a lovely April—I can't believe the month is over tomorrow. Where does time go? Oops.

art via

Speaking of time, you know what I haven't had much time to do these past couple of weeks? Cooking from scratch. Maybe that won't sound weird to those of you who don't cook at home often, but I'm usually at least making soups and stews and the like. At least we don't have to catch our own food anymore, y'know? Anyway, here's my question:

What's the last thing you cooked from scratch? It can be any meal, or even dessert. Or candies. Mmm, candies.

I'm pretty sure the last thing I made myself was some sort of beans and rice dealie. Black beans, pinto beans, rice, bell peppers, lots of spices. Not complicated, but very edible and tasty. I also cut up two pineapples earlier this week. That's surprisingly difficult if you don't have a giant knife, so maybe it should count?

28 April, 2015

Tips For Throwing a Great Last-Minute Game Night


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GameNightIn #CollectiveBias

Game night has always been a popular activity amongst my friends and I. Board games give us a chance to hang out and laugh and connect without being glued to a screen the whole time—something most of us probably do too much of these days. Problem is, as we get older it becomes more and more difficult to schedule these sorts of hangout sessions... folks are busy with their careers or kids (or both) and it's hard to get away. But once in a while, a glorious window of opportunity will present itself—maybe the kids are sleeping at grandma's house. Or you finished work early for once. And just like that, it's GAME NIGHT TIME! But how to throw a memorable little party at a moment's notice?

Tips For Throwing a Great Last-Minute Game Night #GameNightIn #CollectiveBias

Today I'll be sharing a few tips for throwing an awesome, low-stress game night at the last minute. Less time prepping, more time for playing!

Beauty Staple Spotlight: Kao MegRythym Steam Eye Masks

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I have another one of my favorite "invisible" beauty products (AKA stuff I use so often I forget abou it) to introduce to you today, except this week the beauty product isn't actually a beauty product—it's more of a general wellness/personal care item. But it's become engrained in my beauty routine, which I think makes it suitable for the Beauty Staple Spotlight. I present to you: Kao MegRythym Steam Eye Masks!

Kao MegRythym Steam Eye Masks lavender sage

27 April, 2015

Combat the #selfie epidemic with #TheUsProject


This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Soffe. All opinions are 100% mine.

Selfies are a very strange thing if you really think about it. They became a “thing” around the same time that social media evolved, yet the act of photographing one’s self repeatedly is pretty much asocial at the core.

I’m not saying it’s always bad to take a picture of yourself—sometimes you might want to take a picture of yourself to commemorate a moment in time. Or maybe you makeup just looks especially nice that day. I get that—what troubles me is when a point of obsession and insecurity. I was sitting next to my cousin’s teenaged daughter recently, watching her flip through the pictures on her phone, and every single photo was of her. I’m sure she has friends—so at what point did it become all about taking photos of ourselves and not our loved ones?

5 Easy Ways to Green Up Your Beauty Routine for Earth Month


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #NaturalGoodness #CollectiveBias

Earth Day may have already passed, but it's not too late to celebrate Earth Month by making small, environmentally-friendly changes to your routine. Heck, even if you're reading this in September, it's not too late. Treat every day like Earth Day if you can.

Tom's of Maine  #NaturalGoodness #CollectiveBias

Not sure where to start? Today I'll be sharing five extremely easy things you can do to green up one aspect of daily life: Your beauty/grooming routine!

Traipsing through the tulips at Sakura Matsuri in Brooklyn (AKA a crapton of flower p@rn)

I have a bit of an obsession with flowering trees. Did you know that the Brooklyn Botanic Garden has a map where you can track the various bloom stages of their many, many cherry trees? Engage stalking mode! I've been creeping on it since the beginning of the season, so when the Sakura Matsuri festival rolled around this weekend, I decided I had to attend.

23 April, 2015

Unboxing | Chococurb Premium Chocolate Box + GIVEAWAY!!!

Press Sample

This may sound crazy to some of you, but when I was a kid, I didn't really like chocolate. It just tasted... bland to me. As I got older, I realized that there was more to chocolate than sad and waxy chocolate bunnies from the drugstore: There are lots of artisinal chocolates with complex flavors out there just waiting to be discovered. Dark chocolates, salted chocolates, spicy chocolates! But how to get started with your fine chocolate journey? Meet Chococurb, a Seattle-based subscription service and online shop dedicated to introducing you to unique chocolates from around the globe.

Chococurb Premium Chocolate Box discovery service

22 April, 2015

Unboxing | Target Beauty Box Spring 2015 (plus a little Instagram giveaway)

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The latest Target Beauty Box is here! I feel like this box both sold out and shipped faster than any of its predecessors, whoosh. I really wish that Target would introduce a subscription service for their beauty boxes, but until they do, I recommend that you grab them as soon as they're released if you don't want to miss out. Anyway, I have some first impressions to share—let's dive on in!

Target Beauty Box Spring 2015

Weekly Poll | A Fair Day to be at the Fair

Happy Wednesday, everybody! I hope you're having a nice week so far.

art via

This week's question was inspired by my recent obsession with stalking the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's cherry blossom bloom map. I want to visit when lots of trees are blooming, dangit! Anyway I was thinking of popping by there this weekend, but apparently the Sakura Matsuri festival is going on then, so maybe it'll be totally crowded with people. Is that going to improve my enjoyment of cherry trees or destroy it? I don't know. In any case, it got me wondering....

Are there any festivals, fairs or special seasonal events you plan on attending this spring/summer? Or hope to attend? Which ones are you looking forward to the most?

I was about to say that I really wanted to go to the Mermaid Parade this year because I keep missing it, but when I looked up the date I realized that it's happening at the same time as a conference I am almost certainly going to. Haha, oops! Guess that wasn't meant to be. Back to the drawing board....

20 April, 2015

For the Love of Lavender: An easy floral-inspired purple nail art design


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #LongLastingScent #CollectiveBias

Nail art is one aspect of beauty that has always proven challenging for me. I have a chronic tremor in my hands, so the outcome when I try to paint really intricate designs can be... interesting. So what to do? Don't stop trying, just simplify things a little bit. Today I'll be sharing a tutorial for a super-duper simple floral nail design that anybody can do—seriously, if I can do it, you can do it.

19 April, 2015

Review & Swatches | XO Memebox X Nylon Sweet 16/#ItGirlPalette

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I have to tell you something: I love colors. More specifically, I love wearing bright colors on my face and body. I also love Memebox and a lot of the own-brand makeup they've been putting out lately, but after a whole bunch of releases I found myself wishing SO HARD that they'd put out a colorful palette instead of another one containing neutrals and rosy shades. Don't get me wrong, some of those palettes are gorgeous—but I wanted something new. Thankfully, my eyeshadow wishes were answered: Meet the Memebox X Nylon #ItGirlPalette, which is filled with bold, vibrant and fun shades. Yay!

XO Memebox X Nylon #ItGirlPalette

17 April, 2015

Unboxing | Results of the Memebox Search Seoul Mystery Sale

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Apparently I have no resistance against mystery sales. Memebox did another version of their mystery Easter Egg Hunt earlier this week—this time themed around neighborhoods in Seoul. The travel nut in me simply couldn't resist... what can I say, I'm weak when it comes to things named after places. Luckily I made out pretty well this time! Here's what turned out to be in my mystery haul:

Memebox Search Seoul Mystery Sale review unboxing

With a couple of packet samples thrown in for good measure. I'll break it down item by item and tell you which item I think went with which "neighborhood", starting with the cheapest ones first.

It’s Rum Time! Experience the history of the world through rum (+ a dead easy rum cocktail recipe)


This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Rums of Puerto Rico . All opinions are 100% mine.

Rum is my favorite spirit to drink in warm weather. It just goes so darn well with sweet and fruity mixers—perfect for cooling off after a long, hot day. I’ve tried a whole bunch of different rums in my life (I even went to a rum festival once!) but I keep going back to rums from Puerto Rico—they’re accessible, delicious, and come in a bunch of different varieties. Puerto Rico has been distilling rum for over 450 years, so they know what’s up when it comes to rum. No wonder they’re often referred to as The Rum Capital of the World.

GIVEAWAY ALERT! Win a Pacifica spring beauty prize pack

I don't know if you've noticed, but I've been reviewing a whole bunch of Pacifica products recently. Well I have some good news: I have extras of all those products, and one lucky reader is going to win them! Dust off your vanity and make room for these spring beauties.

16 April, 2015

Review | Pacifica Beauty Underarm Deodorant Wipes

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There are two types of products I find myself more and more interested in as summer approaches: Sunscreen (duh) and deodorant. I don't think I'm the stinkiest person in the world, but I'd rather smell like flowers or something than sweat, you know? Today I'll be taking a look at a new deodorant product that's all-natural and comes in a unique format: Pacifica's Underarm Deodorant Wipes.

Pacifica Beauty Underarm Deodorant Wipes natural vegan body care

Unboxing | Beauty Box 5 April 2015: Bloom

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It shouldn't surprise anyone that this month's Beauty Box 5 theme is Bloom: Tis the season for blooming, after all. Or maybe that theme would be better suited to May? (April showers, May flowers?) Either way the April BB5 is here, and it's filled with several spring-appropriate goodies.

Beauty Box 5 April 2015: Bloom unboxing

15 April, 2015

Recap of the John Hancock Vitality Village Event + Get #5MoreNow


Disclosure: I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for John Hancock. I attended an event and received a promotional item to thank me for my participation.

I recently had the opportunity to attend a cool wellness-themed event at Grand Central Station here in NYC: The John Hancock Vitality Village. As I get older I find myself more and more concerned about my overall physical (and mental) health, so naturally this was right up my alley.

John Hancock Vitality Village Event + Get #5MoreNow

Wondering why there was a big old festival of healthiness happening in the middle of crowded train station? Read on to find out all about it!

Unboxing | Birchbox April 2015: Fresh For Spring/Rifle Paper Co.

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My April Birchbox snuck up on me yesterday! I never got a tracking number, but it was hanging out in my mailbox anyway. Mysterious. Shall we have a look inside it?

Birchbox April 2015: Fresh For Spring/Rifle Paper Co. unboxing

Weekly Poll | Morning Glow

Happy Wednesday, everybody! Hey Americans, are your taxes done yet? Don't feel too bad if they aren't—I finished mine at about 1 AM. The late bird gets the worm? Paying taxes gives you worms? Or something.

lady art via

This week's question was inspired by many other beauty blogs. Well, the lack of a certain type of information on other beauty blogs. I feel like a lot of folks post in great detail about their nighttime skincare routines, but it's rarer to find a comprehensive post about someone's daytime routine. So today I ask you...

How long do you usually spend on your morning skincare routine? Is it longer or shorter (or the same) as your nighttime routine?

My nighttime skincare routine can be a rather lengthy affair, so I try to keep things simple in the AM. (Someday I'll write a comprehensive post about this myself, but not today.) Basically I do the following:
  • Quickly wash my face with a gentle foaming cleanser
  • Apply a Vitamin C serum or first essence (I alternate on different days)
  • Apply a moisturizing serum of some kind
  • Apply a light moisturizing lotion or emulsion (maybe a richer one in the winter)
  • Apply sunscreen

And then it's time for makeup. I would estimate that the process outlined above takes maybe 10-15 minutes... is that a long time? Or a short time? I'm not sure sure, actually. How does it compare to yours?

14 April, 2015

My favorite easy PMS snack (that isn't ridiculously unhealthy) + get a FREE sample of U by Kotex!


All right, ladies: Hands up if you tend to get absurd food cravings around that "special" time of the month. I often end up reaching for snacks that aren't exactly nutrient-dense (unless Doritos have lots of Vitamin D?) but I'm trying to be better about that. Luckily, there is one snack that I really love that's also surprisingly easy to make: Chocolate-covered strawberries! Today I'll be sharing my quick and easy method for making them. Because nobody wants to be standing around cooking for hours when they're in a bad mood.

Easy chocolate covered strawberries recipe

You only need two ingredients for this special treat: Fresh strawberries and chocolate chips. Of course any kind of chopped chocolate will work, but I like to keep things simple. I usually get semi-sweet dark chips—almost any kind of chocolate will work though.

My Allergy Season Beauty Essentials

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I don't know about you, but spring is not usually my most beautiful time of year. I have year-round allergies to stuff like mold and dander, but once all the pretty plants start to bloom, I turn into a walking sneeze. Luckily I've come up with a few coping mechanisms over the years to look (and feel) less disgusting during springtime, so today I present to you: My allergy season beauty essentials!

13 April, 2015

Musings on biotin efficacy and a brief review of NeoCell Biotin Bursts

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I'll cut to the chase here: I'm still not sure what I think about biotin. I've read numerous conflicting articles and studies regarding the efficacy of biotin in promoting hair growth—some tout it as near-miraculous, others say it gives you expensive pee. (Well, the latter statement is probably true even if it does help your hair grow.) I experienced a lot of hair loss in 2014 due to stress and other factors, so despite the uncertainty, I still find myself drawn to biotin as a potential source of hair happiness. I don't have any conclusive results to share with you because most of them would consist of speculation and guessing, but I can tell you exactly what I thought of the latest biotin supplement to hit my vitamin rotation: NeoCell's Biotin Bursts.

Neocell Biotin Bursts

Review & Swatches | Pony X Memebox Pony Nails Pastels Set

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This will probably sound obvious to most of you, but spring is the perfect time of year to wear pastels. Delicate, muted shades that coordinate with the lovely flowers that are finally starting to bloom. What's an easy (and affordable) way to pastel yourself up? Nail polish! I recently picked up the Pony X Memebox Pastels Set, which is a cheap (only $3 per bottle!) and cheerful way to add a little color to your fingers. But are they any good? Read on to find out!

Pony X Memebox Pony Nails Pastels Set 포니가 선택한 2015 S/S 시즌 트렌드 컬러 네일

Shopping PSA: New Spring 2015 Target Beauty Box Available for $5!

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Happy Monday, folks! I just wanted to quickly announce that Target has released a brand new beauty box for Spring 2015, and it's only $5 + FREE shipping this time! If you want it grab it now, as these tend to sell out fast.

Target Spring 2015 Beauty Box Contents:

 Like what you see? Grab your Spring Target Beauty Box here! I just got mine. :)

Will you be grabbing a Target Beauty Box this time? Which sample are you most excited about?

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. For more information, check out my full disclosure policy.

11 April, 2015

Review | Laneige Water Bank Eye Gel (new at Target!)

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I have mixed feelings about eye creams. On one hand, the area around my eyes does get dry, and more and more little lines are starting to appear around there with each passing year. But on the other, I've had a lot of really underwhelming experiences with eye creams in the past. They felt heavy, greasy, blah... why not just use your facial cream on your eye area if that's the case? You can certainly do that, but I tried a new eye cream recently that made me want to change my tune: Laneige's Water Bank Eye Gel. Shall we take a look at why this one's different?

Laneige Water Bank Eye Gel review box 라네즈 워터뱅크 아이젤

10 April, 2015

Review | Pacifica Beauty Essential Makeup Removing Wipes

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Looking for a new way to make your face smell delicious? Aren't we all. Natural beauty brand Pacifica recently launched a few new exclusive products at Ulta Beauty stores, including these scrumptious-smelling Essential Makeup Removing Wipes. Facial tastiness aside, I also expect my makeup removal wipes to actually remove makeup, so I had to put them to the test—keep reading to see my results!

Pacifica Beauty Essential Makeup Removing Wipes review

09 April, 2015

Review | Paula's Choice Resist Super-Light Wrinkle Defense SPF 30

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Now that it's sort of warm-ish and I'll actually spending time outside, I'm making sure all my sunscreen ducks are in a row. I recently picked up a few new SPF products to try, but there's one that was already in my collection that may have already beaten them all in terms of comfort for everyday wear: Paula's Choice Resist Super-Light Wrinkle Defense SPF 30.

Paula's Choice Resist Super-Light Wrinkle Defense SPF 30 review

The results of my Memebox Easter Egg Hunt

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Happy belated Easter! Last weekend, K-beauty e-tailer Memebox did a fun little promotion in celebration of the holiday: An easter egg hunt! They hid digital "eggs" around various parts of their site, the idea being that you would purchase an egg (or multiple eggs) and get a mystery item worth more than the price of the egg. Kind of a build-your-own-Memebox situation. Most of the eggs were priced in the $5-$7 range, and there was one $20 "golden egg" that supposedly contained an item worth up to $100 too. Curiosity got the better of me so I ended up grabbing a few... want to see what I got?

Newly reformulated Nexxus haircare products now at CVS + get a $1 off coupon!


Do you change up your haircare routine for spring? For me, a springtime haircare routine must include products that nourish hair suffering from post-winter dryness (without weighing it down) and allow me to wash it regularly (hooray allergy season!) without drying it out. Replenishing shampoos and moisturizing conditioners are essential, and maybe even a serum or leave-in treatment for good measure.

Luckily for me, some of the newly reformulated Nexxus New York Salon Care haircare products address exactly those sorts of issues. Each of Nexxus' haircare regimens is designed to address specific needs, but I'm particularly excited about the improved Nexxus Therappe Shampoo & Humectress Conditioner, which promise to cleanse and hydrate hair while replenishing nutrients, antioxidants and UV protectors. Even better, there's the new Nexxus Humectress Encapsulate Serum Caviar to smooth and condition hair. I haven't tried the serum yet, but it looks like it's both hydrating and light—perfect for my hair type!

If you're also a Nexxus fan or just want to try something new, be sure to stop by your local CVS by 4/26/15 to receive a $1 off coupon for any one product from Nexxus New York Salon Care (while supplies last, excluding trial and travel sizes). CVS Beauty Advisors will also be available to help you with style and beauty tips using your favorite Nexxus products. Click here or on the banner below the find your closest participating CVS store!

Are you a fan of Nexxus? Will you be giving any of these new formulations a try?

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Global Influence, however any opinions expressed above are honest and my own. For more information, check out my full disclosure policy. #NewNexxusCaviar

08 April, 2015

Weekly Poll | It's A Wash

Happy Wednesday, everybody! How's it going?

laundry art via

This week's question was inspired by something rather mundane: Chores. Most of us them, or at least fork over cash for someone else to do them. I was having a discussion with my boyfriend the other day about what type of laundry detergent to buy (exciting!) when I thought of this week's question....

Laundry detergent: Scented or unscented?

Simple enough. When I was a kid, my mom always bought Tide (which is scented), but after my folks split up I spent a lot of time living with my dad, who was solidly in the "buy whatever's cheapest" camp, which sometimes meant unscented. For a long time I followed my dad's example, until I started to realize that not all detergents are created equal... anyway, I think the conclusion I've come to is that I vastly prefer scented detergent. I know that unscented is better for sensitive skin, but using the fragranced stuff doesn't seem to bother me and there's just something satisfying about opening a drawer and being greeted with a fresh aroma.

So, how about you? Fresh or plain? (And was this week's question exciting or what?)

07 April, 2015

Review | Ariul Mood Maker "Nobody Knows Why" Sheet Mask Set

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Do you ever buy something without really researching it first just because the packaging grabs your eye? That's what happened to me with the Ariul Mood Maker "Nobody Knows Why" Mask Pack Set—I saw bright colors and crazy drawings and simply had to have it. Luckily these masks do also have some skincare benefits, so now that I've used them up, I thought I'd share my thoughts!

06 April, 2015

Beauty Staple Spotlight: Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle

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Do you have any "invisible products" in your beauty routine? I don't mean some sort of otherworldly ghost mascara—rather products that you use so often, you kind of forget about them until it's time to replace them. As a blogger I often mention my most-used products as a reference point in describing new products, but it's sort of rare that I actually get a chance to elaborate on why they became essential for me in the first place. Over the next couple of months or so I'll be shining a little spotlight on my most-used (but lesser-discussed) beauty staples. First up: Beauty Protector's Protect & Detangle.

Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle spray bottle

Review | Odylique Ultra Rich Moisture Balm

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Hey hey it's Monday! Dance a little in your chair (or not). Today I have a product review for you of something that will likely excite the natural beauty enthusiasts out there: Odylique's Ultra Rich Moisture Balm.

Odylique Ultra Rich Moisture Balm box French

My Etsy Spring Wishlist + gift card GIVEAWAY!

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I like spring. The weather is nice and all the pretty flowers come into bloom... well, not quite yet around where I live, but soon enough. In meantime I've been trawling through Etsy in search of unique springy things to tide me over until everything's green again. I present to you... my Etsy Spring Wishlist for 2015!

All images are the property of their respective sellers.

05 April, 2015

Project Low-Buy 2015, Update #2: What I bought and thoughts on "catching up" on products

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Month two of my three-month low-buy challenge for 2015 is now over! I have managed to keep on track, so today I thought I'd share what I managed to pick up this month using my meager budget with you.

New to the challenge? Here are the basic rules:

GOAL: Reduce frivolous buying by spending no more than $75 out of pocket over the course of three months.

RULES: Other than basic living and blog or work-related expenses (outlined here), all purchases must be counted towards the budget. The budget can be increased by selling items I already own or if I receive a monetary gift. Purchases made with rewards points, referral credits etc. do not count towards the budget.

Just to quickly recap February, I did receive some cash gifts for my birthday, so my budget/balance at the end of the month was $69.86. I didn't go over budget this month, but I did purchase several things... would you like to see what I got?

04 April, 2015

What I got in my ModCloth Stylish Surprise - Winter/Spring 2015

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So ModCloth had another one of their Stylish Surprise sales earlier this week. And in typical Stylish Surprise style, everything sold out crazy-fast (my shoe size was gone within minutes!) Luckily, I was able to grab one article of clothing in time. Or maybe I wasn't so lucky? That's the special magic of the Stylish Surprise... you never know if it's going to be amazing or terrible. Only one way to find out: Keep reading!

Review and unboxing of the Winter/Spring ModCloth Stylish Surprise box

Not familiar with the ModCloth Stylish Surprise? ModCloth (online retailer of cute dresses and other lovely things) will clear out their stock a couple times per year (usually around the end of a season) and sell mystery accessories and garments for $5-$20 apiece, depending on the category. You pick your size, but the rest is up to them!

03 April, 2015

Review & Swatches | Laneige Cushion Concealer (new at Target!)

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I don't know if you've heard yet, but Laneige (the popular Korean skincare brand that launched at Target last year) is currently rolling out a bunch of new products in the US. Just in case you couldn't think of enough ways to spend your money. Today I'll be sharing my thoughts on one of those lovely bits of fantastic newness: The Laneige Cushion Concealer.

Laneige Cushion Concealer BB Target

02 April, 2015

Review | Pacifica Beauty Alight Multi-Mineral BB Cream

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As the warm weather approaches (finally!!!) I'm looking more and more into sheer face products. New York City summers are humid and gross, so my makeup choices have to be pretty darn sweat-proof or sheer enough to let my skin breathe. Today I'll be taking a look at a base product that promises a sheer and beautiful facial finish: Pacifica's Alight Multi-Mineral BB Cream.

Pacifica Beauty Alight Multi-Mineral BB Cream

Some recent (not-just-beauty) favorites

Affiliate Links Bought It Press Sample

Wow, can you believe that it's been over six months since I did a favorites list like this? Time gets away from you sometimes, man. I can think of a number of things I've tried and liked over the past few months, but I've decided to just to focus on stuff I've come across over the past month or two so this post doesn't take 800 hours to read. You're welcome?

01 April, 2015

Weekly Poll | I Ain't No April Fool!

Happy Wednesday, everybody! Have you fallen for any stupid pranks yet today?

drawing via

This week's topic was inspired by April Fools' Day, in case you hadn't already figured it out. I had sort of planned on posting a joke product review today, but after seeing my 100th obviously phony product image on Instagram/Facebook I decided that was annoying and not to do it. But some pranks are actually clever—which brings me to my question...

What's the most epic practical joke you've ever participated in (either as the pranker or the prankee)? Or if you can't think of a good one, what's the most epic prank fail you've personally encountered?

I used to live with a group of roommates who took pranking each other when they turned 30 very seriously, so I had a hand in many diabolical schemes. (And since I was the baby of the group and only in my early 20s at the time, I never fell victim myself.) One of my funniest memories though was a simple joke my roommate tried to play on me that just totally failed....

Back in those days I lived with a guy named James. I happened to be home one day and sitting in my room very quietly looking at my computer, so he didn't think I was home. As I was sitting there, I heard the door creak open... someone was peeking through the crack. I couldn't see who someone was because of where I was sitting in relation to the wall, so I decided to let whoever the someone was keep opening the door and be surprised. Surely enough, the door swung open and there stood James, holding an unbelievably filthy snow shovel. His facial expression quickly turned from glee to dismay.

"I... I didn't realize you were home!"

"Hi James! Whatcha doing with that shovel?"

"Um, nothing...."


"...I... I was going to put it in your bed."

And thus, the sheepish retreat. It's good that his practical joke failed, because if I had come home to find a muddy shovel in my bed I probably would have murdered him. So I guess my favorite practical joke gone wrong story is also a heartwarming tale about murder prevention? Yay!
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