Saturday, February 23, 2013

Nailpolishes...I've got plenty

Get ready to scroll down a lot for my latest "I've got plenty" post - it's picture-heavy because I'm featuring ALL my nailpolishes! This was a fun post to put together as it features all of my "Nail of the day" pictures - so it will be great for me to refer back to. It also made me try out several polishes I'd bought but never worn (mostly blue, green and yellow shades - guess they're not as wearable for me!). There are currently 44 polishes featured - and I will keep updating this post whenever I buy a new polish (I think a Rose Gold shade is next - am debating between this one by Orly and this one by Essie)

OVERALL RECOMMENDATIONS:
I love Chanel for their unique and recognizable colors, while Revlon Colorstay and Rimmel Lasting Finish Pro polishes have the best formulations (long-lasting, opaque, glossy and easy-to-apply & SUPER CHEAP!). I always use this base coat and this top coat (I highly recommend them - they're easy to find and make my polish last ages) - I own the raved about Seche Vite but am put off by its VERY toxic fumes!

 Which of the polishes below is your favorite? What nailpolish shades and brands do you love?


CHANEL

Black Pearl
Black Pearl by Chanel nailpolish
Chanel Black Pearl Swatch
Rose Confidentiel
Rose Confidential by Chanel nailpolish
Chanel Rose Confidentiel Swatch
Rouge Noir
Chanel Vamp nailpolish
Chanel Rouge Noir (Original Vamp shade) Swatch

ESSIE

Berry Hard
Berry Hard by Essie nailpolish
Essie Berry Hard Swatch
Fiji
Fiji Essie nailpolish
Mademoiselle
Essie Mademoiselle nailpolish
Essie Mademoiselle Swatch with glitter tips
Neo whimsical
Neo Whimsical by Essie nailpolish
Essie Neo whimsical Swatch
Trombone
Trombone by Essie nailpolish
Essie Trombone Swatch

Too many polishes to feature on one page - please "read more" for the rest!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Cookies & Hearts

We had a low-key Valentine's day this year. I woke up to this adorable Valentine's day card from Hubby. I really appreciated it because it had a long and meaningful handwritten note inside...Love Letters were pretty common when we first started dating but after nearly 11 years of marriage they're much rarer and even more precious:


Of course I HAD to wear my Old Navy Heart Sweater (this year's version in Grey or Camel):


Inspired by Catalina Su, I made myself a healthy breakfast (Turkey Breast, Red Onions, 1 yolk & 2 whites topped with Sri Racha):


This was unfortunately offset by the cookies I consumed later on in the day - I made them for my family BUT had to sample a few....


I followed Pioneer Woman's Malted Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe - substituting Milo for the Malted Milk. These cookies were unbelievably easy to make - they are so thin and crispy - and taste WAY too good to resist!

How was your Valentine's Day? Hope you had a great one!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Kiddy Lunchbox: Pizza Muffins & Chicken Pot Pies

Getting my kids to eat something...ANYTHING at school can be quite a challenge. They're not fond of sandwiches, so I'm always trying to find lunches that are both easy to make and yummy to eat. As usual - Pinterest has been a HUGE source of great ideas. Here are 2 lunch ideas that have been big hits so far:

1) Wicked Good Pizza Muffins - original recipe here. My modifications - I used whatever cheese I had lying around the house instead of their specific recommendations. I used chopped up pepperoni instead of red/green pepper:


2) Chicken Pot Pie Cupcakes - original recipe here. My modifications: I used ground chicken sauteed with garlic & salt rather than the herbs & spices in the recipe. I used a mix of Broccoli & Cheddar plus Cream of Mushroom instead of Cream of Chicken soup.


The nice thing about preparing these pies is that half of the ground chicken/soup mixture can be used to make Chicken Spaghetti for dinner. Inspired by this recipe. (EDIT: I'm posting my full recipe for Parveen - fry 1 lb minced chicken with garlic, soya sauce & black pepper. Mix in a can each of Broccoli & Cheddar soup and Cream of Mushroom soup. Stir in a 10 oz can of tomato paste and a can of Old El Paso Green Chiles, Mix with cooked spaghetti, place in an oven-proof dish and top with grated cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes in a 350 F oven). Not the healthiest but it was great comfort food!


Both the muffin and the pie can be frozen in tupperwares and defrosted overnight or microwaved in the morning before school.

My packed lunch formula is:

-MAIN COURSE: French Toast, Chicken Pot Pie, Pizza Muffin, Mini-Pizzas or Pasta
-DAIRY: Cheese stick or Yogurt
-FRUIT or VEG: Apples, Grapes, Orange Slices or Baby Carrots
-SNACK: Chips or Cookies
-DRINK: Water bottle & Milk or Fruit Juice

I definitely send more than they need - but as long as they've had most of their "main course", I'm happy.

What was your favorite school lunch? If you have kids - what do they like eating?

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Recent outfits & Trying to be good....

Marc Jacobs Quilted Single Bag in Black


Old Navy Polka Dot Sweater (only striped versions left online)
Garage Jeans
Old Navy Boots

red jeans outfit
GAP Leopard Scarf
Garage Red Jeggings
Old Navy Boots

A combination of cold weather, family-wide flu & major sinus headaches has made me want to hibernate in bed and NEVER get out...which sadly isn't very practical. I've been layering like crazy to keep the chills away - am doubling up with cotton leggings underneath my jeans!

I'm one week into NO-Buy February...and I've been good - but it hasn't been easy... Sales...Coupon codes...Exciting new products - lots of temptation around! I thought I'd list a couple of the things I've WANTED to buy (but haven't!):

1) Coach Legacy Leather Penny Shoulder Purse in Mint - I've been loving everything about Coach's Legacy line - the discreet logo, pretty tassels & gorgeous saturated leather colors. This purse is tempting at $198 - it's pricey but classic. The strap can be worn cross-body or doubled up for use as a shoulder bag. I've resisted so far BUT Coach has sent me a PCE (Preferred Customer Event) discount code...and it's only valid for the month of February!

2) Revlon Colorstay Longwear Nail Enamel - I purchased Bare Bones in January - and I love this new Revlon formula SO much - it really is like having gel nails: opaque, glossy & super-longwearing color! Now I want to try Pink Passion & Midnight...but I think I can hold out until March...


3) MAC Pro-Longwear Concealer - As I explained in my acne-covering foundation post - I use this concealer as a full-coverage foundation. I still have around a quarter of this product left BUT it's not really matching my skintone at the moment. I need a lighter shade with yellow undertones - either to use alone or blend with my existing concealer to match my skin color. This doesn't really count as a new purchase, does it? 

Aside from making virtual shopping lists and hiding in bed with the flu, I've been productive this month...organizing paperwork, sorting through my closet - it feels good to get some pre-Spring cleaning done!

How has your February been so far?

Friday, February 1, 2013

My Favorite Lipliners + Feature on Beauty Parler!!!

I'm so excited to be featured in the "Blogger Beauty Secrets" series by the gorgeous Monica of Beauty Parler! Isn't her blog design so chic? Click here to read the full post:


One of the secrets I shared with Beauty Parler was my love for lipliners - so I thought I'd write a quick post on my favorite ones.

Chanel Vamp liner and Chanel Rose Cuivre liner

I prefer lipliners over lipsticks & lipstains as they are longer lasting and show up better over my pigmented lips. I color my lips in with lipliner, top with gloss...and I'm good to go. My lip color lasts a LONG time, and reapplication is simple (no need for multiple products or a lip brush).

Chanel Vamp liner and Chanel Rose Cuivre liner swatch
Swatched on lips: MAC Brick, MAC Redd, Chanel Vamp, Chanel Rose Cuivre

Here are the 4 lipliners I use the most:

MAC Brick - I initially tried this on with the famous Ruby Woo lipstick. After applying it at the counter, I figured out that I could skip the lipstick and just use this all over my lip to achieve a  classic true-red lip.

MAC Redd - I was trying to decided between Brick & Redd. I purchased Brick because it was a more classic color, but I couldn't stop thinking about this beautiful orange-toned red...so 2 weeks later I was back at the MAC counter for Redd...and I don't regret it one bit!

Chanel Vamp - One of the first liners I purchased to use as lipstick - such a pretty berry shade. I'm wearing it in the picture on Beauty Parler's feature, topped with an orange-golden gloss from MAC.

Chanel Rose Cuivre - This shimmery brownish pink color is so pretty on its own or worn with this Lancome Juicy Tube on top.

Chanel Vamp liner and Chanel Rose Cuivre liner swatch
Swatched on hand: MAC Brick, MAC Redd, Chanel Vamp, Chanel Rose Cuivre

TIPS: 
  • Lipliners are very drying - so you want your lips to be flake-free & moisturized before application. BUT you don't want to use a greasy lipbalm to prep your lips - otherwise the color will slide right off. I recommend using this lipbalm, blotting to absorb excess balm and THEN applying your lipliner.
  • Use the tip of the liner to outline your lips, then use the side of the pencil to quickly shade in the rest of your lips.
  • For extra long-lasting color - I combine a lipliner with a cream lipstain to set the color. I apply a clear gloss on top to keep my lips from over-drying. Here's my current favorite combination for daytime: 
  • MAC Redd lipliner + Sephora Cream Lipstain in 05 (Infinite Rose) + Revlon Super Lustrous Lipgloss in Shine City.


 What are your favorite products for long-lasting lip color?

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