Thursday, September 18, 2014

Autumn Fashion & Candle Haul

It's been ages since I've had a treatyoself moment and purchased new clothes and candles for myself! Autumn is my favorite Bath & Body Works Candle season and who could resist the always adorable, unique clothing from Modcloth? Plus a few goodies from Forever21 never hurts!

Have you purchased any new clothing lately?

xoxo Kayla

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

20 Facts About Me

Although I have a lifestyle blog over at Microscope Life, there's probably a lot that you, my lovely readers, may not know about me. So here are 20 random facts to get to know me better...

1. I majored in professional communication with a minor in photography in undergrad. I'm now in graduate school majoring in liberal studies with a focus on American culture.

2. I swam competitively for over ten years and played water polo for five. No land sports for me!

3. Growing up, my sister and I had a pet hedgehog named Spike.

4. I've traveled to France, China, England, and Italy among other countries close to America. 

5. I have one older sister that's two and a half years older than me.

6. Growing up I wanted to be a journalist or an author.

7. I've never dyed my hair.

8. I love elephant ears and macaroni and cheese. If I could survive only eating those two things I definitely would do it. Oh and doughnuts.

9. I hate hot drinks that just taste like hot water. I like my tea strong and can't handle coffee.

10. I love Parks & Rec, Doctor Who, Sherlock, The Vampire Diaries, and Bob's Burgers. 

11. I'm an introvert with the occasional extrovert tendencies.

12. I'm in Theta Phi Alpha Sorority and was the president of my university's chapter.

13. My full time job is as a Marketing Coordinator for a university.

14. I don't think I have very good fashion sense.

15. I started filming YouTube videos in 2010, but haven't really gotten fully into it until last year.

16. I've kept a blog of some sort since 2008.

17. I hate salad.

18. I'm dreadful at painting my nails.

19. I love writing letters and having pen pals.

20. In general I'm a pretty private person.

I'd love to get to know you guys a bit better so share some facts about yourself in the comments!

xoxo Kayla

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

NARS "Tolede" Lipstick

NARS makeup is definitely a weakness of mine. Of course I have to go weak in the knees for a brand that's downright expensive. My love of their tinted moisturizer has graced this blog time and time again, but I thought it was time to branch out a bit and try some new things. I picked up "Tolede" ($26), my first lipstick from the brand and I have to say it's not a good start.

Let's start with the glaring negative first. Although it looks pigmented on my hand swatch, this lipstick just doesn't show up on my lips. I know it's there, but there's just no color. Maybe I finally found the exact shade color of my lips in lipstick form and it's causing it to just blend in perfectly, but a lipstick with no color kind of defeats the point.

Other than the fact that you can't tell I'm wearing anything when I put this on, this line has a great formulation. It's moisturizing and seems to last a while (what I can tell anyway from not actually seeing it). Plus it's a downright gorgeous color in swatches and in the tube. And the packaging. Swoon. I just wish I could see it on the lips.

I think I'll have to splurge again for another shade to see if it was just "Tolede" and not the entire line disappearing into my lips. If that's the case and the next lipstick shows up, I may be in trouble of spending all my money on NARS products.

Have you tried a NARS lipstick before?

xoxo Kayla

Monday, September 15, 2014

Maybelline "The Nudes" Palette

Although I featured Maybelline's "The Nudes" Palette ($9.99) in a makeup routine video and a this week's most loved post, I'm still on the fence about it. So I thought a full review post was in order to sort out all my mixed feelings. 

Price wise, this palette is great. With other neutral palettes three to five times the price it's a bargain. However I find myself only using the three center shimmery shades and more or less leaving the rest alone. These three shades I find to be the most pigmented and easy to build up, while everything else is very hard to work with. The two darkest shades are muddy and hard to blend. I have used the bottom left shade a few times and can manage something with it, but the other shades are just is so-so. When I was working on a swatch photo for this post I got so frustrated with the majority of the shades being impossible to get to show up on my arm. Hence no swatch photo (sorry!).

Yet I do really love those three center shades and like to use the light beige ones in the rest of the palette for soft highlighting of my brow bone. I find myself reaching for this palette because I enjoy creating a bronzey gold look. But I use a quad of shadows at most and could have saved a few dollars and just bought a quad instead of a larger palette. 

Ultimately I'm glad I purchased the palette, but it's no where near a replacement for higher end neutral palettes. If you're considering this over another neutral palette, I'd save up a bit more and splurge for the Stila in the Light Palette over this any day. But if you're looking for something cheap and don't mind a little extra work blending and building up, this is a good option.

What do you think of this palette?

xoxo Kayla

Friday, September 12, 2014

This Week's Most Loved #38

The weather here in Michigan changed drastically this week. It went from serious summer weather to the dead of autumn in a day. I personally love fall so I'm jazzed to be able to break out my autumn decorations and start burning my Bath and Body Works Candles. My makeup favorites this week go along with the shift in weather.

I've really been enjoying the Maybelline The Nudes Palette ($9.99) and featured it in my "Everyday Makeup Routine" video recently. It's an amazing palette for the price and has all the shades I love. As you can see I tend to gravitate towards the somewhat shimmery shades in this palette as they're the most pigmented. It's not Stila or Urban Decay palette, but for three times cheaper it's downright awesome.

With the shift in weather I find my lips being more dry and flaky. Not to mention when I start new things (like grad school) I tend to get nervous and bite on my lips more. My trusty LUSH Mint Julips Lip Scrub ($9.95) is back in my life again and rescuing my lips from the wind and myself.

Once my lips don't have cracks and look just straight up nasty, I've been enjoying my Revlon Lip Butter in "Wild Watermelon" ($8.49). It's the reddest I'll go in the lipstick department while still being moisturizing and incredibly easy to wear.

What products have you been loving this week?

xoxo Kayla

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Everyday Makeup Routine

My weekday mornings are a blur. I usually wake up late (I needed those extra minutes!), fly around the apartment making sure I have all my stuff and food, and rush out the door without looking back. I've gotten my everyday makeup routine down to a science because I don't have time or the brainpower to get creative before the sun even decides to wake up. Check out the first video I've ever put makeup on my face (I deserve a medal for how long I've managed to avoid it...) and see how I get ready on a daily basis. 

Let me know what you thought of the video! I was pretty nervous filming it so I hope you enjoy it!

xoxo Kayla

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

5 to Follow on Instagram

When it comes to social media platforms, Instagram is my favorite. It's like Facebook and Twitter combined to create the perfect platform where posts are short and sweet with a photo to go with them. There are also tons of different types of Instagrams to follow to make your feed a dream to scroll through. Is it cliche to say you can really learn a lot about someone from their Instagram feed? Here are some of my favorites.

I can't get enough of the lovely Estée no matter what social media she's on. She's a doll and a wiz at creating engaging content I devour immediately. Plus her Instagram features a lot of snaps of her dog Reggie which is always a nice bonus. Beauty, dogs, and quirky hotdog humor? I'm sold. Estée and I would be besties in real life, that's for sure.

I discovered this Instagram through her Etsy shop and have been obsessed ever since. Karolinaskrafts is a planner accessory shop where I've bought my fair share of decorative stickers for my planner. Her Instagram is filled with inspiring weekly spreads that have me pulling out my washi tape and spending an absurd amount of time with my planner.

Sometimes your Instagram feed needs a little bit more artistic beauty and this account definitely has it. Flora's illustrations remind me of my childhood and I can't help but pause on her posts while scrolling through. 

Mail has never looked so beautiful than in Eunice's posts. I would die a happy camper to receive one of the beauties I see on her Instagram feed. Vintage and detailed, you'll find yourself staring at envelopes for a lot longer than you ever thought possible.

For to die for and astonishingly well lit beauty photos the one an only erisaxo comes to mind. I don't follow her on any other platform oddly enough, but I drool over her makeup collection on a daily basis. She's workin' that Instagram game hard and I'm loving every second of it.

If you're interested in following my Instagram, you can do so here! What are some of your favorite Instagram accounts to follow? 

xoxo Kayla