Blogtober14 Day 24: beauty products that i can’t live without

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It’s not a bore, it’s day 24!

If you saw my post from day 20, you know that my love for makeup runs deep. So imagine my excitement when I realized that I would be able to dedicate another post to it. “One (yea, right) beauty product I can’t live without”.

I’ve been using those skincare products that I wrote about a few days ago and I have to say, I really like them. My skin is really soft and the dark circles under my eyes have lessened. I think I need to look into something that will get rid of dark spots since I have some on my chin from not being able to leave my face alone when there’s a pimple on it. My mom always told me, “stop picking your face, you’re going to put holes in it”. No mom, not holes, but unappealing marks all over my chin? you betcha.

After meaning to buy it forever, I finally got around to purchasing the MAC lip conditioner. MAC lipsticks are not my favorite because they dry out my already dry lips something fierce. Even though I’ve heard only good things about it, I was pretty skeptical because I had yet to find anything that helped. I asked the salesgirl for it and when I went to pay, I noticed it was in a twisty tube in a Prep and Prime box. I always remember it being in either a squeeze tube or a pot. I asked the girl if they had changed the packaging and she said that this was the only lip conditioner they had so this must be what I was looking for. ok, i’ll believe you…for now. I used it for the first time the other night when I did my makeup for a friend’s engagement dinner. My lips are still smooth. Let me say that again – MY LIPS ARE STILL SMOOTH!  I’ll take 100 more, please. The other reason I know the conditioner is totally worth it is that I didn’t even use lipstick, I used a lip liner and some lip gloss and my lips didn’t peel or anything.

The liner and gloss I used has quickly become a favorite combination of mine. I used NYX lip liner in cabaret and Sephora lip gloss in glowing amethyst. I would post a picture except in all of them the color comes off more as red rather than the burgandy it was in real life.

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My other go to products are
blush – Nars Dolce Vita (for Fall)
eyes – Naked 1 & 3 palettes by Urban Decay, anything from Inglot, the creme shadows from Flower beauty, All That Glitters from MAC.
bronzer – NYC Smooth Skin in “Sunny” and the one from the IT Cosmetics CC+ Radiance palette.
lips – the Covergirl lip perfection glossy balm in 255 and 225. For the perfect red lip, I love the Kate Moss lipstick by Rimmel in 01.

I think I deviated far enough away from where this post was supposed to be so I’ll just end it here.

What are some of your favorite products? Maybe you shouldn’t tell me – I don’t need any more temptation.

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Blogtober14 Day 23: favorite photo editing apps

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Oh em gee it’s day 23!

I’ve been excited about this one since I first read the prompts for blogtober. It’s “your favorite instagram editing apps/editing tools for your blog”.

I only have one, and that is picmonkey.com. I love this website. I don’t usually use it for my instagram pictures; I just use whatever filters they offer. i wish they would offer some more. 

Normally, I use it to spruce up the pictures I post here. I also use it to add a watermark to them. I pay to have a Royale membership so I have access to all that they offer. It’s $4.99 a month and definitely worth it. The only thing that bothers me is that they don’t offer a “recently edited” feature like their predecessor, picnik.com, did. So if I work on a photo and save it, it’s done. I can’t close the site and then come back to the same photo, or even two photos ago. I’d have to open it again from the file on my computer and start all over. Really though, it’s more of an inconvenience than a huge problem.

I also used that website to make my header and signature for the blog. i told you i’m in love.

I have Photoshop and use it occasionally, but I never sat down to really learn it so I don’t know how to do much with it. It’s a shame because it’s so powerful (and expensive!). A goal of mine is to sit down and play and see what happens.

Since I don’t have anymore tips or tricks, I’ll just post some pictures that I edited on picmonkey.

If you’re interested in printing photos and need weird sizes or want a different finish of paper (like metallic), I recommend using Nations Photo Lab. I had pictures printed for a small project that I’m working on and I was so happy with how they came out. The project is not done yet, but when it is, I’ll share it with you. (*i paid for my photo order with my own money. i was not asked to mention the company here. my feelings about the company are my own.)

I can’t wait to read the other blogtober posts so I can find some new apps/websites to edit on! If you aren’t participating in blogtober, what do you use for photo editing? Leave a comment and let me know!

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Blogtober14 Day 22: pet peeves

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How do ya do, day 22?

Today’s prompt is “biggest pet peeve”.

Honestly, I have tons of pet peeves. I find myself sucking my teeth and/or rolling my eyes or just plain getting slightly annoyed at something on a daily basis. I’m not a miserable person at all. It’s just a knee jerk reaction I have to certain things and situations. As a matter of fact, I used to get in trouble for it all the time as a kid. I’m trying to tone it down, but it’s just so hard. Also, it’s not like these annoyances ruin my day; maybe 10 minutes of it so it’s not that bad.

Some things, however, take the cake on the annoying scale. Here are some of them.

close talkers: for the love of all things holy, BACK UP. Last year at work we held a defensive driving class and I was asked to greet the man from AAA (I think) who was running it. I went down to the event area to help the guy set up. As I was putting the handouts into neat piles, he came over to talk to me. He was making small talk and when I looked up he was inmybusiness. I backed up a bit and continued to get things ready for the class. I should add here that the conversation was totally appropriate and I didn’t feel threatened or uncomfortable at all. Except for the fact that he was all up in my grill. And by this time, the class was filling up so there were people around. By the time my co-worker came down to let me know she was leaving and to see if I needed anything else, I didn’t know where to put myself. Thankfully, shortly thereafter, the class was set to begin. As soon as roll was called, I was out of there.

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being contradicted I feel like a hypocrite because I do this all the time. I just can’t stand when it’s done to me. I’m an exaggerator and a bit of a drama queen. Just let me tell a story, laugh at it, and move on. Ever hear of “dramatic license”?

 

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misuse of words: specifically there/their/they’re and your/you’re. I understand that typos happen, but when it’s all the time, it annoys me. It doesn’t take long to just read over your sentence and think about what you’re trying to say. You’re = you+are (you’re dumb) your = possession (get your dumb ass away from me).

 

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making little things, big: i’m not saying that I don’t do this; everyone does from time to time. However, life is waaaayyy too short to go around making drama out of nothing. Like those people who go around fighting with anyone who looks at them the wrong way. Or the people who always take things the wrong way. God gave us connotations for a reason, and there’s a lot of them – pay better attention and chill out.

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There’s more and I’m sure you’ll hear about them eventually, but I’m going to end it here so I don’t look like a total misery.

See you tomorrow!
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Blogtober14 Day 21: dream vacation

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Having fun on day 21!

Today’s prompt is something that I think about on a pretty constant basis. As usual, I don’t have just one answer.
We’re talking about dream vacations today, kids.

If I were given an unlimited amount of time and money to go any and everywhere I’d go to:

EUROPE: i want to eat pizza in italy, ask big ben for the time, see a senorita (with flowers in her hair) in spain, drink beer in germany, pick a 4 leaf clover in ireland, see the beauty that is prague, buy a beret in france, brush my hair with a dinglehopper at the little mermaid statue in copenhagen, smell the tulips in holland, suspend reality in amsterdam, visit castles in scotland… the list goes on. am i stereotyping? i apologize if my ugly american is showing, but the more i wrote, the more excited i got.

EXOTIC BEACHES: after my european journey, i think my next vacation would be to a beach. my cousin has been to atlantis in the bahamas and really liked it. fine with me. i just want a good pina colada, a comfy beach chair, a book or my kindle, and a pool for when the sun gets too hot.

AUSTRALIA: i want to be face to face with a kangaroo ( or a safe distance behind a fence with trained profesionals all around), i want to feed a koala some eucalyptus, i want to see the great barrier reef, i want to find P. Sherman at 42 Wallaby Way, Sydney. i want to visit the opera house at night because the pictures are so beautiful.

CALIFORNIA: The furthest west I’ve ever been was memphis, tennessee. which isn’t that far, in the long run. i want to do all of california. see the redwoods, go to haight-ashbury, find the backstreet boys’ star on the walk of fame, say hello to the tanner family in san fransisco, break out of alcatraz, slip some of my celebrity husbands my phone number.

OTHER STATES: i have an ever growing list of places to see in america. i live here; i have no excuse. i’ve heard the grand canyon is incredible in person. niagara falls (the american and canadian side), hawaii, georgia, south and north carolina, louisiana, texas… this list goes on also.

MANHATTAN: but martina, you live in brooklyn! i know. i’ve just always wanted to rent a room in the city, traipse around – taking pictures, doing typical new york things, and when i’m tired and done for the day, just go up to my room and order room service. this vacation (weekend getaway, really), probably sounds better in my head. i’m a big believer in being a tourist in your own city because you’re probably taking the things it has to offer for granted. especially when your city is new york.

I guess I have a bit of wanderlust, huh? Where would you go?

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cukoo for kiko!

Day 19’s prompt was “Your biggest fear”. Yea, no. My biggest fears are either too depressing or too embarrassing to talk about with the internet. So in lieu of that post, I decided to talk about a new cosmetic line that I’ve recently come across.

What better way to spend Columbus Day other than shopping? Spending Columbus Day just taking what we want, that’s what.

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Anyway, we took a ride to the Staten Island mall and were ready to shop. We headed over to JCPenney first, where we all usually have success. I, however, did not have success but that’s for a different post. As we walked down towards Penney’s I noticed a new store that was filled with brightly colored things on display and black walls. a new makeup store? I thought. not with MAC right two stores away. As we got closer I looked in and got super excited. IT IS A NEW MAKEUP STORE! WITH MAC TWO STORES AWAY! it must be expensive. I peeked in as we passed and my eye caught a sign by the door. Something about mascara starting at $5.95. WHAAAT?! Could it get any better? I announced that we needed to make the new makeup store, Kiko Cosmetics, a stop on our Staten Island mall tour.

We did our clothes shopping, stopped for some lunch (I had potatotopia, in case you were wondering, and I highly recommend it), and then it was finally time to return to the new makeup store. I did a few laps, picking things up here and there. I swatched some lipsticks and eyeshadows. My hands looked like Bob Ross’ paint palette. The quality of the products were high and the cost low. It seems like they’re testing the American market because from what the salesgirl was saying, they’re changing the prices and offering some discounts to see what sells at what price point. Now that I wrote that out, it doesn’t seem right. Maybe I misunderstood because, quite frankly, I was in my own little makeup world.

The prices are really reasonable. The skincare was 30% off and the water eyeshadows were $9.95 (i believe). The prices listed below are before any percentages off.

From their website:

KIKO MILANO is constantly committed to a single objective: to allow all women to treat themselves to the most innovative cosmetics without having to sacrifice their budget. Quality is no longer synonymous with high prices.

thankyousomuch!

Let me show you what I bought!

(*disclaimer: i bought the following products with my own money. i was not asked to shop in the kiko cosmetics store or write any reviews of their products.)

 

I haven’t used any of these products yet except for swatches.

First impressions:

eye shadow: they are super pigmented. the shades i picked all have shimmer to them but they do offer some matte shades. they have a nice selection, but i hope they add to it as the brand becomes more popular. i thought the infinity eye shadow would stick to a z palette, but it doesn’t. it kind of makes transporting/storing hard, but they offer plastic cases that the shadows click in to. the next time i go back, i’ll just buy one to put the shadow in.  the quality and pigmentation reminded me of Inglot eye shadows. if you haven’t been there and find yourself near one, do yourself a favor and go in and buy something, anything. you can thank me later. i heard the sales girl compare the water shadows to makeup for ever shadow.

nail polish: they have a nice selection of nail polish shades. again, although there are some creamy ones, i found mostly shimmery/glittery ones. but that could also be what i’m attracted to. i chose this shade because i’ve been on the hunt for a nice, true emerald shade.

skin care: being closer to 30 than to 20, i decided to start to add anti-aging products to my routine. i really like the moisturizer because 1) it can be used for both day and night. 2) on the box it says that it “guarantees a significant increase in moisture after only 90 minutes”. my dry skin is guardedly optimistic. 3) the packaging is plastic so i don’t have to worry about dropping it and it’s not heavy at all. the eye serum is supposed to combat dark circles and puffiness while instantly lifting the skin. the serum itself feels really nice on the skin. the perfect picture serum also feels good and the both absorb quickly. it has a pink iridescence to it, which helps to diffuse the light, and makes you “picture perfect”, but it doesn’t leave the skin looking like a disco ball.

I wish I bought a lip product since I’m obsessed with them; also to see how they wear during the day.

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As I was checking out, I asked the sales girl if they had a website that I could buy from also. She said that the website is designed for the European customers right now. So if you buy anything from there, it would be in Euros and you end up paying more for your order. She said that the website would be available to America in January. As far as brick and mortar stores, the only ones in America are located in the Staten Island mall, two or three malls in New Jersey, and one in Miami. Frankly, I’m surprised they didn’t come to Manhattan. I mean I’m not complaining; it’s just surprising that they would choose New Jersey over the city.

I’ll keep you posted on how the products work/hold up. I have high hopes for these products; I’m a bit obsessed with the brand already!

See you tomorrow!

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Blogtober14 Day 19: what makes me happy

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Day 19 wants to know what makes me happy.
I’m a generally happy person but there are things that send me over the edge. As usual, I’m blatantly not choosing just one item. Without further ado:

Martina’s List of Happy
my family, my friends, Disney movies, when my favorite shows have new seasons, diet coke, guys who are good with kids, guys in sweatpants, laughing, glitter, the mindy project, once upon a time, fall colors, taking off my bra, romantic comedies, guys who don’t act like assholes, michael kors bags, christmas, my birthday, finding money in an old jacket pocket, anything on sale, compliments, backstreet boys, one direction, receiving flowers, trips to sephora and ulta, videos from my favorite youtubers, payday, meaningful conversations, romantic guys, just because presents, taking a great photo, central park, smart guys, when things work out according to plan, new school supplies, going away on vacation, 90’s reruns, brooklyn, my bed, my celebrity husbands, instagram, funny guys, iced coffee, apple cider donuts, inside jokes, blogging, no traffic, rainstorms,summer, emojis, tax returns, crisp fall days, finding a good parking spot, getting dressed up, food, a fresh manicure, vibrant lipstick, good books, watching TV on the couch with my mom, Degrassi seasons 8, 9, and 10, movie nights, exploring the city, clean sheets, boozy brunches, reading in bed, silly moods, finding things with my name on it, having my hair played with, when my hair/makeup comes out exactly how i want it to and stays that way, seeing my site stats go up, nice comments on my posts, an easy day at work, ed sheeran’s thinking out loud video, anything from kate spade, reminiscing, shopping sprees…

And this list goes on.

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Blogtober14 Day 18: share a secret

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Day 18 wants to know a secret about me. Usually, I hope that millions of people come and read my blog, but this time, I hope my readership is low because after I tell you this secret, I’ll have to kill you.

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Do you give up, or are you thirsty for more?

I have thought and thought about this topic and I really can’t think of any secrets. Or really, any secrets that I’m willing to share on the internet for everyone to see. Consider yourself saved.

I mean, of course I have secrets- who doesn’t? I just feel like there’s a different kind of secret that should be released to the internet. Things that might come out in casual conversation, maybe over a few drinks are ok. Because remember, there was a time not too long ago that drinks and conversation with actual people was considered “social networking”. Things that you should go to a priest or the police with, are not ok. What defines each type of secret depends on the secret haver/ teller.

I guess I could admit that although I love being an only child, recently I have been wanting a brother or sister – or two. I wanted on for a few years as a kid and got over it when I realized I didn’t have to share anything. But now, I kind of wish I had an older brother or sister. I think part of it is because my mom has siblings and I see how close they are and I see how close my cousins are with each other as siblings. Don’t get me wrong, my cousins and I are extremely close, but at the end of the day, it’s not the same. Also, I want to be an aunt. As happy as I will be for my cousins and friends when they have children, and accept the title of “Aunt Martina” without hesitation, I can’t help but to feel that it’s just not the same. The love for the kids will be there, no question. But there’s a difference between friend/cousin aunt and Aunt aunt. You know?

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sisters who selfie together, stay together.

What are some of your “social networking” secrets?

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Blogtober14 Day 17: things I am an expert at

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Woah, day 17 already. It’s the beginning of the end, folks.

Day 17 wants to know what I’m an expert at.

Um. everything. Do you even read this blog?

I guess I could choose a few things to write about.

Golden Girls trivia: I’ve mentioned this before,  but I know each Golden Girls episode back and forth. Just try me.

Starting things and not finishing them: I’m not trying to be self deprecating; I hardly ever finish things I start. I usually get bored or frustrated that whatever it is isn’t coming out the way I intended so I put it off to the side, with the intention of coming back to it with a clear head and I usually never do. Frankly, I’m surprised this blog has lasted almost a year. mimosas for everybody!

Making piles: I’m not a slob or a hoarder, but sometimes I don’t have a place for all of my stuff.

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Giving the benefit of the doubt: I’m constantly playing devil’s advocate. I’m not sure if this is a good or bad thing.

Organizing pictures: Ok. I might have an issue with putting my other stuff away, but when it comes to photos, I’m a pro. I’m one of those people who still get printed copies of their photos. It drives my mom crazy because we’re running out of space. I tell her, and anyone else who has something to say, “Don’t call me when you need a slideshow or collage made then.”

Daydreaming: My goodness, I’m always talking to myself and staring off into space. It’s one of my endearing qualities *wink*

The Little Mermaid: I could pick up this movie at any point and start reciting. Apparently, I am a big expert in reciting lines from movies and TV shows. Another one of my most endearing qualities. I don’t know how I’m still single.

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I'M RIGHT HERE!

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What are some things that you have expertise in?

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Blogtober14 Day 16: Fall fashion

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Another day, another picture heavy post.
Day 16 is all about Fall fashion. I scoured Pinterest and Polyvore for some “If I had the money, body and time to put this together, I would totally wear this” outfits. Enjoy!

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love that scarf and those elbow patches!
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excuse me while i drool over this coat

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with leggings and boots.. sign me up.

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At the end of the day, I should really just live in  this shirt.

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