What I'm Packing: Charlotte, NC

October 17, 2014

This weekend we are taking a road trip to Charlotte, NC! It's about 3+ hours north-ish from where we live in Charleston, so it's not super far. However, I've never been and there is an IKEA, so I'm looking forward to it! Dallin has duty today, so he has to go in tomorrow morning and turn-over to the next guy, but we are going to leave right after that! It's just a 2-day/1-night trip, so nothing major. We'll spend Saturday there and return home on Sunday. I am just looking forward to seeing something new. (And to eat some swedish meatballs! Dallin thinks it's ridiculous that I want to go to IKEA so much, but I NEED to buy stuff for the house!)

I am a notorious over-packer, but since it's such a short trip, I don't think I have that problem this time. Here's what I'm planning on bringing!

Madewell High Riser Skinny Jeans, Everlane Heather Grey U-Neck T-Shirt, Jewelmint Silver Leaf Earrings

This is what I'm bringing to wear on Sunday. It's simple and comfortable. It's the Everlane Heather Grey U-Neck T-Shirt, Madewell High Riser Skinny Jeans (same cut, different wash), and earrings that I bought years ago from Jewelmint. The Everlane T-Shirt is super soft and comfortable. It's one of my favorites! The Madewell jeans are also super comfy. I like that they're high-rise. It's one of my favorite pairs. I've had the earrings a long time. I haven't bought anything from Jewelmint in FOREVER, but I did like everything that I got from them. I should probably check out what sort of stuff they have nowadays.

LOFT Knit Bomber Jacket

I'm bringing this Knit Bomber Jacket that I recently bought from LOFT. The weather here has been so weird lately. It'll be freezing one day and then super hot the next. It's hard to tell what the weather will be like. But I know that I love to be cozy. I've been wearing this jacket to work everyday because our office gets chilly. I like how it's comfortable like a sweater, but fancier and more structured than a hoody. Also, I got it for 50% off, so I think it was a great deal!

NARS Pro-Prime Pore Refiner Primer, Maybelline Volum' Express The Rocket Mascara, Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder, NARS Tinted Moisturizer, RMS Beauty Un-Coverup, ModelCo Bronzer, NARS Orgasm Blush, Temptu Highlighter, Smashbox Eyeshadow, Urban Decay NAKED Basics Palette, Atelier Cologne Cédrat Enivrant

For make-up, I'm just taking a couple samples that I got from Birchbox and some staples (clockwise-ish, starting from top):

  1. NARS Pro-Prime Pore Refining Primer: Must-have!
  2. Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder: I rather use the NARS Light-Reflecting Powder, but this is smaller and I should probably try to use the rest of it up.
  3. Maybelline Volum' Express The Rocket Mascara: Currently my favorite drug-store mascara.
  4. NARS Tinted Moisturizer: Love this! It's like, my skin, but better. It looks natural to me.
  5. RMS Beauty "Un" Cover-Up: I like that this is "natural." I obviously use this to cover up imperfections (acne, under eye, redness, etc). I want to try the luminizer after I used up my current highlighters.
  6. ModelCo Bronzer: This is a sample that I am almost done with. I liked it, so I actually bought the full-size of this. This one has shimmer in it, but it's not that noticeable to me. Hope it translates well into fall/winter though.
  7. Temptu Highlighter: This is another sample that I got in my Birchbox. I actually really like this, but I'm not sure if I'll get the full-size.
  8. Smashbox Eyeshadow Trio: I got this in a kit at the beginning of summer (couldn't find it online). I've actually been using it everyday. The lightest shade is matte and the other two are shimmery. Worked well for summer!
  9. Urban Decay NAKED Basics Palette: Neutral Mattes. I'm bringing this just in case. (Plus, it has a mirror!)
  10. Atelier Cologne Cédrat Enivrant Cologne Absolue: Love this and it's travel-sized!
Can anyone tell that I'm grasping onto summer still? I love the fall, but I also like the warmth. Haha. And I think my skin-tone looks better when I'm a little tan. But that's just me! ;) (I'm not ready for it to get cold! And I live in SC!)

In addition to the make-up, I'm bringing my BECCA The One Perfecting Brush, a powder brush, and three eyeshadow brushes.

I'm lugging everything in this Betsey Johnson bag that I got on super sale at Ross in Guam. Also, not pictured: skincare, nintendo 3ds, book, and other necessities I'll probably remember tomorrow. Ooh! Like my toothbrush! :)

Hope you all have a great weekend!

(all links are for convenience!)


October 13, 2014

I used to be addicted to shopping (especially online) while I was single and working in Hawaii. I was working a lot of overtime and stressed out. Buying things helped me to temporarily feel better. After I quit my job to move to Guam to be with my husband (then-boyfriend), I ended my love-affair with online shopping. I learned to make-do with what I had and I'm really grateful for that.

Even though I don't shop as much as I used to, I think that I can do a lot more to declutter my life. There are certain things that I am pretty good about not hoarding, but there are other things that I'm just not allowed to buy anymore (hello, billions of nail polish bottles!). This is an attempt to let go of things that I don't need and just keep the essentials (things that I actually use). So, I'm going on a buying ban!

Also, if you can't tell from the picture, I don't really have a good way of storing my make-up items. They're either in those two bins shown, or just in empty birchbox boxes or in my bathroom drawer. Part of decluttering will be finding a place for everything and making everything neat.

Here's a list of things I'm allowed to buy (one-in, one out):
  1. Facial Toner
  2. Facial Oil
  3. Facial Cleanser
  4. Eye Cream
  5. Sunscreen
  6. Tinted Moisturizer
  7. Foundation
  8. Concealer
  9. Primer
  10. Blush (I'm allowing myself to find and buy two more shades that I love and also to replace the one that I'm currently using)
  11. Bronzer
  12. Mascara
  13. Brow Pencil
  14. Dry Shampoo

Things I'm not allowed to buy (unless I completely run out of current stock):
  1. Body/Hand Lotion
  2. Nail Polish (it makes me sick whenever I look at how many bottles I have)
  3. Make-up remover
  4. Lip balm
  5. Lipstick (unless it's a completely different color than what I currently have! Not really looking for anything right now though.)
  6. Lipgloss
  7. Eyeshadow (especially neutrals! All I have are neutrals!)
  8. Illuminator
  9. Body wash
  10. Shampoo/Conditioner
  11. Hair oils/serums
  12. BB Cream
  13. Facial moisturizer
  14. Face masks
  15. Perfume
It might seem like I have a bunch in my "things I'm allowed to buy" list, but that's because these are things that I only have one or two products of versus a stockpile of different products that aren't being used (like the ones in my "not allowed" list!). I hope to give these unloved products some attention before deciding whether to chuck it or keep it. One day I hope to only have products that I absolutely love instead of "wasting" my money on things that I don't use/need. We'll see how successful I am. I also want to do something like this with my wardrobe!

Does anyone else seem to have a huge stock of products that aren't being used? Would you ever go on a buying ban?
Also, any suggestions on how to store make-up? :)

(Post inspired by From Roses.)

New Layout!

October 11, 2014

I spent the past week updating my blog layout! I'm not an expert website designer, but I know my way around code (a little). I thought it would be better to go with a more simple layout than the previous template that I was using. I don't really have anything else to say about it except... Let me know if you find anything buggy or if it looks off on your computer/screen/browser! I would really appreciate it! :)

I guess that I should go to sleep now that it's 3am. It is a three-day weekend, so I'm pretty excited! Also, next week I have my regular day off, so it's a three-day WORK week. Gaahhh, this is better than Christmas for me (almost).

Anyway, hope you all have a great weekend!

(Bonus picture of my cat yawning in his cat cave/bed!)

Current Primers

October 06, 2014

NARS Pro-Prime Pore Refining Primer & Dr.Jart+ Pore Medic Pore Minish Primer

Using a primer after a moisturizer and before applying make-up is essential in my daily routine. Sometimes I will skip it if I know that I will be staying home all day being lazy. However, I notice that without primer, my foundation or tinted moisturizer doesn't last as long and my face looks oily/shiny more quickly. So, I just try to use primer every time I put on make-up (which is almost always daily!).

NARS Pro-Prime Pore Refining Primer is my favorite primer. I've been using it for years now. It minimizes the look of my pores and makes my skin look smoother. Previously I had been using Smashbox Photo Finish Primer which has an interesting texture: very smooth and silky (but almost in a weird way). The NARS primer is more like a lightweight lotion, which I love and prefer! I don't know how many times I have repurchased it, but all I know is that I've always had a tube on hand. I guess that once I find something I like, it's hard for me to stray too far.

The Dr.Jart+ Pore Medic Pore Minish Primer is one that I bought recently. I saw it on Birchbox and was intrigued. The texture is similar to the Smashbox Photo Finish Primer. It's actually very similar to a sample of Benefit The Porefessional. Very... tacky or sticky, but also silky. Not sure how to describe it. It was a little weird at first, but I actually got used to it. It does minimize the look of pores, maybe even more than the NARS primer. However, my make-up doesn't last as long with just the Dr.Jart+ primer. It hasn't broken me out or anything, but if you're sensitive to silicone, definitely do not try this primer.

Even though the Dr.Jart+ primer was alright, I think I'll stick with my my go-to NARS primer. :)

Do you use a primer? What's your favorite? I'm open to any suggestions! :)

(all products were purchased by me and all opinions are my own. links are for convenience!)

A day in the life of a ballerina

September 28, 2014


I happened upon an article on ELLE.com about the day in the life of Ashley Laracey, a soloist for the New York City Ballet. It is an incredibly insightful article and the photos are so lovely.

I have always found ballerinas to be absolutely fascinating and awe-inspiring. To me, they are so strong, talented, graceful, disciplined, and just beautiful! But I think that making it a career and becoming a professional ballerina takes a lot of hard work and sacrifice. And the article offers a glimpse into what its like.

This is one of the more powerful quotes from the article:
The most important thing, she's learned, is to treat new ailments immediately so they don’t get worse, so you don’t traverse from “injured” to “out.” Because, she says, “When you’re out, you feel worthless; you feel disposable.”
It seems like it's a very demanding job, both emotionally and physically. And it's kind of hard to understand, as an outsider, why someone so talented and accomplished would feel that believing in yourself is the hardest challenge. But I can imagine that it might come their constant pursuit of perfection.

Anyway, the article is worth a read on this (lazy) Sunday! (can be found here)