Sunday, April 27, 2014

Watermelon Makeup - Totally sweet or too much?

So there's a new trend I've been seeing popping up on Pinterest and in makeup tutorials - watermelon makeup. Yes, that's a thing now, and it's as fun and colorful as it sounds. People make their eyes, cheeks, and lips look like a bright, juicy watermelon. It's perfectly timed as the warmer months are almost here and now you can match your favorite dessert at this year's cookout. It's gorgeous and fun, but the real question is: is it realistic for regular people to wear, or is it only good for a photoshoot?

I love the looks people come up with - the artists that created these looks are seriously talented. Are you a fan of this trend, or is this too much?

I say, the sweeter the better <.3

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Coconut Oil Review

Unless you've been living under a rock for the last year or so, you've probably heard about the health benefits of the miracle-substance coconut oil. It's been praised by magazines, celebrities, and fitness gurus alike for it's ability to cure many common ailments while costing next to nothing. A couple weeks ago I came across 4 different sources talking about it in one day, and I realized the universe was clearly trying to send me a sign to go try it out. It was either the universe or the best marketing agency known to man, so I decided to take the bait either way and walk over to my local health food store to pick up a jar of unrefined virgin coconut oil. This is the kind I picked up to try:

With my $12 jar of miracle mystery goo in tow, I went home to find out what I could do with it. I was amazed at all the uses I found. There were dozens, but these are the ones that were most common:

Common Uses

1.) It helps make hair smooth and shiny/fights split ends
2.)  It helps with indigestion/metabolism if you add it to your smoothies/food
3.)  It's a great moisturizer for your face/skin/nails
4.)  Eye makeup remover
5.)  Oil pulling with this helps improve acne and dental health 
6.)  Natural chapstick
7.)  Natural shaving lotion
8.)  Seasoning for cast iron skillets
9.) Great for frying since it has a high smoke point
10.) Natural mosquito repellant when mixed with other herbs

The interesting part is that coconut oil is not what you think it will be when you open the jar. It's not a runny traditional oil - unrefined coconut oil looks like wax. It's white and solid - you have to scoop it out of the jar.


1.) Hair Serum - I noticed a difference in my crazy frizzy hair immediately. Louisiana humidity is no joke, and this stuff really helped me manage my fro and make it look presentable. It didn't feel oily to the touch either once in my hair, which was really nice.

2.) - Stomach Aid - I suffer from serious indigestion and some other not-so-fun stomach-related problems, so I was excited to try this out. I experimented with a tablespoon of it in my smoothie, and I noticed my stomach felt really calm for the rest of the night, which is very rare lately. I recently used it in place of Earth Balance in my banana bread recipe, and my stomach reacted very positively. My stomach normally reacts a little funny to sweets and sweet breads, and this time I didn't get a stomach ache, so I definitely recommend substituting it in recipes.

3.) - Moisturizer - My skin is naturally a combination of oily and dry, so using it helped and hurt me. If you have oily skin, you skin will adjust to using it, but you will break out in the process. I don't have time to wait for my skin to stop breaking out. It was great on my body as a moisturizer, and even better on my nails as a cuticle oil.

4.) Makeup Remover -  It actually worked nicely in removing makeup, almost like a cold cream.

5. Oil Pulling - Since it's solid, I had to heat it up a bit to get it to be liquid-y. I have learned through this oil-pulling experiment that I have crazy sensitive gag reflexes. I tried coconut oil, didn't work. I tried olive oil, didn't work. I tried peanut oil, didn't work. I tried grapeseed oil, didn't work. When I say didn't work, I mean it barely got past my lips before my body forcefully expelled it back out into the kitchen sink and I proceeded to dry heave for 5 minutes thereafter. While oil pulling is said to have amazing abilities, I clearly will have to train long and hard to be successful at it.

6.) Natural Chapstick - It moisturizes, it just doesn't last for very long, but it definitely works while it's on.

7.) Natural Shaving Lotion - Very successful, and it left my legs smooth afterward. Extra bonus!

8.) Seasoning for cast iron skillets - My husband shooed me away. I brought the coconut oil to him while he was seasoning, and he grabbed his vegetable oil and wouldn't let me near his pans. I'm sure it works, just make sure to get to the pans first!

9.) Frying - I scooped a little bit into a pan and stir-fried some vegetables with 100% tasty success!

10.) Mosquito Repellant - I'm sorry to report, I have at least 5 mosquito bites to prove that this formula does not work. Then again, nothing really works in the deep south against mosquitoes. The mosquitoes down here never stop, never sleep, never even blink until they find a target and attack. While I'm sure in other places this mixture would work just fine, I'll stick to staying in when it gets dark.

Overall Review:

Coconut oil is amazing, and for all the things you can do with it, it's insanely inexpensive! It's worth every penny. <.3

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Cupcake ATM's

So a few weeks ago, I spoke with a friend who recently flew back from LA, and she mentioned  what she saw while driving around the city. When she first mentioned it, I thought I was clearly delirious from lack of sleep, and then I realized she was actually being serious - she saw a cupcake ATM. 

Yes, the stuff of teenage fantasy, or 2am the night before finals after 7 cups of coffee when the lightbulb appears above your head with the best idea ever. I immediately ran to my computer to see if it's true, and it is! The entire time I was living in California, I never saw these. Clearly I never went down the right street.

The famous cupcake company Sprinkles started this amazing business venture. Co-founders Candace & Charles Nelson came up with the brilliant idea for a 24-hour cupcake ATM outside of their store in Beverly Hills. Luckily, they haven't stopped there; there are multiple locations throughout the country as shown on the map below.

If I'm lucky they'll open one up in New Orleans, but until then I can just dream about the day I can get a craving at 11pm and go buy a cupcake without having to wait in line.

Seriously, let's talk about the genius of this invention: people who work at inconvenient hours(like mwah) can still satisfy their sweet tooth, the company can make money 24/7, and the ATM itself is FREAKING adorable! Sweetest idea ever.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Daily Inspiration

I find inspiration for outfits, makeup, and decor through random photos I come across in my day-to-day routine, and below are a few of my favorites from this week's findings <.3

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Words to live by

I love my Yogi tea, and tonight I found a beautiful message as I sipped. No matter what's going in the outside world, you are beautiful, inside and out <3 p="">

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Good Fortune Saturday

Living with roommates can be challenging and immensely fulfilling.  Being immersed in other people's lives and connecting with others in a community setting is rewarding by itself. Then, sometimes, there are those moments of hidden treasure that comes from co-habitation, like being given an amazing, unexpected gift.

I've been really wanting a new piece of jewelry for a while now, but I always think "I don't need more jewelry, I need gas, or groceries, or electricity". So this morning, one of our roommates came home from the hotel he works at with the Lost & Found he was allowed to take. He grabbed a big bag of jewelry and gave it to me to sort through.
In the bag, I found 6 brand-new gorgeous pieces of Jewelmint jewelry. That's roughly the equivalent of $180.
Life has a funny and beautiful way of working out sometimes.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Julep Nail Polish Trial

One lazy afternoon back in October I decided to clean out my Inbox, a task waaaay over due. While going through my over 3,000 (yes, you read that number correctly) unread emails, I came across an email from Refinery 29 talking about a new nail polish company that had been growing in popularity like wildfire. Refinery 29 was offering a free month with this company called Julep, all I had to do is pay $3 for shipping & handling.

When presented with the offer to only pay $3 for an entire box worth of goodies, unless it's clown shoes or Justin Bieber cds, my answer will always be "Yes". Being a smart shopper though, I decided to check out their page of course before clicking "Submit My Order".

Julep is a fantastic, girl-power-infused company that offers nail polishes, skin care, nail care, accessories and then some. Their nail polishes boast an impressive "4-free"motto, which means their product is free for 4 main toxic ingredients found in most nail polishes. To get their product, you can go about it one of two ways:

1.) You can sign up on their website and become a "Maven", or a monthly Maven Box purchaser. To do this, you take a personality quiz which determines which of their products would suit your style best. Each month they send you a box for $19.99 that contains an exciting, random assortment of any of their products based on your quiz's outcome. If you don't want to buy during one month, you just go onto the website and click "Skip This Month", or call and have one of their representatives do it for you. Being a Maven means you have access to their AMAZING sales + free shipping.


2.) You can purchase from their website without becoming a Maven, and you can shop as a regular customer as little or as often as you'd like. You won't be charged monthly, but you won't have access to their sales, and you won't get free shipping.

I decided to become a Maven, but since I'm not swimming in my money like Scrooge McDuck, I was determined to skip each month. I told myself I would remember between the 20th-25th of each month to go onto the website and click "Skip This Month". I was determined, but I would of course always keep my eyes peeled for any special sales where I could snag something for $5 or less + free shipping.

I was INSANELY successful with keeping my eyes peeled for sales, not so successful on remembering to skip each month. And before I knew it, I was accidentally charged for a month. Julep's representatives responded quickly and helped me deal with my accident with ease and I didn't have to wait long to talk to someone. After dealing with a similar mistake with Jewelmint and Shoemint just a few months prior, I decided at that moment that I can't be a successful member of a skip-if-you-don't-want-it-this-month site. With great sadness, I closed my Maven account.

From their sales this past holiday season, I acquired all these goodies for less than the cost of one Maven box:

After trying each of these products, I can honestly say: sign up!!! Their packaging is great, products are amazing, shipping is fast, and customer service is fantastic. Oh, and your nails will look amazing too <3 comment-3--="">