Makeup Review: Revlon Colorburst Balm Stain in Romantic

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I bought this stain last week on a whim — I’ve heard great things about Revlon’s lip products and was in search of a great red. The combination of a balm and a stain sounded intriguing so I picked up Revlon Colorburst Balm Stain in “Romantic”, a brick red. I got it for around $6 at Rite-Aid but you can also find it at Target, Ulta, Walgreen’s, and many online retailers.  It’s like a nice, thick crayon — super smooth application and you can immediately tell it’s soft and creamy without being messy at all. It has a light minty scent which is surprisingly refreshing!

It does take quite a few coats to get it to the color that I like… but you could also swipe it across your lips once or twice for just a hint of color if you wanted. The nice thing is that, despite it being a stain, applying it isn’t scary — you don’t feel like you need to hurry up before it starts to dry or that you’re going to mess it up and have to scrub it off. I just put some on about 20 minutes ago and it still feels soft and malleable, in a good way. I don’t feel the need to put a gloss on over it, though you can for a shinier look — my lips feel soft and kissable, which is rare for me with any lipstick, let alone a stain. I’ve worn it a few times already and I’ve found that even when the product itself rubs off (which takes a while), the color is still mostly there, so that’s a big plus. I’d give it an 8/10!

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Mukow Monday! #1

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I thought it was about time that my pup have her own honorary spot on this blog, so from here on out every Monday shall be MUKOW MONDAY! Basically I will just post one of the (hundreds and hundreds) of photos I have of her… either a recent photo from that week or a random pick. This one is from a couple weeks ago — she LOVES the leaves outside (which are, sadly, still covering the yard even now) and she REALLY loves her purple bone (best $3 Rite-Aid purchase I’ve ever made).

Product review! Greenwich Bay Trading Co. Bar Soap!

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Sadly I couldn’t find a photo of the exact soap I have since the scent doesn’t seem to exist anymore. But the brand is Greenwich Bay Trading Co. based out of Raleigh, NC. I stumbled upon it at HomeGoods — one of the best places EVER — and bought a bar of their spa soap in Green Tea & Ginger for $3.99 (the 10.5oz spa soaps retail for around $6.50-$10 online). It seems like their website only sells to stores and businesses but you can find their products on Amazon and eBay as well as some other online retailers.

Anyways, I had picked this soap up and it’s been sitting on a shelf in my bathroom for… I want to say months but more realistically probably a year or more. The packaging is just so beautiful I couldn’t let myself rip into it. But I decided to give it a try this morning and this stuff is AMAZING. The scent alone is heavenly enough but I’ve never used a bar soap that produced such a rich, creamy lather. It was totally perfect and left my skin feeling squeaky clean but also super smooth and soft. If you spot some, I highly recommend you give it a try! 10/10

Etsy Loves #2

Welcome to the second week of ETSY LOVES! This week’s theme is CHEVRON. I am still kind of smitten over this pattern — the curtains in my office are a grey and white chevron — so this was a fun theme. So many gorgeous items!

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First row, from left: Brass chevron necklace from foxtailboutique ($44) | Herringbone mouse pad from SSKDesigns ($12) | Chevron secret message quote ring from ZennedOut ($22.50) | Gold party straws from MailboxHappiness ($4.75) | Second row, from left: Chevron three-quarter length peasant dress from ShelbyJaneandCo ($18) | Chevron makeup bag from PlatoSquirrel ($22) | Peel-and-stick removable wallpaper from Livettes ($34) | Vinyl switch cover decal from BugzyBoutique ($2.25) | Third row, from left: Colorful fabric belt from LiliesBoutiqueEtsy ($18.99) | Chevron mouse pad from SSKDesigns ($12) | Wooden forks from SucreShop ($12) | Original wood watch from Freeforme ($12) | Bottom row, from left: Knuckle rings from LLIwireworks ($8.50) | Washi tape from PrettyTape ($2.25) | Geometric iPhone case from OvercaseShop ($16.75) | Wood arrow wall art from SparklePower ($55).

Wishlist Wednesday! #1

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Welcome to the first official installment of WISHLIST WEDNESDAY! Yes, once a week you can come here to see things that I want to buy and most likely end up wanting to buy some of them yourselves. CONSUMERISM. On to the list…

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#1 Make Up Store LED Lip Gloss in Atomic (only available for purchase online at Nelly, but sadly they are out of stock otherwise THIS BABY WOULD BE MINE).

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#2 Cheese! Bag from JumpFromPaper ($39.60 on Fab). This company has TONS of amazing bags so if orange isn’t your thing, go look around their website and then realize you can’t possibly make a decision about which awesome bag to buy. SPOILER ALERT: I just bought this bag. Couldn’t resist. It’s a full $60 cheaper on Fab than on the official website and I COULDN’T SAY NO.

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#3 This Is NPR: The First Forty Years ($21.55 on Amazon). I love NPR so this is a no-brainer. “This beautifully designed volume chronicles NPR’s storied history, featuring dozens of behind-the-scenes photos, essays and original reporting by a who’s who of NPR staff and correspondents, transcripts of memorable interviews, and an audio CD of the most memorable programming throughout the decades.”

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#4 Truly Unforgettable Dress ($59.99 on ModCloth). Purple and lace — winning combination.

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#5 Cool Story Bro (Now Make Me an Equal Member of Society) Tank Top ($26 from Look Human). A play on those idiot “Cool Story Babe, Now Make Me a Sandwich” shirts that you can buy at the mall. GAG.

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#6 Kymera Magic Wand Remote Control ($89.95 on Amazon). Yes, this is a remote control. For your TV. That looks like a MOTHER FLIPPING MAGIC WAND. Need I say more?Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 7.31.13 PM

#7 I Was Here: A Travel Journal for the Curious Minded by Kate Pocrass ($13.56 on Amazon). I travel a bunch — mostly around New England but also around the US — and this just looks like fun.Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 7.51.15 PM

#8 Head of the Sass Flat in Black ($34.99 on ModCloth). I just love these — and most flats with straps. :)

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#9 Sriracha Mug ($9.99 on ThinkGeek). Everyone knows I love sriracha so this just seems appropriate!Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 7.56.14 PM

#10 Assembly Home Moa Rug ($44-$199 from Urban Outfitters). I don’t think this would go with the decor in ANY of the rooms in our house but… I love it.

Wear What Makes You Happy

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There’s a link going around from late October that is a list of “20 Things Women Should Stop Wearing After Age 30″. I’m not going to link to it because ya know what? That’s a bunch of bullshit and I won’t be responsible for more traffic going to that site. The list includes things like leopard print, mismatched socks, short dresses, American Eagle jeans, and glitter eyeshadow, among other so-called faux pas. I’m 27 — a mere 2.5 years away from 30 — and I still wear these things, and some others on the list. Because they make me happy.

To me, that should be the only fashion rule that exists, for any age. Does it make you happy? Does it make you feel confident? Does it make you feel like you could take on the whole freaking world and win? If you said “yes” to any of the above, WEAR IT, and rock it, and don’t let idiot lists like this make you feel ashamed for a goddamn second.

Makeup Review: NYX Studio Liquid Liner in Extreme Plum Purple

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I bought this eyeliner a few weeks back and today is my first time giving it a shot. It’s NYX Studio Liquid Liner in Extreme Plum Purple — you can get it on the NYX website for $4.50. I found it at ULTA and couldn’t resist… it’s a shimmery purple eyeliner, how could I!? I only wear eyeliner on my top lids so my review is based on that. I started with a base of Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion — my go-to primer. My first impression is that the applicator is all wrong. It’s almost like a nail polish brush… if you apply the slightest bit of pressure it goes from a super thin, sleek applicator to more spread out bristles, making the eyeliner apply thicker than intended. More of a negative if you typically go for a super thin line right against your lashes. I also noticed that when the bristles spread out, the color tended to do the same… so I had these spots of super thick, condensed color and some others with a more faded color that I had to attempt to even out. Not very smooth.

The color is great — a beautiful deep plum with some shimmer to it but not overly so. Definitely appropriate for daytime wear (not that I think anything should be confined to just “daytime” or “nighttime” but if you’re more conservative with color, this would be fine!).

It’s been on my eyes for about 15 minutes and I can tell it dries tight, if that makes sense. I can almost FEEL it on my eyelids. This may have to do with needing to apply it so liberally to get a thick, dense line… I imagine there’s a decent layer of liner on my lids right now. The plus side is while it feels super wet while applying, it does dry quick, within a minute or two.

I’d say overall it gets a 6/10 from me. The color is gorgeous and I think with some more experimenting I could work out a better method for applying, but the messiness and crappy applicator definitely bump it down a bit.

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Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response

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So, for those of you who have never heard of it, ASMR — or autonomous sensory meridian response — is… well, kind of awesome. I’d be willing to bet that there’s lots of you who have experienced this before and just didn’t know what it was, or that it had a name (and its own Wikipedia page!).

There’s very little scientific explanation for it — for why it happens, what exactly is happening in the brain to cause such a pleasurable feeling, or why some people experience it and some don’t. It’s also referred to as “brain tingles”, “head tingles”, or “brain orgasms”, though many people within the ASMR community dislike this term because of the sexual connotation it has (the “brain tingles” one feels during ASMR are not sexual in nature at all).

The only way to explain the feeling is an intensely relaxing tingling sensation starting in the head and sometimes radiating down the neck and into the arms. Everyone has different triggers and many of them are auditory — whispering or other soft talking, tapping, scratching, foreign accents or speaking in a foreign language, and water sounds (dripping, pouring, etc). There are tons of videos on YouTube that cater to people who experience ASMR and include various role playing videos, many of which are people describing or acting out a visit to a spa, hair dresser, dentist’s office, etc. There’s also physical stimulation that can cause ASMR, most commonly having your hair combed, braided, or otherwise touched (I LOVE having my hair washed at the hairdresser for this very reason).

The first time I realized ASMR was a thing was while listening to This American Life. There’s an episode from March 2013 called “Tribes” where novelist Andrea Seigel talked about her experiences with it (and her boyfriend’s lack of ability to relate).

For many people it’s a great reliever for insomnia as well as relief from anxiety and panic attacks. I personally have soothed myself out of several panic attacks and generally anxious times by watching or listening to some of these videos on YouTube. It brings on a sense of relaxation that can’t really be matched by anything else.

Do any of you experience ASMR? What are your favorite triggers?