Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Mascara: Wand or Formula?

Mascara is a beauty product that I buy more often than anything else. I get a new mascara often because I'm afraid of any germs that might be lurking in an old product. It's a real treat to receive deluxe samples of mascara. They're the perfect size and are a great opportunity to try something new.

Here are two samples that I added to my collection this week. The Eyeko Black Magic Mascara has some of the coolest packaging I have ever seen. It looks like your favorite tube of lip gloss, but opens to reveal a curved brush. So fabulous! Bare Minerals' Lash Domination is another fun find.

Throughout the years, I've experimented with every kind of mascara but always return to the same question.

What makes a great mascara? The wand or the formula?

There are some wands that you can see are not going to work right out of the chute. And there's something so luxurious about a thick, caterpillar like brush that promises to lengthen and separate your lashes. Personally, I prefer a straight brush over a curved brush. There are wands in every size and variation. I have to admit that I'm a believer in a good brush. The Mason Pearson does wonders for my hair; would a great wand do wonders for my lashes?

Formula is also important. I want something that dries quickly and won't clump or flake. Preferably, it's also relatively economical, too!

So I did a little experiment with these new samples and the mascaras I currently use. I tried the different wands with different formulas to see what would happen. I also used a disposable mascara wand that I picked up from Sephora.

The results were surprising to me. In the end, the formula seems to matter more than the wand. My trusty favorite mascara did the trick with every wand I tried (except for one that wouldn't fit into the narrow opening!) My eyes looks fantastic, even using the disposable mascara wand.

What do you like about mascaras? Do you tend to choose a unique brush or is the formula more important? Would a whimsical package like the Eyeko be a selling point for you? 

I'd love to know what your favorite mascara is!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

If I Must Wear Black...

I'm a huge fan of color, all year long. When everyone is wearing shades of brown, black, and gray in cooler fall months, I'm still donning bright pinks, greens, and blues. But there are occasions when you must wear black. 

Black is slimming, easy to wear, and sophisticated. Lately, I've found myself in the predicament of "having" to wear black for solidarity or for a funeral. So, if I must wear black, I want to feel pretty wearing it. 

Here are some of my favorites in black that are anything but boring. 

This ensemble from Kohl's ELLE collection was a steal. The dress and cardigan sweater cost less than $40 total! Polka dots make everything pretty!

Another great choice is the Scotland dress from Elizabeth McKay. Because black never goes out of style, you can afford to invest a little bit more in classic pieces in black.  

A good pair of basic black pants is a must have in any wardrobe. I know that I've already told you about the Travel Pant from Lilly Pulitzer, but you must get these immediately! Yes, they're stretch pants, and yes, they're practically leggings, going against my negative feelings about wearing leggings in public, but you need these pants. The magic pants flatter every figure and look elegant with a front and back center seam.  

Thursday, September 12, 2013

What Does a 40 Year Old Wear to a Concert?

Sometimes I feel like a 25 year old trapped in a 40+ year old body.

Although I embrace my age enthusiastically and wouldn’t change a thing, I do sometimes wonder about being age appropriate in the way I dress. My daughters often tell me that I’m “cute” but I’m not sure exactly how that translates. Is it cute in the same way an 80 year old woman wearing a sweater with fall leaves on it is cute? Or is it cute in a “Wow, my mom rocks” kind of way?

Last night I went to see Muse in concert. The show was amazing and I love the atmosphere of being at a concert; music makes me happy!

So what does a 40 year old wear to a concert? There are so many great options to look fabulous and fashionable without looking too frumpy or too young. Comfort is key since I wanted to be able to dance and move if the mood struck me.

 At first I was considering a pair of flattering dark washed jeans with an Elizabeth McKay silk blouse and a pair of Revas. In the end, I decided to wear an Elsa blouse from Lilly Pulitzer with black Travel Pants, also from Lilly Pulitzer. The Travel Pants are probably the most comfortable pants I’ve ever owned and are so flattering, especially with the center seam down the front. I piled on a bunch of bangles and some fun button earrings and it was perfect look for a concert at any age!

Friday, September 6, 2013

A Stylish Tag Sale

Last month I visited a unique tag sale and fell in love. Chartreuse and Co. is a fabulous collection of barns and buildings filled with one of a kind home treasures. They're only open once a month and you never know what you'll find.

This outdoor chevron rug is stunning.

In September, six large buildings will delight visitors. I was amazed at the selection and prices of the items. Furniture and accessories are a mix of old, new, and repurposed items.

The displays are stylishly arranged and entice buyers to take them home. By the way, if you see something you like, pick up the tag because it might not be there the next time you check. It's kind of like a flash sale. Hundreds of people eagerly await the store's opening every month, so shop early and shop often.

I fell in love with this crab. Wouldn't it be perfect for a beach house?

Visit Chartreuse and Co. this weekend from 9 to 4 on Saturday and from 12 to 4 on Sunday.  Trust me, you'll love what you find.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Tween Birthday Spa

My not so minnie minnies are 12!  They celebrated with 8 of their closest friends with an in house spa party.  The party had lots of Lilly Pulitzer touches including table linens and printables in the Chin Chin print.

Here's the tablescape.  Each place was set with a silver charger and a sleep mask.  The girls promptly decided that the sleep mask was a great headband and put them on top of their heads.  So sweet!

When the girls first arrived, the enjoyed some sweet treats before it was time for pizza.  Every party needs cake pops, right?

Alexia designed and created the duct tape water bottles and topped them with a cute bow.  She loves making things with duct tape.

Now it was time to primp and polish!  Each girl chose a color or two for her manicure.  I've gotten a few of Julep's  mystery boxes, so I had a quite a selection of polishes for the girls.

Manicure kits for each girl make the manicure special and are a great addition to her goodie bag with her nail polishes and sleep mask.

Many girls used multiple colors on their fingers or used a top coat with glitter!  Fun!

Here are the happy fingers!

While the polish dried, the girls were treated to a quick hair style.  Girls could choose different braids for their hair including French braids, fishtail, and more!

Finally, the girls created ribbon flip flops in school colors!  I had pre-cut the ribbon to the exact length to save time.  The flip flops are adorable and all of the girls wore them the next day to school.

It was a perfect party!


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