This is a blog written by a PR professional in the Second City. Follow along as I chronicle fashion and beauty, lifestyle content, social events and more. Thanks for stopping by!
Tag Archives: beauty review
With my upcoming wedding (and impending 30th birthday) I’m trying to stick to “quality over quantity” more often when it comes to beauty products. Sure, I still look for deals (I can’t say no to a drugstore mascara that does its job), but I also weigh the lasting effects of what I’m purchasing. I’m willing to spend more on a product if it means more pigment and staying power.
I was extremely excited to be invited to a Clarins launch event for their new spring products. Clarins was one of those brands my younger self would have never thought she could – or should – afford. I’ve gradually been introduced to the brand through its lipstick, and now I see the rest of their products are just as purchase-worthy. I find myself reaching for Clarins makeup daily, whether it’s for a day at work or night out. Read after the jump to see my four favorite Clarins products you should add to your makeup drawer.
You might have heard me mention Goldplaited a lot lately on the blog or on Instagram. And if you haven’t, well, listen up! Goldplaited is a finishing salon that marries a blowout bar and makeup lounge. The first time I went there I was a little nervous because I haven’t always had the best stylist experiences. My natural hair, which you don’t see often, is curly and coarse, and new-to-me stylists can sometimes be confused by it. Thankfully, my first experience at Goldplaited left me with an amazing blowout and wanting to go back for more! Especially when I heard they do braids.
Lucky for me, Goldplaited offers a “Prep Pass,” the option of one payment that unlocked unlimited blowouts and braids per month. Now, a Prep Pass isn’t always something I can see fitting into my budget, but you know I’m a sucker for trying a new subscription service. I also learned about the Goldplaited Prep Pass at a time when I was sick of trying to manage my own hair and not have it come out looking its best. So, I signed up to try the service once. Who knew I’d still be a part of it several months later?
I was recently on a mission to find shampoo and conditioner that could breathe new life into my hair. I’d been using a drugstore brand and was fed up with my hair not feeling clean at the roots, yet dry at the ends. As I was scouting for products to make the switch, I never thought to look for a create-your-own subscription shampoo and conditioner. In fact, I didn’t even know that service existed until the company Latherology connected with me. I worked with them to create custom-mixed hair products that gave me everything I was missing from my other products. And, they’re some of the best smelling hair products I’ve used (if I do say so myself).
I’m a mail junkie, so I was thrilled when the September Popsugar Must Have Box arrived in my mailbox recently. (Packages ordered online give us something to look forward to for the next 3-5 business days, right?) I’ve tried lots of subscription boxes for clothing, but this was the first time I was receiving a monthly box with a variety of beauty, fitness and lifestyle products.
Obviously I dug into the box right away! The first thing that caught my eye was the hat they refer to as off-duty model style. I love a good hat when it gets cooler, and didn’t have a black one yet, so it was a nice addition to my closet. I loved the rest of the items in the box, too, valued at over $100 but only $39.95 per month, shipping included. Keep reading to see what was included in the September box and how you can get your own in a coming month. And good news, there’s a code at the end so you can get $5 off to try your first Popsugar Must Have Box! (more…)
You might remember that several months ago I shared a friend’s review of nail polish created by Formula X and Emily of Cupcakes and Cashmere. The colors were cute, but I didn’t end up purchasing any. However, when I saw a Formula X Atlantic-Pacific collaboration I had to jump on it! The three colors, reminiscent of the coast and changing seasons, were what originally caught my eye. It was an added bonus that the #ColorCurator Blair has also been a favorite blogger of mine for years. Her style is classic but original, just like these nail polishes. I purchased two of three colors, both the grays. Keep reading for swatches and a review.
Today I just had to share the best new nail polish I’ve found! I do my own nails about once a week and, like any girl, want that polish to last as long as possible. While I’ve used good top coats before, I was ready to try a new one. I was drawn to the Seche Vive Instant Gel Effect Top Coat because it promises a “glossy, high shine finish without the use of a UV/LED light.” I purchased it at Ulta, and it did not disappoint! Without further ado … here’s my Seche Vive top coat review.
Well you guys, I drank the Kool-Aid. I bought a Kylie Cosmetics lip kit. It was something I’d been interested in trying, but was hesitant to pull the trigger. $30 for any lip product is too much in my book. But when I received birthday money I thought what the heck, treat yo’self! My flip in thinking also happened at the same time Kylie was releasing new colors, and the Kristen was calling my name. I set my alarm for the lip kit sale (snatching one of these kits is as hard as getting tickets to Lolla), and was excited to purchase the product with no problem. Read on to hear if it was worth it…
I’m a big advocate of treating yourself to a new nail polish or two once in a while, so I asked my former blog partner and fellow nail polish hoarder, Amanda, to write a guest blog post today. Read on for a Sephora Formula X Cupcakes and Cashmere review.
I’m a sucker for a good collaboration, and was thrilled when one of my favorite bloggers, Emily from Cupcakes and Cashmere, collaborated with a somewhat new-to-me nail polish brand, Formula X.
Let’s talk about the Formula X formula first. I happened upon it when I was in Sephora looking for a new color for the weekend and decided to give it a try. I’m immensely brand loyal, particularly when it comes to nail polish, so I wasn’t sure how I’d like it. I LOVED it. The brushes are fantastic and the coverage is amazing. Most of the darker shades only need one coat for it to be opaque, and the brush is small enough that I don’t make many mistakes or color “outside the lines” when I’m doing my nails. The wear is great (I got a good 5-7 days), but I really attribute that more to the topcoat (Seche Vite) than the polish.
Now on to the Sephora Formula X Cupcakes and Cashmere review:
I had to start with the reds, because reds are my favorite. I own probably 40 shades of red alone, and seriously, they all look different to me. I had high hopes for the C&C “Haute Sauce,” and it didn’t disappoint – it’s a fantastic red. Largely because I think it looks exactly like OPI’s Fashion A Bow, which I already loved.
Verdict: I’ll be keeping this one, but it’s not a necessary purchase if you already have a red you like.
Next up I tried the C&C “Peach Tea.” I compared it to Essie’s Tart Deco, which looked similar in the bottle but was very different once I got it on. Not my color. I wanted it to be slightly darker so it didn’t wash me out, but could see how it’d look nice with a tan.
Verdict: Would not have purchased this, but I’m going to try again mid-summer once I have a tan.
Finally, I tried the nudes. I compared the C&C Latte Run to OPI’s Tiramisu for Two, which is my absolute favorite nude. I was prepared to hate this one, but it was actually my favorite of the collection! The coverage is great (no need for 3-4 coats like some nudes need), and the shade is just slightly lighter than the OPI, which I liked. As my fiance says, “it doesn’t blend into your skin.”
Verdict: I love this shade, and hope the bottle never runs out. If you buy one shade from this collection, make it Latte Run.
Just like the leaves, my lipstick color also changes with the season. I love a plum hue for a fall lipstick! I recently found that Clarins makes an amazing moisturizing lipstick that lasts through a day of pumpkin carving, candy snacking and even a few kisses with the bf.
Seriously, the Joli Rouge lipstick goes on like a gloss and, although it fades a bit throughout the day, it leaves an even hint of color for hours so your lips aren’t ever bare. I’ll definitely have this soft plum shade in heavy rotation throughout the season.
Dress – very similar in white | Forever 21 – cognac boots | Jewelry – via Rocksbox (use code “sincerelyjenniexoxo” for one month free) | Clarins – Joli Rouge in Soft Plum c/o | Manicure – Essie’s “Clambake”
And how about the ease of this black dress with a jean jacket? You first saw it in a past blog post when I dressed it up with heels. I’ve found the mock turtleneck dress goes with low booties just as well as black stilettos. Layer it with gold Rocksbox (use code “jenniebff5” for one month free) and you’re good to go out the door!
Oh, and I have to give a shout out to my hair stylist Hannah London at Robert Jeffrey in Lincoln Park. You know how excited you get when you find that one hair stylist? Well, Hannah is it for me. I found her a few years ago when I went in to use a Groupon, and haven’t strayed since. I was disappointed when she told me she was moving to L.A., but she’s coming back every few months so I can stay a bright blonde! Call in to Robert Jeffrey to see if you can set up an appointment with Hannah or any of their other talented hair stylists, and don’t forget to drop my name!
One of the most fun parts of blogging is connecting with brands and companies that I really like and getting to try out new products firsthand. Sometimes those products don’t quite measure up to what they claim to be (and I tell you guys) or they’re too good not to share.
Recently, Rakuten had us Chicago bloggers out to their offices to learn more their affiliate network and to get a little taste of the types of companies they work with. They then sent us home with a swag bag that was out of control! It included adorable Vera Bradley coin purses (similar here), delicious snacks, and products from top hair and makeup lines. Today I’m reviewing my five favorite products from the bag that I just had to tell someone about!