Monday, December 31, 2012

Disappointed...

So I have been eyeing kale chips for the longest time. I love anything crispy and a healthier alternative to fried potatoes?!?!? I was all over that! Not too many places sell kale chips. I did see them in Whole Foods but it was $8 for a small container and it seemed extremely overpriced for baked kale.

Jenn saw this at Trader Joe's and was nice enough to get it for me! I was so excited to try this. I remember I scowered the isles of Trader Joes and was unable to locate any kale chips. I assume these are something new?

Sadly I was very disappointed in the taste. I am not sure if it is the taste of kale that I dislike or the nacho flavor they added. I have had kale before and I did like it so I am going to assume it is the nacho taste that I dislike.

It doesn't taste horrible, it has this stale taste to it. The crunch is quiet enjoyable. But the aftertaste it leaves is quite unpleasant.


If you ever swing by a Trader Joe's and this catches your eye... PLEASE keep walking! 

Thank You

In October Jacq and I did a swap and there was one thing that I wanted which needed to be shipped by sea. I received the package about two weeks ago and broke into it immediately! Needless to say I was overwhelmed with her generosity.


I never tried any Naruko products and I know Jacq raves about the brand all the time! Can't wait to try this! 



I wanted to try her favorite oil cleanser from Ponds. I am still working though my current cleanser but I can't wait to break into this!!


She also sent some whitening toners! I was really addicted to toners for the longest time so I am super excited!


Thank You so much for your generosity Jacq! I can't wait to dig into everything!

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(P.S. I got this package in November but I been so busy with the move I forgot to do this post ><)

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Where has the time gone? November Empties


Okay so it's Dec. 22nd and I am just posting my November empties. I have this bad habit where I know something is late, I just keep procrastinating in hopes it will magically be completed. Sadly that is never the case. So without any further procrastination, my NOVEMBER EMPTIES.

Cotton squares - Not much to say, I go through a pack every few months. I use them to remove my makeup, apply toner and even to wipe down my mirror with cleaner. I usually get these from a Japanese supermarket. I only use the squares, I find round cotton pads with the stitching to be too harsh on my eye. Fully layered cotton squares worth perfectly! I love the Shiseido cotton pads but these are about 1/4 of the price although the cotton isn't as high quality they do the job.
Repurchase: Yes!
Rating: Hurray!

Store brand mini razor - I absolutely adore these things. They are disposable little razors and I mainly use them for my eyebrows. My eyebrows need grooming about 2-3 times a week and to constantly have it pluck out baby hairs is a pain. A few quick swipes under the brow and two swipes over and my brows look freshly waxed. This has been a such a time saver! They usually come 3 in a pack. I bought these at my Rite Aid - a drug store chain but I don't have a specific preference on where I get them. I bought new ones at Pathmark (supermarket) when I was doing some Thanksgiving shopping! lol
Repurchase: Yes!
Rating: Hurray!

Secret Clinical Strength antiperspirant - My favor antiperspirant. I used up a few of these and will continue to repurchase. They make them in a few different scents, even waterproof!
Repurchase: Yes! It's a Holy Grail!
Rating; Hurray!

Supergoop! SPF 30 sunscreen - I think I got this in a Birchbox. I was super excited to try it. I had seen the jumbo size at Sephora but didn't want to take the leap just yet. I am glad I didn't. This sunscreen leaves my skin super shiny and smells like sunscreen. Granted it is sunscreen but I really dislike the sunscreen smell. It doesn't really sink in and the shine doesn't go away. Even topped with a powder the shine is apparent.
Repurchase: No
Rating: No Way!

Neutrogena eye makeup remover - I poured the Neutrogena eye makeup remover into this Sonia Kashuk makeup remover bottle because... Well... It just looked nicer. I always pick up a few whenever there is a 40% off Neutrogena sale at the drugstore. I don't necessarily like how oily it leaves my skin but for $3-$4 you can't beat the price.
Repurchase: Yes only when it is on sale
Rating: Okay

Sephora by OPI nail polish remover - I think they have since reformulated this product. Mine was a purple color. It was okay. Did what it was suppose to do. I would opt for a drugstore remover because it is overpriced for what it is. Nothing spectacular but no complaints.
Repurchase: No
Rating: Okay

Neutrogena Wet Skin Kids Sun Screen - I love this aerosol sunscreen. I love that its for kids which makes me feel like there are less harsh ingredients and is more gentle ... (Which could be totally bogus!!) But it is very waterproof and does the job and doesn't leave me feeling too sticky. I used it all summer and barely got a tan. I bought this last summer so I think it's time to get a new one. Although my friend has tried the lotion version of the Neutrogena sunscreen and it broke her out. I dislike the lotion because its too greasy for my taste but I absolutely love the aerosol!
Repurchase: Yes! Holy Grail!
Rating: Hurray!

That's it for my November empties! I been so busy with holidays work and moving that blogging fell through the cracks! My google reader currently he over 600+ unread posts!

Till next time
Ari~




Saturday, November 24, 2012

Gotta Collect them all!! - Sephora FF2012 Haul Part 2

Like a normal beauty junkie I was just browsing the Sephora website and in the travel section I saw some new Stila travel palettes...

Ooooo.... $10 each... 5 variations in total...
Hmmm... Probably won't use them...
But they are so pretty!!!
....
Remember your other unloved Stila palettes in the drawer...
NO! Must not buy!
....oooo... Limited edition....
...maybe I should buy them and give them away??
*scoffs*
...you probably get your fingers in them the minute they arrive... NO ARI!!!
....online only?!?!?
....*checks Stila's website*
....$16 normal price and no longer in stock?!?!?
OMG!!!
*Runs back to Sephora website!!!*
....click, click, click....
"Thank You for ordering at Sephora."

I have no self control....


I also picked up a Tarina Tarantino Black Diamond Liquid Eyeliner. It is a multi-color glitter suspended in a black base. The black isnt strong enough but it will look nice layered over a black liner for intensity. 

Also grabbed a 100 point redemption for Bumble and Bumble Thickening Hairspray. I never tried a thickening hairspray before so it might be nice to see what it does to my fine flat hair. 

I also picked up a few things during another visit to Sephora for some gifts I won't be showing here.

I picked up two more Caudalie Cleansing waters/ Lip Balms to give away. 

The Purity Foaming 3 in 1 Cleanser and Nars Velvet Lip Pencil in New Lover I got with my Sephora Points. I thought they were pretty good size and might make good gifts so why not? lol

I also shamefully have renewed by VIB status yet again ... I was quite surprised they give you a welcome box with a huge mirror inside along with some coupons! 

The brushes I picked up before the Friends and Family Sale but I thought I would throw them in here. I LOVE the IT contour brush (the pink one) Just looking at it makes me happy! I decided I wanted another angle face brush just because I prefer that shape for my blush/bronzer applications and I won't need to wash mine as often. This brush picks up a ton of product with a light tap! I am really enjoying it! Plus it is super soft!!! 

I didn't need another angle brush but my friend recommends this one so I thought I would grab one to try. Also picked up a short smudger brush. I lost my last tiny smudger brush I got in a palette that I loved. =( Hopefully this will perform as well!

My wallet hasn't taken a beauty hit like this in a long time but it makes me happy and that is all that mattters! I also ordered two sigma brushes in the mail since they were doing their once a year free shipping event for black Friday. Excited to see how much I will like those! 

Ari~

Update: I did end up returnin the Stila palettes because they sat in a box for two weeks and I decided they weren't worth keeping if they are going to live in a box. 

Friday, November 9, 2012

Sephora Friends and Family Haul 2012

Yipppeeeee!!! I am so excited my Friends and Family Haul came in! I placed my order yesterday Morning and I recieved my package today! Crazy how fast Sephora works! 

This haul is very much inspired by Linh! Her love of the Clarisonic and the Duo Mat powder was the basis of this haul. I opted for the Josie Maran set since I have been curious about her Argan oil for a while now. I did want a white Clarisonic but it was only available in Peony. It is currently out of stock online so I am so glad I woke up early to place my order. hehe


I also picked up an angle brush and a small Caudalie set. ^^

Ecstatic Ari~ 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

September Birchbox

So back in Mid September I applied for a position at Birchbox and I thought it would look pretty bad if I was no longer subscribed to them so after cancelling my subscription for 10 days, I resumed it ._. 

I wasn't expecting to get the September box since I didn't resume till past their billing AND shipment date but nevertheless I received one in late September. 

To be honest I just kind of threw it on the side and haven't really looked at the contents till I took these pictures. I took a quick glance when I received it. Here are the contents. 



There was a "gift card" for Madewell website. It really urks me when they call a coupon code a gift card. A gift card shouldn't require a minimum purchase. Shame on you Birchbox for trying to trick us with your marketing techniques!

As for the contents.... 


I was excited about this Benefit sample till I opened it up... I hate packaging like this.... this is too much to be one use and having it sit like that on my counter top is just annoying... I am interested in trying this cleanser out and I do appreciate it is a nicer foil packet sample.


It amazes me how these went from being called lifestyle extras to becoming your main samples. These are good hair bands to have around but I wouldn't purchase them. They have horrible wear... I ruined the old ones within a few days and the color of of the fabric fades. 


I am not big on primer but it is always good to have some on hand. This is a decent sample and i like that it has a pump. From what I can tell the bottle is one of those vacuum types that pushes the bottom up when you pump it which I love! 

This color club color is a custom created shade by Birchbox. It appears to be a muddy blue gray. The color looks flat in the bottle but we shall see how it applies. =)


I always thought you could get Nexxus in the drugstores? I am not impressed with foil packet samples.... I have so many shampoo packets I should really use them just to get rid of them. But when I am in the shower I am usually in a hurry and fumbling with foil packets is extra seconds I can use on something else. 


I think lifestyle extras are becoming my favorite parts of Birchbox! lol This month we got to sample three tea bags. It is still a little warm here for me to be drinking hot tea but I will definitely use these  later next month! 


In our Birchbox there was a fall look book. I took some pictures. =)










I received a call in mid October from Birchbox stating I did not get the position but I have one more  Birchbox for October that I will be posting. That however will truly be my final Birchbox. =)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Polka Dots

Whenever I'm lazy with my nails, I just paint polka dots.  It is easy and quick but looks chic and cute!

 

Friday, November 2, 2012

"Your Mom has better skin than You do"

Yes that is what my facialist said to me.... I been very bad about getting facials the last few months and since I couldn't go to work due to power loss in lower Manhattan I decided to go get a facial.

My facialist asked me if I had an allergic reaction to seafood or used something funky... My skin was the worst she had seen.... "At this point your mom has better skin than you do" (We use the same facialist)

Omg!!! The horror of hearing those words!!! She then went onto extracting all the oil and whiteheads from my face which is always excruciatingly painful.

So after a long chat, I think the current sunscreen I have been using might be the cause of my breakouts. (Been using the Supergoop sunscreen)

She suggested the Clarins sunscreen which I purchased. (I love that she does suggestions but does not push products on me! I had to ask her for it at the end of the facial)

Here's a picture of the aftermath....

She said I should come back in 3 weeks to redo the treatment ><

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

October 2012 Empties

If you haven't read Jacq's blog yet, you should probably head over there asap! I am really loving her rating system. With her permission I am going to start using this when I do empties posts and mini reviews so if you don't want to read my babble, it will give you a quick and simple translation. Plus it rhymes! Whats not to love! haha

Hurray, Okay or No Way


A slow empties month but I am very excited that I finished one full size product!



I finished a full size face wash! I think this my second full size face wash! lol I always get so many with GWP and other things that I never have to buy face wash....

Neutrogena Redness Soothing Cream Cleanser - I have been using this cleanser on and off  but during the summer I was consistently breaking out and it was driving me nuts. I switched to just using this cleanser hoping the salicylic acid will help. It didn't... I can see why this is a popular cleanser. The consistency is smooth and creamy (i.e. the name) and foams nicely. I would recommend this to people who like foamy cleansers with some acne fighting properties. If you have  acne and hoping it will help get rid of them this is not the product for you. As for the redness reducing properties, I only notice a different immediately after cleansing but the results do not last. I would not repurchase. Rating: Okay

The Face Shop Collagen Mask - The mask is has a slightly floral scent but not unpleasant nor is it strong. It does linger for a couple hours. I don't think it was particularly moisturizing and did too much for my skin. I would no repurchase. Rating: No Way

Caudalie Vinoperfect Day Perfecting Cream SPF 15 - I got this sample during a Caudalie event I attended at The Plaza. I was using this as my day moisturizer and it smells divine with the signature Caudalie scent. (Their products are derive from grapes but the scent is not exactly like a grape smell) I tried many Caudalie products and I think this cream was just okay. For a cream with such a low SPF after application it leaves my face a little too dewy. It also takes longer than I would like to sink into my skin. I have very little time in the mornings so every second counts. I would not purchase this item. Rating: Okay

Erno Laszio Night Serum - I got this in a very old Birchbox. I only got two uses out of this and the texture wasn't anything special. The product doesn't spread easily on the skin but absorbs quickly. Base on my experiences with this product I don't think I will be looking into anymore Erno Laszio products anytime soon. Rating: No Way


I almost forgot I also finished another bottle of the Neutrogena makeup remover. I forgot to keep the bottle so I just took a stock photo off google. I been through a few bottles of these already and it is my favorite dual phase drugstore eye makeup remover. That being said I only buy it when drugstores do 40% off offers. I prefer the Sonia Kashuk one over this one but that one is about $10  and I usually pick this up for $3.50 when it's on sale. My favorite is the Lancome Bi-Facil because it works so quickly though the price tag doesn't justify the extra 10 seconds saved holding the other brands up to my eyes, waiting for it to "melt" my eye makeup. 
Rating: Hurray

I had another face mask that I used up this month but my mom threw it out before I could get a picture of it. It was my favorite moisturizing face mask I have used thus far and my last one. =(


Ari

Butter London's FF sale 30% off!

I was browsing Nouveau Cheap's blog and saw this post...


Butter London's 30% off sale for her subbies starts tonight!


Just thought I would share!

For the rest of my life?!?!

Wow I can't believe its been two weeks since my last post. If you don't know, Hurricane Sandy ripped across NYC and neighboring states causing a huge storm surge cutting off mass transit and killing power in a big chunk of Manhattan. I am fine and haven't had any issues with power or flooding. However I am suck at home for the week because of lack of transportation and power in certain areas. (I have no excuse not to be blogging... haha)

On a positive note...  I GOT A JOB! woohoo!!! I started on the 16th and that's what I been doing the last two weeks. 

The end of my life bumming at home is over... I really miss waking up at 11 and doing nothing... haha

Then it hit me... I have a job now... I will be working for the rest of my life or the next 50 years.... D= 

On the plus side, I have an excuse to wear makeup everyday to work so that's always fun ^^ 

I am still planning on doing posts about my room which has significantly shrunk in size so its going to be fun puzzling all the furniture in my little room x.x I been drawing up plans in my head and moving things around and I come to the conclusion that I will just get the bed first and plan the rest of the items accordingly. I will have more pictures up when the renovations are over. 

I have a bunch of reviews planned but the main reason why they are not up is because I have been too drained/lazy to write them... haha I will hopefully get them up soon.... 

I want to do a collective haul if I ever get around to taking pictures. I didn't want to post it because some of these purchases were from August but I think it would be a good idea just to keep a record for my own benefit. 

Now to bring back a little beauty into my blog....

I received this lip balm from a friend almost 2 years ago and I love the smell, how well it moisturizes and the feel. So why do I still have it after so long? I hate pot lip balms. The idea of dipping my finger into it is repulsing. That being said this little pot sits on my table and I have been diligently using it with a cheap ELF $1 concealer brush I got way back when. And I finally hit pot!! woohoo!!! 


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

A Beauty Exchange - Swap with Jacq

I have been planning a swap with the Lovely Jacq from beautysketchbyjacq since Late August.

I am very embarrassed to say I got this package almost 3 weeks ago!! (I think) I opened it right away to take a peak inside but I haven't gotten around to taking pictures. 

I been hating my point and shoot lately and drooling over a dslr but now is not a good time to make that purchase... I did finally get my iPhone 5!! YaYYYY!!! (only took 3 weeks to get to me >.>)

So I decided to take the pictures with my new iPhone. It looks a lot better on the phone... guess these pictures are not meant to be enlarged... lol 

So when I opened the package I pulled out this lovely little traincase! I thought it was so adorable how she packaged it!!! (I just tossed everything in a box and hoped it would arrive in one piece ><)

It was overfilled with goodies! I honestly couldn't get it to fit inside again! lol

These are the two things I asked for specifically. I saw these acne stickers(???) on a youtube video and I really wanted to try them! Jacq was nice enough to run and get them for me even though I sent her the list almost 2 weeks ago >< I tried the stickers already and they really work! the best part is they kind of deflat the pimple so its easier to cover with concealer... hehe

She also got me backups for my MOPIDICK! I drown myself in this stuff in the summer mosquito season!

I asked Jacq to pick me out some sunscreen. I haven't found one that I love yet and I am excited to give these a try! I might end up giving one of these to the BF. I convinced him to start using sunscreen because he switched to Benzoyl Peroxide for his acne.

During the summer my skin threw a fit! I constantly had pimples all over my face even places I notmally don't get pimples! (temples, cheeks, chin) I looked like a witch with warts!

Jacq picked up some masks for me to use help calm my skin as well as some other mask goodies!

I am most excited about the middle one on the bottom row! I skyped the BF and made him read the masks to me! haha (I don't read Chinese but I can speak it) Needless to say he was very confused... 

I might slap some of the BF to help with his acne. Now that the weather has cooled down, my skin seems to have calmed down a bit... I still have the odd pimple here and there but the scaring from the summer wart feast needs to be dealt with!

Jacq also sent me so many sample goodies!

I asked for a Tony Moly Cream I had tried a while back but it wasn't available in HK. She did send me some of their sample products to try! WOOHOO! 

Jacq also sent me a Majolica Majorca Lash King mascara cut out... I think its a book mark! I thought it was so adorable haha

Here is a link to her post of the stuff I sent her if you want to check it out. Link!

I urge you to go over and check her blog out! She does awesome posts and she is currently posting everyday in the month of October! 

Ecstatic Ari~ 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Drugstore CC cream?

Not promoting or anything, I'm surprised the drugstore brands are quicker than the fashion houses.

This in November 2012 Lucky magazine.

Oxblood??

This is out of Nov 2012 Lucky magazine.

Don't get me wrong, I love the rich burgundy red color but couldn't they come up with a better name....



It's impactful... It's Gorgeous.... It's also kind of disturbing to say... "I am wearing oxblood... It's the color of the season!!!" lol!

Me and My Random Thoughts.... Hehe
Ari

Sunday, October 7, 2012

A Place to call my Own

I would first like to warn my readers that this is a Renovation Project and not a Beauty related Series so feel free to click away if your not interested.

So we are renovating the 2nd floor of our family house. My parents are moving my brother and I up there. Currently they are knocking down the walls and old fire places. I am super excited to plan how my room. My current room is just more like half storage half living space and one big mess. I am not a neat person. I now have a chance to start from scratch and see what I come up with. 

Things to keep in mind

1. Unemployment. Not having a stream of income strongly damages my purchasing power. I want to decorate once and be done with it. I want to be happy with things the first time and not move things around too much.

2. We are actively looking for a house to move into. Our current place doesn't have a garage which is a pain. So why renovate? Because the second floor hasn't had any changes since we moved in almost 17 years ago.

3. I want to never fold anything ever again. That being said I want a big closet in my room.

4. Simplicity is key. =)

I won't be doing a lot of DIY on this project. Why? Because I just don't have that type of talent. 

I wish I took some before pictures of my room... but this is what it is after one day of demolition...
(there are parts from the kitchen in there also)

They are going to flatten out that wall so more of the fireplace will be removed. The space to the right of it was a weirdly shaped closet that also has been knocked down. 

Remnants of the odd shape closet.


This is a picture of what the fireplace looked like. This is from what will be my brothers room.


The space I will be working with. The door by the window will be sealed.


Flooring will be changed. We are currently deciding between wood or tile. I like wood and my brother is a fan of tile.

I am very excited to start this series. I want to keep track of my progress and ideas and I couldn't think of a better outlet for me....

Friday, October 5, 2012

Out with the Old and In with the New Part Quatre

For those unfamiliar with what is going on, this is a quarterly series about that gives me an excuse to finally throw out stuff I will never use in my collection and recognize I wasted my money on them. 






I have a review of the Oscar Blandi Dry Shampoo Here. I tried really hard to finish this but every time I use it, I fell like in addition to the previous oiliness that it did not remove, it left my hair feeling heavy and loaded with product. 


My very first foundation! (The same bottle too ><) This is what started my love for makeup. I was recommended this by a sales girl at Sephora and I thought it was a miracle worker. I had never owned foundation before this! I loved the finish and coverage at the time. As you can tell I did use it. As I got more into makeup I noticed it was breaking my out slightly. I just tossed it aside when I started purchasing other products and it has been sitting in my drawer ever since. I decided it was time to let this go. (Mostly because I need the space in my drawer xD) 


Looking at these liners you must think... Oh wow they were well loved! No... no they weren't... The Sephora white liner was a full size pencil and I sharpened it to that small! It refused to sharpen, the wood would always break and splinter and the product was hard and chalky. Saw this at the bottom of my stash and decided it needs to go! 

The MUFE eyeliner originally was a mini (half of a full size pencil I got it in a set) so I did use it but not as much as you think. I did like this pencil but when I reached to use it the other day (messing around with liners) it had dried out and tugged on my eyelid. I don't use pencil liners much... actually almost never...lol! I've given majority of the ones I have away but I still have a few here and there. I pulled out the product from the pencil to show you how much is left... I have to say thats a lot of liner left in such a small pencil!

Not too horrible a month. I am hoping I won't have any for the last quarter of 2012 but we shall see! 

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