Nails

Fall nail polishes

My Current Favorite Fall Nail Polishes

To say I’m excited for Fall is an understatement. I wore my first sweater on an 80 degree day in September and my riding boots before it dropped below 60. What can I say? I’m a basic white girl and Fall is just my favorite.

And another favorite? Nail polish. If you’ve been reading for a while, you’ll know I change my nail polish often. Why stare at one color of nail polish all week when you could stare at multiple?! So the first order of business once the weather chilled was to whip out some of my current favorite Fall nail polishes.

Believe it or not, I haven’t purchased any new nail polishes this season. Ok, that was a blatant lie, I realized as I wrote the sentence. But, I only purchased one new polish, so that’s a win as far as I’m concerned. The new shade I nabbed was L’Oreal Extraordinaire Gel-Lacque in Glossed & Found and I’m wearing it on my nails as I type. It is such a beautiful, deep purple shade and I feel like a BAMF while wearing it.

Before I go off on a delusional tangent, let’s take a look at the other shades: SpaRitual in Clarity, Zoya in Rue, Essie in Smokin’ Hot and Stylenomics, Prestige in Sweet and FormulaX in their shade for VIBRouge card holders.

Fall nail polishes

Looking at these photos again makes me want to paint each nail a separate shade so I can stare at them all day long. I wouldn’t look like a crazy person at all … And if you do paint your nails a new Fall color, make sure to keep these tips and tricks in mind.

What shades are you loving for Fall this year?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

beauty bloggers' favorite summer products

Beauty Bloggers’ Favorite Summer Products

June is here, which means that Summer is unofficially officially in full swing. Unless you live in Boston with me where it’s not warm yet this year, but that’s a different story.

You already know that I’m loving Bareskin, L’Oreal polish in Tangerine Crush and the Skin Authority skin cleansing system for Summer, but I thought you deserved to hear from some of my blogger friends on this topic too.

beauty bloggers' favorite summer products
Happy Summer!
  1. Phyrra’s Pretty Little Exilir - “This hair mask is great for Summer to rehydrate your hair after being in the sun, getting it lightened, or swimming in pools. I use this weekly to keep my hair nice and soft!” Eugenia of Geniabeme
  2. Hada Labo Tokyo Skin Plumping Gel Cream – “I love this milky almost clear gel moisturizer for summer because it is lightweight, not greasy in the least, and doesn’t clog pores or create milia. Also, it is fragrance-free so it doesn’t interfere with all the other sunscreens and scents that summer seems to bring.” Allison of  Never Say Die Beauty
  3. The Zoya Tickled Collection – “These beautiful creams are opaque in two coats & perfect for nails that scream summer!” Stephanie Louise of All Things Beautiful
  4. Urban Decay Electric Pressed Pigment Palette – “I love bright colors in the Summer and this palette is perfect for it! I’ve been mixing shades from the Urban Decay Electric Pressed Pigment Palette with nudes to still be work friendly while having a fun pop of color.” Lisa of  Cosmetic Sanctuary
  5. NCLA nail polish in I Only Fly Private – “It’s such a fun coral shade that’s great for summer. It goes with a lot of other colors and it really stands out against bronzed skin.” Tashina of Logical Harmony
  6. Clinique City Block day time cream with SPF 40 – “I have a very pale complexion that burns very easy, so I need lots of SPF in the summertime! Along with this cream being fairly affordable as far as daytime creams go, it also gives me a great base for my makeup application.” Kaelyn of MyFairDaily 
  7. Elemental Herbs All Good Lips Active Beauty Tints SPF 18 – “These natural, moisturizing lip balms offer broad-spectrum SPF protection with physical sunscreen (pure zinc oxide) while adding a soft wash of beautiful color!” Harshleen of BeautyTidbits
  8. Urban Decay Loose Ultra Setting Powder - “It provides perfect coverage without being the least bit heavy. I get compliments on my face whenever I use it.” Stephanie of Makeuprshutup
  9. Skindinavia Oil Free Makeup Primer - “Skindinavia Oil Free Makeup Primer is awesome for summer, it helps seal the skin before makeup is applied and is sweat proof, paraben and oil free.” Norah Salazar, Makeup Artist  at Norah Loves Makeup 
  10. Too Faced Melted Lipsticks – “I love the bright, punchy colors, especially Fuchsia, Candy, Violet and Ruby! They’re easy to apply, the formula is comfortable to wear and they’re very pigmented.” Courtney of Phyrra
  11. Not Your Mother’s Beach Babe Texturizing Cream and Beach Babe Texturizing Sea Salt Spray – “My hair normally takes FOREVER to air dry! I use the Cream all over and the Spray at my roots. The cream allows my curls to “clump” while the spray gives me texture and lift at the roots! Speeds up drying, too!” Jessika of Polish Insomniac 
  12. Josh Rosebrook’s Cacao Antioxidant Mask - ” I love this skin soothing, radiance boosting mask. I like a bare face for summer and this mask gives skin the chance to glow without makeup.” Cindy of Hello Dollface, Naturally
  13. Pond’s Luminous BB+ Cream – “Spf + light second-skin coverage make this a more desirable alternative to heavy foundation in the warmer months. This is such an easy product to wear; just slap it on your face and GO!” Carly of The Science of Chic
  14. Dermalogica’s After Sun – “With the heat turning up, I know thay even though I am diligent with putting sunscreen on, sometimes it’s envitable that you will end up burnt. Dermaologica’s After Sun helps heal, soothe and reduce any irritation or redness caused by the sun and getting sun burnt. Seriously it is a life changing summer must have!” Jamie of  Makeup Life and Love
  15.  Neoteric Cosmetics Inc Alpha Hydrox Sheer Silk Moisturizer with SPF15 – “This moisturising cream absorbs quickly, doesn´t leave any greasy residue and it feels light on my skin. It also works well with my makeup.” Leelo of Beauty by Miss L
  16. Kama Ayurveda Lavender Water - “Kama Ayurveda Lavender Water is pure distilled lavender water and super refreshing for summers and to carry around..acts as a toner too.” Bhumika of New Love-Makeup 
  17. Coola Face SPF 30 Cucumber – “I love it because it is organic sun protection! This sunblock rubs in nicely just like lotion (doesn’t leave that white residue), and leaves your face super smooth and soft.” Saarah of Beauty Momme

There you have it – 17 of the beauty bloggers’ favorite Summer products.

What are your favorite beauty products for the Summer?

Photos:  beautyXposé

l'oreal tangerine crush

NOTD: L’Oreal in Tangerine Crush

I wasn’t having a very good day on Sunday. I was a bit blue and nothing seemed to pull me out of my funk … until I hit the grocery store. While I love grocery shopping (weird, I know), it wasn’t the groceries that cheered me up.

l'oreal tangerine crush
hello my pretty

After crossing all the food items off of my list, I made a slight detour to the beauty aisle. Woops. After deciding against yet another lippy (I’ve gone crazy in that department lately), a beautiful shade of nail polish caught my eye. Tangerine Crush from L’Oreal. This isn’t a new color, but I couldn’t help but drop it in my shopping cart. It’s the perfect blend of pink with a touch of orange. I don’t eat a lot of tangerines, but I think this color is closer to grapefruit. But that’s not really that important.

l'oreal tangerine crush
Perfect Spring/Summer color

I think it’s safe to say that this is going to be my go-to polish for Summer 2014. It’s just so beautiful, cheery and I love it! Not too pink, not too orange. Not too pale and not too neon. Just perfect!

What shade of polish are you loving for the Summer?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

Drugstore Beauty Favorites

My Top 5 Drugstore Beauty Products

I have something a little bit different for you beauties today. I’m blogging about my top 5 drugstore beauty products on Project-Swatch

While I love high-end makeup products like any respectable beauty blogger, I don’t always like emptying my wallet at the registers. Thankfully, I’ve found a bunch of drugstore beauty products that I like just as much, if not more, than the high-end alternatives. You can read all about my top 5 in my Project Swatch guest post.

Drugstore Beauty Favorites
These are a few of my favorite things

What are some of your favorite drugstore beauty products?

Photo: beautyXposé

dazzling blue

How to Wear Dazzling Blue this Spring

While it might not feel like it up in Boston where I am, Spring is well on it’s way, just 10 days away. We just sprung our clocks forward, and shop windows are teasing us with the cutest Spring frocks. And even though the weather forecast tells me I have more wintery days ahead of me, I can’t help but start stocking up on Spring clothes.

dazzling blue
Hello, Spring!

This Spring, I’m especially excited to sport anything and everything in Dazzling Blue – one of Pantone’s 10 Spring 2014 colors. So excited in fact, that I’ve teamed up with 9 other fabulous bloggers to show you how to rock this and the 9 other colors. If Dazzling Blue isn’t your color (but I’ve found it looks AMAZING on most people), you can skip on down to the end of this post and check out how my bloggy friends are rocking the other 9 colors. And while you’re at it, check out these 10 nail polishes that are perfect dupes for the 10 “it” colors of the season.

But back to the topic at hand – how to wear Dazzling Blue this Spring …

I have mixed feelings about Gap – I love Gap Fit clothes, but 90% of the time I strike out with their day-to-day wear. Still, I hold out hope and pop in every few months to see what’s new. When I popped in last month, I was ready to admit defeat when I stumbled upon the cutest dress in the back corner. Why anyone would put this baby in the corner is beyond me. I scooped it up, ran to the dressing room and jumped up and down (on the inside) when I saw how cute it looked on. It also didn’t hurt that I had to size down (I don’t hate you, Gap vanity sizing!).

And while I haven’t been able to wear it just yet – damn you, Polar Vortex! – I’ve been dreaming of all the ways I can wear this dress when the weather warms up a bit. Dressed up or down, this dress is going to be perfect for almost any occasion.

dazzling blue
1 dress 4 ways

Day Off: Shoes, Bag, Sunglasses | Work: Necklace, Blazer, Shoes | Date: Shoes, Earrings, Bag | Brunch: Shoes, Scarf, Hat

Here are some other Dazzling Blue clothing and beauty items you could rock this Spring: 

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclaimer

opi gwen stefani collection nail polish

Rock out with the OPI Gwen Stefani Collection

Products were sent for this OPI Gwen Stefani collection review, but opinions are all Anne’s own.

If you love rocking out, looking glamorous and playing with different polish textures, then do I have the perfect nail lacquer collection for you:  the OPI Gwen Stefani collection.

Featuring seven different polishes with four different texture finishes, the OPI Gwen Stefani collection is as fun and fabulous as Gwen herself.

opi gwen stefani collection nail polish
Gwen Stefani teamed up with OPI to create this spectacular nail polish collection
Over & Over A-Gwen is the signature red polish and comes in a kit with nail art
Over & Over A-Gwen is a signature red polish available with  a nail art kit

I’ve always loved how effortlessly glamorous Gwen Stefani appears to be, so I jumped at the chance to test out the signature red nail polish in this collection, Over & Over A-Gwen, which comes in a special kit with studded nail art and nail glue. However, I quickly learned that there’s nothing effortless about applying this nail art…and I really suck at it.

My poor attempt at nail art on top of Over & Over A-Gwen
My poor attempt at nail art on top of Over & Over A-Gwen

My plan was to apply nail art to all five of my nails, but after seeing how horrible I was at just one nail, I gave up.  I am simply not talented enough to get tiny studs into a precise spot on my nails without smearing the polish all over, but I’m sure other people could do this easily. The good news is that Over & Over A-Gwen is so opaque and dries to a nice shine that it’s a stand-out polish just by itself.

The collection comes with two other nail polishes with a creme gloss finish — Hey Baby and and I Sing in Color.

hey baby opi gwen stefani nail polish
Hey Baby is a beautiful bold pop of pink!
I Sing in Color is the deepest beet-black polish I've seen.
I Sing in Color is the deepest beet-black polish I’ve seen.

Hey Baby is my new go-to for spring because I love how fun and “Barbie” pink it is.  In contrast, I Sing in Color is very vampy, which is also super trendy right now. After one coat, it looks like a deep beet-red, but after two coats (as you see in the picture above), it dries down to almost black.

There’s one chunky holographic silver glitter in this collection called In True Stefani Fashion. The polish itself is clear, so I don’t like the look of it on bare nails alone. But when you layer it over another polish like Hey Baby, it looks spectacular!

in true stefani fashion hey baby opi gwen stefani collection review
In True Stefani Fashion layered on top of Hey Baby.

The OPI Gwen Stefani collection has two polishes in a “satin” finish, which looks to be just one step “shinier than a true matte finish.

4 in the Morning is a deep charcoal that reminds me of chalkboard nail polish.

4 in the Morning opi gwen stefani collection review
4 in the Morning is a satin finish charcoal nail polish.

Love. Angel. Music. Baby. is the other satin finish nail polish, which has a very different looking texture since it contains microscopic flecks of gold shimmer. I am in love with how this polish looks, and it dries in a flash!

Love. Angel. Music. Baby. opi gwen stefani collection
Love. Angel. Music. Baby. is another satin finish polish.

So what texture is left? Well OPI added a silver nail polish with a “chrome” finish in the Gwen Stefani collection. Sold as a set, you have to apply a special base coat first before laying on Push and Shove. This is the most mirror-like polish I’ve ever worn, and you don’t get any streaking at all!  But of course, there’s a catch — it only lasts for about a day or so before peeling off in tiny foil-like flakes. But while it lasts, it’s amazing.

push and shove opi gwen stefani
Push and Shove is like wearing a mirror on your nails!

The OPI Gwen Stefani collection is one of my favorite pairings from OPI because each polish is so unique and there’s an incredible variety of finishes in one set. Which is your favorite polish?

 

Photos:  Anne Houseman/beautyXposé

 

pantone spring 2014

Pantone Spring 2014 Colors – The Nail Polish Edition

Oh look, I’m talking about nail polish again. Surprise, surprise. You already know I’ve found at least three Radiant Orchid nail polish dupes, so I figured it was time I round up the other nine colors in the Pantone spring 2014 color collection.

While Spring is about a month away, I figured I’d show you my roundup early so you have enough time to buy them all up. I’ve tried to decide which shade is my favorite, and I honestly don’t know. I change my mind every couple of minutes, but what else is new.

pantone spring 2014
A color for each finger

Placid Blue | Violet Tulip | Hemlock | Paloma | Freesia | Cayenne | Celosia Orange | Sand | Dazzling Blue | Radiant Orchid

Which color is your favorite?

Photo:  beautyXposé

notd

NOTD: Spa Ritual in Last Tango

Samples were provided for review, but all opinions are Kristin’s own.

I don’t know about your hometown, but it’s a gross, wintery hot mess in Boston right now. The endless bone-chilling temperatures and endless slush piles have really put a damper on my outfits. Especially my footwear. A girl can only get excited about wearing her new winter boots every day for so long.

NOTD
Imagine being stuck in this winter (not) wonderland for months on end …

While I am not insane enough to break out my springy flats and heels right now, I’ve decided to take a stand with my nail polish. So yesterday I decided to take off my grey polish and swap it for a Last Tango - a vibrant orange red. It was just the pick-me up I needed. Now every time I look down at my hands, I see a bit of spring staring me in the face.

notd
A bright, springy color to beat out the winter blues

There you have it, my current NOTD. Breaking news, I know!

What nail polish are you sporting today?

Photo: beautyXposé; Disclosure

radiant orchid

3 Radiant Orchid Nail Polishes

In case you missed the news, Radiant Orchid has been crowned the Pantone color of the year. It’s a beautiful purple with pink undertones, and it’s just such a cheerful color. Pantone describes the color as …

Radiant Orchid blooms with confidence and magical warmth that intrigues the eye and sparks the imagination. It is an expressive, creative and embracing purple—one that draws you in with its beguiling charm. A captivating harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid emanates great joy, love and health.

The easiest (and most fun, in my opinion) way to work Radiant Orchid into your routine is with nail polish. It’s inexpensive and noncommittal. Decide you want to move onto one of the other colors in the rainbow? All you need is a few swipes of polish remover. To get started, check out these three polishes.

These three polishes are a perfect way to break yourself out of the winter rut and ease into Spring … even if it’s still below freezing in lots of the U.S.

radiant orchid
Pretty in Polish

Sweet | Plum Seduction | Tango 

I think the Prestige polish is the closest match, but these Duri and Revlon polishes are nice (slightly pinker) alternatives.

How will you be working Radiant Orchid into your beauty and fashion routine?

Photo: beautyXposé; Disclosure

nicole by opi carrie underwood collection

Nicole by OPI Carrie Underwood Collection

Products were sent for review purposes, but opinions are all Kristin’s own.

When one is given the chance to try out a new nail polish collection, one mustn’t turn it down. It’s only proper manners. So it was basically a moral obligation that I sample all 14 polishes in the new Nicole by OPI Carrie Underwood collection when offered.

nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Bring on the polish!

I squealed with delight after unpacking all of the polishes. The collection ranges from creamy nudes and vibrant pinks to sultry purples and festive glitters. And rather than making you ramble on nonsensically trying to explain the colors, I’ll let Carrie take care of that. We’re on first-name basis, obvi.

  1. American as Apple Pie – Tradition runs deep in this classic red.
  2. Backstage Pass - I want access to this brown with purple nuances.
  3. Carnival Cotton Candy – This spun sugar pink is all about fun.
  4. Carrie’d Away – Carrie’s own gold record signature shade.
  5. Color Me Country – This soul-ful hot pink makes me want to sing.
  6. Fisher Queen - I’m hooked on this deep, deep eggplant.
  7. Goodbye Shoes Hit the road, but leave me this standalone gray-green.
  8. Lips are Dripping Honey – This multi-gold glitter is sweet on you.
  9. Love My Pups Let’s “paws” for this adorably sweet pink.
  10. Party Bus – Celebrate on-the-go with this party-perfect confetti glitter.
  11. Sing You Like a Bee – Put some of this frosty ice on that, honey!
  12. Southern Charm – Frankly my dear, this nude shade looks charming on you. 
  13. Some Hearts – You can’t beat this romantic coral dream.
  14. Sweet Daisy – A bouquet of southern peach blossoms.

I know the suspense is killing you, so I’ll stop talking and show you the goods.

nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
American as Apple Pie
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Backstage Pass
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Carnival Cotton Candy
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Carried Away
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Color me Country
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Fisher Queen
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Goodbye Shoes
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Lips are Dripping Honey
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Love My Pups
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Party Bus
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Sing You Like A Bee
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Some Hearts
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Southern Charm
nicole by opi carrie underwood collection
Sweet Daisy

My top favorites are Southern Charm, Goodbye Shoes, Color me Country, but there isn’t a polish in this collection I wouldn’t rock.

What is your favorite color from this collection?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure