She Feels like Carolina, Looks like California

Today's song comes to you from Parmalee. It's called Carolina, and it's absolutely amazing. The band Parmalee is made up of two brothers, their cousin, and a best friend from childhood (I love family bands). So far, they've put out one album, "Feels like Carolina", and have had two Top 40 songs. 

Their more popular song, Carolina, has reached the number one spot on US Country airplay, and for good reason. I really like this song, and maybe you will too. It's got a little bit of a rock tone behind it, so you may like it even if you don't like country music. 

The Beat of the Music

In 2013, I'd do these posts on Monday, when everyone else was doing their weekend recaps. To be honest, I try to do as little as possible on my weekends, or they're really not something I'd like to share online. However, I decided to switch it up a little bit in 2014 and do these posts on Friday, because nine times out of ten I'm so ready for the weekend by this point that I have nothing to say.

There's this song called 'Beat of the Music' by Brett Eldredge, and I'm currently obsessed with it. If you look at my iTunes account, it literally has this song replaying over and over again. I'm pretty sure I've got it on repeat right now. There's something about country music that just speaks to me. I grew up with a ton of different styles of music being played around me at all times, and I can go back through the years and see what kind of music influenced me when. As of late, it's been country music. 

The song, Beat of the Music, is a song that that he wrote while he was down in the Bahamas, and he saw a girl across a boat. He ended up not meeting her, but wrote this song as what he would have said if he would have ever met her. It's so freaking catchy, and if you like country music, you'll surely fall in love with it as quickly as I did. 

"Well you got the soul, and you know how to use it; put your hand on my hip cause you know that I'll lose it"

I Don't "Do" New Years Resolutions

Like everything else in my life, this post is going up late. Things have been a little crazy here lately, with moving back into the sorority house, a crazy love life situation, and going back to school (and getting an internship). So I've neglected this little blog here of mine. I'm back, though maybe not in full action. So without further ado, today's post!
But really...I don't make New Years resolutions anymore because I don't really keep them. Instead of making resolutions, I'm making goals for myself. Three goals that I've been thinking about, that will help me in becoming a better person. 

1. Make time to run every other day. 
2. Go to church every Sunday, no exceptions. 
3. Work on being a happier person. 

Now, you might be thinking, oh those are some easy peasy goals...Well, they are. That's why I set them. They're easy goals, but they're something I need to work on. The past couple years have been a little bit of a struggle for me. There have been insanely happy times, and awful bad times as well. As I struggled through the past years, I've realized (slowly but surely)  that I've become off track in a lot of aspects of my life. 

I started running after my last serious boyfriend broke up with me. I was angry, upset, and hurt, and I needed something to take my mind off things. As I started running, I began to fall in love with it. I ran every other day for four and a half months. I ran two half marathons, and then got injured. After having chronic shin splits while running & even when I'm not running, I had to stop. I was on crutches for about five or six weeks, then I went to Italy. I refused to bring crutches to Italy, so I chanced it. When I got back, I broke my foot. Seriously. I let it heal, at the end of August I was given the OK to start running again. I had lost my ambition, my love for running. This year, I'm trying to find my groove again. Well see how it goes, but I'm hoping that it comes back quickly. 

The second goal is one that I've been looking at for about a year now. I was raised (kind of) strict Roman Catholic. Mass was on Sundays with the family, and then school mass was on Wednesdays. This meant going to mass twice a week for about 17 years of my life. After I got confirmed, I stopped going to mass as much, and then when I graduated high school, I stopped going all together. Faith is a very tricky thing for me, and I'm currently working on finding mine (again). This means going to Church on Sundays, regardless of what I'm doing. I got really good at making any and every excuse of why I couldn't go, but this time I'm not. 

The final thing is kind of self explanatory. I want to work on being happier, and positive. I've surrounded myself by people who are unhappy and forever-complaining for awhile now, and I'm trying to fix it. I want to be happier & more upbeat. This means working on who I am as a person, what I like, and what makes me happy. I'm going to try and do things that push me out of my comfort zone, like going to the movie or shopping by myself. 

Bring it on 2014, I'm ready for you! 

The Revlon Illuminance Creme Shadows

Today's post is all about Revlon's Illuminance Creme Shadows in Precious Metals. Now, I was really skeptical about buying these at first because the only other cream shadows that I had ever used were the Color Tattoo's. I figured since the Color Tattoos were super simple and easy to use, these would be as well. 

I've swatches them above, without a primer (are you supposed to use primer with cream shadows?). As far as the actual shadows go, I like them enough. They're a lot more difficult to use than the Color Tattoo's, and I think that's solely because they came in a much smaller pot. 

This actually creased a lot on my eyelids after just a couple of hours, and I don't actually have oily eyelids. The packaging is super hard to open up, and there wasn't actually as much product as I thought that there would be. 

It's a lot harder to get my fingers into the colors, but I assume it's much easier to get a brush into there. The color payoff is okay, but I don't think it's really anything special. I'd rather spend the money on the Color Tattoo's than this, but that's just my opinion. I don't think that it's a bad kit, but it's not something that I'd be buying again. 

It's so odd for me to find a product that I'm actually really not into, because normally I read a lot of reviews before purchasing a lot of things. Plus, Revlon is a brand that I normally really like. 

Winter Empties: Part 3

This round would have to be my 'not so great' empties edition. I got probably almost all of these products from Birchboxes in months past, and while sometimes some of the boxes are good, sometimes the samples aren't so good. 

1. Miss Jessies, Creme de la Creme - This is probably one of the worst products I've received in a Birchbox. Not so much because of what it did, but more so how it smelt. This smells like the toner that I put in my hair when I used to dye it all the time. I opened up the packet and almost had a little freakout because of the smell. I tried to use it, but honestly I couldn't use it without gagging or freaking out. It's something I would definitely not purchase. 

2. Clearasil Refreshing Superfruit Wash - I really liked this face wash. I got one use out of each packet, and kind of wish there was a little bit more. I've always really liked pretty much everything I've bought from Clearasil, so it wasn't really a surprise to me that I enjoyed this. It made my face feel clean.

3. It's Potent, Total Moisture, Triple Preforming - I am kind of obsessed with this skincare system. I really want to buy the entire skincare line. As far as brightening my skin? I didn't see any real process, but I only really used the samples for about four days. 

4. Love Shampoo - Smooth my hair? Not so much, but my hair isn't too frizzy to begin with. I liked the smell of the shampoo, and it worked well enough for me. This is not something that I would use on an everyday basis, or something that I would really repurchase. It was a heck of a lot better than the conditioner though. 

5. Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Cream - I received a sample of this in my Birchbox. I had never used a CC or even a BB cream before, so I thought I should give it a chance. This is one of those things that I'm still wary about. Yes, it was moisturizing. No, it didn't cause my skin to be oily. But I just didn't really feel like it did anything for me. I don't think I'd use a CC or BB cream on a normal basis, but this didn't really do anything for me. 

6.  Caudalie Divine Oil - Once again with the oddly smelling (to me), overpowering oils.  Usually all I hear is praise about Caudalie, pretty much everything. Now, it could be that I'm just not one for hair oils, but there was just something I didn't like about this as well. I really did try to use the rest, but I just had to toss it into the empties bag. 

7.  Ojon Nature's Golden Elixir - As you can see, this is not empty, but I was so done with it after three or four times of using it that I had to just toss it to the empties bag. There was something about it that made my hair feel really weird. It felt very weird and greasy. 

8. Lashem Noticeable Difference Lash Growth - Whenever I saw this in one of my Birchboxes, I was really skeptical if this would work. After using it for a while (it's actually dried out now), I can't honestly say if my lashes grew much. However, I could see a bit of a difference when I used it on my eyebrows. 

The Best Baked Blushes Ever

One of my favorite drugstore blushes (that is the hardest thing to find in the entire world -- at least around where I am) comes from Milani. Their baked blushes are seriously one of my favorite things in the entire world. The most recent one that I've found is Luminoso, which is one of the more 'well known' shades. Apparently it's one of the hardest shades to find, but because I normally can't find any of the blushes, this wasn't really too difficult to find.

I know it doesn't really look like I've got any blush on (which is why I kind of love it), but I promise it's there. It's kind of a peachy coralish shade, which is different for me because I'm usually not the largest fan of coral on my skin tone. My younger sister has a darker/more olivey complexion than I do, and it looks good on her as well. I've heard people say that it's one of those universally flattering colors, like NARS Orgasm. 

The blushes are about $8 or $9 depending on where you get it from, but I've managed to find mine on sale for about $6 at Walmart one day. The blush comes with a little mirror and blush brush on the underside of the packaging. This is definitely one of those shades that I will have to repurchase. 

Winter Empties: Part 2

Today's round of empties mainly come from bathroom/makeup products. There is a mix of things that I liked and things that I didn't like so much. Just keep reading to find out what I liked and what I didn't!

1. Opti-free Replenish -  For people who wear contacts on the regular, this is kind of super important. I don't go through solution really quickly because I normally wear my glasses more so than my contacts. 

2.  Reach Dental floss - Woo dental floss. My dentist would be proud that I'm flossing. Definitely not my strong suit, but whatever.

3.  Colgate Total Mouthwash - This was sent to me in one of the vox boxes that I signed up for with Influenster, and quite honestly I hated it. I'm a listerine girl through and through.

4. Maybelliene Colossal Volume Mascara - I don't know if you can tell or not, but this is my absolute favorite mascara. I've tried different ones, but I just feel like it's super easy to use and take off. I will definitely be repurchasing this one because it's kind of awesome.  

5. Covergirl Brown Eyeliner - I really liked this eyeliner, enough to repurchase a couple of times, but as I kept using it, it seems that it transferred a lot. I really want to try to use gel and liquid eyeliner, so I probably won't be repurchasing this anytime soon.  But when I first started using it, I really liked it. 

6. Covergirl Wetslicks Lipgloss - This is one of my oldest lip glosses, given to me by one of my best friends. I've been using this until it ran out, and it's finally run dry. I don't really like lip glosses, but this is one of my favorites. I'm interested in seeing if the newer ones are like, so I'll definitely be purchasing soon.

7. Burts Bees Chapstick -  Until I found the Nivea lip butter. this was my go to chap stick. I've gone through so many tubes of this it's not even funny. In Italy, my friend and I had about six tubes of this Chapstick between the two of us at all times.  

8. Simple Face Wipes - I try to not use face wipes too often, but when I do I love simple wipes. They're seriously the easiest thing to use when I'm feeling lazy, and they're really gentle on my face, which is great since I have sensitive skin. 

9.  Swisspers Rounds - These are possibly my favorite things ever to take makeup off with. I use them for my toners, cleansers, and anything else that may need a cotton round for. 

[One of] My Favorite: Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter in Pink Truffle

I don't know about you, but I am obsessed with Revlon's ColorBurst Lip Butters. I seriously want to get all of them -- and the Revlon Colorbursts, I want all of those as well -- and recently I've added to my collection. Every time that I go into a store I have to go to the makeup channel and check out Revlon's section. Most recently, I've found the lip butter in Pink Truffle. I've seen it on a lot of different people, but one of Tanya Burr's YouTube video's sealed the deal for me. 

It's a really pink/rosy color that looks really natural on my lips. I love wearing this as an everyday lip color, which is rare for me because on an everyday just going to school & work, I only put Chapstick of some sort on. The great plus about this is that I don't need to put on a lip balm with it because it's so moisturizing. This has been my go-to lip color during the winter because it's so easy, and such a wintery color. 

Winter Empties: Part 1

So today, I'm going to start my three part series on products that I've used up. I've used up a bunch of products over the past few months, and I know I like reading about what people like and what they didn't like because it lets me see if I'm going to like something. 

1. Pssssst! Dry Shampoo - This is possibly one of my favorite dry shampoos in the entire world, and that's saying a lot. I go through a lot of dry shampoo on a regular basis because I hate washing my hair every day because it strips the oils out of your hair. Since my hair is so thin, you can definitely tell when I haven't washed my hair. So enter dry shampoo!

2. Serge Normant Dry Shampoo - Now, for one of the products that I didn't love so much. I think that this dry shampoo was just a little too much for my poor, thin hair. It was too thick, and heavy and it made my hair feel weird and gross.

3. Black Raspberry Vanilla Body Lotion - This is one of my favorite smells for body lotion. Bath & Body Works make everything the greatest. It takes me forever to go through body lotion because I kind of forget about it all the time.

4. Dove Pomegranate & Lemon Verbena Deodorant - I mean, what can you say? It's deodorant. It works really well. It smells really good. I had three of these, but it felt a little excessive to photograph all three of them.

5. Sweet Pea Body Lotion - Then we have Bath & Body Works (again) body lotion in Sweet Pea. I swear to you this is empty. I had it turned upside down to try and get the last little bit out, but it wasn't working so I just gave up and decided to throw it out. As you can see, I've had this for quite some time because it's still in the old packaging.

6. St. Ives Oatmeal & Shea Butter Body Wash - I had never used this body wash before, and I was presently surprised that I liked it so much. St. Ives is always wishy washy for me -- sometimes I love it, sometimes I absolutely hate it. Fortunately, this is one that I absolutely loved. It smells awesome, and it's really moisturizing. I've got a skin condition, which causes me to have really sensitive skin, and this did not irritate my skin at all.

7.  Pantene Shampoo for Fine Hair - As you can see by the product, I've got really fine hair, so sometimes you just need a something that's more focused on people who have thin hair (like me!). It was good. I'm using a different shampoo now, so I haven't repurchased it, but maybe one day!

8.  Neutrogena Oil Free Acne Wash - This is one of the face washes that I've been using as long as I could remember. I had the bar soap version of this back in middle school, and it's really good for sensitive skin. I don't have super oily skin, mine is more combination, so as far as oil control goes? Not so sure, but I like it, and we've already got another bottle at the house.

9 & 10. Midnight Pomegranate & Sweet Pea Hand Wash - Last, but not least we have two different fragrances of hand soap. We have this in our bathroom and in the kitchen at home, so we use both! We don't actually go through hand soap quickly because most of the time my younger sister and I are at college, and the hand soap stays at home! But we really like this and have already replaced it.

All About: Revlon Just Bitten in Crave

As of late, I've been trying to wear bolder colors in my day to day life, so when I found this Revlon Just Bitten lip stain + balm in Crave, I knew I had to try it. I'm obsessed with the Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains, so I figured that this wouldn't be too different. Oh boy was I wrong. Instead of being one product, it's two separate ones. One side is the actual stain, and the other side is a lip balm. So you stain your lips and then put the lip balm on. 

Thing's I'm not a fan on: putting on seven (or you know...two) different lip products. I thought that since I enjoyed the Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains, I'd really enjoy these (because they're both staining products) but I didn't. I don't really like the whole staining aspect of it. I found it to be really difficult to apply, and I just didn't like how hard it was to control. 

Overall, I really like the color and the concept, but I think that the Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains work a lot better for me. Granted this stays on a heck of a lot longer than the other product, but I just can't get with it. I love the color, and really want to find more in the deeper redish/berryish colors. 

The Best Lip Balm You Will Ever Use

I've heard a lot of people talk about different lip balms before, which ones work and which ones don't, but honestly I've never really thought that there was any difference. That was, until I found these. I've heard friends talk about how these were their favorite, so when they were 2/$5 at one of my local drugstores, I decided that it was time to buy them.

There were three different types to choose from but I ended up going with the Vanilla (my all time favorite) and Raspberry (because why not have a little red tint). I've got really dry, chapped lips [it probably doesn't help that I bite them like crazy when I'm nervous] so having a good lip balm is a must for me. I've gone through endless tubes of Carmex, Chapstick, and Burts Bees, but I've never found one that I like as much as this. 

The only thing that I'm not too fond of is the fact that it's in a pot that you have to put your finger in. It's not too sanitary, but it's cool. I'll live with the one tiny flaw I can find. I prefer the Vanilla one over the Raspberry one, but I'm a sucker for all things Vanilla. It's very thick, and you can definitely tell that you have something on your lips, unlike some lip balms I've used before. All in all, it's the bees knees and I won't trade it for the world. 

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