S&S IN MEXICO (PART TWO)

The last few days in Mexico were just as adventurous as the as our first (Read Here). We did a lot more eating, drinking, sight seeing and ended our stay with a spa date. Mexico was truly a beautiful place to visit with so much informative history, excellent hospitality and tasty food. 

 

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📍 Cenote Xunnan, Mexico.

We woke up bright and early to meet with the Aventuras Mayas team who drove us into a beautiful jungle for activities. We (By that I mean Jeannette) drove ATVs to a hidden gem where we zip lined into a beautiful open cenote. 

 

📍 Cenote Xunnan- Ha, Mexico.

First of all, I was shedding tears and was literally shaking before getting on. The instructor advised us to lean back when zip lining so that we wouldn't get stuck in the middle of the track.So I was pretty much parallel to the line because I wasn't having that! HAH!  We zipped over 30, 50, 75 feet up in the air, I really was terrified but pushed through after I backed out of jumping off the cliff into Cenote Ik-il. 

 

📍 Cenote Estrella, Mexico.

Zip lining was followed by swimming in a cave filled with bats and water species. Although the water was freezing cold due to lack of sunlight, the experience itself made me forget about the temperature. How beautiful is this?! 

 

Photo was taken from google, as I left my camera in my luggage by then.

Photo was taken from google, as I left my camera in my luggage by then.

📍 Sandal Caracol, Eco Spa.

Our last day was completed by spending time at the resort's spa and using the $25 off vouchers gifted to us by our concierge. The Jacuzzi, sauna, pool, tea and 51 minute massage was exactly what we needed before taking our flight in the evening. 

 

📍 A hundred thousand feet in the air, somewhere between home and adventures.

Being in Mexico was extremely humbling. Staying in our resort with exceptional hospitality to visiting the cities where people with no doors nor electricity, smiled just gave me so much courage and respect. It truly reminds me of growing up in America on a clean slate and being appreciative of what what my parents gave to me. Although I never understood giving away a comfortable lifestyle to struggling here- I now understand that it was all for the opportunity to do what I am currently doing. Living and not surviving. 

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S&S IN MEXICO (PART ONE)

My trip to Mexico was SUCH a last minute trip! You see, up until a week prior to booking our trip, my best friend Jeannette and I had Puerto Rico in mind. But instead, we decided to switch things up and make last minute arrangements (which made me very nervous considering how much of a control freak I am) once we saw the forecast was much better there. Jeannette wanted to lay out on the beach as much as possible and tan while I wanted to do as many excursions as I could. We squeezed both of our desires into a 5 day trip and sealed the deal with a spa date in our resort, Sandos Caracol, right before our flight on our last day. 

We checked in around 3PM at our pristine resort set in the picturesque city of Riviera Maya. The resort was just serene and eco-friendly, which I really appreciated.

📍Sandos Caracol, Riviera Maya.

These photos were taken after our power nap, right at the pool and on the beach as the sun set and moon popped up. The shack reminded me so much of Beyonce's Lemonade so I had to sneak a photo! 

 

📍 Sandos Caracol, Riviera Maya.

We were up bright and early to be transported on this ride that reminded me of The Magic School Bus for our 12 hour excursion to Xichén Itza, Yucatan, Mexico.

 

📍Xelha, Mexico

We made a stop to freshen up and purchase snacks and the eco-friendly public restrooms were to die for. I loved the ceiling baskets and the opened windows by the sink.

 

📍Ebtun, Mexico.

After roughly a two hour ride, we stopped at Ebtun to explore the Mayan culture in a local area. We were offered yellow crystals to make a wish on and burn as well as blessed water placed to on our knees, heart and temple. 

 

📍Chichén Itza, Yucatan, Mexico.

I was literally standing under the beaming sun, on top of 1 of the 7 wonders of the world. Chichén Itza was created by Mayans at the center of the universe. 

 

 

📍Cenote, Ik-Il, Mexico. 

If you were keeping up with my Instagram while I was in Mexico then you know how upset I was for not conquering my fear of jumping into this 150 foot deep water cave. I told myself I was going to jump off the cliff up until I got there and saw how intense everything was. Walking away from this, I told myself that going forward I was going to be limitless and say YES to anything that would challenge my fears.

 

📍Cenote Ik-Il, Mexico.

I took this candid shot after we had lunch at Cenote Ik-Il. I don't think I've ever appreciated a beverage so much considering how blazing hot the temperature was. 

📍 Valladolid, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico.

Even though it was unplanned, our tour guides from Xplor were kind enough to make sure stopping by the historic Valladolid fit into our schedule and took us anyway. Valladolid was established by the Spaniard and French- relocated from Spain to Mexico where the colonist dismantled the Mayan buildings and reused their stones for a colonial town. There was eventually an uprising between the Mayans and Colonists. 

 

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📍Sandos Caracol, Playa Del Carmen, Mexico.

With such a jam packed day, Jeannette and I somehow still had enough energy to dress up and head out for dinner. By the time we were all set, only one restaurant was still open. So we headed out for burgers on a swing and ran back to our room because a raccoon chased us! 

 

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CANDY SHOP

One of my earliest memories is when I lived back home and was joyous when the neighbors would extend a party invitation. If I saw my mother arranging hair appointments and assembling our (my sisters and I) fancy outfits, I knew it was about to go down! That meant we could attend a party and have sweets, and sweets meant a happy Aïchatou! I would stuff my pockets with as many as my little hands could grab and go home hoping my mother didn't notice (although I'm pretty sure she did by the trail of candy wrappers I left).

I came to the United States at 9 years old and felt like the candy fairies just granted my wishes. I lived where bodegas were so easily accessible and a dollar from my daddy was just a bat of lashes away. You'd think my desire would simmer down considering how much I have indulged due to my freedom but I kid you not, I had macarons for breakfast before writing this post! It reminds me of growing up in Benin with such a strict mother then arriving to the USA as a preteen who could easily attain all the junk food my heart desired.

This look, inspired by Aaliyah Jay, a beauty guru I met at the Beauty Biz Network, triggers so many nostalgic feelings. I've always had an immense obsession with sweets- chocolate and macarons were always my favorites but I really didn't discriminate on anything that gave me a sugar rush. Although it felt unfortunate at the time, I also had a very stern mother who wouldn't even allow me to drink soda unless it was for a particular occasion.

 

MAKEUP DEETS

FACE: Mac Studio Fix Fluid in NW45 & Pro Longer Concealer in NC45.

CHEEKS: Too Faced How Deep is Your Love Blush, Benefit Sunbeam & ABH That Glow Kit.

CONTOUR: Black Radiance Press Powder in Rich Mahogany to set & Covergirl Queen Ebony Bronze to warm up the face.

BROWS: ABH Dipbrow Pomade in Ebony.

EYES: Morphe 35O Palette and Ardell Demi Wispies Lashes.

LIPS: Too Faced Melted Fig & Sephora Rose Petal Lipgloss. 

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15 WEIRD QUESTIONS TAG

I had such a great time doing my 15 THINGS ABOUT ME TAG, I thought "why not another one?!" So here's something short and fun post on things that you probably never knew about me!

#1. What's a nickname only your family calls you? Most of my family nicknames derive from my full name: Chatou, Satou Bella, or just my full name when my mom is pissed at me. HAH!

#2. What's a weird habit of yours? I can't go to sleep or be in a room with the door open and once I'm around people for over a month, I can recognize their footsteps before I see them. I knowwww, super odd.  

#3. Do you have any weird phobias? For a very long time, I was afraid that if I hit my head in a swimming pool, I would die. So I never bothered to learn how to swim because of it. Now I'm taking a ten course lesson because this is my year to "Feel The Fear and Do it Anyway."

#4. What's a song you secretly LOVE to blast & belt out when you're alone? Any kind Afrobeat is my jam. Do you dance in the shower? Oh, me either.

#5. What's one of your biggest pet peeves? When people chew with their mouth opened or burp excessively. Oh, and when people leave me in a room and do not close the door. (Please see #2)

#6. What's one of your nervous habits? I laugh when I'm nervous. I know I can't be the only one who does that. 

#7. What side of the bed do you sleep on? The middle, I'm skinny and stingy. (Just kidding about the reasoning...I think)

#8. What was your first stuffed animal & what was its name? I actually had a bunch of dolls growing up. Stuffed animals were never really my thing but my doll collection was unimaginable! I lived for the days my mother would go on trips and come back with the most exotic dolls for me. It took so much effort for me to let them go. (Read the story HERE

#9. What's the drink you ALWAYS order at Starbucks? A Trenti, mocha focha with soy milk, foamed up half way, 3 Splenda hold the powder with whip cream and three pumps of sweetener. Just kidding, a hot chocolate with whip cream because I'm such a Starbucks immigrant. 

#10. What's the beauty rule you preach.. but never ACTUALLY practice? Drink, drink, drink water! It's good for you and will clear out all your pores. It is super essential for skincare and will give you the perfect canvas. What do I drink? A can of Soda. *shaking my head.

#11. Which way do you face in the shower?  I like the water on my face, so I face forward? Which is super odd considering #3.

#12. Do you have any 'weird' body 'skills'? I can twist my tongue, crack my ankles randomly and I am double jointed. 

#13. What's your favorite 'comfort food'/food thats 'bad' but you love to eat it anyways?  SHAKE SHACK! I had to put it into caps to explain how much my soul loves it. 

#14. What's a phrase or exclamation you always say? YASSSSSS. SLAY HUNNAY. You Betta WERK. On FLEEK!

#15. Time to sleep- what are you ACTUALLY wearing? A nice silk Victoria secret PJ set with the matching robe. Kidding again, an old T-shirt and some fuzzy socks, there's no one to look cute for! Girl, bye. 

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DEETS:

JACKET: Here

BROWS: ABH Dipbrow Pomade in Ebony & Clear Brow Gel.

EYES: Too Faced Semi-Sweet Palette

LIPS: ABH liquid lipstick in Trust Issues & Colourpop Liquid Lipstick in Limbo.

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CANTINA ROOFTOP WITH BEAUTY BIZ NETWORK

I can't stress enough on how much someone's network is their net worth. For bloggers or entrepreneurs, it's not only about what you can bring to the table but who you're eating with. I told myself this year I would shy away from being timid and actually meet individuals that are like minded in the process of wanting to succeed or have already surpassed their goals. There's just an invisible push when you know that you're not doing something alone and not only does this apply to entrepreneurship but to anyone in reach of their life goal. What Beauty Biz Network has refreshed my memory on here, is the power of being true to yourself in the pursuit of your passion. Be an expert at turning obstacles into opportunities, market yourself to the point you know longer have to introduce yourself and learn from the tribe of people that are starving as much as you to succeed. 

Thank you Beauty Biz Network for bringing a different caliber of individuals with different end goals but who similarly have the desire to conquer what most view as impossible.

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BODEGA MAMACITA

If you have or do reside in NYC then you know what a bodega is. The dictionary defines it as a small grocery store, especially in a Spanish-speaking neighborhood. To me? It's a nostalgic place I visited countless amounts of times as a preteen, right after school for a few bags of chips and a quarter juice. A dollar really had me thinking my life was together and the days my parents gave me $5.00?! Boy! I had the ENTIRE week planned out. I wasn't allowed to play out for so long especially as a new immigrant, so I would take my sweet time going home after school just so my mates and I could happily grab our snacks and catch up on what teenagers talked about. 

It was only right to head back there and shoot a look when my nieces triggered my memory through their obsessive desires to continuously head to the Bodega aka Deli. For some sunflower seeds, a bag of Doritos and that good old juice that now costs $1.75. I silently giggle as I thought of all these tricks my sisters and I had just so we were allowed to do the same. 

Oh the memories of being a Bodega Mamacita.

SHOP THE LOOK:

PURCHASE M.Y.M COLLECTION LACE SHIRT HERE

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BROWS ON FLEEK

I'm almost ashamed to admit how awful my eyebrows looked once upon a time. I had NO business walking in public looking like a hot mess. You're probably wondering, "Well, where were your friends Aïchatou?!" Believe me when I say they told me countless amounts of times, but I still couldn't see the mess that was so vivid.

Now that we got the truth out of the way, I can go ahead and share the scoop on how I have NOW been getting my brows on fleek. There are really simple products that will keep them in place if you're familiar with the best brow products in the market. Keep in mind while the products I mention are high end, you can purchase similar drugstore products as long as it essentially creates the same results. Oh and if you do, please share below! 

ABH DipBrow Pomade in Ebony- I have been using this pomade for three years now and have never turned back. To use, outline the bottom and top of your brows then fill them in with tiny little strokes to your satisfaction for natural looking brows. 

ABH #7 Mini Duo Angled/Spooley- Works SO well with creamy consistencies. The brush makes the most detailed strokes while the spoolie (spiraled end) blends out the excess product. 

L.A. Girl Pro Concealer in Fawn- Super affordable, blends well and has an opaque finish. I love that it already comes with a application brush where you can precisely clean up your brows and blend them.

ABH Brow Gel- While this may be an added essential but see this as a top coat to your brows. It stays on all day and not one strand of hair will budge. 

TIPS- Eyebrows are sisters not twins! For natural looking brows, they should more than often be two shades light than your hair color. (There's nothing wrong with super dark brows making you happy though because it's all about YOUR comfort zone!)

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COOL TONED MAKEUP LOOK

I've teamed up with the gorgeous, Melody Lawrence to bring you some fun, spring makeup looks. Melody has gone for a dramatic warm toned evening look and I went for a cool toned day look. Remember that there are no rules with makeup and you can go for any look you would like to try during any season. I have no objections towards wearing cool, dark or nude shades during any season and neither should you, because rules are meant to be broken here!

Be sure to check out Melody's take on this spring look (Here) and tell me what fits your personality best! 

Do you prefer her warm tones or my cool tones for the warm weather? Comment down below!

DEETS:

FACE: L'Oreal True Match Foundation in Cocoa & Mac Prolongwear Concealer in NC45.

CHEEKS: Mac Format Blush & Becca Shimmering Perfector in Topaz.

CONTOUR: Bobbi Brown Foundation Stick in Chestnut, Black Radiance Press Powder in Rich Mahogany to set & Covergirl Queen Ebony Bronze to warm up the face.

BROWS: ABH Dipbrow Pomade in Ebony.

EYES: UD Naked 2 Palette in Tease on the crease, Suspect on the lid, Foxy on the brow bone & Half Baked on the inner corner. Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper & Ardell Wispies Lashes.

LIPS: Prestige Lipliner in SIlk & Colourpop Liquid Lipstick in Kapow.

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CURRENT FAVORITE BEAUTY PRODUCTS:

BALMAIN INSPIRED ROPE CHOKER

I couldn't have been the only one who was vexed once this beautiful chocker was IMMEDIATELY sold out when the H&M X BALMAIN collection was released. If you're anything like me, you're not really into staying up for hours to refresh a crashing website in order to purchase limited pieces. We never fall for the concept of scarcity and high demand due to our lack of patience. I fell in love the minute I saw Kim Kardashian wearing this piece, but so did everyone else, especially those who purchased it for such an elevated price on eBay. (Shame on you vendors who ask for rent money!) 

Luckily, Mirina Collection sent me a handmade version of the exact piece and I melted. To my surprise it's so delicately made and quickly shipped. This necklace is a statement piece to any outfit so I can't wait to style it. Be sure to check out their beautiful products and use the coupon code MIRINAGIRLS for 20% OFF!

FACE: NARS All Day Luminous Weightless foundation in New Orleans & NARS Heat Soft Velvet Powder to set the entire face.

CHEEKS: Mac Sweet as Cocoa Blush & ABH Glow Kit in Golden Bronze & Dripping in Gold as a highlight.

CONTOUR: Bobbi Brown Foundation Stick in Chestnut, Black Radiance Press Powder in Rich Mahogany to set & Covergirl Queen Ebony Bronze to warm up the face.

BROWS: ABH Dipbrow Pomade in Ebony & Brow Gel in Clear.

EYES: The Nubian Palette & House of Lashes Iconic.

LIPS: NYX Lip Liner in Pale Pink & ABH lipgloss in Sepia.

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STREET STYLE X NIKE

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If you couldn't tell by my smile, I'm super excited for the warmer weather! And clearly, my love affair for street style hasn't subsided. It's all about being comfortable and sometimes that means tucking away the pumps and pulling out a pair of comfy sneakers. This pair of Nike's that I purchased directly from Kith, an exclusive shop, are extremely comfortable! I could have partnered the look with a bomber jacket, (like the olive you always see me sporting) but I really wanted to add a "tailored" feel to it with my leather basket weave buttoned tan coat. The best way to look dressed up without putting too much effort, is throwing on a badass fitted coat. 

Keep your eyes peeled for more look books because I will be combing through my closet and putting together some more spring looks! 

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I AM AN AFRICAN FT. THE NUBIAN PALETTE

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"When Africa weeps for her children, my cheeks are stained with tears. When Africa honours her elders, my head is bowed in respect. When Africa mourns for her victims, my hands are joined in prayer. When Africa celebrates her triumphs, my feet are alive with dancing" - Wayne Visser

OUTFIT: Purchased wax fabric from an African boutique & had it custom made by a tailor.

FACE: L'Oreal True Match in the Shade Cocoa and Mac Prolong Wear concealer in NC45. MUFE HD Powder in 178 to set the entire face.

CHEEKS: Mac's Format blush and Mineralized Skin Finish in Gold Deposit as a highlight.

EYES: The Nubian Palette

LIPS: Coloured Raine liquid lipstick in Mars

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THE NUBIAN PALETTE

Juvia's Place has taken over most, if not all, social media platforms by storm with its infamous Nubian Palette. This $20.00 gem comes with a 12 piece collection of buttery, warm-tone shades that are easily blended and lasts all day. As a sucker for packaging (if we haven't established that yet) not only is this product well sculpted, but has highly pigmented shimmery and matte pans that compliment all skin shades and undertones.

The beautiful queen, who reminds me of an Egyptian Goddess, lays on a jade green palette that stands true to its name, Nubian. Besides the package itself and how well it is marketed, what attracted me to it was how well the vibrant colors complemented all shades of women and specifically those with melanin who struggle with finding the perfect color hues for their dark skin. 

As a lover of gold, bronze and brown color spectrums this versatile layout is exactly what I need for the golden summer days. It's all about the dew and glow on the skin and this Nubian Queen has the right amount of intensity for just that! 

 

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LASH GAME STRONG

It took me a long time (by that I mean a very, very long time) to get used to lashes. I would cringe at the thought of it because I had an enormous fear that anything that was near the socket of my eyes would damage it. It took countless of practices and text messages to my beauty guru friends to have some form of serenity towards them. My point of all this is, if I can apply falsies, so can you! 

Now if you aren't into worrying about washing your eyes and costly appointments, strip lashes are for you. They range from $2.99 to $29.99 depending on the quality and could be easily removed at the end of your day.There are numerous styles like whispies (which are awesome!) , glamorous, naturals and voluminous to give you the extra "vavavoom" you need to complete a look for a special event. Some of the current brands I've been reaching for lately are House of Lashes, Kiss, Ardell and Salon Perfect. 

APPLICATION TIP

• Purchasing lashes with thin bands help hide the visibility of where your falsies lays. 

•Before applying, measure your false lashes accordingly and snip the excess off from the outer ends. (This will allow the inner corner to stay natural and not irritate your eye during the day.) 

• Be sure to apply the tiniest amount of glue on the eyelash bands and allow it to get tacky within 60 seconds. 

•Personally, I like to look downwards during the application process in order to place them closest to my lash line. Apply mascara and squeeze your lashes and voila! 

 

PURCHASE THE LASHES BELOW

ARDELL DEMI WISPIES | VELOUR LASHES DOLL ME UP | VELOUR LASHES CARLI LASH

HOUSE OF LASHES BAMBIE |  LOTUS LASHES NO. 410 | HUDA BEAUTY SAMANTHA

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BARBIE WITH A BAD HABIT

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As a child, one day my mother decided it was time to get rid of all my dolls, I was really starting to build a collection. She decided the best way to do this was by convincing me that she'd replenish them with brand new dolls. My obsession with Barbies was so blown out of proportion that she had to trick me in order to tame me. I remember being so upset and feeling betrayed but truthfully, if she never used this tactic I probably would have a doll or ten still hidden in my closet! 

Fast forward to present time, I've decided, why not live my fantasy by looking like my own African Barbie for a day?! This look was actually accidental- it happened while I was looking for the right lipstick to match this eye look.  I had rediscovered my Colourpop lipstick in the shade "Bad Habit". Yet again, it was love at first swatch! I continuously purchase from Colourpop and they always come through!  

FACE: L'Oreal True Match in the Shade Cocoa and Mac Prolong Wear concealer in NC45. MUFE HD Powder in 178 to set the entire face.

CHEEKS: Mac's Format blush and Mineralized Skin Finish in Gold Deposit.

BROWS: Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade in Ebony & Clear Brows Gel in Clear.

EYES: Morphe 35O Eyeshadow Palette. 

LIPS: Colourpop Liquid Lipstick in Bad Habit.

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STREET STYLE X METAL CAP TOES

More than often, I'm dressed casually unless it's for a special occasion. To be realistic, most bloggers are normal people in comfy clothes on a regular basis until it's time to work (by that I mean Slay honey). While I do love feeling comfortable, looking put together is just as important. My staple items are usually chunky knits (or a basic tees), form fitting jeans, "pretty" shoes and a tailored coat. Because shoes and coats can make an outfit in the cold season, I focus on having stand out pieces. Street style is all about having an avant-garde urban inspiration with an added personal touch.These limited edition Adidas Superstar Sneakers complete this offbeat look with its clean silhouette and metallic cap toes. I've developed a fascination for having either "A Sex in The City" look, a preppy look or something more badass with an urban feel. When I am too lazy to dress things up with heels you can catch me wearing the stated alternatives. 

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Note: Purchasing these half a size smaller than your usual sneaker size is highly recommended because these run big. While mine were limited edition, you can "create your own" to a very similar taste.

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KISS ME IN PINK

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For my ladies who like to look flirty and sexy, this is for you! Bae or not, Valentine's Day is a celebration of love- may it be for yourself or a partner -never feel out of the loop. This soft eye shadow will have you feeling simultaneously comfortable and beautiful. It's all about the "face glow", the shimmer on the eyes and the soft glossy lips. I used my Urban Decay Naked Palette 3 to achieve the easy doll like eyes. It replicates a romantic look without an excessively bold approach. Personally speaking, classic eyes and glossy (or matte) lips are always the way to go if you're unsure.

DEETS:

FACE: L'Oreal True Match in the Shade Cocoa and Mac Prolong Wear concealer in NC45. MUFE HD Powder in 178 to set the entire face.

CHEEKS: Mac's Format blush and Mineralized Skin Finish in Gold Deposit.

EYES: Mac Saddle as a transition shade. UD Naked Palette 3 shadows in Liar on the Lid, Nooner on the crease and Trick on the inner tear duct. Kat Von D tattoo liner in trooper and Ardell Demi Whispies Lashes.

LIPS: Colourpop Baewatch Lippie Stix and Sephora lipgloss in Rose Petal. 

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VALENTINE'S DAY GIFT GUIDE

I am trying to grasp the idea of how we are already in the month of February. Just when I finally got used to dating my signatures for 2016 rather than 2015- I have come to the realization that hallmark is making its debut with Valentine's Day cards and everything pretty in pink. While this is a celebration of love and partnership, enjoying this time with close friends and family is just as great. Whether it's for your best friend or a guide for your babe, here are a list of five things that are just right for date night! 

1. CLARISONIC "KEITH HARING"- I can't stress enough how much deep cleansing is important, especially for my girls who love makeup like me. Once you use this, you're more than likely never going back to just using your hands because of how deep it gets into your pores and renews the surface of your skin. 

2. TOO FACED MELTED "FRENCH KISSES"- I've purchased two of these lipsticks about a year ago and actually love them. Which is surprising since I was disappointed to find out that unlike the Colourpop Liquid Lipsticks these were more of a creamy consistency. Now I LOVE them and actually plan to purchase more. They remind me of a liquid formula for the Mac Cosmetic Lipsticks, very moisturizing and pigmented. 

3. ABH "THAT GLOW" KIT-Okay, can we just talk about how Anastasia Beverly Hills  has been taking the beauty industry by storm with her quality products?! If you're into highlighting you've seen these everywhere with exceptional reviews. I've developed a glow obsession so Valentine's Day or not, this is on my list! 

4. MORPHE 35O PALETTE- I've been using this palette religiously since my purchase and review. I truly wish Morphe was around a couple of years ago when I was on a hunt for the perfect eye shadow starter kit. 

5. SEPHORA SHEET MASKS- what girl doesn't like a good pampering day at home?! Sheet Masks are perfect for the days you want to clear out your pores and rejuvenate the skin but not splurge hundreds of dollars at a spa. And for $6 each? Why not have a colorful assortment as a bouquet!

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DEEP RED X BOMBER

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There's something so comforting about neutral colors. Whether it's in reference to eye shadows (I'm still working on venturing to colors here), shoes or clothes -it's super easy to pair things together with a versatile canvas.  This Khaki bomber, which I have talked more about in my CASUAL CHIC x BOMBER JACKET post, never fails me. Its simplicity paired with the gold and brown hues I have on my eyes makes me feel like an edgy goddess. While I wish I could wear deep colors every day, (it isn't suitable for my job policy) I jump at every opportunity to wear them because it reminds me that daring is also good! 

DEETS:

FACE: L'Oreal True Match foundation in the shade Cocoa and Mac Prolong Wear concealer in NC45. My entire face with MUFE HD Powder in 178.

CHEEKS: All time favorite, Mac's Raizin and Becca's Shimmering Skin Perfector in Topaz. 

EYES: The infamous Morphe 35O Palette and House of Lashes in Iconic.

LIPS: Mac Cosmetics lip liner in Burgundy and Colourpop liquid lipstick in LAX.

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THE MORPHE 35O PALETTE

After a few months of having this palette, I am infatuated with the infamous MORPHE 35O PALETTE. Morphe was brought to my attention through the makeup queen herself, Jaclyn Hill, who collaborated with them. Because of its cost, I initially underestimated the quality, and boy was I wrong. 

Usually, when you swatch "affordable" eye shadows, they appear slightly more pigmented on your arm and in the palette then they do on your eyelids. That isn't the case with the 35O Palette, especially if you use a creamy base like Mac's paint pots before the process. There are 35 warm tone shades that vary from shimmery to matte and are quite close in sizes with the Mac eyeshadow pans (retailing for $10-$12). If you are currently venturing out and experimenting with eye shadows, this beats every starter palette! 

NOTE: Please keep in mind that you should purchase directly from MORPHE.COM because I've noticed vendors selling them & duplicates for $100 when it is sold for $22.99. The palette is a permanent item and will continuously restock! I used Jaclyn's code: JACATTACK for $10 off.

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FAVORITE EYE BRUSHES

I have tons of eye brushes that I alternate based on the looks I am going for, so it took a lot of effort and heartbreak to minimize this to my top five brushes. 
I take pride in these beauties because they really make a difference with my eye shadow application. I knew that if I combined both my favorite face brushes and eye brushes into one post, it would be extremely long. So I broke it down into two- one post for my Favorite Face Brushes and another for my Favorite Eye Brushes. Now that we've talked about the face brushes let get right into my all time favorite eye brushes! 

1. ZOEVA 230 / LUXE PENCIL- The best for smoking out the lower lash line or adding a glow to the inner tear duct. It's all about blending your make up and this bad boy does the job. 

2. ZOEVA 142 / CONCEALER BUFFER- I currently use it to blend out my concealer when I do my eyebrows or to apply a creamy eye shadow base. Because of the density, it gives an airbrushed and opaque effect to the skin by hiding blemishes.

3. ZOEVA 231 / LUXE PETIT CREASE- This brush would slay a cut crease! It is super precise with applying deep colors to the crease while leaving it blended and intensely pigmented. 

4. MAC 224 / TAPERED BLENDING- I'm not even going to lie, I hesitated before purchasing this brush. $32?! The make up artist had me convinced that I needed this brush to the point where I found myself reevaluating my finances at check out. It's a great brush for blending and can really last a long time (YEARS). Do you NEED it? Absolutely not. Is it excellent for blending deep shadows and a great investment? Yes it is.

5. SIGMA E40 / TAPERED BLENDING- This is a GREAT alternative for the MAC 224. (Hence the emphasis on great because it's really that good!) I've had this brush for over 3 years now and it still gets the job done! If you're really on the fence on purchasing the MAC 224, this one does the job just has well. It is a little more dense in comparison but nonetheless great and will literally show the difference when you are using it for your transition shade. 

 

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