Saturday, February 27, 2016

Yes to...Coconut Skincare Review

I was able to test out these products back in December before they were released in stores, thanks to the Yes to... PR. I've been using various lines and products of theirs for several years. In fact, it was the brand that I first tried out when I started buying my own skincare and personal products in general. Some of their products have worked amazingly for me, while others irritated my super sensitive skin. To say the least, I was excited to try out the new products for their coconut line as I know that coconut oil is great for your skin, but coconut oil in it's natural form doesn't personally work for me [it never soaks into my skin].
The first product I tested out was their Coconut Ultra Hydrating Facial Soufflé Moisturizer [$14.99] -- my skin has been unusually dry this winter, so seeing that their moisturizer was advertised as ultra hydrating had me hooked. Oh, my goodness. This stuff is thick, creamy, and moisturizing! My skin just soaks it up every time I use it. Since this moisturizer is so thick and creamy, I like to lather a bunch onto my skin at night mostly. I find it a bit too thick for daytime use, except for those rare days when my skin is flaking like crazy and nothing else will help the dryness.
Coconut Ultra Hydrating Facial Mask [$15.99] -- I'm not sure that this is one of my top favorite skin masks, but it is helpful for those really dry skin days. Apply a thick layer over skin, let it dry for 10-15 minutes. Wash off with warm water and a washcloth.
Coconut Ultra Hydrating Crème Cleanser [$9.99] -- If you only do a one-step cleanse for your face, this product isn't for you [if you wear makeup that is]. Where if you do a two-step cleanse, this would be great for your second step cleanse after you have already washed your makeup off.
Do you love the Yes to... line? What are your favorite products?

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Play! By Sephora | #06 (February, 2016) Review

I actually received my first, Play! By Sephora box in December, 2015, but have never gotten around to sharing about it except on Snapchat. I kept meaning to do a review of the two previous boxes, just never got around to it. Over the years, I have tried out several beauty subscription boxes: Birchbox, Glossy Box, Wantable, Ipsy, etc... all of which have various pros and cons, price points, and purposes.
When I first heard that Sephora was starting a subscription box, I was intrigued. Sephora sells amazing products, from fantastic brands many of which I am yet to try out. I was curious as to how the boxes would be curated and if there would be any benefits to subscribing to their subscription.
I am a Beauty Insider at Sephora, and have been for years (I was a member and shopped at Sephora wayyy before I ever shopped at Ulta Beauty). The benefits for a Beauty Insider are alright, you occasionally receive a discount and your points only turn into deluxe sized samples. You do receive excellent birthday gifts (I always look forward to my gift every year), and the Sephora inside JCP is always sending me flyers for free gifts with no purchase necessary -- making it easy to test out brands and products I typically couldn't afford on a daily basis without some discount. [And for my job, knowledge is power and things are expensive.]
Back to about Play! By Sephora -- you typically receive a fragrance sample, and various deluxe samples from any of their other departments: skin, hair, and/or colour [this would be makeup]. You also receive a booklet explaining about the products and a card to redeem on your next purchase for 50 extra points (100 points = 1 deluxe sample), making it easier to collect more points if you don't make a lot of purchases at Sephora. You also receive 10 points each month for receiving your box. Oh, the box is $10 a month + tax.
This month was makeup heavy focused with one hair product and your traditional fragrance sample. I know that most people don't love receiving fragrance samples in their subscription boxes, but I love them. They are perfect for traveling and I have discovered my first favorite perfumes with said samples.
  • Tom Ford // Black Orchid EDP -- This scent wasn't a favorite of mine. It was too strong for me. Also, sandalwood is one of the top notes of this perfume, so that could be one of the reasons I dislike this. I am allergic to Cedar, so I find that I dislike most woody fragrances.
  • Lancôme // Drama Liquid-Pencil Longer Eyeliner in Noir Intense -- Intense creamy pigmentation that lasts all day. I'm a fan of this eye pencil. Reminds me of the Rimmel London or Butter London gel eye pencils, which are my other two favorites.
  • Tarte // Lights, Camera, Lashes 4-in-1 Mascara -- I have tried this mascara out before, and I have found it too dry for my taste. My sister, Gaby on the other hand loves this mascara! So I always pass on my samples to her of this mascara. Personally, I love a more wet to medium dry mascara, like the Too Faced 'Better Than Sex'.
  • Make Up Forever // Rouge Artist Natural in N9 Copper Pink -- This was a birthday gift back in 2014, and on first application it was true lipstick love.
  • Bare Minerals // Pop of Passion Lip Oil-Balm in Plumbery Pop -- The color is amazing! I haven't worn it too much yet, been loving nude lips when I do wear something other than a lip balm recently. Mostly, because my lips have been crazy dry since January, no matter how much water I drink and lip balm I use.
  • Bumble and Bumble // Pret-A-Powder -- This stuff is awesome! Doesn't make my hair feel funky after using it, just clean and refreshed. It is a powder formula, which was new for me, as I typically use a dry shampoo that sprays out of an areole can, but with some practice I can easily get the hang of using it. Confession time. I had a dream the other night that Bumble & Bumble was coming to Ulta Beauty -- I love it that much. (If you don't know, I currently work at Ulta Beauty).
Whould you subscribe to the Play! By Seohora box? Also, what are your favorite subscription boxes?

Monday, February 22, 2016

Dreaming of Spring + Blog Event (#BramblewoodThrifted)

Hello everyone! I don't know about you, but I'm kinda over the winter weather and fashion. I want warm spring weather to arrive so I can wear cute dresses and flats! It would also be nice to wear all of my cute spring jackets too.
Since I have the winter blues, I thought we should do a blog event to help make the winter seem a little shorter. How does that sound?
  • When: March 11th-13th, 2016.
  • Where: Hosted on Bramblewood Fashion
  • Who: Anyone who has a social media account (public) or blog.
  • What: Each day of the event everyone is going to be encouraged to share their outfit's of the day. The challenge for this event is going to be that most of your outfit (not the entire outfit) has to be from the thrift store or consignment shop (thredUP counts too).
  • How: Post pictures on your blog or social media account and link-up here on the blog and include the following hashtag on your social media post(s): #BramblewoodThrifted
  • Bonus Points: Monday the 14th is going to be a bonus day with an extra challenge. Share a vintage inspired outfit using thrifted pieces.
Leave a comment with your RSVP, so I have an idea of how many people will be attending. Also, feel free to share about the upcoming event with your friends and on social media!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Galentines Day | Gift + Outfit Ideas

I've only recently become familiar with the holiday Galentines Day [which is February 13th], and to be honest. One of my friends has always hosted a girls-only Valentines Party to celebrate being together as friends, granted her parties are for singles, but the same basic idea applies. We also do a chocolate gift exchange at the party, so I thought it would be fun to share some fun little gift ideas that your girly, or not so girly friends would enjoy that won't break the bank. I'm also going to share some quick outfit ideas for y'all too! 
  • A Girly Movie -- Personally, I'm the kind of gal who loves collecting and watching movies and television shows, so I wouldn't mind receiving one for a gift. Granted of course, you already know all the movies I own [I kinda own a lot]. Another fun idea would be to give a gift card to Netflix! The ones featured in the above picture are: Leap Year [2010] & Cinderella [2015].
  • Chocolate -- Duh? You can never go wrong with chocolate. Unless of course, they are allergic to it, or just don't like it. #strangepeople
  • Cute Mug or Travel Cup -- Hmm...we may have a problem with giving each other mugs as gifts in our family. Our kitchen cupboard is packed full of mugs in various designs and from various Starbucks collections. This is a cute mug that can be found on Etsy. Anthropologie is always a good idea. So is Target or Altered State.
  • Lipgloss -- A girl can never have too much lipgloss, or if you know she prefers lipstick give her that.
  • An adorable makeup bag -- Even if you know your friend doesn't wear a lot of makeup, a bag is always usefully for so many things! Traveling. Storing skincare.
  • Graphic Tee -- Personally, I love a good graphic tee. In fact, I have two storage bins in my closet for graphic tees. One bin is for tees with: Bible verses, quotes, sayings, or flowers. While the second bin is for tees of a more fandom nature: Marvel, Doctor Who, Sherlock, Disney, etc... Where can you find a cute graphic tee? Well, I find that most stores have them in-stock these days. I find mine at thrift stores, J.Crew, Target, Old Navy, and I have even made my own.
  • Notebook -- Have some writer friends or blogging friends? They may appreciate a cute notebook. Or if you have an artsy friend, consider giving them a blank sketchbook that could fit in a purse. [I don't know where mine is from. It was a gift.]
  • Earrings or a Small Necklace -- If you really know their personal style for jewelry, this is always a good idea. Target, Forever 21, and Francesca's always have a good selection if you are looking for reasonably prices pieces. [The earrings featured in the picture are from Forever 21, a couple of years ago.]
  • Cookies -- I think it would be fun to make up some cookie mix in a jar to give as gifts. Then all they would have to do is add the wet and bake. Homemade cookies anytime they wanted. Of course, you could also treat them to some Trader Joe's cookies, or some other fun brand!
Galentines Day | #1

Okay. I might be a bit obsessed with graphic tees. I mentioned them in my gift guide, and now I'm featuring them in my outfit ideas. What can I say? I'm personally going to be wearing a graphic tee to the Valentines Party this Saturday.
Galentines Day | #2

I'm really liking this outfit combination. Various shades of pinks.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

PUR Minerals | HydraFluid Water Serum Foundation

Hello everyone! I'm excited to share with y'all PUR Minerals newest foundation with y'all: HydraFluid Water Serum Foundation. If you like a natural looking coverage that is build-able, stays looking fresh all day, gives a natural dewiness, and doesn't dry out your winter skin I would say give this foundation a go.
The foundation comes in five shades: Light, Medium, Tan, Dark, and Deep. When watched, you would think that the light shade is a tad dark for me, but it somehow works. I have also used the dark & tan shade to try contouring my face with creams instead of powders. Let's just say, I need to practice more as contouring is hard. Of course, it could be because I like a very natural makeup look, not glam.
When I have worn this foundation to work, I have receive many complements on my foundation and how natural my makeup looked. Which is crazy as I was wearing a ton of makeup -- blush, highlighter, contour, powder on my oily zones, eye shadow, mascara, eye-liner, and concealer. I'm excited that this foundation is now in-stores, as I can now recommend this product to customers when ever I wear it to work [or not].
The foundation retails for $39 and can be found at Kohl's, ULTA Beauty, and on PUR Cosmetics website. Also, the foundation just launched in-store this past Sunday [February 7th] so you should be able to locate it easily.

Monday, February 8, 2016

What I Did This Weekend

It isn't often that I have the entire weekend off, so I made my time off count. Especially since I didn't have to spend my spare time working on behind-the-scenes blog stuff anymore (which is what I did the entire month of January).
On Saturday morning I went shopping with my Mum to Goodwill's 50% off sale and to several grocery stores. We made out like bandits at Goodwill. I found several Madewell & JCrew tee shirts, an oversized cream jumper (this has long been on my dream fashion wish-list), several cardigans and jumpers from my favorite brands (BB Dakota, JCrew, Banana Republic, Gap), American Eagle flare jeans (they look brand new), and a Bufflo plaid like jacket from a boutique brand. I got everything for 60% off because I have their Goodwill card, which helps you save money when you spend over $20 on their 50% off days. #score
That evening I finally got around to watching the film, Unbroken (2014) with my sister, Gaby. I really enjoyed the film and can't wait to read the book someday -- as I heard it is fantastic and better than the film!
On Sunday I wore two of my new finds from Goodwill: one of my new Madewell tees & the plaid jacket.

What I Wore

  • Plaid Jacket -- May & July (thrifted)
  • Grey Tee -- Madewell (thrifted)
  • Pencil Skirt -- JCrew (consignment shop)
  • Riding Boots -- Target
  • Leggings -- Old Navy
  • Pearl Necklace -- Caroline Hill (c/o)
  • Tote Bag -- Nordstrom (gift)
I loved the top half of my outfit so much, I wore it after church too when I went out shopping with my sister, Gaby. I just switched a few things out for a more casual, yet dressy look.
  • Jeans -- Lands End Canvas (thrifted)
  • Combat Boots -- J.C.Penny (gift)
  • Necklace -- Kendra Scott
Btw, do y'all have tips for making your jeans look cute while tucked into your combat boots? 'Cause mine always look sloppy and puffy -- mostly because I have skinny ankles so my jeans are never "tighter" around my ankles.

We went shopping at Forever 21 to find my bridesmaid dress for a friends wedding this May [found it!]. Stopped at Trader Joes & Fresh Thyme to picked up nuts, fruit, and supplies for dinner that night for the two of us (chicken Italian sausage with homemade marinara sauce and zucchini noodles). Then we headed over to our fancy mall to stop at Altered State, Sephora, and Urban Outfitters. Once we were done shopping, we headed back home to cook dinner and play taboo with our youngest sister before the Super Bowl game started.
All in all, it was a fantastic weekend! Minus me having an allergic reaction to summer sausage -- making my lower lip swell to twice its size. #freeky

What did y'all do this weekend?

Saturday, February 6, 2016

#HowToGoRed | National Wear Red Day

Hello everyone! Today is National Wear Red Day in support of women's heart health. I was asked by the American Heart Association online shop, to share my outfit ideas for their collection of Limited Edition Go Red for Women tees that came out in support of women's heart health.
Stars from the upcoming movie, How to Be Single (2016) hand selected the tees for the collection. These leading ladies are: Leslie Mann, Dakota Johnson, and Alison Brie. Every purchase of one these exclusive tees benefits the Go Red For Women cause.
I have two outfit ideas that would work with any of the tees from the Limited Edition Go Red for Women collection. Though honestly, there are so many ways you could wear these shirts as they are great basic designs that lend themselves to various looks and styles.
#HowToGoRed | 1

Classy, yet trendy. This outfit is perfect for the office [just throw on a blazer], or brunch on the weekends. If it is colder where you live, just throw on some tights or leggings so your legs don't freeze.
#HowToGoRed | 2

For the preppy girl, this look may be more your speed with the riding boots, jeans, and vest look. You could totally add a statement necklace to this look, or even switch out the riding boots for either flats or heels.

 How would you style one of these tees? Let me know in the comments, as I would love to hear your suggestions!

Friday, February 5, 2016

My Ramblings

Hello everyone! I feel with this fresh new look, I'm going to be motivated to blog more. It also helps that Wordpress has an app that works, so I can start working on a post whenever the mood strikes. Yay!
I have several blog post ideas lined up (most of them beauty related with one lifestyle post). Once warmer weather comes to Indiana, you will see more fashion related posts. I tend to get in a dressing slump come colder weather, and like to just wear sweaters, jeans, and boots. But I'm itching to pull out my cute dresses and flats once Spring hits! Especially since I've found so many cute dresses over the winter for cheap.
I do want to do a fashion event either this month or in March. Haven't decided which yet. I'm sorta leaning towards March 'cause it could be warmer. What type of event it will be, is still to be determined. I had lots of suggestions for a vintage themed one. But I'm not sure. If it was going to be vintage, I would lean more 1960s or 1970s for everyday nowadays. 1930s were never me. I still have a weakness for the 1940s & 1950s, just not for everyday anymore. People change. Personal style can change depending on your current lifestyle.
Anyone seen some good movies or TV shows recently? I have been watching the following television shows: ArrowThe FlashAgent CarterFoyle's WarDoctor Who, and Full House (season 2, cause that is all I own). Movie wise the only one that comes to mind is, The Courtship of Eddie's Father [1963] -- mostly because it is easier to watch a TV episode before going to bed when one has to wake up anywhere between 4am-5:30am for work.
Oh, did y'all watch the Sherlock special? I personally loved it. Even if it got a tad dark for me at times, but I loved the tie-ins! I definitely can't wait for series 4 of Sherlock to come out.

I should mention that I'm doing Whole30 during the month of February. So far I've only been craving carbs, Italian food, oatmeal cookies, and iced coffee with cream. Doing this is a huge change for me, especially for the breakfast hour. I've always been the type of gal who likes either cereal and milk, waffles, or some type of breakfast pastry & coffee for her breakfast all the time. I never did eggs for breakfast, except now I have eggs every morning now on the Whole30. #irony
Well, I better get going y'all! Talk to y'all later!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Simple Makeup Routine

Recently I've been really into either going all out with my makeup (think foundation, highlighter, contour, etc...), or doing something simple and basic (brows, mascara, taupe eyeshadow, under eye concealer, etc...).
Funnily enough, I typically only do the full face of makeup for events, occasionally for work, or from January to April or so. :p There is something about this time of year when I adore a good highlighter, blush, and contour. Which reminds me, I should totally share my favorite current highlights with y'all -- which ranges from high-end (BECCA) to drugstore (Wet 'n Wild).
Yesterday's makeup was an example of one of my more simple days. I keep it fairly basic with hardly anything on my skin, so it is able to breath (since my skin is clear of any acne right now). Of course, this look would vary from person, to person depending on your skin and how much you want to cover. For example: when I had more acne I would wear a BB Cream on my simple makeup days to add just a touch more of coverage.
I start out by moisturizing my face. It is wintertime and you need to keep your skin hydrated no matter what the time of year is, or your age really. A well moisturized face helps keeps your face looking younger, so start young and keep doing it (no matter what). Currently I like using Clinique's Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion + during the day as it is a lighter formula.
Once my face has been moisturized, I dab a little bit of concealer to my under eye area to help hid my dark circles and to help brighten up the area in general. On lighter days I'm currently grabbing my Maybelline Fit Me concealer (15), on days where I need a touch more coverage I will grab my Urban Decay NAKED concealer (light-neutral). If my skin is a little bit oily, my forehead has been recently, I will brush some Rimmel London Stay Matte powder on my oily zones (my go to powder on my oily days).
Next we focus on the eyes and brows. Grabing my Anastasia of Beverly Hills Brow Wiz (medium brown) I add some color and shape to my brows. Some days I will add a higher arch, others it is just slightly sloped. Once my brows are done, I work on my eyes by adding a wash of color to my lids. Recently I've been testing out CoverGirl's eye enhancers (tapestry taupe 760) as a quick wash of taupe all over the lid. But I have been known to use a cream eye shadow stick from various brands in the past. I add a quick cat eye flick with some gel eyeliner (brown) from e.l.f cosmetics, and a quick coat of mascara (Too Faced 'Better then Sex') and my eyes are finished.
The finishing touch is of course, the lips. Sometimes I will reach for a pinky nude, a berry, or like yesterday a peachy coral (Rimmel London by Kate Moss in 38).
What are some of your favorite products to use on a simple makeup day?
Also I want to announce that Bramblewood Fashion has switched from Blogger to! Let me know how y'all like the new look, and if anything isn't working right and I will try my best to fix it.


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