Are you a NARSissist? Get your hands on these three new NARS Collections for Spring!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

NARSissist (NARS∙is∙sist) (n.) - lives by her own rules, not afraid to express herself in every look, mood or attitude. Effortless charm with a bottomless makeup bag.

Do you identify as a NARSissist? I surely do. Not only do I live by my own rules, I can’t get enough of NARS beauty products. The brand continues to release new and innovative products and these three upcoming Spring Collections (Velvet Matte Skin Tint, Spring Color Collection, and #NARSissist Spring Gifting) are no different. From a matte skin tint to a sultry eyeshadow palette, there’s something for everyone.

A new must-have cheek palette that includes my favorite NARS bronzer, Laguna.

A limited edition eyeshadow palette with everyday neutrals and smokey shades to take you into night.

An oil- free skin tint that helps blur imperfections and control shine throughout the day. You'll also get a dose of vitamins C, E, and protect skin with broad spectrum SPF 30.

For Spring 2016, NARS debuts a fresh and modern mix of seasonal shades and innovative textures for eyes, cheeks and lips. Products include:

Any of these new NARS products on your wishlist?

New Skincare Products To Try

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Skin is our largest organ and everyone's skin is very different; we all vary from oily, dry to combination skin. This means that every individual’s skin does not react the same to every product out there. I have found a few new products that target problem areas that we’ve all dealt with. The first product will help you tackle uneven skin tone and skin discoloration. Elizabeth Arden’s Skin Illuminating Collection consists of 3 key products, Skin Illuminating Brightening Day Serum, Skin Illuminating Night Capsules, and Skin Illuminating Retexturing Pads, but now, Elizabeth Arden introduced Ceramide Overnight Firming Mask. This mask works to improve skin’s overall appearance while you get your beauty rest. The other exciting new product is the Ceramide Cleansing Oil. This oil cleanses skin to perfection and easily removes all makeup and impurities.
Another solution to dark spots and hyper-pigmentation is the new Pevonia Lumablanc Cream. I personally suffer from dark spots and hyper-pigmentation due to acne scars and sunspots. I know many others out there suffer from the same thing, and according to the reviews that I have read; this product seems to be the solution to our problem. Besides erasing scars, this cream also lightens and brightens the skin to give your face a clean look.

The next product is said to reduce fine lines and give complexion a more youthful appearance! The new RoC® SMOOTH PERFEXION® Instant Line Corrector combines science with skincare using Copper-Zinc to generate skin renewal. Research shows that after using this product for only 2 weeks, women said they were able to forgo makeup being an essential part of their daily routine. At a retail value of only $24.99, this product is a steal.

Let’s talk hydration. Dry skin is a ever-growing problem that many people deal with daily. Like our bodies, skin requires a glass of water as well! That’s where intense moisturizers come in. Stemology Cell Renew Hydro-Plus Overnight Moisturizer helps to rejuvenate and hydrate your face overnight, leaving your skin glowing. Reviewers are already raving about the moisturizer and claim that it leaves your skin smooth without being oily. This moisturizer is new on the market but can be found online.

This is a guest post written by Imani Wood-Rodriguez.

Case of the Mondays - 5 Beauty Products To Help Start The Week

Monday, January 25, 2016

Hello friends! It's a winter wonderland outside but even Storm Jonas can’t stop Monday from coming! We have a cold week ahead, so let's start it right with this week's Case of the Mondays.

Kiss Gel Fantasy Nails, $7.99

Need a quick mani on-the-go? With Kiss Gel Fantasy, I can have a fabulous manicure in only 20 minutes. With many different cute options to choose from, this product gives a whole new reputation to press-on nails. Say goodbye to damaging nail glue and start your Monday off with a fancy at home manicure.

WHEN Glamour Mask, $35

Have you ever heard of a sheet mask that gives your face a healthy glow, revives your skin, and also primes skin for makeup? WHEN Glamour Mask is a soft jelly mask made up of coconut juice, comforting serum collagen, etc. These properties are used to improve skin elasticity, keep skin healthy, and prime skin for makeup application. The best part about this mask is that it doesn't contain parabens or sulfates. Plus, you can see a difference in your skin just in time to tackle a wintry Monday.

Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Deep Moisture Balm, $56

This weather has been making my skin pretty dry and the only thing keeping my face hydrated and moisturized is this moisture balm. It's formulated with Edelweiss flower to lock in hydration, antarcticin to replenish skin with moisture, and glycerine to help draw moisture into skin for lasting hydration.

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Misery Lip Tar, $15

The liquid lipstick trend is still at an all time high. OCC’s newest shade Misery screams determination with its shockingly red shade. For a pop of color in a city covered in white, try this shade this Monday! Leave it matte or add a layer of gloss for a truly beautiful finish.

Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser, $18

A face wash is not only the first thing used in every skincare routine, but it can be the most essential. With Glossier’s Milky Jelly cleanser, you not only get an amazing cleanse but it also works as a makeup remover. If you would like to use as a makeup remover, apply 2-3 pumps of the cleanser on dry skin and massage into face. Try this product in the morning to refresh or in the evening to deep cleanse.

This is a guest post written by Imani Wood-Rodriguez.

Enter Essie’s First Ever Nail Art Awards “The Essie’s”

Monday, January 11, 2016

We have exciting news to share! Essie has just announced it's first ever nail art contest (the essies) hosted on YouTube and featuring an exclusive series of nail art challenges to discover the next great nail artist. Essie fans and nail artists can enter the contest for a chance to win the grand prize - a $20,000 partnership with essie, a spot at New York Fashion Week with Celebrity Manicurist, Michelle Saunders, and much more! The final two winners will be determined through a combination of online fan votes and essie’s panel of experts, including:
  • Carolyn Holba – General Manager, essie worldwide
  • Jenny Fox – Founder of Jenny Claire Fox, a top nail art and beauty Youtube channel
  • Katie Rodgers – Artist and Creator of Paper Fashion
  • Michelle Saunders – essie celebrity manicurist
  • Rebecca Minkoff – essie Global Color Designer and industry fashion leader

The essies will run from January 2016 through June 2016 and be broken into four phases:

Phase 1: Qualifying Challenge (January 6th – February 22th)
Qualifying submissions will open to all participants. Contestants will be required to upload two videos to, including: an “All About You” video and a “Show Us Your Skill” video, creating any nail look using essie nail and care products. The first 1,000 entries will receive essie’s gel.setter kit and the creators of the top ten videos, as selected internally by essie, will move on to phase two.

Phase 2: Spring Trend Challenge (February 22th – March 28th)
In this phase, the top ten contestants will receive essie’s spring 2016 collection and challenged to create the ultimate spring trend inspired nail art look. Videos will be uploaded to where online fan votes will determine the top six semi-finalists moving to phase three.

Phase 3: Dream Getaway Challenge (March 28th – May 2nd)
Six lucky semi-finalists will receive an essie branded polish rack filled with 90 shades, and be tasked with creating a nail art look inspired by their dream getaway. The top three finalists, as chosen by online fan votes, will move to the last phase.

Phase 4: Blank Canvas Challenge (May 2nd – June 6th)
The three finalists will be flown to New York to film their last video in Youtube’s studio. For this challenge, they will be given a blank canvas and challenged to get expressive. essie’s expert panel will select the top two winners who will be announced on June 1st.

One Grand Prize Winner will be chosen by the judging panel. One Fan Favorite Winner will be chosen by the public voters and receive a $1,000 prize. For complete contest rules and information, please visit

I can't wait to see all the entries!

10 Beauty New Year's Resolutions for 2016

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Image via Pinterest

Goodbye 2015. Hello 2016! The end of the year bought many thoughts of resolutions and all I hope to accomplish this upcoming year. 2015 was filled with some of my favorite memories. From traveling to Maui with my fiancée to attending my first music festival (Governors Ball with Dove!), it was definitely a year to remember. I also collaborated with a few of my favorite brands, such as Tria, Revlon, Boots Beauty, and Head & Shoulders!

This year, my resolutions are pretty simple. I've learned that the most important thing in life is to be happy and surround yourself with people you love and care about. As a beauty girl, I'm always looking for ways to improve myself and my beauty routine. Here's are my 10 beauty resolutions for 2016!

Resolution #1Get enough sleep every night

I've always been a night owl, but it's important to get a full night's rest every single night. I'm notorious for staying up to the early hours of the morning to finish a story or project. This year, I vow to sleep better and get more rest. My pillows have just become more cozy thanks to my new iluminage Skin Rejuvenating Pillowcase. It helps fight wrinkles while you sleep. That's pretty much a win-win.

Resolution #2: Experiment with makeup more

I'm a victim of routine and I want to be more bold with makeup this year. My signature look has always been a nude lip with winged eyeliner. This year, I plan to experiment with more with color and get out my comfort zone.

Resolution #3: Wear sunscreen everyday

Sunscreen is the most important part of anyone's beauty routine. Good makeup starts with great skin and the sun is very harsh. I've already starting adding items to my daily routine. I normally prime with Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer SPF 15 and often use Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20. I also adore Supergoop! Defense Refresh Setting Mist SPF 50 to set makeup and touch-up throughout the day.

Resolution #4: Clean makeup brushes more often

I own so many brushes that I normally swap out dirty ones with new and then I'm left with 50+ brushes to wash. I vow to be less lazy and clean my brushes more often. Johnson & Johnson Baby Shampoo is the best cleanser for brushes and the Sigma Spa Brush Cleaning Glove is a lifesaver.

Resolution #5: Tone my body

For years my New Year's Resolution was always to lose weight and I'm finally starting to accept my size. It's okay not to be thin, but it's important to be healthy. My biggest goal for 2016 is to tone up my body and workout on a more regular basis.

Resolution #6: Eat healthier

This resolution ties into my previous one. I eat healthy on occasion, but I want to be more conscious of the food I'm putting in my body. When you're constantly on the go, it can be difficult to stop and order something that's actually good for you (plus, I love french fries). I've already begun purchasing more healthy items at my local supermarket. Incorporating more fruits and vegetables into my meals is also easy to do!

Resolution #7: Take vitamins daily

I recently tried Nature's Bounty Hair, Skin & Nails Gummies with Biotin and was surprised at how yummy they tasted. These gummies feature Vitamin C and Biotin for glowing skin, lustrous hair, and strong healthy nails. I recommend adding these to your routine. Set an alarm to remind you or just take with your morning coffee!

Resolution #8: Swap out makeup weekly

Being a beauty editor has it perks and one of them is getting to test new beauty products often. This also means that I've become a bit of hoarder with items living all over the house! I've started swapping out old products with new and vice versa, so every item gets a chance to shine. I have drawers dedicated to items (lipstick, bronzers, highlighters, etc.) and weekly, I swap products for different ones. Doing it weekly or bi-weekly helps me remember what I actually have and let's me fall in love with old products all over again.

Resolution #9: Wash hair less, deep condition more

I have fine, curly hair, so it gets tangled very easily. This causes me to wash my hair almost every day. While it's okay to wash hair often, you shouldn't wash your hair every day because of the natural oils on you hair and scalp. Your natural oils actually keep hair healthy and shiny. By washing daily, you're missing out on the benefits of natural oils. Not only do I plan to cut down on washes, but I also plan to deep condition more often. You can skip shampoo and deep condition to repair and nourish strands on an off day. Hair Food recently sent over their Moisturizing Hair Mask and Hair Food Apricot Conditioner and I could see a huge difference in my locks after washing. Try this product; you won't be sorry!

Resolution #10: Use more natural products

I want to add more all-natural items into my beauty routine and pay more attention to the ingredients in my products. Coconut oil was a big beauty trend in 2015 and there's a lot to be said about the benefits of natural beauty products. Brands like Tata Harper, RENKahina Giving Beauty and Nude are just some of the natural brands you can add to your skincare collection.

What are your New Year's Resolutions for 2016?

Winter Skin Prep: 5 Products To Add To Your Routine

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Winter skin can be tricky, so it's important to make sure your skin is always hydrated. Throughout the winter season, you may need to swap out your old skincare for some new additions. We're here to help, so here are a few recommendations. La Praire’s Cellular Time Release Moisturizer Intensive gives thirsty skin some much needed TLC. This moisturizer acts like a shield for smooth skin while removing all of the dead skin cells off your face. Try this moisturizer to keep your skin looking fresh!

Our face is not the only thing that gets dry and flaky during these winter months; our feet need extra care as well. Baby Foot is a treatment product made specifically for feet. It works as an natural exfoliator. The process is easy; simply wet your feet, apply the cream, wait a few minutes and finally rinse off. Dead skin cells will begin to peel between 3-7 days after using. Your feet will feel the softest they have ever felt.

We have talked about our faces and feet, but what about the rest of our skin? Since the cold weather is harsh, dry skin can become itchy. The new Curél Itch Defense Body Wash product can help! This product currently offers a body wash that gives a cooling sensation while making the skin soft and supple. The collection also includes a non-medicated, moisturizing spray. This product instantly relieves itchy and dry skin. Another product that tackles dry skin is Dermadoctor’s KP Duty Body Lotion. This product exfoliates the skin while also hydrating. Although this lotion targets Keratosis Pilaris, it is a wonderful product to help with all dry skin problems.

Lips are in definite need of extra attention during the cold weather months. Dry lips can be embarrassing and cause discomfort. Carmex is a brand that is known for their fast-working lip products. You can now purchase their new Limited-Edition Carmex® Winter Mint Lip Balm Click Sticks. This new seasonal flavor will not be around forever, so get it while supplies last at your local drugstore.

Bundle up, friends!

This is a guest post written by Imani Wood-Rodriguez.

Case of the Mondays - 6 Beauty Products To Help Start The Week

Monday, January 4, 2016

Hello friends, and welcome to the new year! 2015 was filled with so many amazing experiences and memorable beauty trends. I cannot believe it has come to an end, but I am ready for all of the wonders 2016 will bring! Now let's get the first full week of this year started with Case of the Mondays

TEMPTU Air is a new groundbreaking invention that applies makeup flawlessly with the push of a button. The airbrush device addresses multiple beauty needs and is used with Airpod makeup (sold separately). You can apply foundation, blush, and even highlighter! For a quick and seamless makeup application, the TEMPTU Air is a great option to start your week.

With Contouring being so popular and contour palettes being a high price point for some, contouring can seem a bit unattainable and time consuming for the average New Yorker’s budget. L.A. Girl PRO Conceal HD Concealers come in 24 different shades for light to deep contouring, concealing and correcting. Well-known beauty vloggers have even raved about this product!

The Kiss InstaWave is a curling iron that makes curling your hair quick and easy. On a Monday morning, you’re probably in need of a quick hair fix and this is just the thing. Unlike traditional curling irons that take a lot of time to form a curl, the KISS Instawave catches and curls hair creating effortless, beautiful curls in minutes. 

Taking off your makeup at the end of a long day can be one of the greatest feelings in the world, but what about removing your makeup and cleansing your face at the same time? GARNIER Skin Active Micellar Cleansing Water All-in-1 Makeup Remover & Cleanser does just that. Some removers can make your skin feel oily, but this product makes your skin feel refreshed while removing all dirt and makeup. Keep this product by your nightstand for whenever you’re feeling lazy. No rinse needed!

Need a little more hydration start your week? I would recommend the YES TO Coconut Ultra Hydrating Facial Souffle Moisturizer. This moisturizer gives skin a much-needed vacation from dryness and is non-greasy. Apply before your foundation for a creamy, soft canvas.

Curly girls are always looking for something that will either calm down their curls or revitalize them. GIRLS WITH curls Curl Boosting Mousse does both! Curls should always be defined and beautiful, especially on the first day of the week! This mousse belongs in any curly girl’s routine. 

This is a guest post written by Imani Wood-Rodriguez.

Pantone Color 2016: How To Incorporate Serenity & Rose Quartz Into Your Beauty Routine

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

As the end of the year quickly approaches, the possibilities for the New Year are endless. What are some of your goals and desires for 2016? Lets start the New Year off right with Serenity and Rose Quartz! These are the Pantone colors of the year; will you be on top of the latest trend? These are said to be the IT colors for the upcoming year, we will see these colors in everything from fashion, home décor, nails and our favorite makeup. This is the first time that Pantone has ever chosen two colors of the year. We're not alone in the excitement of these shades; some of your favorite brands have already started coming out with products in these trendy colors.

Lets start with nails; Sally Hansen and Smith + Cult Lacquers already have colors in these nail shades. For Rose Quartz options, you can try Sally Hansen Insta-Dri in Petal Pusher or Smith + Cult in Pillow Pie. For Serenity options, you can try Sally Hansen Miracle Gel in Sugar Fix or Smith + Cult in Cut The Mullet.

It Cosmetics has also come out with their Pantone inspired lip glosses. These Vitality Lip Blush™ Hydrating Gloss Stains are extremely hydrating and infused with oils and butters for the most luxurious feeling on lips (no stickiness)! Try shades Je Ne Sais Quoi and News Anchor BlueSmith + Cult's Life in Photographs is also a light and gorgeous lip lacquer with a hint of shimmer. If you're not much of a gloss girl, KORRES Lip Butter in Jasmine is the way to go! It's a small jar packed with luxurious butter to leave lips smooth and slightly rosy.

One of our favorite brands, Hourglass Cosmetics, has a beautiful Ethereal Glow blush that gives off that rose quartz glow. We can't forget eyes - Sonia Kashuk's Fair & Square Eye Shadow Quad brings different shades of the rose color we all adore and offers textures of sparkle or matte without breaking the bank. Elizabeth Arden also offers new staple colors in Innocence (rose quartz) and Sky (Serenity). These two shadows can be worn lightly and eventually be built up for a evening look.

Last but certainly not least, Sephora has teamed up with Pantone to create the Pantone Color of the Year 2016 Collection! This collection will highlight Rose Quartz and Serenity for eyes and lips. For lips, the collection will include a Layer Lipstick, which will have a velvety smooth rose finish, and a Matte Color of the Year Lipstick in Serenity, which will be a lovely pastel blue. Some of you may be thinking, "how can I incorporate blue into my daily routine?" Don't worry! This lipstick can go from subtle to bold. We obviously can't have a collection without some fabulous lip-glosses, so the color of the year Modern Watercolors Lip Gloss Set will feature six pastel shades. Lastly, you'll want bold and beautiful eyes. The Modern Watercolors Eyes Palette will contain 24 shadows. Staple shades will be included as well as bold colors. This collection is available now at all Sephora locations.

Will you be picking up any of these Pantone inspired products?

This is a guest post written by Imani Wood-Rodriguez.

Dove Launches Curly Hair Emojis & Encourages Women Everywhere To #LoveYourCurls

We have exciting news from Dove! The time has finally come for curly-haired girls to be recognized on the emoji spectrum. That's right ladies - you will finally have an emoji that looks like you with curly hair and all. Not only do these emojis have curls, Dove offers a variety of skin tones and curl patterns. We can finally, truly connect with our emojis. I personally use emojis quite a bit, and as an iPhone user myself, they have become a part of my daily routine. For my Twitter friends out there, if you tweet using hashtag #LoveYourCurls an adorable curly hair emoji will immediately appear after the hashtag. According to research, 72% of curly-haired women would love to see an emoji that looks like them. Now that you have heard the news, go spread the word and download the app! It is available on Google play and the App Store.

This is a guest post written by Imani Wood-Rodriguez.

Case of the Mondays - 7 Beauty Products To Help Tackle The Week

Monday, December 28, 2015

Can you believe the Holidays are over? Christmas came and went so fast. I can't believe it's already time to say goodbye to 2015. This week, I'm gearing up for my annual New Year's Eve party. Family and close friends usually stop by my place for a night of games, food, fun, and laughs. Every year I vow to go out and every year we end up having a party at home. NYE is good time to reflect on the past year with family after-all. Did you guys have a good holiday? Any exciting beauty gifts to share?

For this week's Case of the Mondays, I'm testing a few new products and adding a few of these favorites to my New Year's routine. Keep reading for more info!

Chosungah 22 24H Raybeam Highlighter, $28

I'm all about glowing skin and this product from Chosungah 22 helps create the perfect glow. You can apply under or over makeup for bright, radiant-looking skin. It even comes with a puff to lightly apply.

Carol's Daughter Sacred Tiare Combing Creme, $10

I used this Carol's Daughter product on Christmas Eve and my family couldn't stop raving about my curls. I had washed my hair prior to dinner and my curls were completely frizz-free and pretty perfect. My hair looked unbelievably healthy and smelled divine. At only $10, I might be buying this in bulk very soon.

Colgate® Optic White® PLATINUM™ Express White Toothpaste, $3.99

Who wants dull teeth right before New Year's Eve? Not I. I've been using this toothpaste for about two weeks and can see a noticeable difference in my teeth shade. It's kind of like an instant whitening treatment without the dentist visit.

Amopé Pedi Perfect™ Extra Coarse Electronic Foot File with Diamond Crystals, Varies

Once upon a time, I had baby soft feet. My mother always said my feet were the softest as a child, and then, life happened. My feet are far from baby smooth anymore, but thanks to this product from Amope, it's pretty close. The brand is known for their Pedi Perfect, which buffs away hard skin in minutes. This version comes with diamond crystals. I'm sold.

Herbal Essences Naked Volumizing Souffle, $6.99

A boost of grapefruit & mint lifts hair, so it doesn't fall flat. Who doesn't need this during a New Year's Eve party?

Molton Brown London Vintage 2015 Body Lotion (Limited Edition), $44

There's nothing better than champagne-inspired packaging. I'm planning to apply this scented lotion for NYE and then leave on display for everyone to see. It's that pretty!

Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer in Champagne, $4.99

Champagne will be on my body (in body lotion form as stated above), on my lips, and in my glass this NYE, of course!

What are your plans for New Year's Eve?

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