Thursday, January 30, 2014

Snow Jam '14

Since I haven't worn makeup much this week and it's really been the last thing on my mind, I thought today I'd post something a little different.

We have been snowed in here in the good ol' ATL since Tuesday afternoon.  Yes, you read that correctly.  I'm sure people living in Northern climates are having a good laugh at our silliness, because after all, it was only 3" of snow and the city went into full-fledged gridlock insanity.  However, one thing to keep in mind before you slap your knee and cackle at our stupidity: this is "Hotlanta"!  It snows here every few years and we've only had a major snow/ice event four times in my entire 33 years of living here.  There was "SnowJam '82", the "Blizzard of '93", a severe ice storm in 1999, and in 2011, ice and snow shut the city down for almost a week solid because the snow kept melting and refreezing, creating an icy mess on the roadways.  We have 30 salt/sand trucks for a city of 6 million people because snow is just not something we have to worry about very often.  So it shouldn't be a total shock that 3" of snow can shut this puppy down within a matter of hours.  However, Southerners are pretty good natured and can deal with some ribbing and laugh at themselves for the chaos and insanity.  Atlanta, the setting of the AMC TV show The Walking Dead, seemed to look eerily similar to the promo images used by the network!  Ya know, minus the zombies and plus the snow.

Jason and I got VERY lucky.  We both work within 3 miles of home and managed to make it to our place with relative ease.  One of the biggest problems was tractor trailers getting stuck across major highways and the snow turning to ice while the cars behind them waited.  Some people were stuck on the roads for more than 24 hours!  I thought I'd share a few pictures I found online and two stories from some of my favorite co-workers to illustrate just how crazy Snow Jam '14 was!
Tuesday evening (image credit: @primetimeatl)
Wednesday morning (image credit: @primetimeatl)
From my friend Frank, one of the kindest and most positive people you'd ever hope to meet.  After being on the road for 7 hours, his car slid into another car, and that turned into a 12 car pile-up.  Everyone was unharmed and the damage was minimal, but there was no way Frank could drive any farther.  Another person involved in the pile-up invited Frank to walk the 0.6 miles off the highway to her house to sleep for the night.  It took them 2.5 hours to walk there in the ice and snow.  This is the rest of his story as of Wednesday evening:
I am not home yet but I'm safe and warm. The nice South African lady who put me up for the night and I walked 2 1/2 miles to look at our cars at noon, but the hill on Northside Drive was still too icy. A kid drove by with a Georgia Tech license plate, and I waved him down. My daughter is a freshman at Tech, so I thought maybe he could drive me down to her dorm. Turns out he's a senior at Tech, but he wasn't headed down there. Just the same, he said I could hang with him for the time being. He then had the idea of taking me to the MARTA station at Medical Center, and so I rode it down to North Avenue. I'm now hanging with my daughter and her boyfriend in her dorm room, and her boyfriend said I could sleep on a futon in his dorm for the night. Then hopefully sometime tomorrow (Thursday) the ice will have melted enough on the hill where I'm stuck, my wife can drive down from Marietta and give me a lift, and all will be well!
Abandoned cars and those trying to navigate around them Wednesday morning. (Image credit: CNN)
From my friend and boss Mack, a fantastically funny man I respect and love:
I left the Capitol at 2:30 and, after 8 hours in the car and walking a mile or so, I made it to Publix at Northside Drive and West Paces Ferry.  I slept at the Publix and their floor is really hard. First shift I slept on the floor on aisle 3 between the ladies feminine products and the greeting cards.  I walked around the store at about 3:00 am to loosen up, and for the second shift, I moved over to aisle 5 and stretched out between the coffee display and the chow mein.  What a night!  I got a ride from a limo driver Wednesday afternoon and he dropped me off at Interstate 75 & Windy Hill and I walked home from there. Glad to be home.
One positive outcome of all of this is the wonderful stories of people helping others.  There were two kids who bought 200 biscuits from McDonald's and walked to the highway to hand them out to people stuck there.  All of the businesses who stayed open round the clock so people could sleep there and get a hot cup of coffee were vital to people who couldn't get home.  I love that the worst of mother nature brought out the best of human nature and it makes me proud to say I'm an Atlanta native.
In true Georgia fashion, it's forecasted to be 60℉ this Saturday!

What's your craziest snow story?  

Monday, January 20, 2014

Kat Von D Esperanza Eyeshadow Palette - Review, Photos, Swatches

It was love at first sight.  I spied the Kat Von D Esperanza Eyeshadow Palette on Instagram and, had I been a cartoon, hearts would have been floating above my head.  I went to and bought it, swatch unseen.  I've used other Kat Von D shadows before and I've always found them to be of excellent quality, so it wasn't a huge gamble to buy it without waiting to see how it faired on other beauty blogs.  I'm happy to report Esperanza, Spanish for "hope", is fabulousity.
Esperanza contains eight 0.035 oz shadows in matte, pearl, and high-glitter finishes including one transformative color veil.
  • Selena (glitter purple) 
  • Dayglo (transformer shade, iridescent white) 
  • Galore (pearl peach) 
  • Placebo (matte peony pink) 
  • Santeria (glitter greenish grey) 
  • Archangel (sparkle seafoam green) 
  • South (matte beige) 
  • Dog Roses (sparkle bronze)
All of the shadows are creamy and blend exceptionally well without fading away into nothingville.  Even Archangel, the pastel mint shade, applies beautifully without being chalky or patchy.  A true feat for a pastel shadow, amiright?!  Tracy at Beauty Reflections, I'm looking at you! ☺
Sunlight / NW20 skin
Flash / NW20 skin
Dayglo, the transformer shade, adds a golden/green duochrome finish to any shade you layer it over.  I swatched it over Archangel (pearl), Placebo (matte), and Santeria (glitter) so you could get an idea of the results across the different finishes.  I think it looks pretty jazzy, especially over Placebo!
Archangel, Dayglo over Archangel / Placebo, Dayglo over Placebo / Santeria, Dayglo over Santeria
The palette design is all kinds of Dia de los Muertos gorgeousness.  It's a cardboard palette, so if you're a die-hard fan of plastic and/or metal packaging, this may not be for you.  The palette contains a full-sized mirror, which makes it even more desirable for the frequent flyers among us, or those who find themselves applying makeup on the go.

I'll be featuring some looks I've put together with this beautiful palette soon for a few face of the day posts, so keep your eyes peeled!  This is a gorgeous palette with fantastically-formulated shadows.  LOVE IT.

My Rating: A+
Cost: $36.00
Where to Buy: Sephora

Just looking at Esperanza makes me think spring is right around the corner!  Though for selfish reasons, I kind of hope it's not because that means everything should be completely planned, booked, set up, and done for our April 26th wedding and GIRRRRRL - it's NOT!  This week I've got to lock down a DJ, a rehearsal dinner place, book a hair consultation (FIND a hair example I like), schedule our engagement shoot, find something to wear for our engagement shoot and rehearsal dinner, finish our wedding website, test out my wedding makeup ideas (including learning to apply false lashes), narrow down the decoration ideas from the 80 thousand on my Pinterest board, and maybe only 15-16 other things.  I need a mimosa and some 70's soft rock, STAT!  Bring on the America.  "Ventura the sunshine...where the days are longer, the nights are stronger than moonshine..."  PS: What exactly do they mean by "alligator lizards in the air"?  Anyone?

On an unrelated zen note, check out this gorgeous hawk we saw in the woods off our back porch this weekend!  We looked it up in the bird book my mom gave Jason for his birthday and think it's a Broad-Winged Hawk.  What a beaut.  It just looked around for a long time and then flew away in an amazing whoosh!

Friday, January 17, 2014

WIMB? | January 2014

Today it's time to snoodle around in my makeup bag!  My friend Sarah at Tatt2sAndWarpaint prompted me to do this and it's been so much fun, I might make this a recurring post series!  The products in my makeup bag are those that I reach for most often.  If something's made it into my bag, it's a keeper!
These are my current makeup loves, in the order I apply them!
1. Beautisol Need I Glow More? Face Self-Tanner: I get REALLY pale in the winter, and Need I Glow More? has been a key product for me!  I use it every few nights and it's allowed me to wear tinted moisturizer instead of a full-coverage foundation.  I loves! {Full review here}
2. Elizabeth Dehn for One Love Organics Vitamin E Eye Balm: Puffy, tired eyes?  That's been me lately!  I tap a little of this thick shea balm under my eyes and it depuffs and smoothes. {Full review here}
3. NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Shade Light 2 Alaska: I just love this.  Super moisturizing (but doesn't make me crazy oily) and medium coverage.  Definitely the most coverage I've ever found in a tinted moisturizer. {Full review here}
4. NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Vanilla: For under-eye magic. {Full review here}
5. MAC Select Cover-Up in NW25: For concealing blemishes. {Full review here}
6. MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural in Medium. {Full review here}
7. NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base.
8. Too Faced Chocolate Soliel Bronzer. {Full review here}
9.  NARS Penny Lane Cream Blush: Due to my oily skin, I can't really rock creme blush in the summertime ("I GOT THAT SUMMERTIME...I GOT THAT SUMMERTIME"!  Sorry, Lana lapse).  But in winter?  It's perfect!  I love using Penny Lane as a base and layering a powder blush over it for added dimension and staying power like a mofo.  I will either layer a neutral blush over it for a very natural look or throw on something more vibrant for a healthy pop.
10.  Tarte Exposed or MAC Blushbaby: Neutral powder blush options.
11. Lancome Blush in Love in Pommettes D'Amour: For a snappy pink pop. {Full review here}
12. Urban Decay Naked Palette: This palette is my #1 all-time Supah Fave.  It's got everything I need for countless natural looks.  I just hit pan on Virgin, my go to brow bone highlighter! {Full review here}
13. Too Faced Summer Eyes: I have been loving this palette lately!  A few gorgeous browns and some really fun and, for me, unexpected colors like bright pink and coral.  Wearing these shadows makes me feel like spring is a lot closer than it really is!
14. Clinique Cream Shaper for Eyes in Chocolate Lustre: Matches everything.  My faves! {Full review here}
15. Maybelline Eye Studio Master Shape Brow Pencil in Soft Brown:  Love that this has a spoolie on one end to comb the waxy pencil through the brows.
16. L'Oreal Lash Out Butterfly Mascara in Blackest Black: This mascara gets me as close to a false lash look as any mascara ever has!  Huge fan.
17. Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector in Shade 01.  
18. MAC Modesty Cremesheen Lipstick: This is one of my top no-brainer lipsticks.  Easy, breezy, done.
19. MAC Blankety Amplified Creme Lipstick: I love the texture, but the color is a teensy bit light for my lip pigmentation. But I really like the way it looks topped with...
20. NARS Risky Business Lipgloss!
21. Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh: I am crazy about this perfume!  Like drunken Bachelor contestant crazy about it.  Smells SO GOOOOOOD.

So...what's in your bag?

Thursday, January 16, 2014

HANAair Professional Hair Dryer - Review + Photos

Before I launch into a full-on rave fest about how the HANAair Professional Hair Dryer is the best blow dryer I've ever used, let me share my hair care routine so you can fully digest the absurd laziness that is me and my hair.

1. Shampoo
2. Conditioner (shout out to my bestie, Aussie 3 Minute Miracle!)
3. Wrap it up in a micro fiber towel
4. Brush it out with my trusty Tangle Teezer 

And scene.  That's a wrap!

I let my long hair air-dry because using a dryer takes a long time and tends to create knots.  However, air-drying isn't the greatest idea when it's 9 degrees outside!  So when the kind people at Misikko offered to send me a HANAair to try, I was extremely excited!  Perfect timing, Misikko!
Now let's discuss this sleek Italian beauty.  The HANAair is AMAZING.  The power!  The pageantry!  ;)  Seriously, the 2300 watts of power this dryer generates is incredible.  It typically takes me about 8-10 minutes to fully dry my hair.  With the HANAair, it takes 3!  This lazy hair person was thrilled!  
It has 2 speeds, 3 heat settings (Hot, Warm, and Cool) and a Cool Shot button that you click on or off.  No more holding down the cool shot button!  It's really nice.  The cool air is extremely cold almost instantly.  For all of the power it generates, it's not excessively loud.  It also has a VERY long 12 foot cord, making it ideal for anyone whose nearest electrical outlet is more than a few feet away from where you like to dry your hair.  Fabulous!
After drying my hair with the HANAair, I experienced a phenomenon known as "volume"!  My hair felt bouncy and volumized and was remarkably free of static due to the infrared ions. The pure tourmaline crystals add antibacterial ions (bye bye static!) and shine.  My hair doesn't tangle like it normally does when I use the HANAair, which is another mark in the win column!   
Do you dry your hair every day?  How long does it take you?  Have you guys tried anything from the HANA Professional line?

My Rating: A
Cost: $184.88 USD
Where to Buy:

Sunday, January 12, 2014

REVIEW! | Clinique Cream Shaper For Eyes in Chocolate Lustre

The other day my mom was wearing the prettiest liner; chocolatey brown with a beauitiful iridescent quality to it.  I had to know what it was!  Turns out it was the Clinique Cream Shaper For Eyes in Chocolate Lustre, $16.00 USD, and like any good brown eye liner nut, I needed one!

Just look at that swatch!  Chocolate Lustre is a stunner.
Chocolate Lustre glides across my lids easily without any tugging or pulling.  It does need to be built up with a second pass to be fully opaque because it's not as creamy as, say, a MAC Pearlglide.  It lasts all day on my primed lids and removes easily with soap and water.  Dreamy!  Like a Pearlglide, Cream Shapers are actual pencils, as opposed to twist-up liners, so they do have to be sharpened.
From my stash, I would compare Chocolate Lustre most to MAC's Pearlglide Intense Eye Liner in Lord It Up (one of my top favorites!).  Both brown liners have that gorgeous shimmer that really makes your eyes sparkle.  The iridescent shimmer in Chocolate Lustre is finer than the gold shimmer in Lord It Up, and for that reason, I find it easier to wear.  Lately my eyes feel fatigued after wearing Lord It Up because they're sensitive to the shimmer in it.  Clinique's Chocolate Lustre has all of the shimmery goodness as the MAC pencil, but doesn't bother my eyes at all.  A huge bonus for anyone with sensitive eyes!
Please ignore my eyebrows.  :)  Wearing Chocolate Lustre liner along with several mattes from the LORAC Pro Palette.
 Makeup worn in the above shot, minus the NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Alaska:
Have you ever tried a Clinique Cream Shaper?  What's your #1 favorite liner right now?

My Rating: A
Where to Buy: Clinique (6 shades available on US site)

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Glambunctious turns 1!

1 year ago today, I posted my first review!  I'd actually attempted to do a beauty blog during the summer of 2011 but I had a really bad camera that produced really blurry photos.  Unfortunately, very few of those early reviews are still up on this site due to a glitch in my photo storage software that caused most of the pictures to get deleted.  That's okay though, because I dusted myself off after taking a break, and decided to get back on the blog train!

Over the course of the year, I have to say the best thing I've gained is the friendship of YOU GUYS!!  You all mean so much to me!  You guys aren't just like-minded beauty lovers, you're friends.  Hearts!

Every person who's taken the time to interact with me here has participated in making me feel like this blog had a purpose and I genuinely thank you from the bottom of my heart!  Your support and friendship continues to serve as a source of positivity and inspiration.  Here's to a fantastic 2014!

Thank you!  I love you guys!

A few stats...if you're into that sort of thing!
My first post was a review of Orly Passion Fruit Nail Lacquer.
I've published 190 posts in 2013.
My most viewed blog post of 2013 was the Maybelline Color Tattoo Seashore Frosts and Lavish Lavender Review.
My most repinned pin on Pinterest was my Urban Decay Naked Basics Tutorial:
My most liked Instagram photo:
Here's a link to all of my social media accounts if you'd like to follow me on any of them!  Sidenote: Instagram is my favorite and most-used!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Collection! | Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush ❤

Happy New Year!

I thought I'd kick off 2014 by sharing my Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush collection.  I just love everything about these blushes!  They last all day on my oily skin without oxidizing and come in a lovely variety of 16 colors.  I prefer matte blushes in general (you can always add shimmer with an illuminator) so all of the Tarte blushes in my collection are matte.  If shimmer is your jam, they offer plenty of glimmery options as well.  I also love the packaging of these.  They contain a mirror and open completely flat.  The compact is the same color as the blush inside, making it easy to grab the shade you want from a dark drawer or makeup bag without any serious investigating.
Clockwise from top: Exposed, Tipsy, Blissful, Dollface, Natural Beauty
Clockwise from top: Exposed, Tipsy, Blissful, Dollface, Natural Beauty
Clockwise from top: Exposed, Dollface, Blissful, Tipsy, Natural Beauty

Natural Beauty: a matte red.  This one is the most pigmented of the bunch and only requires a teensy amount to make an impact.  The red color might seem overwhelming in the pan, but it looks like a completely natural just-in-from-the-cold flush.  This one has been a favorite for me this winter!  See Natural Beauty on Brittany at Clumps of Mascara here.

Tipsy: a matte coral orange.  I have wanted Tipsy ever since I saw it on Taylor at My Lucite Dreams!  It's bright but can be worn as subtly or boldly as you wish.  This is a really flattering color that's gotten a lot of love from me lately.  Though typically viewed as a more summery shade, I love wearing it in the winter to remind me of warmer temps and cool breezes!  See Tipsy on Taylor at My Lucite Dreams here.

Blissful: a matte warm coral pink.  Blissful was my first ever Tarte blush and as you can see from the pan, it's been heavily enjoyed.  Blissful is more pink than Tipsy, though they are similar.  This is a blush that compliments any bold eye or lip look you put together without detracting from the proverbial main event!  See Blissful on Arianne at The Glitter Geek here.

Dollface: a matte cool light pink.  Dollface is surprisingly wearable and adds a fun pop of blue-based pink to whatever face you put together.  I actually love cool blushes on warm-toned skin.  There's something to be said about opposites attracting!  See Dollface on Mandy at Pretty Making here.

Exposed: a matte pinky brown.  This one is a desert island pick for me!  I could literally wear this blush every day and not get tired of it.  It's such a subtle color that compliments anything you pair it with.  Like all the Tarte Amazonian Clay blushes, it's buildable so you can really customize the results to suit your preferences.  I will be forever grateful to Alison at 10amBeauty for introducing me to this shade.  Thanks, girl!  It's become my #1 favorite, as evidenced by the fact that the embossed design on the pan is almost all gone.  See Exposed on Alison at 10amBeauty here.

Natural Light (Indoors), L to R: Natural Beauty, Tipsy, Blissful, Dollface, Exposed
Indoor Light (Lamp), L to R: Natural Beauty, Tipsy, Blissful, Dollface, Exposed
Flash, L to R: Natural Beauty, Tipsy, Blissful, Dollface, Exposed
Top: Natural Light, Middle: Indoor Light (Lamp), Bottom: Flash
My camera really let me down on these swatch pictures!  Here are a few links to other bloggers' beautiful swatches and reviews of the formula:

L to R: Natural Beauty, Tipsy, Blissful, Dollface, Exposed

What's you favorite Tarte blush?