Elizabeth Arden

Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Lash Extending Treatment Mascara | Review

1:40 PM

Hello! Today's post is a review on a mascara that I haven't heard much about, but those who talk about praise it highly. 

What: Mascara
Where: Macy's and online
Price: $20
BTW: Elizabeth Arden products are tested on animals.

Oh, Elizabeth Arden. This brand is mostly known for their infamous multitasking Eight Hour Cream. I had a little twist up tube of that at one point, and I thought it smelled so weird. Other than that and a mask, I haven't tried much from this high-end brand. I mean, can you blame me? At prices like $20 a mascara, a broke student can't really afford the products.

This mascara claims to be a lash extending treatment. Basically, the more you wear it, the longer your eyelashes will grow. I've not really used any eyelash growth products aside from an eyeliner with lash boosting claims, but it didn't do much for my stick-straight, short, sparse eyelashes. This mascara is infused with "ceramide triple complex (Ceramides 1, 3 & 6) plus vitamins to help reinforce and restore lashes' natural protective barrier. Protein-based complex Keravis helps fortify, lengthen, define & revitalize lashes." It claims to lashes longer and fuller, contain vitamins A, C, and E, and also boasts that it won't smudge, flake, or clump. It's available in two shades, black and brown, and in two formulas, waterproof and regular.. I'm reviewing the regular black.

The packaging for this is really plain. It shiny gold tube (I believe it's been repackaged to a matte gold) holds a disappointingly plain wand; the classic bristled wand that is slightly tapered towards the end. Sometimes the sifter won't remove enough mascara and I'm forced to wipe off some mascara, thus wasting product. Packaging is plain and functioning, but could be better for the price of this little guy.

So, as you can see, my lashes before curling and applying mascara are pretty pathetic. The bottoms are quite sparse and I'm not a fan of applying mascara on them, so I didn't apply any for this review. This mascara darkens and defines them, you can see they're a lot more noticeable but still nothing amazing. This mascara is a tad bit lengthening and gives barely any volume. It hardly ever clumps and doesn't flake. It's definitely more of a natural look. The natural I don't mind, but it's the smudging that I do. This mascara is super smudgy. However, that might be my own fault. My eyes are quite sensitive and water up a lot. This mascara isn't suitable for sensitive eye types like mine; it doesn't bother my eyes or make them itchy, but smudges a lot when they tear up. There is a waterproof formula available, btw! It removes surprisingly easily with an oil-based remover. I have yet to see any lash growing properties in this mascara.

Overall? Not impressed, not disappointed. Worth it? No, not for $20 bucks. Will I repurchase? Maybe, probably not. If I do, I will make it a point to get the waterproof version. 

Upcoming Blog Posts + Project 365 | Life Update #2

8:21 PM

I've got a plethora of exciting blog posts coming soon. A few more photography posts (aperature and shutter speed, lighting, etc! I've been working really hard on them, haha) and DIYs (some of my favorite things ever). Look forward to that! I'm also quite close to finishing a bunch of products, so another empties post might be on its way. I also might start doing OOTDs. I'm not a big fashion gal but I've been really going through the women's fashion page on Pinterest lately.

 Quick Project 365 update - I've decided to do weekly themes whenever I can think of one. This week was "seven things that touch my face everyday" and these are my favorite pictures. I think for next week I'm simply doing "seven things."

What's In My Bag | School Makeup #2

4:30 PM

Today one of my friends was cleaning out her purse and I caught a glimpse at all the lipsticks. Let's just say that there were a lot. I pride myself in keeping a neat purse and bag; everything's in cute compartments and bags. But I do tend to accumulate products in my makeup bag, so I thought I'd dump it out and show you.

Here I've got a hand sanitizer, a hand cream, three lip products, a concealer, a rollerball perfume, a cute pack of tissues, and a mirror. Pretty good, right?

Thanks for reading! What's in your makeup bag right now?

mediocre life advice

How To Be Productive | Mediocre Life Advice

3:47 PM

I'd just like to point out that I am an extremely unproductive person. I procrastinate the hell out of things. Even making food. Sometimes I think that I have slight ADD because I can't focus on much at once. However, once I get in the groove, I can be super productive. In today's post I'll be sharing with you how I stay productive when I have a lot to get done. Usually it's homework with a dangerously looming deadline.

Eat Right
Eating right can give you a buttload of energy. Make sure you have a lot of liquids, natural sugars, and healthy foods. Yes, Doritos and Cheez-its can seem like a great snacking food while you're working on sit-down stuff, but in the end they make you feel bloated, puffy, and overall crappy. Instead, grab some dried or regular fruit like clementines, oranges, mangos, grapes, etc. If you're not a fruit person, that's fine. Get some nuts. Anything that gives you energy, but in a natural, healthy way. Make sure you drink a lot of water or tea! You'd be surprised how eating right can make you more productive.

Don't Stress
I know people say this all the time and you probably respond with a snappy "everybody stresses, how can I not stress?!" Don't worry, this is only natural. You're absolutely right. Everybody stresses! But try your best to keep your stress levels low; do whatever it takes to stay cool and relaxed. Take a break every now and then, listen to relaxing music, etc. Things that help you unwind are a great break time activity. Catch up on the latest Parks and Rec episode (I love Parks), take a Pokemon break, whatever. Just try your best to stay collected rather than frantic. It helps you look at things at a clearer perspective and keeps your grapefruit (mind) running.

Get Organized!
This is my best tip. When I have a lot to get done, I make lists. Chores and others on one side, homework and studying on another. Within those lists, I put everything from most important to least important. When I finish something, I cross it off. Feels great! I like to switch between chores and homework so I don't get swarmed in a pile of quantum physics notes and lose my mind. It might help you to get a task organizer or agenda; I simply write everything down on a notepad. There are tons of brilliant apps though, I highly recommend this lovely one. You'll find that when you're organized everything just goes smoother and you get more done, thus being much more productive.

Don't Procrastinate
This is a big issue for me. I can't not procrastinate. My body just isn't to trained to do anything right when my mind tells it to do it. However, I have really cut down on my procrastinating! Putting things off is the exact opposite of being productive; just do it. It seems painful and boring and annoying but you'll feel accomplished when you finish and you can do whatever you feel like.

Some smaller tips are to take care of yourself, ask others if you need help, get plenty of rest, and remember that being productive takes a lot of effort. I hope this helped~


Sonia Kashuk Brow Definer | Review

4:20 PM

Hi, everyone! How are y'all doing? Today was weird and gross and rainy and cold, but nothing like last week's high-of-12-degrees-Fahrenheit weather. Anyways, today I'm writing a review on a product that I've mentioned a few times, always saying good things. I'd taken the pictures months ago and forgot I had them until today.

What it is: a brow pencil
Where it is: Target stores
Price: $5.79
BTW: Sonia Kashuk is cruelty free!

Let's talk about brows for a second. Brow pencils are really hard to get right. Sometimes they're too hard, too soft, not waxy enough, too waxy. Some of them don't brush out, some of them brush out too much. This pencil hits the spot. Everything is so nice. SK claims that this pencil is " non-greasy and highly heat resistant. Use it to lengthen the light and particularly thin eyebrow hairs or with more thinner and closer perpendicular marks, to re-size a sparsely haired eyebrow arch." There are two shades available, Taupe (which I hear is wonderful for blonds) and Haze, which is the shade I have and am reviewing.

Packaging for this pencil is very basic but nice. It comes in a matte black pencil that has to be sharpened. More hygienic, but also wastes a little bit of product. The color on the end of the pencil corresponds with the shade. It doesn't come with a spoolie, which is the only thing I would change. Packaging is average and plain.

As you can see, Haze is a fairly lightly pigmented pencil. It looks a tad ashy in the picture, but it's very neutral toned - not too red, not too brown. I think this would suit a large range of brunettes, from dark blonds to people with soft black hair like mine. The formula for this pencil is really nice. As SK claimed, this pencil is non-greasy and very long lasting. You know how some brow products you have to set or the color will fade? Not with this little guy. He holds color really well. It's also easy to brush out with a spoolie or brush, but not to the point where it brushes away. 

This pencil checks all the boxes, and it has an affordable price! Highly recommend.

Thanks for reading! What's your favorite brow product?

Photography + Start of 2014 | Life Update

6:47 PM

This is a life update. For me, 2014 had a bit of a rocky start. Since returning to school, I've been quite stressed and constantly tired. Last week in particular dragged me along by the hair, kicking and screaming. The weekend, although a nice break, felt like an all-too-familiar dream where I wake up in school.

My mom went to Taiwan for a month to see her parents, leaving my brother and I alone with the devices of our father. Not a big deal really, because my brother takes me to school and then commutes to his school but the house without my mother is so... quiet.

On a different note, I finished an arduous research paper on Jeffersonian and Jacksonian democracy. The word limit was unbelievably short, so the hardest part of actually writing the paper was cutting words down. I handed it today asking the teacher to "please take care of my baby." I got some odd looks.

And now onto some photography! These are my favorite pictures from Project 365 so far. To be perfectly honest I take most of these after the sun goes down, in artificial lighting, hence why I like to put vintage, old-timey filters on my pictures - they disguise the bad lighting. I've also been using the same lens for every single picture this year, I've grown quite reattached to it after leaving it for a year or two.


What Lives In My Shower

4:42 PM

Hi everyone! Today I'm showing you the hair products I use on a regular basis. I don't normally talk about hair products on my blog, so this is a little different, but I wanted to share!

I have been using Dove shampoos for yeeeeeears. I find that they're great for daily cleansing because they aren't harsh or stripping, and don't dry out my ends. They also smell really really nice. Normally I get the blue one but I have this pomegranate scented one which smells heavenly.
I talked about the Clear products in my drugstore hair recommendations post a couple months ago, and for good reason. I'm using the conditioner right now, which is really great at nourishing hair and coaxing shine back. I use this all over, but concentrate on the ends.
The next two products I'm going to talk about together, because even though they aren't the same they're equally effective. They're from Bath & Body Works, and to be honest I mainly got them because they smell great. And smell great they do. Here I have the Volumizing shampoo and Moisturizing conditioner of the Warm Brown Sugar scent. Not to say that they're bad or ineffective, but just not as good as my other ones. These smell incredible, but don't do wonders. I only use them about once a week.
Lastly, there's the Garnier Fructis Sleek and Shine Morrocon Oil Treatment. This stuff is amazing! It smells like a freaking rainbow, if that's what a rainbow smelled like. It's really good for adding extra shine and strength to your hair, and when mixed with the Warm Brown Sugar fragrance is amazing.

Thanks for reading! What hair products do you use?


Everyday Makeup #2

4:27 PM

Hi, everyone! I'm back today with an everyday makeup post. I did one of these a couple months ago and I really like reading them (a good snoop around somebody's daily products is always satisfying to me), so I thought I'd do another one. I don't have a picture of my face, apologies - I already took off my makeup today.

Note the organized mess!

I've been focusing a lot on my base these days. My face has been a little red lately, so I've been using a base. My poison is the Sonia Kashuk Radiant Tinted Moisturizer, which is a lightweight, comfortable to wear base that cancels out redness and also gives you a very healthy, well, radiant complexion. Depending on how I feel and how red my nose looks, I'll use either the Sonia Kashuk Hidden Agenda Concealer or the NYX HD Photogenic Concealer. These are dabbed and buffed into the corners of my nose and the scars on my chin. After that, I use the Garnier Anti-Dark Circle Eyeroller under my eyes to brighten and bounce away dark circles. I set the concealers with the powder from the concealer palette.

I like a bit of a healthy glow, so I pop on a light pink blush from The Face Shop and and my favorite Sonia Kashuk Chic Luminosity Highlighter Stick. These two together are a great combo, they give me a very bright complexion.

Eyebrows are the most important thing to me. I love me some eyebrows, I ALWAYS do them. Many days I only leave the house with my brows. I simply fill in the sparse areas with the Sonia Kashuk Brow Definer (love this guy) and set them with the No7 Lash & Brow Perfector, which is looking a little gross at this point. This brow duo is great, the color lasts all day and my brows don't look all wonky and sticking out wrong.

I pop on a tiny bit eyeliner, very close to my lashline just for some subtle definition. I love pencil eyeliner, but they don't give you the razor-thin lines that the Physicians Formula Eye Booster Eyeliner can. Then I toss the Clinique Chubby Stick in Super Strawberry in my bag and put it on in the car because at this point I'm usually late.

That's all for today! Thanks for reading! Let me know what your daily products are.


Collective Haul! Mostly clothes ~

5:07 PM

Happy New Year! I can't believe 2013 is finally over. I hope you had a safe and happy holiday season. Today, I'm doing a collective haul. I was supposed to be in Michigan this week, but something came up and my trip had to be canceled. Oh well, there will be other times. Anyways, these are items that I have bought over the span of December, or received as Christmas presents. My family doesn't really celebrate Christmas, we're all too lazy to get presents for one another and my friends and I did a Secret Santa, so I didn't really get  many Christmas presents, but it's not a big deal! I'm still grateful for my friendships.

Let's start off with skincare samples! If you fill out this questionaire from Mario Badescu, they'll give you a list of some recommended products and then email you a few days later asking if you would like samples. Granted, these samples are tiny (note the hair tie for size reference) but they're generously filled and I haven't run out of any yet. The samples come with some booklets about the company and the products you received, they're even initialed by the president. It's really wonderful.

Next we have some beauty products. I've got the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush here, an impulse buy from earlier this month. I quite like the brush, but I've got to admit that it's so much smaller than I imagined. Another brush (or brush set, I should say) is the Ecotools Essential Eye Set. These are very nice. They're fluffy and soft, and I love the small size. Not to mention that with this set, you're pretty much set with eye brushes. I've got two products from The Face Shop here. In case you didn't know, The Face Shop is a Korean beauty brand. They're a little tough to find in America but there are stores and retailers. My friend got me a perfume (Soul Promise Ring) and a blush (Coral Cushion Blusher) from Fort Lee. They're both really lovely. Finally, I've got a concealer, the NYX HD Photogenic Concealer in Medium. I got this off Amazon from a great seller with quick shipping and I'm in love. It reflects light like a dream, casting away any dark marks or circles. 

I don't know how to photograph clothes. Don't hate me ^^"

Boxing Day isn't very well known in America, but a lot of stores like to drop their prices around Christmastime. I went shopping on Christmas Eve AND the equivalent of Boxing Day and I got quite a few items for very cheap.

So I went to H&M, which was having this ridiculously cheap sale... Items up to 65% off and buy two get one free? How could I ignore that? I got quite a few basics from there. I got a plain white v-neck and a black tank top with silver buttons. Both very simple and basic, and plus they're made of organic cotton! The red shirt is from RedBubble, it's a Supernatural shirt from my buddy for Christmas. Hehe.

More H&M! These are two high-low jersey tops with small breast pockets. They're the same shirt, just in a different color. I really like these high low shirts that cover my butt so I can wear leggings and not have to wear a thong. TMI? Maybe. But they're genius.

Another plain white t-shirt, this one loose and flowy. The one on the right I purchased at TJ Maxx. I can't find the brand anywhere, but the tags read Workshop. It's another high low, btw. Emily is happy.

Cardigans and sweaters, my favorite types of clothes. The one on the far left, hidden behind the other two is a plain gray crewneck from Old Navy (the plaid is my shirt, lol). It was discounted from $17 dollars to $4! The red one in the middle is a simple open cardigan from F21, super soft and was very cheap. There are even pockets. I love me some pockets. The cardigan on the right is also very basic; a v-neck buttoned one that is plain black. 

Finally, I got some pants. These gray jean/pant things are super cute, with panels by the knees. There's also a pair of plain black fleece-lined leggings which I LOVE. Perfect for winter wear.

Thanks for reading! What'd you get this holiday season?

Happy New Years!

12:00 AM

I hope 2014 is good to you ^^ 
Here's to a new year filled with new chances, beginnings, and opportunities. 

Emily xoxo

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Hi there, I'm Emily. It's nice to meet you. I'm a beauty blogger who also happens to be very interested in photography/film. Chat with me, let's be friends!