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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Makeup Tutorial {Night Out}

I am not a makeup guru.
It has taken me years to figure out the difference between blush and bronzer, or to even learn what a smudge brush was.
However, I think I finally have a solid makeup routine down-pat. The following is by no means an everyday look - this is my going-out makeup look, and I do pretty much the same thing every time.
So here's my step-by-step tutorial on my going-out look!

1. I start with a blank canvas - freshly washed and moisturized face. I always do my hair before my makeup, since my hair can fall nicely as time goes on but my makeup needs to stay put.

2. My first product is the Neutrogena Shine Control Primer. My face is very shiny in the t-zone, and this helps my makeup stay on, and keep it matte.

3. I then use Too Faced's Lemon Drop Eye Shadow Primer. This helps get rid of under eye circles and keep my eyeshadow in place.

4. Concealer (lifesaver). I use Cinema Secrets Cream Concealer in #61. My face is extremely volatile in terms of acne and redness, plus I have awful under eye circles. I use concealer liberally on my chin, eyelids, under my eyes, around my nose, and on my forehead. I leave my cheeks without concealer (unless they need some), so that's why they look so red in these pictures. I spread the concealer around with my fingers and blend it in as best as I can.

5. Eyes. I picked up my eyeshadow palette at Forever 21 (unusual, I know). It has been a great palette for a more neutral look. I start with the lightest shade, which is a shimmery beige. I spread that all over my lids and up to my brow-bone.

I then use the rose-gold shade, which as you can see I love dearly, and spread that all over my lids, still using my basic eyeshadow brush.

Then, I grab my smudge brush and lightly get some of the darkest shade of brown on the brush. I essentially draw a straight line in my crease and then go back over it with my blending brush to smooth it all in.

Before blending!

Finally, I do my eyeliner. This time I used the Neutrogena Nourishing Eyeliner in Charcoal, but I often alternate between that and a chocolate eyeliner. I line my top and bottom lids, and smudge on the bottom using the smudger attached to the eyeliner. I do my mascara after I've finished using all of my powders so that the powder doesn't cover up the mascara.

6. Foundation. My foundation is a custom shade for my skin tone. I go to a place called Elea Blake in Chattanooga where all of my makeup is custom matched to my skin tone. I use foundation, concealer,  blush, and bronzer from there regularly. I have a few eyeshadows and lipsticks from there as well, but I try to save those for special occasions. I have always used a loose minerals for my makeup, and although they are messy, they are the best choice for my skin.

7. Bronzer & Blush. My bronzer is a mauve-y peach powder from Elea Blake. I use a big fluffy brush to make sure I don't put too much on and I always shake the excess product off before it touches my face. I put the bronzer on my forehead and in the hollows of my cheeks to contour subtly.

After using the bronzer, I use the same brush for my blush, which is also from Elea Blake. This is a muted rose color, and I spread it out lightly on the apples of my cheeks.

Finally, I use a little bit of liquid highlighter to accent my cheekbones. I do not have an extremely prominent bone structure, so this little bit of shine goes a long way for me. I use Elf Shimmer Whip and lightly pat it into my cheekbones and on the bridge of my nose. 

8. Finishing Powder. I use Neutrogena Shine Control Powder with my Kabuki brush to set my makeup. This product is a lifesaver in terms of keeping my overall look matte. I just dust it all over my face and then my makeup is set!

9. Mascara. I save this step until after all of my powders are on my face so that the mascara is a little purer. I used CoverGirl Flamed Out Mascara in Very Black, and below you can see the difference between the eye that is and isn't coated. I do several coats, and then I'm onto brow gel. This just helps comb out any powder that may have lightened my brow color and gets them in line. It's a clear gel, so the color of my eyebrows isn't altered, but they're just tamed.

10. Highlighter (Round 2). I use the Almay Wake-Up Eyeliner and Highlighter duo to complete my eye makeup. I only use the highlighter side though. I just swipe it in the inner corners of my eyes and right under the brow bone. It's a very soft shimmer, but it goes a long way to brighten my eyes.

11. FINALLY - lips! This is the last step! I used a Tarte lipstick here that I got from Sephora. It's a great color that stays put over time. I just spread that all over my lips and finish with a little bit of gloss.

All done! Now for a fun night out!

Monday, December 30, 2013

2014...Ready or Not

It's so crazy to think that 2013 is almost over! It has been one crazy year. I've dealt with a shoulder injury, started my first relationship, survived by first AP exams, had my own personal financial crisis, gotten into my first car wreck, and applied to college. And those are just the big things.
However, 2014 is barreling towards us all.
In the next six months alone, I will: compete in my final state championship meet, participate in my senior May Day, graduate from high school, and be accepted into college (somewhere).
It's terrifying.
This coming year is going to be chock-full of change! It's so scary to imagine everything that's about to happen in my life.
As I think about everything that's going to happen, a quote from Jason Aldean's song "Fast" pops into my head.
"Hey, what's past is past. Oh nothing in this world lasts. Hey, aren't those four lanes fast."

Happy New Year.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Progressive Dinner {picture dump}

Last Wednesday was the annual Progressive Dinner. This is a huge huge event for my swim team!
Let me explain this dinner a bit - it happens every year right before Christmas, and we eat appetizers at one house, dinner at another, and have dessert and a sleepover at another house. We do a Secret Santa gift exchange and take TONS of pictures. It is always a fun night (even when we watch horror movies...).
This was my third time hosting a part of the Progressive Dinner. I've hosted the appetizer portion my freshman, sophomore, and senior years because I live so close to school, so it makes for a great first stop.
We had breaded mozzarella sticks, sausage balls, fruit, and mini quiches.
My mom did a great job of decorating the house to accommodate our guests!
Merry Christmas, y'all!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Modern Feminism

Recently, I logged into Facebook to see an article headed "2013 - It's been a great year for Feminism." I didn't click on it since I was in a hurry, but the title caught my eye. A great year for feminism...hmm...
Was it really that great of a year? As a student at an all-girls school, female empowerment is a very emphasized subject. But, I have some personal issues with feminism as a philosophy.
To me, feminism means being proud of being female and not letting the gender you were born into limit your accomplishments.
However, some people feel that in order to be a feminist you must denounce being a woman altogether, and I strongly disagree. I want to get married, I want to start a family, and I want to have a successful career in a field of my choosing. Some would feel that my desire for the first two things should disqualify me from supporting the gender equality movement, or rather that because I choose to own up to the fact that because I am a girl, I am naturally inclined to the maternal instinct and bond, that I am not qualified to stand up for female rights.
This seems so silly to me. Why on earth should we, as girls, reject what makes us girls? Why is that a bad thing?
So, I believe that there is a balance. There's a way to embrace the traditional family life without sacrificing a successful life. Feminism to me is being able to be a girl in every way, and then to never let a gender bias stop you from achieving your dreams.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Break Plans

I don't know about y'all but I am dying for a break. This semester has been so long and crazy. Between my regular schoolwork and college applications, it's been stressful. I'm pretty sure that this has been the most stressful year yet. I've been trying to handle a leadership position, a full course load, a time-consuming athletic schedule, and a somewhat decent social life.
It's a lot.
So, I'm pumped for a break.
I'm ready for naps and no school, for Christmas movies and giving gifts to family and friends.
I'm ready (ready?) for 5 hours of swim practice a day, with naps and naps in between.
I'm ready to work on scholarship applications (eh), but more ready to have them done and out of the way.
I'm ready to have all of my projects, test, and quizzes done.
If you haven't noticed, I'm already out of here!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas List

Christmas List

Kate spade bag

Jennifer Zeuner initial ring

Kate Spade apple iphone case

Ray-Ban plastic sunglasses

It's almost that time of year! Christmas is the best time of the year. Because I got in a car accident last month, I have to focus on asking for money to help pay for the repairs, but if I were to make a Christmas list...this would be it.