A few months ago I stopped into Nordstrom to pick up a few samples of the Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation. I love that there is a counter just a few blocks away from home, allowing me to delight in trying all the latest products from one of my absolute favorite makeup artists. My wallet, however, maybe doesn’t delight in this fact as much as I do.

While getting color matched – I am currently a 4 – the lady helping me casually mentioned that Charlotte Tilbury herself would be coming to the Seattle Nordstrom that coming week! I’m positive that my friend thought I had won the lottery, as I was maybe a little bit too excited at this news. I quickly made an appointment to have my makeup done, and to meet Charlotte at her personal appearance.

Charlotte Tilbury Seattle Personal Appearance

I stopped in early for a makeover appointment, and had my makeup done loosely in the style of “The Ingenue” but with a few changes to better reflect my personal style – a bit more depth in color for the eyeshadow and black eyeliner on my tight-line to better blend in my lashes (one of my favorite tricks for creating a natural false lash look).

After the appointment, it was time to line up to meet Charlotte. I was so pleasantly surprised by how lovely she is – she took the time to speak with everyone in line and recommend specific techniques and products from her range. To have an elite makeup artist like her compliment your eye color and lashes was just beyond exciting… Especially considering that earlier that week, Charlotte had been in New York at the Met Gala, doing the makeup of one of my ultimate style icons – Blake Lively.

I ended up purchasing the 5 Minute Face On the Go Palette and received a mini size of the new Legendary Lashes Mascara as a gift. I can say that I love the palette, but can’t quite get on board with the mascara. It has the habit of running down my face and is so strongly perfumed that I can smell my eyelashes for hours after application (which is super bizarre in my opinion). Next time I head to the Charlotte Tilbury counter at Nordstrom, I’ll definitely continue to pick up the ever-trusty Full Fat Mascara instead.

Charlotte Tilbury Seattle Personal Appearance Charlotte Tilbury Seattle Personal Appearance

Do you have any recommendations for new products to try?

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A big hooray for my first monthly favorites post! I feel like every Youtube video or blog post about favorites is required to start off with “How is it _____ (month) already!?”, but really – how is it April already? March was a busy month at work, which made the whole thing go by quickly. In addition to being a busy worker bee, I had my birthday at the beginning of the month, and celebrated for a few weeks with various friends due to travel schedules. I think that celebrating your birthday all month should be a regular thing, and I plan on doing this again next year.

This was also a good month for trying new things. After my trip to Australia in February, and the changing seasons, I found that I needed some new skincare items, as well as some new makeup. Helllllllo sunshine – goodbye vampire skin.

March faves 2016

 

 

While this technically became a favorite in February, the Origins Drink Up Intensive Mask (1) has been my trusty skin quencher for everything from a 15 hour trans-Pacific flight to the everyday struggle of not having a flaky face. I bought the travel size prior to flying to Melbourne (literally three hours before my flight – gotta raid the travel section at Sephora for a flight like that), and have loved it ever since. I’m now at the point of squeezing every last drop out of this small tube a whole month and a half later, which is amazing considering that it has been a staple in my skincare rotation. It smells of peaches, and leaves my skin as soft as one, too. At $17 for the small tube, this has been worth every penny.

Dry skin is something that I’ve dealt with forever – so I decided to try using straight up coconut oil as a facial moisturizer a few weeks ago. This was a bad idea. My skin was less dry, but considerably more pimply than before. I usually have very clear skin, so this was devastating. I rekindled my long lost love for my Clarisonic Mia (7) brush in a quest to clear those pores out. I am currently using the Radiance Replacement Brush Head (2), which is a tiny bit softer than the sensitive brush (from what I remember). In addition to some more stringent cleansing, the Kate Somervile EradiKate Acne Treatment (3) has been a huge help. It is just like the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion, but more expensive 🙁 Sometimes the markup is worth it when you need to treat a spot, stat, and you’re already in Sephora. Both of these treatments do a great job of making zits disappear overnight, but do leave you with the vague smell of rotten eggs as sulfur is the main ingredient – again, worth it.

I have been especially loving my Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette (4) lately. I received this as a gift at Christmas, but I have really noticed that each of the shades is looking a bit more “loved” this month. If I could douse my whole body in ambient lighting powder, that would be truly great.

For eyes, I have been using the Maybelline Master Precise Skinny Eye Pencil (5) and am so glad to have found it! I loved the Hourglass 1.5 mm Mechanical Gel Liner but found that I went through it too quickly to justify the higher price tag. This is a very close dupe, and while not as creamy, does the trick of getting into the upper lash line/tight-line very well.

I have been on the quest for a cool toned dark brown eyebrow pencil for some time now and am thrilled to have found Charlotte Tilbury’s Brow Lift Pencil in “Cara D”. Like all eyebrow pencils, there is a mechanical pencil on one end – this one is like a wedge marker shape which fits the brows nicely – and a spooli brush on the other end. This product surprised me though. I had no clue that there was a highlighter included in the middle though! I was very pleasantly surprised to find a small highlighter smudger screw out of the middle in a color very similar to Becca’s Champagne Pop (another favorite).

Moving away from beauty – I have found a bra that I never want to part with ever. The Free to Be (wild) Bra from Lululemon (8) is quite possibly the most comfortable bra I have ever had the pleasure of wearing. Yes, it is a sports bra, but it is cute and doesn’t result in uni-boob! I am excited to wear this with tank tops this summer, as it is a great option for when you actually do want your bra straps to show. I have this in both black and white in preparation for all sorts of summer ensembles.

Lastly, this whole post was written while deeply inhaling the scent of a Capri Blue Volcano Candle (9). I have one in my kitchen, another in my bathroom, and a room spray for everywhere in between, so it is safe to say I am obsessed.

I hope you enjoyed reading my very rambly March Favorites! What have you been loving this month? Let me know! 🙂

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The day after my Christmas party with friends, all I wanted was to have a thoroughly relaxing “me” day. First order of business was to take off all the jewelry that I passed out in glamorously fell asleep in. I love this tiny jewelry dish that my Mom sent to me in a care package a while ago. It’s a tiny glass Texas, with a gold heart over Austin <3 I can’t say how happy this makes me every time I come home. 
It is the perfect size for my ring, and whatever earrings that I’m currently wearing. On this particular occasion, I had worn my Megan Runser Good as Gold for BaubleBar “DIAMOND CAYMAN STUDS”. Megan is a fabulous friend who is currently battling Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. In true style, she designed a Guest Bartender collection for BaubleBar. 100% of the proceeds go to The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I think I’ve worn these studs at least four times a week since getting them the day the collection launched. I love how just a bit of glitter can dress up even the most boring winter garb by day, but transition so well into luxurious statement earrings by night. Paying it forward never looked so good. Check out the rest of her collection here!

Next on my agenda was to just relaxxxx. One thing that helps me to instantly feel more at ease is to pamper my skin. I recently went to Uwajimaya – a truly massive Asian supermarket here in Seattle. I went with one thing on my mind – face masks. I love a good sheet mask, because they can be so hydrating but require basically no effort to apply or remove. I’ve heard such great things about the sheet masks made in Asia, but haven’t had a good place to find them until moving up here. 
This only makes up a small selection of the truly ridiculous amount of masks that I bought. Walking down the face mask aisle was pretty much like being a kid in a candy shop. I had to try each one. What’s nuts is, I didn’t even scratch the surface of what they had to offer. So far, I have tried masks with “Diamond Extract”, “Hyaluronic Acid”, and “Pearl Essence”. Each one has left my skin feeling refreshed, and particularly moisturized the day after. For about $1.50 to $2.00 a piece, they are definitely worth it!
I saw something that I just couldn’t leave without right as I checked out with my face masks. Bioderma. You have eluded me for so long. I have always wanted to try this cleanser, but have been weirded out by the idea of ordering it online. I love this so far. I have used it to completely remove my makeup a few times, but I really prefer to use it after my usual cleansing routine. It definitely helps to get rid of any lingering makeup, and really tones the skin while keeping the moisture in. 
I couldn’t not share my framed “Your the Shit” Calligraphy. Who doesn’t love some gilded script, especially when the message itself isn’t all that fancy? For all the cleansers and masks in the world, there are some things that you just can’t clean up – my sense of humor included. 🙂
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As I had mentioned in my “Going Crazy at Ulta” post earlier this week, living in Seattle has made me rethink a crucial step in my daily makeup routine – mascara.

Defining my lashes is a very important part of my cosmetic ritual; so much so that I will still wear mascara even if I’m having a “no makeup” day, and would certainly bring a tube with me to a desert island. However strong my love for this black goo is, my least favorite thing to happen to my face throughout the day is to look in the mirror to find that my mascara has flaked, smudged, or just mysteriously disappeared.

Walking to work every morning, I am often faced with a face full of mist and drizzle, which certainly doesn’t help things. In Austin, it was always so dry that any ol’ mascara would do and I never had to bother with anything waterproof unless I was out on the lake paddle-boarding. Within the first few weeks of moving here, I deemed it necessary to pick up a waterproof mascara because I’m not going to let a little moisture turn me into a raccoon by 9am each day. After a few weeks, I noticed a change in my lashes – they were crunchier, tanglier, and over all lacking luster as a result of coats on coats of harsh product. I needed help.

When I found myself happily perusing the aisles of my semi-local Ulta, I was approached by one of their employees and she told me that I absolutely had to check something out. All of a sudden, I’m standing in front of the Per-fékt counter clutching a tube of their “Lash Perfection Gel” ($28.50). It is billed as a primer/mascara hybrid that helps to darken, lengthen, strengthen, curl, and condition. I was immediately sold when I head the words “”oil free” and “hyaluronic acid” during this description. This is exactly what I was looking for, something that wouldn’t budge and would actually help to condition and moisturize my lashes!

Since the formulation is oil free, the mascara ends up being water resistant without necessarily being waterproof. Gone are the nights of scrubbing at my eyes with cleansing balm, only to still wake up to raccoon eyed mornings! No longer will it feel like I’m applying my mascara with a rusty lawn rake because there is still left over residue from the day before! What I’m trying to say is… this is easy to remove, but stays put when you want it. The hyaluronic acid helps to undo some of my existing damage, by holding its weight in water several times over. Add in some Vitamin A and E, as well as some tiny lash building fibers, and it’s like my waterproof woes never happened! 
I love this mascara so far – it is light, natural, and healthy, but builds and has enough staying power to really make an impact. If you have any suggestions for lash care or fab mascara recommendations, let me know in the comments or tweet me @allistewart :]

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There’s really something about always having a fresh manicure. I always feel more put together – polished, if you will – whenever I can look down and see glossy, colorful nails. Really, it does make me feel more confident as I go about my everyday activities. It might be silly, but on the inside, I’m thinking “Oh yes, you know I’m fancy. Have you seen these nails?!” Somehow that makes typing emails, going to the gym, cleaning my apartment, or sitting in traffic way more fabulous.

That said – having to constantly keep up with my manicure is so annoying! I don’t mind painting my nails – I actually prefer painting them myself – but the time it takes is always a drag. I also don’t have the time and/or money to luxuriate at the spa all the time either. I’ve tried traditional UV Gel polish a few times, thinking that having something long wearing would do the trick; but I really find the removal process to be an unnecessary hassle, and despite claims that it is safe for your nails, mine always look awful after.

I am so excited to try Sally Hansen’s new Miracle Gel kit, since it promises two of the things that I look for in an awesome manicure: 1. Long wearing – they claim a whole two weeks, 2. EASY – you can remove it with normal acetone or nail polish remover ( 😀 ). 

I went to not one, but two, Targets before deciding to pick up the “Pretty Piggy” kit. I only just applied this last night, so I can’t say anything about its staying power but it was super easy to apply. It’s basically the same drill as a normal polish: one coat, two coats, top coat, and dry. It wasn’t streaky or gloopy at all, and actually dried rather quickly. I’m looking forward to seeing just how long this will last. Hopefully it will be the answer to all of my manicure wishes and dreams!

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