Today, I leave a kiss on post-it note…

Long time no see! Sorry we’ve all been a bit MIA. Charkie has been labouriously brushing up anatomy, physiology, and biochemistry knoweldge for her finals; Markie has been settling down in her new life (which I saw, is pretty sweet!) and being social, and Arkie has been busy with her job and being awesome. As for me? I have no excuse. Sorry!

This morning, as I left for work, I didn’t want to wake le significant other up, so I decided to do what I’ve seen in countless romcoms: leave a note and a kiss. I felt like a penguin waddling around in the dark and falling all over the place. Where’s the post-it note? How do I cut the tape? I can’t see! However, when I had the finished product hanging up on the wall… How did it feel? Pretty cool… I guess.

Lancome’s Color Design Lipstick in Wannabe Pink will do the trick! 🙂

Images via lancomeusa.com and fiverr.com

And now to something sort of related, not really – what’s your favorite lipstick (or lipgloss, if you don’t wear lipstick)? What’s your favorite romantic comedy?

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Today, I bring a little luck (Allure Free Stuff August 2013 Goodies Pt 1)…

It’s been a while! I’ve been a bit MIA lately, but I finally have some time to myself and am in a pensive mood. It’s crazy how some things in life really do come so unexpectedly.

When one door closes, another door opens; but we so often look so long and regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.
-Alexander Graham Bell

It really seems that a lot of luck has flown my way in the past few days. However, I’m beginning to wonder if this is really considered luck. Maybe it’s just that, in the words of Taylor Swift (<– yes, click on that link), “for the first time, what’s past is past.” Now I can actually see all the new open doors: new people and experiences have come into my life. Speaking of luck, I’ve apparently won a lot of goodies from the Allure Free Stuff August 2013 Giveaway. Here’s a look at the first few that have come my way. I definitely have positive experiences with the cleanser and the hair treatment. Have you tried any of these products? Have you won anything from the giveaway? 

Left to Right:

  1. Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser (retail value: $11.99)
  2. NYC New York Color Lip Stain in Smooch Proof (retail value: $4.99)
  3. Rimmel London ScandalEyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in Brown, ScandalEyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in Black, Lasting Finish 1000 Kisses Lip Pencil in Rose Quartz, Match Perfection Blush in Light, and Glam’Eyes Quad Eye Shadow in Smokey Brun (retail value: $24.95)
  4. Nuance Salma Hayek Leave-in Treatment (retail value: $9.99)

I’m excited. I still have a few more products coming in, but so far, the total value of all the free goods I’ve received has come to ~$51.92 which is more than I expected. 🙂 🙂

Happy Veterans Day!

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Today, I have a little secret after making my own skincare products…

An idea has been zooming all around my brain lately… but it only solidified Wednesday night while I was learning how to make lip balm, facial toner mist, and a body salt scrub. It’s still in the works, so I won’t say much now but it’ll be a long process of experimentation, but I am so very happy to let you lovely readers in on it! Maybe you’ll get to try out the end-product 😉 I’ll tell you about the journey along the way. As for last night’s event, I had so much fun! I realized the process of making my own skincare products brought a combination of three things that I Iove together: culinary arts, science, and beauty.

Is this a cooking class?

I’m surprised that the livingsocial venue (at least the one in DC) is so spacious! And I didn’t realize the turnout would be so great. Jill Dickens from Evolve Skin taught the class. Her story was really interesting and also inspiring. Something she emphasized quite often can be summarized in her following statement –

If you can’t eat it, it shouldn’t be going on your skin.

For the skincare products, it’s best to use distilled water. In this case we were saving water, so the water used above will be the same one as the one used for the toner. The double boiler method is used a lot in making these products. Very simple to do. Boil a pot of water, put another bowl on top (something that can stand the heat, of course), and voila! You’ll be able to avoid having your products burn or getting into contact with water.

Lip Balm

Here’s the coconut oil in our double boiler. Coconut oil can be help with dry skin and can moisturize your hair.

 

Candilila wax (left), derived from a Mexican shrub, is used as a substitute for beeswax. If you’re ever working with a recipe that calls for beeswax and you want to use this as a substitute, you only need to use one-half of it.

Unrefined cocoa butter (right) was added. It looked like shredded cheese to me. It can help in extending shelf life for one year and can also help for stretch marks. Keeping this in mind 🙂

A drop of Vitamin E (d-alpha-tocopherol) was added. It can also extend shelf life and is a very thick oil.

Pipette the mixture into your lib balm tubes. Set it aside and let it cool. And voila! Here you have the lip balm.

Green Tea Facial Toner Mist

 

The base of the toner here is green tea. Green tea is an antioxidant that protects the skin from free radicals and helps to maintain skin elasticity. Aloe vera was added; it can be used for dry patches and for sunburns. Lavendar oil, an antiseptic, was also used. It helps to get excess impurities out of your skin and is good for wrinkles, sunburn, and stress (calming aromatherapy). The toner has a shelf life of about 2-3 weeks if placed in the refrigerator. If you add in a drop of Vitamin E oil, you can extend the shelf life for ~2-3 months. Pretty sweet, huh?

Detoxifying Body Scrub

This is a body scrub not for the face but rather for the body. If you were making a scrub for the face, you would need to use a much finer salt. Epsom salt is detoxifying and can be found almost everywhere (CVS, Walgreens, etc). Other ingredients included castille soap, extra virgin olive oil (penetrates deep into the skin and provides long-lasting deep moisture by providing a shield for the skin). You could replace the EVOO with grape seed oil or some other veggie-ish oil. We went for peppermint oil to sooth and cool the skin. It helps to clear, awaken, and brighten your [tired] skin. It’s anti-bacterial, anti-viral and energizing. Quite simple… combine all the ingredients into a bowl and you’ve got your body scrub.

The finished products 🙂 Remember to store everything in air-tight containers and keep in a cool place. Have you ever made your own beauty products? Please do share! 🙂 

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Today, I drink lots of hot chocolate & enjoy my NewBeauty TestTube Sept/Aug 2013…

My NewBeauty TestTube came on my birthday! What a lovely “Experiment with Beauty” birthday surprise! 🙂 Since tests and applications are starting to slow down, I have much more time to just enjoy this 20-something life, which sadly but also lovingly means gorging on delicious food (pizza?), sipping on coffee/teas/hot chocolate, lying in bed, watching TV, etc. Speaking of which, Downton Abbey came out overseas. I shall watch tonight along with my cup of hot chocolate. Markie found this article about the health benefits of hot chocolate (let’s keep away Alzheimer’s & Dementia!). I guess I can’t complain. Of course, the addition time given to me also means finding new/discovering old hobbies (drawing/painting) and spending quality time with dear friends 🙂

NewBeauty TestTube
Cost: $29.95 + S&H (~$38.00)
See my previous reviews HERE.

photo (2)

The box has gone through some changes along with that came new packing! The overall design is so pretty! And the tube is now recyclable and reusable! I love it. I always felt a bit guilty having to throw away the previous tubes. I am still thinking of ways to use this tube.

I was excited to receive an additional AmorePacific color control cushion compact and two hair products! 🙂 Much needed!

AmorePacific Color Control Cushion (0.14 oz / $8) 
I first discovered this product in a previous Glossybox… I love that it protects, hydrates and provides coverage… the perfect on-to-go product to keep in your bag. It’s interesting in the sense that the makeup is liquid-ish but in a sponge so that you can control how much of it gets applied onto the puff. The puff is what is used to apply make-up to face. Wonderful coverage! 🙂

BioSilk Silk Therapy (2.26 oz / $10.01)
This product contains silk, wheat and soy proteins and smells wonderful! It isn’t too heavy and leaves my hair feeling so smooth!

It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In Plus Keratin (2 oz / $10) 
I first experimented with It’s a 10 product .. actually from a previous testtube. I finished that bottle last week, so I’m excited to get this one. 🙂 Smells good and works!

IT Cosmetics Heavenly Luxe Powder Brush (Full size: $48) 
It’s a large plush powder brush. I don’t wear make-up that often… but it seems so awesome that I’m going to have to give it a try… maybe with my bareminerals powder that I’ve been meaning to use. Apparently delivers a flawless airbrush application every time! 🙂

Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer (0.25 oz/ $2.97)
I’ve actually received way too many of these deluxe samples that I’ve lost count. However, I keep managing to give them away, so this time, I will TRY it. I’ve heard good things about them. Have any of you tried them?

La Roche-Posay Mela-D Deep Cleansing Brightening Foaming Cream (0.5 oz / $9) 
Brightens with gentle exfoliation. Smells good… I wouldn’t say it’s too foaming, but I think it’ll be go wonderfully with my foaming net. Formulated with 0.1% micro-exfoliating Lipo-Hydroxy Acid (LHA).

Mally Evercolor Starlight Waterproof Eyeliner (Full size: $15) 
This is a really pretty eyeliner. Light blue-ish with almost a light green tiny. I don’t think I’ll use this much… so expect in a future giveaway 🙂

Extra samples 🙂 I am in somewhat of a rush, so I won’t calculate the value of these bonus products! I’m sad that my dr brandt collagen booster doesn’t work. I’m a bit lazy to try to contact customer service. Should I contact? Bleh. Lazy me. Hahaha.

The total value of this box came to OVER $102.98. Aside from the eyeliner, I’ll be able to use every single product (and I’m looking forward to it). This was a wonderful box for me. What did you think of it? I’m currently stuck in between deciding whether to keep Blush Beauty or NewBeauty mystery box :\ I need to cut back on spending to just one box. Any suggestions? Advice? Comments? 

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Today, I am glad it’s Friday! (Blush Beauty Mystery Box September 2013)

Looks like I’m going to be the fifth wheel tonight at Jaleo DC. Might as well start hashtagging things as #foreveralone… or as I joking mentioned to the Arkies, my ONE TRUE LOVE or OTP or #onetruepairing is with food 🙂 NEVER BE ASHAMED of your interests and loves. Speaking of interests and loves, my Blush mystery box came! 🙂 🙂 I have to leave in about 30 minutes, so I’ll keep this short-ish! I LOVE LOVE LOVE Blush and this month is no exception! But let me just say that ONE of the products I received made the entire box worth it to me!

Blush Mystery Box 
The Box: Full, deluxe and travel size products worth at least $100 + a free gift
Cost: $24.95 (monthly subscription)/ $34.95 (one time subscription)
See my previous reviews HERE

***Coupon: If you’d like to try blush out but are not willing to subscribe, send an email to todaycommai@gmail.com and I’ll send you a referral link for a $10.00 off a one-time subscription (or it’s really off any $30 product at DermStore, blush or HairEnvy) 

A preview of the beauty box. Something feels bulky inside the bag. What could it be??!?!?!!!!

Racinne Deluxe Travel Set (Valued at $70.56)
MY EYES WENT @_@ when I pulled this bulky kit out of the mystery bag. This set consists of the Ultimate Youth Power Cream (.34 oz), Serum  (.34 oz), Mask  (1.07 oz), and Neck Emulsion  (.34 oz). This line uses Korean ginseng callus extracts and active antioxidant ingredients to reduce the signs of aging.

Amlactin Triple Action Alpha-hydroxy Therapy Foot Cream (3 oz / $10)
Basic foot cream. It has kind of a light, fresh wood scent (maybe that’s not the right description). But it’s light and not overpowering.

LVX Nail Lacquer in Midori (.5 oz /$16.00)
I am always amazed when nail polish costs more than $10.00! This is a “muted neon green” that is very spring/summer season.

Pop Pouty Pop Crayon in fuchsia flirt (Value $4.16 ??)
Very pink. Crayon.

Alterna Caviar Anti-Aging Dry Shampoo (0.10 oz / $0.83)
I love dry shampoo. I also love ALTERNA. I also have disgusting/aging hair that is slowly being fixed thanks to these subscription boxes. 🙂 This will definitely go to use (though it is a tiny sample).

Brad Biophotonic Skin Care Ultra Peel (0.25 oz / $25.73)
Oh my goodness. The full size (1.7 oz) product is $175! This product better work! It contains kojic acid, licorice and bearberry extract to treat brown spots and give you a more even skin tone.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel (0.085 oz / $6.67)
Uses a hydrating, flake-free formula that keeps your eyebrows in place.

These were my free samples – VICHY Liftactiv (0.05 oz / $4.46) and Airbrush Eye Cream (which I’ve gotten twice before).

Final Thoughts. The value of this box came to $133.95. Overall, I think some of the previous boxes have been better. However, I was so happy to see the Racinne Deluxe Travel Set in this box! I will use most of the items, and it was a good variety… though I think som eof the other samples had to be smaller to accommodate the anti-aging kit. Anyways, hope you enjoy yours if you get this, too! Did you receive the same products? 🙂 

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Today, I am busy!

I’ve got a busy day ahead of me today! Lunches, retirement/send-off parties, work work work! 🙂 Busy days are always more rewarding than bored days. Is today a busy school/work/life day for you, also? I was so happy to have won a bracelet giveaway hosted by Jen over at Dragonfly Reviews (thanks for hosting!!). She was sweet enough to add some make up and Julep nail polishes into the bag!

I actually saw these Hello Kitty eyeliners on Sephora and had been wanting to buy them (I LOVE HELLO KITTY) .. but now I don’t have to! YAY! Have you tried any of the below products? What do you think you’d like? Okay, until next time!

as always,
Jarkie

Satindoll bracelet amidst the wonderful goodies! 🙂 

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Today, I prepare for the change in season with the ULTA Collection…

I was so so so excited to have found out that I won the Birthday Beauty Giveaway hosted by Michelle over at Beautiful Goodies. September is my birthday month, so I’m considering this as my early birthday present. Haha 🙂 Michelle’s birthday was towards the end of August (Happy belated birthday!), I believe, and it was such a sweet thing for her to host a giveaway! If you haven’t checked out her blog, you should check it out! Prior to stumbling upon the world of beauty subscription boxes, she considered herself a “Plain Jane.” Things are different now, of course 🙂 The package came in a timely manner and I was so happy to receive make-up from ULTA to play with. I’m not much of a makeup gal, but this opportunity will give me a chance to change things up a bit… just in time for a change in season! My favorite season is FALL/AUTUMN! 🙂 I love being able to wear layers, scarves, stockings, tights, leg warmers (okay that’s closer to winter), boots … etc. The change in color of the leaves , apple cider, pumpkin-flavored things… sigh… so amazing. Anyways, let me show ya what I received.

I had no idea that ULTA has their own collection!  All the products were full-sized and products that I will use.

Salon Nail Polish in Grin and Berry It – I love this shade. In the light in looks like a pretty magenta… but it can look pink or purple depending on the lighting and whatnot. Love it for fall!

Smokey Eyes Eyeliner in Smoke – always need eyeliner 🙂 Excited! 🙂

Mineral Blush in Sweet Pea – I’ve been looking for a blush! It’s small enough to stick in a clutch or small wallet for on-the-go touch-ups!

Eye Shadow in Plum Smoke

Eye Shadow in Lustre

Nourishing Mineral Lip Gloss in Rose Garnet –

Loving the new nail polish and lip gloss! Already using both today!

I cannot wait to try out the eyeliner, eye shadows, and blush! Have you heard of or tried the ULTA Collection? They seem to be well priced… and you can get a BUY 2 GET 1 free deal right now. 🙂 I might have to check out some of their other products!!

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