Sunday, June 26, 2011

How to Apply Glitter as Eyeshadow

I love glitter and love wearing if for a night out, but damn, does it make a mess. Keep in mind that it will stick to everything and you will probably be finding glitter in all kinds of unexpected places for days after you wear it... That being said, this tutorial will help you apply it easily and keep in place until you take it off! Taking it off can be quite tricky, try something thick like Pond's Cold Cream. You will still end up with glitter in your eyebrows, hair and all over your boyfriend!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Giveaway Entry And Rules

Hey everyone!

I'm really excited to do this giveaway! I purchased a two sets of feather hair extensions. They are fun and easy to apply!

Please enter this contest for your chance to win:
4 individual solid purple feathers
5 individual stripped turquoise feathers
10 beads

The Body Shop Bronze Honey Lip Nectar in Honey Beige
This contest is open internationally and you must be 18 older. If you are not 18 or older, you must have your parents permission to enter and give out your address.

You must be a subscriber on youtube to enter this contest!
Please comment on the video for your first entry. Please tell me your favorite beauty product for summer!

You also get one entry for the following:
  • Following me on twitter (because some user names on twitter will be different for youtube user names, please leave a your twitter user name in a comment below, so I know its you!)
  • Follow my blog (again you will need to leave a comment below with your blogger or email/user name, so I know its you!)

The giveaway will close on THURSDAY, JULY 7th and the winner will be announced JULY 11th.

Each entry will be given a number and will chose the winner! The winner will be selected at random and will be notified via Youtube message after the announcement video has been posted. You have 24 hours to respond with your shipping address before another winner will be selected. 

Thank you to everyone for the support and following! I can't wait to hear your suggestions!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Soak Off Gel Laquer Review

OPI Axxium Soak Off Gel Polish in My Private Jet

I am absolutely loving UV cured gel systems. I think they are quite possibly the greatest thing since sliced bread!  I have been using two different systems that both work with my UV lamp, OPI Axxium Soak Off Gel Lacquer and IBD Gelac.

Nail polish has never lasted very long on my nails. My nails have been sensitive and peeling lately which does not make for a good platform from nail polish. It would often chip in the first 24 hours, if I didn't mess them up while they were wet! I was really skeptical when I first heard of CND Shellac, but did some research and they seemed great. When I finally made the decision to purchase a system for myself I decided to go with the OPI Axxium for a few reasons.

OPI Axxium has a lot of colors to choose from and they are replicas of our favorite OPI nail lacquers. I chose Axxium over Shellac because Shellac has so few colors to choose from. I am not a large fan of nude, pink and red colors. They are lacking fun purple, blues, and brights that Axxium has. There are downsides to Axxium as well. The colors are slightly more translucent than their lacquers and don't always match the lacquer exactly. The My Private Jet is slightly lighter, but still beautiful. I have to apply 3 coats of color to get an opaque finish. The Axxium system has one major difference from Shellac and that is that it comes in a pot and must be applied with a separate brush. Shellac comes in a bottle like a traditional lacquer.

I wanted to try a system that was in a traditional nail lacquer bottle, so I chose the IBD Gelac system. Their packaging has led some people to believe that this is a generic of Shellac, but it's not. Most of the Gel Lacquer systems came out around the same time and Shellac quickly became the front runner, mostly due to advertising, in my opinion. The Gelac System had quite a few colors that caught my eye, especially the Tanzinite and Freesia. I had heard all kinds rumors about all the systems, but I had to find out for myself.

I love both of the systems that I have, and hope that CND comes out with some more appealing colors so that I can try the system! :)

What are soak off gel lacquers? Soak Off Lacquers are a fusion between a traditional gel nail coating and a colored lacquer. "Gel nails" are much like acyrilics. They can be used with tips and must be filed off. And colored lacquer is well, traditional nail polish!

What is the difference between brands, like CND Shellac and Axxium Soak Off? There really isn't a whole lot of difference, mostly just the application. Axxium Soak Offs have more of  traditional gel application. The product is also in a pot, instead of a nail polish jar like Shellac and other brands. It does make the system a little harder to use at home, but if you are good at applying nail polish in general you should be just fine!

Do they really last 2 weeks? Longer in some cases! Of course it is all going to depend on the individual, how well the nail was prepped and the product was applied, the health of the nail and how rough you are on your nails on a daily basis. I've heard of some people's not lasting long, or one nail peeling off within a week, but I've also heard that they last longer than 3 weeks.

Can I do them at home? Of course, but this is not something a novice should do. There are two reasons for that, the up front cost and the outcome. Gel polishes are not cheap, running between $15 and $25 a pop. You will need the top coat and base coat and of course a few colors. You will also need a 36 Watt UV Lamp. There is NO way around that one. The cheapest I've seen them is around $60. You will also need all of the prep supplies, including a cuticle stick, cuticle remover, cuticle nippers, 99% Isopropyl alcohol and nail dehydrator, to name a few. It can be very time consuming, and cannot be rushed. The outcome of the gel lacquer has so much to do with the prep of nail and application. If the nail is not prepped properly or the polish is not applied correctly, it will not last. I know this from experience. :)

Will they ruin my nails? While gel lacquers don't require you file down the nail as you would with acrylics or traditional gels, they are less damaging in that aspect. The removal requires that gel nails to be soaked in acetone for 10 minutes. Acetone can be extremely drying and I've heard lots of complaints about that. Some people just can help themselves from picking their nails... I'm guilty of it. The first time I wore Axxium Soak Offs I peeled them all off in less than 10 minutes. Once you catch a free edge they peel off in one big sheet. Peeling them off also peeled off the top layer of my nail. They did not look good or feel good. I would stick with soaking them off. I also feel like my nails are dried out after I remove the lacquer. I'm not sure if this is due to the actual lacquer or the removal process. In short, I don't think they do as much damage as other nail enhancements, but they aren't as harmless as nail polish.

Will the UV lamp be harmful to my health? I'm not entirely sure, but it's worth being concerned about. I'm not sure if the lamp is powerful enough to effect the skin, because I've never notice a burn or tan, but I can feel the warmth it omits. It's always best to do your research and see if it's worth the risk to you. I ALWAYS advise using a sunscreen before you place your hand in the lamp for curing.

I absolutely love my gel lacquer nails, I would advice you to give them a try.

Have you tried them either at the salon or at home? What do you think?

Monday, June 6, 2011

Finding the Perfect Hairstylist!

Dear Kim, 
Your hair is awesome. I'm getting my hair done soon and it's a new hairdresser so I have no idea what I'm going to do. What do you ask for at the salon?

When you get your hair done do you get your hair washed as well? Does your stylist always shampoo and blow dry your hair?


Hi Sarah!

Thanks for your question! The first step to getting a great hair cut, is finding the hairstyle that you want. Look in magazines and online for pictures. Print out multiple angles of the hairstyle that you choose so that the stylist that you pick knows exactly what you are looking for. Also, look online for tips about what hair styles would look best on your face shape and hair type. If you are planning on changing your hair color, your stylist will be able to help you pick out a color, but bring in pictures so she has a good idea of what you want.

The next step would be to find a stylist. The first thing you should do is look online using websites like yelp, insider pages, or citysearch. These websites have reviews and yelp does a great job filtering reviews that may not be real. It's a great way to narrow down your search. Also ask friends and family if they like their stylist, and why. Does she listen well? Do you come out feeling like you worked together to achieve a great haircut?

When you've narrowed down your perspective stylists, call the salon and book a consultation. This will ensure that you have the stylist's attention for at least 15 minutes and can get a feel for her. Take your pictures into your consultation and ask her if this is a look she can give you and if your expectations are realistic. Also ask about pricing and what the appointment will include, such as washing, conditioning and styling. Some salons charge extra for styling after a cut. You will want to have your hair styled in a way you could replicate on daily basis and ask about products and if they are able to suggest things within your price range.

Typically stylists will wash, condition and style your hair at the appointment, but be sure to ask.

Hope this helps!


Saturday, June 4, 2011

New Hair! New Products!

Hey Everyone!

As I said in my video, my short hair was a bit of an accident. An accident that ended up alright, but still an accident all the same. I wanted to share my new hair care routine with you because I've never really used a whole lot of product before. I was really excited to try new things after my haircut!

I try to alternate between two different shampoos, but I find myself gravitating for the my Herbal Essences Hydralicious Featherweight Shampoo. The other shampoo that I use is Lanza's Healing Volume Thickening Shampoo. What can I say? I like my sulfates!

The conditioner that I use is the Lanza Healing Moisture Kukui Nut Conditioner. It smells delicious and leaves my hair detangled and refreshed. I only use conditioner on my ends so that helps minimize "weigh down".

Protecting your hair from heat is one of the most important steps you can take. I'm using the Label.M Heat Protection Spray. It's very light and perfect for me know. I used to use the Thermafuse HeatSmart Serum when I had long hair. It helps to smooth and make my damaged ends extra shiny.

Next I apply my "body giving juice". Evo's Shape Vixen gives great body, hold and slight texture. The fragrance can be a bit overwhelming, but it's makes a huge difference in the volume of my hair.I use and Itech Round Brush (3 3/4") and blow dry away.

When my hair is about 85-90% dry I spritz in my Fudge Salt Spray. This gives my hair the just back from the beach texture without the fishy smell. :) It smells like coconuts and helps give my hair body.

Next I tease my roots with Spornette's Little Wonder Teasing Brush. I spray the Alterna Bamboo Uplifting Root Blast all over my roots to help the teasing stay in place.

I finish it all off with either the Evo Builder's Paradise, which is their working spray, or their Helmut Finishing Spray. I prefer Builder's Paradise because of the scent, but Helmut has more hold!

I hope this gives you some ideas for new hair products. I'm loving all of mine and can't wait to share all the new goodies the purchase when these run out!

Horrible Haircut

At the beginning of May, I saw a picture of Jen Aniston's new hair in People magazine. I fell in love with her hair and convinced myself that I should cut my long hair and get an inverted bob for summer. I booked an appointment to see my hair stylist and friend, Gina*, for a cut and color. The appointment was about a week away and I spent the whole week going back and forth , back and forth, back and forth on whether or not I should cut it. I actually lost a lot of sleep. My best friend didn't help matters much either, she had chopped her hair off at one point and regretted it. She made every point to remind me that I would hate short hair as well. Thanks Bets!

The day of my appointment I decided just to play it safe. There were two reasons I decided to just get a trim. 1. I loved my long hair. I've almost always had long hair and every time I've cut it, I've always grown it out again. That awkward in-between stage sucks! 2. The first time Gina did my hair, she did an AMAZING job on the color, but the cut was a little uneven, but not the worst cut I'd ever gotten. I didn't really want to put a new cut into her hands.

I went into my appointment and she started right away on my color. We chit-chatted and caught each other up on life. About 20-30 minutes into my appointment her husband and daughter show up. She and her husband are in the middle of a separation, so he was dropping their adorable 2 year-old daughter off. I didn't mind, but quickly realized that having them their was a major distraction for her, as it would be for anyone.

While I was processing she came over and asked me if we could do my cut at her house. I wasn't crazy about the idea because I had already driven 30 minutes to her salon, but I agreed anyways. We had made a deal that she would not charge me for the haircut, but I would pay full price for my foil. She then came back to tell me that she could do my cut "real quick" here at the salon. I almost listened to my gut and said no, but I decided to trust her. Big mistake.

Gina flew through my haircut. She grabbed random pieces and just cut. There was no rhythm or reason to where she was cutting. I was shocked when she told me she was finished. She then asked me if she could skip blow drying my hair! What!? I couldn't see my color or my cut. I asked her if we could blow dry it and she said, "I'll do a partial blow dry so you can see the color." It then dawned on me that she didn't really care.

I went home with partially dried hair and discovered the horribly uneven cut she had given me. I knew I was going to have to chop off my hair in order to get an even cut. I even cried a little. I was sad because I knew I was going to have to part with my hair, but more-so because someone I considered a friend, couldn't put forth the effort to give me a nice even cut. I was disappointed. As someone who works in the beauty industry I've always taken pride in my work and felt terrible when I didn't do a good job, especially on a friend.

My friends and family kept telling me that I needed to call her a tell her about the cut. But what am I supposed to say to someone who doesn't care? It's not like she just missed a spot or I would trust her to fix it. So what was the point? If she cared she would call me or text me the next day to see what I thought. She did text me the next day to chit-chat, but she never asked about my hair.

Luckily I work with one amazing hair stylist. Jessica came to my rescue and was able to work out a great cut for me. I love my cut, she did such an amazing job. I thought I was going to have to ask her to stop cutting my hair she was so meticulous, but it was greatly appreciated.

Things always happen for a reason, right?

*Names changed