Friday, January 21, 2011

Bringing Back the Fanny Pack!

Be warned! I've got a feeling (oh great! now that annoyingly catchy song from Black Eyed Peas will forever be stuck in my head!) that fanny packs will be making a comeback.
Yes, fanny packs are those super flattering (not!) and stylish (also not!) pouches that were worn around the waists of millions in the 80's and early 90's as well as numerous tourists around the world. The British and people in parts of the world other than the U.S. call them bum bags. They also go by other names, including belt bag, hip bag, hip sack, hipster pack, etc. But I just call them cool (ha, ha, ha).
Whatever you want to call them, you can't deny the fact that they are super duper handy. You can carry around all of your goods within hands reach and still have your arms and hands free. They're perfect for amusement parks, hiking, yard sale and thrift store shopping, walking outdoors, and pretty much anytime.
Luckily, in more recent years, designers have begun making more sleek and stylish versions of the fanny pack. Famous designers such as Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Prada, and Marc Jacobs all have out their own designs of them. Celebrities including Rihanna and Tyra Banks have been spotted sporting them. 
With cross-body bags gaining tons of popularity withing the past year or so, I predict that fanny packs (the new, better looking ones, of course) will be the next new must-have bag. What's popular in fashion many times progresses from one thing to the next and I see fanny packs as the next step from cross-body bags. Only time will tell, but be on the look out! And in the mean time, I plan on making one for myself.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Sweet Beats from 2010

Since a new year has just recently begun, I just have to share one of my most favorite songs from the year of 2010. I believe it came out in the summer of 2010, but I've been listening to it ever since.

Drum roll, please! (I actually just tried to figure out if there was a way I could type the sounds that a drum roll makes, with no success, of course.)
And the song is ........"Hot N Fun" by N.E.R.D. featuring Nelly Furtado, from their album "Nothing".

I love this song! It's such a fun, upbeat song that will be stuck in your head for days or even weeks as in my case. Though it's a pop/hip-hop type of song, I'm pretty sure that anyone who likes catchy, peppy songs with an awesome beat will find this one a winner. However, it might take some time to grow on some folks who aren't used to listening to such dance-worthy tunes, but once they like it, they soon love it!
If you haven't already, Download it NOW!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

N.Y.C. New York Color Bronzer REVIEW

I love a good bronzer, especially if it's cheap. And even more especially if it's cheap, matte, and not too orange-y. Luckily for me, NYC makes one that is all of the above. The full name of it is N.Y.C. New York Color Smooth Skin Bronzing Face Powder. I have it in the shade 720A Sunny. The storse in my area only carry this shade, so I'm not sure if it's available in any other colors. I purchased mine from WalMart for a little less than $3. It comes in a regular ol' compact with a mirror and contains 9.4g (0.33 oz).  The compact closes completely and stays closed so it is portable and great for traveling.

It's a nice neutral bronze shade that's completely matte with no shimmer at all, which can be difficult to find in inexpensive bronzers. It's perfect for oily skin, but shouldn't be too drying for dry skin. If you do have dry skin, you might want to make sure you moisturize really well beforehand just in case it's too drying, or just test it to see. For me, it goes on evenly and lasts all day. It's not a super dark color, but also isn't too light and is buildable. There is a bronzer made by Rimmel London that I prefer the shade of a little bit more, but it also costs a couple dollars more, so I use this NYC one way more frequently.

I honestly love this bronzer! I love that it's inexpensive and is of great quality. I would definitely recommend this bronzer and will continue to repurchase it.

Bonne Bell My Style Concealer REVIEW

I have olive skin tone that will scar from the slightest touch. Ok, not actually just from touch, but anytime I have a breakout, a scratch, or a mosquito bite I'm always left with a scar that generally hangs around for at least a couple of months. So, I'm always in need of a good concealer to hide those pesky little imperfections. In addition, I also have serious dark under eye circles that have been there practically all of my life.

I was at my local WalMart in hopes of finding the much raved about Hard Candy Glamoflauge Concealer, but of course, in my little town they were out of it. But, right across from it were the Bonne Bell products, including the Bonne Bell My Style Concealer in a little squeeze tube that looked quite like the Hard Candy one, which also looks similar to the loved-by-many Kat Von D Tattoo Concealer. I immediately developed high hopes that this would be one of those secret-little-inexpensive-makeup-miracle products.

While I realize that Bonne Bell products are typically targeted towards young customers, such as tweens and even little girls, many adults love their lip glosses, especially the Lip Lites, and their bronzers, such as Blend n Glow (I personally didn't care for this one though). For less than $4, I figured this concealer would be worth the risk.

Unfortunately, it didn't really live up to my dreams and high hopes for it. For me, the concealer just doesn't cover that well. It needs to be more pigmented or at least a thicker consistency to work. It honestly doesn't seem that much different than a foundation. And if I try to blend it out, it mostly blends away. This certainly is not for covering blemishes. The staying power of it is also seriously lacking. It definitely seemed to fade away pretty quickly. Though I usually use products in colors of the medium to tan category, I chose this one in Cover Up (Light), which really does look more like a medium shade. It is also available in the shades Secret (Fair), Hidden (Medium), and Hush-Hush (Dark).

I also have issues with the packaging. It comes in a thin squeeze tube and contains 0.33 fl oz (10 ml). The squeeze tube part is fine, but on the end of the tube where the concealer comes out there is a connected brush. This would be fine if the brush was fantastic and just the right amount of product dispensed, but it does not. On my skin, the texture of the brush is fine, but it's a little too big to use on small spots and leaves the concealer too streaky for under my eyes. It also makes getting out the right amount of product difficult, because you don't know if you have enough out until it's all globbed up and gooping off of the brush, and then you have out too much. To make it work for me, I just squeeze it a little until I can see some concealer on the attached brush and then use my own brush and dip it into it. Another concern is that I imagine it will be quite difficult to clean and sanitize the brush part without dispensing any of the concealer or getting moisture into the tube.

I have been using this and will continue to use this on days when I'm not wearing much makeup and don't need my makeup to last that long. I mostly just use it on such days to cover the dark circles under my eyes and on larger areas such as my chin and nose to even out my skin.  Though I don't like it as a spot concealer, it would work decently as a handy, on-the-go, touch-up foundation.  Overall, I would not recommend this as a spot coverage or under-eye concealer, but possibly as a very light concealer to even out larger areas. I most likely will not repurchase this.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Easy Fan Transformation

I live in southeast Georgia, where it gets miserably hot during the summer, well, actually during all seasons but winter. So, in order to save on the A.C. costs, keeping a fan around is a must.
Though it's finally cooling down around here, I completed this a little while ago, so I figured I should go ahead and share. 

This is an easy project that will turn any regular tabletop or standing fan into a cool, somewhat retro looking, and overall nicer looking fan.

Now for the complicated instructions: just spray-paint it!
Yep, a coat or two of spray paint will turn a  raggedy, cheapo, white-plastic fan into something you won't mind leaving out while company's around.

For mine, I chose to use Rust-Oleum Specialty Hammered Paint For Plastic in Black. I like the hammered texture it gives, plus I got it for only $2 at Big Lots. But, any basic spray paint should work. Test it on a small area to be certain, if you'd like.

And Voila!

From this (something like this actually).......

Close Up, so maybe you can see the hammered texture
(click on it to enlarge it)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

New Music (for me anyways) : Pomplamoose

Recently, while watching a YouTube video about makeup, as I often do when I should be doing homework or anything more productive, I heard an awesome song as the intro/background music. Luckily the YouTuber included a link to the YouTube page of Pomplamoose, the artists of said song. I couldn't wait to check out their other songs, I barely finished watching the original video (but, it was a good video so I stayed tuned)!
          According to Wikipedia (yes, I know that it's not always completely accurate, but I'll take its word on this)
"Pomplamoose is an American indie music and indie jazz duo consisting of multi-instrumentalists Jack Conte and Nataly Dawn. The band was formed in the summer of 2008.[2][3] The duo sold approximately 100,000 songs online in 2009.[4]"
They apparently first got popular via YouTube & Myspace. Since gaining popularity, their songs have been used for at least a couple of different commercials, specifically car commercials.
           I love indie music (a lot of it, not all of it though), so for me, their music is right up my alley! I really suggest you check them out, even if you don't like indie music. They have a unique sound that is quite refreshing. They have their own songs, as well as some terrific cover songs (which I also love), including covers of older songs, such as "Mister Sandman", to new hits, like Beyonce's "Single Ladies" and Lady Gaga's "Telephone". But of course, all of their cover songs have their special Pomplamoose touch. They also have cute and quirky videos for their songs. You've got to check them out!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Quick Tip: Cheaper Alternative to a Popular Kid's Drink (Adults love it, too!)

I usually get the yellow-orange(citrus) one in a container
that looks the big Sunny D containers.
If you enjoy the delicious sweet zing of Sunny D, then this if for you. I usually buy the generic or store brand version of just about everything, but I haven't been able to find a store brand version of Sunny D where I shop. However, I did discover Tampico! It tastes almost just like Sunny D, but a gallon of it is at least $1 cheaper. At my local Walmart where I shop for groceries, it can sometimes be a bit tricky to locate because it's not always right near the Sunny D, like most generics would be. Sometimes it will be in a totally different area on the non-refrigerated shelves with the regular juice, whereas the Sunny D will be in the refrigerated area with the milk and orange juice. Anyways, Tampico also comes in at least two other varieties, which I haven't tried yet but have heard are good. No matter which flavor you choose, it's a great value. And, to save even more money, water it down some. Once you get used to drinking it watered down you won't even notice that it's diluted. Plus, it will be healthier for you and help you to get in more water and less sugar. Happy Tampico drinking!

Must Watch T.V. Show

There's an awesome new show on MTV. And, to much surprise, it's actually entertaining, it keeps my attention, and it's even educational. Yes, that's right, an educational show on MTV. In case you don't know what show I'm talking about, it's called "World of Jenks". It follows Andrew Jenks, a 24 year old documentary filmmaker, as he tags along with and basically lives the life of another person for a week. The person he follows changes every week and widely varies from a homeless girl (or "houseless" as they say on the show) to a world poker winner. My favorite episode so far has been the heart warming one where he lives with a 20 year old autistic young man. This episode (episode 2, "Can't Make Me Be") is certainly a must see. One of the aspects I like most about "World of Jenks" is how real it is, and no, not practically scripted like most so called "real" shows on MTV. It gives you real insight to each of these individual's life and shows the struggles they deal with on a daily basis. I also like that Jenks isn't afraid to ask questions and hit on the touchy subjects. He gets to the real heart of the matter. If you haven't watched this show yet, you definitely should check it out. I feel that most all audiences will enjoy it and could learn a lot from it.

Chad and Jenks from episode 2, "Can't Make Me Be"

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Lovely Highlighter for Cheekbones, Browbones, etc.

     I've been on the hunt for a great highlighter to give my cheekbones that lovely "glow from within" look. I wanted one that would look natural and highlight my cheekbones with subtle shimmer, not glitter. Since I'm pretty much strictly a drugstore makeup user, my options were limited. I found one that seemed nice, Physicians Formula Mineral Glow Pearls, but, at about $14, it cost more than I wanted to spend. So the search went on. I had heard that a few of Hard Candy's blushes made for nice highlighters, but I tried one and I didn't really notice it on my skin at all. Then, it finally hit me, why not try a shimmery eyeshadow? Duh! There's a wide variety of drugstore brand eyeshadows as reasonable prices to choose from.  The next time I was at Walmart, I came across Cover Girl's Professional Eye Enhancers eyeshadow in Champagne, which is a pretty, very subtly shimmery eyeshadow in a creamy beige-ish color. It works fantastically! It provides just enough shimmer to highlight without having annoying pieces of glitter or being too over the top. And at only around $3, it's a steal as far as highlighters go! If the shade Champagne doesn't work for you, you can still check out other eyeshadows in various brands and colors to find what does work for you.

Monday, June 28, 2010

How To: Homemade Magazine Holder

Here's something cheap & chic to hold your magazines. It's the perfect size for holding magazines, it's a way to recycle, it can make for a fun craft project, & once it has been painted or decorated, it also looks great.
Get an empty, large powder detergent box(other boxes might work, as well) & paint or spray paint the outside. You could also glue pictures all over it or paint an image or design on it. You could make it match with your favorite bedspread or paint it to look like wood. Use your imagination! If you're like me, you have waaayy too many magazines and will need a lot of these magazine holders, so you better start saving your boxes!