So Much Silver at the Met Gala

The theme of the 2016 Met Gala was “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology.” Most celebrities interpreted this to mean they were wearing silver. I love a metallic, but the sea of silver got so repetitive on last night’s red carpet, and made the few standouts look even better. Despite the theme, there were so many fashion misses. The few best-dressed stars were in stunning gowns, and some took literal interpretations of the tech theme..and the results were gorgeous.

karolina-kurkova-met-galakarolina-kurkova-met-gala2Karolina Kurkova (Images via Getty & Karolina Kurkova): This gown was a collision of art and technology, and it was so amazing. It was designed by Marchesa and IBM Watson, a Jeopardy-winning computer. Hundreds of tiny LED lights were sewn into the blossoms on the Cognitive Dress (it has a name!), and when people tweeted Kurkova throughout the night, the lights got increasingly brighter based on emotions detected in the tweet. (It could detect five different emotions!) They’re calling this the emotionally intelligent dress, and it’s one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen on a red carpet.

kate-hudson-met-galaKate Hudson (FilmMagic): Cut-outs, pleats, ruffles, beading, and netting — so much going on, and it works, particularly in white. This Atelier Versace dress was an awesome take on the theme, and it looked incredible on.

claire-danes-met-galaclaire-danes-met-gala-glowingClaire Danes (WireImage, Zac Posen): On the red carpet, Danes channeled Cinderella in a pale blue ballgown. And just like Cinderella, after dark, the magic happened. Her Zac Posen dress glowed, as fiberoptic lights were sewn into it. The effect was ethereal.

blake-lively-met-gala Blake Lively (WireImage): Pretty and feminine in peach. My favorite part of this Burberry gown is the floral detail on the chest.

Rita-Ora-Met-GalaRita Ora (REX): I mean, it’s basically my dream to drape myself in feathers, and Rita Ora did it in this Vera Wang number and killed it. It’s so dramatic!

beyonce-met-galaBeyonce (Getty): Not a Beyonce fan at all, but she looked so pretty in peachy-nude latex, which is really an impressive feat. The Givenchy dress also featured crystal and bead appliques and puffy shoulders. When you put all those elements together, it could have been a real disaster, but she pulled it off gorgeously.

kendall-jenner-met-galaKendall Jenner (Reuters): This slinky cut-out Versace sheath is woven of sheer netting, and the innovative interpretation of futuristic fashion was on point.

Pretty much everyone else missed the mark. All of the other looks after the jump. Continue reading

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Foreo IRIS Illuminating Eye Massager

foreo-irisThere are very few good things about aging. Now that I’m in my 30s, I need a little more help with looking half decent, especially in the mornings. I battle puffiness around the eye area on a daily basis, and have also noticed a slight bit of sag in the area (ugh!). I’m a big fan of de-puffing eye creams, but was wanting something with a little more of an effect. When I was offered the chance to review FOREO’s IRIS Illuminating Eye Massager ($139), which claims to visibly improve the eye area, I jumped at it.

IMG_0522The device is a peculiar-looking thing. It’s made of FOREO’s signature soft-touch silicone, which I love (my Luna Mini is made of the same material, and it’s so gentle and soft on my skin). It basically looks like a small handle with a loop on the end. The loop is just big enough to fit into your eye socket, and was designed for the contour of your eye. Turn IRIS on, and as it vibrates, gently hold it against your eye area, and, using light pressing motions, move it around the entire eye. (You don’t want to drag it, as that’s not good for your skin.) Like the Luna, the IRIS has a built-in timer that pauses to let you know when to switch to the other eye, and when your treatment is complete.

Also like the Luna, IRIS boasts T-sonic vibrations in two modes: Pure and Spa. Pure Mode resembles the effect that you’d get if you massaged your eye area with your fingertips: a refreshed look. Spa Mode incorporates tapping and pulsating motions, and produces more visible results. I personally like this mode better, but I switch between the two based on my mood.

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Tweezerman ProCurl Eyelash Curler

tweezerman-procurlThe Tweezerman ProCurl Lash Curler ($22) is SUCH an underrated beauty tool. It’s an  Allure Best of Beauty 2015 award winner for a reason, yet I feel like nobody talks about how great it is. The rose gold body sucked me in (so pretty!). The head of the curler is really rounded, which is nice for both round and deep-set eyes. I have hooded eyes that look droopy at the outer ends if I don’t curl my lashes, so I really need a solid curler to make me look more awake. This one, with its more exaggerated curve, covers the entire eye area and grabs every lash to make sure I get a wide-eyed, full curl. The thick, cushiony lash pads create a lasting true curl, rather than a crimp, and the narrow top bar allows for the pad to hit closer to the lashline, for a natural look. The opening is also a little wider than other curlers, meaning you can curl lashes effortlessly, and with less risk of pinching. The curler comes with three replacement pads (as compared to the standard single pad that accompanies most curlers). This is a must-have in my collection of beauty tools.IMG_0409

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Spring Mood

spring mood boardFeeling blushed vibes and and warm weather lately…

Image credits: 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12

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Glossier Phase 2 Set

glossier-phase-2When Glossier announced that Phase 2, their makeup-based collection of essentials that was a follow-up to the Phase 1 skincare collection, would be released last Monday, the Internet collectively kind of freaked out. I’m new to the brand, but was excited to try what they deemed were essential products for every woman’s makeup bag.

IMG_9469In the collection, there are 3 products: Stretch Concealer, Boy Brow (a tinted brow pomade), and Generation G (sheer matte lipcolor). You can customize your color preferences for each product. Stretch is available in Light, Medium, Dark, Deep, and Rich. Boy Brow comes in Blond, Brown, and Black. Generation G comes in Cake (warm peachy nude), Like (sheer berry pink), Crush (vibrant berry red), and Jam (deep berry).

IMG_9475Boy Brow is, by far, my favorite product in this collection. This product was released last October, and sold out super fast; Glossier said that as of last weekend, when it was restocked, the waiting list had 10,000 people on it. And now I totally get why. This product transformed the way I do my brows. I was really into a bold statement brow; and while I do still like that on occasion, I wanted to lighten up my brows a bit by only filling in the sparsest areas with pencil. That’s where Boy Brow comes in. It’s a tinted brow pomade that gives you a wash of color to make your brows look uniform and defined, and it’s made with wax so it holds them in place. The teeny tiny wand gets into the arches and curves of the brow, so you don’t end up with makeup everywhere. This makes your brows look polished in 10 seconds. The blond shade is a true taupe that’s very similar to the Anastasia Beverly Hills taupe shade.

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An Open Letter to Living Proof

IMG_9157To the people at Living Proof:

My hair has been going through a really rough time. I used to have great hair, but for the past year, it’s been meh: a little dull, lackluster, and just generally blah. And for the last few months, it’s been downright awful: broken from the crown down in random patches; dry; brittle; and full of split ends, despite the fact that I keep up with regular trims. The breakage was incredibly depressing, and a little concerning, because nothing seemed to heal my stressed strands, and I was starting to worry I was going to have to chop off all my hair to get it healthy again.

I read a lot of great things about your Restore line, but put off purchasing the products because they’re pricey. But when my hair became alarmingly damaged, I decided to spend a small fortune and purchase the entire line, minus the Restore conditioner. I’d previously had a lot of luck with your No Frizz line, so I returned to the brand. I bought the Restore shampoo ($28), mask treatment ($42), Instant Repair ($29), and Instant Protection ($26). The shampoo is self-explanatory. The mask treatment is a deep conditioning treatment that helps heal stressed strands; it’s intended for weekly use in place of conditioner. Instant Repair is a lightweight leave-in conditioning lotion that helps repair hair, and Instant Protection is a heat protectant spray.

IMG_9171I use the shampoo every time I wash my hair (every other day), and the treatment mask twice a week. I feared it was going to weigh down my hair and make it look lifeless and limp, but it totally does not; this stuff is practically weightless. (How is that possible?!) It doesn’t make my hair greasy at all! I smooth the Instant Repair lotion from the midshaft down to ends before every blowout, and use the heat protectant spray all over my hair every time a hot styling tool comes near my tresses.

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My Experience with the JUS by Julie One-Day Juice Cleanse

imageThe awesome people at JUS by Julie included a complimentary one-day juice cleanse ($50) and a bottle of probiotic cold brew coffee ($8) in the first Rakuten Bonus Box of 2016. I was one of the lucky bloggers chosen to receive the box, and I was so excited about this cleanse. I wanted to share my experience doing a one-day juice cleanse. If you’re up for a juice cleanse, now is the time! Order now and get 25% off, plus free shipping, with code STPADDYJUS (expires March 20, 2016).

I ordered online, where I was able to schedule a delivery date. I chose the first available date, which was about a week from the time I placed my order. My juices arrived packed in a box with cooling materials (an ice pack and insulation). When they landed on my doorstep late in the day, they were no longer cold, to no fault of the JUS by Julie people; the package had been sitting on a UPS truck since 6am. Although the juices are perishable and need to be kept refrigerated, mine were absolutely fine. I popped them in the fridge as soon as I unpacked them.

The one-day cleanse consisted of six juices, which were to be consumed at intervals throughout the day (around 2-3 hours apart), finishing the last juice no later than two hours before bedtime. The juices are numbered, so you know the order in which to drink them.

The morning of the cleanse, I was amped up and ready to start. First up was Sweet Spin, a combination of kale, spinach, pineapple, mango, and banana. It tasted slightly sweet, and was on the thick side. As far as green juices go (which can be pretty nasty), this one tasted great.

IMG_9159Mid-morning was Spicy Pomegranate, which (surprisingly!) ended up being my favorite juice of the day. It was a mix of pomegranate, lemon, cayenne pepper, maple syrup, and water. I normally don’t like anything spicy, and this definitely had a kick to it, but all of the flavors tasted so good together. It was light, fruity, and I drank it quickly, even though I had to let my mouth cool off a little between sips. It was so refreshing and flavorful…this is one I would drink on a normal basis if I could.

Dr. Green was another green juice, infused with ginger. I don’t like ginger. This drink was really hard for me to get down because the ginger taste was overwhelming to me. If you like ginger, this shouldn’t be a problem. This served as my lunch, and it was my least favorite of all the drinks.

Read how the rest of the day went after the jump.

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My Latest Lip Gloss Obsession

MJSugarSugarWhile in Sephora recently, I found a new product that I fell for — hard. On the shelf, it looked like nothing special, with its simple packaging and an unassuming black and white box. But then I swatched it on my hand and I was done for. When I actually applied it after I brought it home, my only thought was, “Why didn’t I buy multiples?!”

IMG_8880Marc Jacobs Enamored Hi-Shine Lip Lacquer in Sugar, Sugar ($28) is the product I’m talking about. The second I pulled the applicator wand out of the tube, I knew it was going to be good. The formula is creamy without being too thick, and it doesn’t feel heavy on lips. The amount of shine is insane; it is seriously so glossy. And really, is there anything prettier than a really glossy mouth?

In addition to looking pretty, it feels nice on and performs well. It’s longwearing yet comfortable. I slick it on in the morning and by lunchtime (after about two cups of coffee), there are still traces of it on my lips. It has this amazing staying power without being at all sticky.

IMG_8887One of my favorite parts about this is the flat applicator tip, which is cushiony and flexible, so it lets you create a defined line on the edge of lips. It lets you be neat and clean so you don’t get gloss outside of the lines. Because the tip has a bit of spring to it, it just feels really good to apply the gloss. Any product that makes application a nice experience wins bonus points with me.

The color I chose, Sugar Sugar, is a champagne-y nude that looks neutral in the tube but has a slight pink undertone on my lips, which I love. It’s a nude that goes with every look imaginable, and looks fabulous layered over a nude/pink lipstick.

Although this is pricey, I’m kicking myself for not buying a backup because at the rate I’m going through this, the tube will be empty in about a week. I can’t stop using it; it just looks so, so good.

Bottom line: This gloss is SO DAMN GOOD. Go buy it. You’ll love it.IMG_8889

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John Frieda Luminous Glaze Clear Shine Gloss

image{The lineup of usual suspects in my shower: FOREO Luna Mini, Pureology Strength Cure Shampoo & Conditioner, & John Frieda gloss}

Winter has done a number on my hair. Parched is the kindest way to describe the dull, dry tangle currently sitting on my head. Because my next salon appointment is still a good 3+ weeks away, I picked up John Freida’s Clear Glaze John Frieda Clear Shine Luminous Glaze ($8) and hoped for a miracle.

Unfortunately, I didn’t experience any divine intervention. In fact, I barely experienced anything. But before I get into that, this product’s claims are important. It promises, among other things, abundant shine. Shiny, smooth, shampoo-commercial-worthy hair. You can use it as a daily addition to your haircare routine, or as a weekly treatment (which is what I did).

Following the directions, I saturated my dry, unwashed hair with the glaze. I really worked it in from root to tip. Then I kicked back and read a magazine for 20 minutes while it worked its magic…or so I thought. As I was hopping in the shower, I noticed that it had a little bit of a funky smell, almost like haircolor does while it’s processing on your head (but to be clear, this product does not contain any color). After I shampooed and conditioned, and my hair felt really soft. I couldn’t wait to see the results after a blowdry.

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Beauty Inspiration

I’ve been in such a rut lately–totally uninspired by beauty, fashion, and basically everything else. I was browsing Pinterest for inspiration and wanted to share these looks that caught my eye.

natural-makeupPretty, soft makeup

makeup-gigiA fresh glow

jcrew-spring2016Polished skin {with statement earrings!}

makeup-spring16Barely-there makeup with rosy cheeks

eyeshadow-spring16Colorful lids

spring-16Monochromatic pink tones

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