Affordable beauty favorites

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Happy Monday! I haven’t done a post rounding up some of my favorite make up from the drugstore yet – and I am loving a ton right now! So I figured this post was well overdue.

If you ladies have not watched Tati Westbrook on YouTube, you HAVE to! My cousin got me obsessed with her videos over winter break and I haven’t stopped watching her since. She is so honest about every product she tries and gives 100% real reviews no matter what brand. What I love is that she has introduced her viewers to so many great products that are SO affordable. And thats just what us college girls need right?! I cannot afford to buy my $40/$50 foundations anymore, so I am really pleased that I’ve found products that are lot more affordable. Some of these products pictured above are “Tati-Approved” so of course, I had to buy them and try them out. Now they are a part of my daily make up routine.

  1. Wet N’ Wild Photo Focus Foundation – Until I watched Tati’s video on and review on this foundation, I was hesitant to try a foundation that was only $5/$6. I have oily, acne prone skin so I am usually very sensitive to cheaper foundations that are not oil free. I gave this one a shot, and fell in love. It is SO full coverage, and it applies so well with a beauty blender! I have three different shades so that I can mix them depending on if I am fake tanning or not.
  2. Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer – This stuff is a GAME CHANGER. I have seen a lot of bloggers and youtubers rave about this concealer, so I finally decided to give it a try.  It is not super thick like my other concealers I swear by (I talk about them in this post) but DANG this is full coverage! It covers my under eye circles better than anything else I’ve tried. And the best part – its only $7/$8!
  3. L’Oreal Brow Stylist Definer – To be completely honest, until I started watching Tati’s youtube videos I never filled in my eyebrows. I just didn’t think it was necessary because mine are already so dark and somewhat defined. But this has made a huge difference just filling in any sparser areas in my brows and making them stand out a little more!
  4. Coty Airspun Loose Face Powder – This stuff is another game changer. First of all, it smells SO GOOD, and second of all, it sets like no other powder I’ve tried. It is sometimes easy to go overboard with, a little definitely goes a long way – but it sets with my under eye concealer so well.
  5. L’Oreal Lash Paradise Mascara – I have never been one to spend a lot of money on mascaras – I’ve always managed to find drugstore mascaras that I love. I don’t think I’ve ever even purchased a high end mascara?! This one has become one of my all time favorites. The downside to his however, is I find that it dries out quickly compared to my other mascaras. Other than that, I love the length and volume it gives my lashes!
  6. Wet n’ Wild MegaGlo Highlight – To be honest, I never was one to highlight much until I started watching Tati either..but lately I have been really into it, especially at night! This highlighting powder is only $5 and i find that it gives my cheekbones a nice “champagne” glow that isn’t too intense. I especially love it mixed with bronzer.

Something that I have been really trying to do is invest in my skincare and take better care of my skin (drinking more water, moisturizing more often & etc), because I feel as though the better your skin is, the better it will look in make up. So I’ve learned I would rather splurge on skin care that way my skin may be able to tolerate more affordable make up! Like I said – if you’re looking for honest reviews on products in various price ranges, check out Tati!

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Free People Thermal Top

IMG_3173-1IMG_3174IMG_3172IMG_3171Free People Thermal Top / Booties / Jeans / Monogram Necklace

This thermal top from Free People is one of the COMFIEST tops I have ever owned. It definitely runs big – so I would size down (I probably should have.) It also looks cute with a lace bralette underneath! There are so many ways you can style this. Considering it is still cold and not feeling like Spring at all in Illinois, I am still pairing it with booties. I got these booties at Target for $9 (not even kidding) on clearance – they don’t have them anymore, but they are very similar to ones I’ve found on Nordstrom. Something about these are SO flattering – they make your legs look longer! They’re super comfy and easy to walk in too. Honestly all Target shoes go on major clearance at the end of each season, so instead of paying full price for a lot of their shoes I wait until they go on clearance!

I’ve been so inconsistent with blogging lately – I’ve really been trying to enjoy my spring semester of senior year, I have less than a month left until graduation.  It’s starting to really hit me that I’m about to join the big-girl world (scary.) But I’m hoping to write more blog posts on my college experience too!

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Spring Break at Paradisus Cancun

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The pictures say it all – Paradisus Cancun was absolutely gorgeous. It was surreal. We stayed in the Royal Service part of the resort, and we SERIOUSLY received “royal” service. If you are staying in royal service, it comes with various benefits – complimentary meals and room service, a butler that tends to your every need, and a private beach and pool section for royal service guests only. There was not a single staff member that did not greet you or say hi to us our entire stay – everyone was extremely friendly and welcoming. The last picture is a photo of part of our room – which was SO beautiful. We had two full beds, two bathrooms, and two pull out couches as well. There was a ton of space. And like I said, the room service staff was on top of everything.

I went on this trip with my cousin, my brother and my Uncle. I surprisingly did not mind being the only girl one bit! It was somewhat of a last minute decision for me to go with them, and I am so glad I did! Senior year of college can get crazy and overwhelming still taking classes yet figuring out what you want to do after you graduate..This trip really helped me clear my head in order to get back on track…and sometimes, that is just what you need! A little brain break (and being in paradise obviously helped.) Although adjusting to reality was definitely hard after a trip like this, it was great to get away from it all. I already want to go back!

As for packing, I definitely overpacked (per usual.) During the day, I wore a bathing suit and a cover up, at night for dinner was when I would actually get ready and wear a dress. It was so relaxed during the day and I loved having no pressure at all or no set schedule. We mainly just planned it day by day depending on what we were feeling like doing, and those types of vacations are always the best!

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Starting to feel like spring!

IMG_3165IMG_3166-1IMG_3168IMG_3195IMG_3167Jacket / Jeans / Boots / Louis Vuitton Neverfull

The weather is slowly but surely starting to get warmer, and now that it is officially spring break my roommate and I were able to take some photos! I had wanted these Sam Edelman boots for so long – and I stumbled upon them at Nordstrom Rack the other day on sale for $45! I was seriously shocked that they were marked down that low –  so I of course had to get them. This scarf is from J Crew, I got it a few years ago but it is still one of my favorites for the fall and spring. As I’m writing this I realized that it snowed last night…maybe Spring isn’t here yet. Luckily I am Mexico bound in 3 days!

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Spicing it up with stilettos

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Top / Jeans / Stilettos / Monogram Necklace / Louis Vuitton Neverfull

Sometimes all it takes to spice up your outfit is throwing on a pair of heels – it seriously changes the entire look! If you’re still wanting to keep it casual for during the day, you can never go wrong with ripped jeans and a blouse! This blouse is one of my go-to’s..tie sleeve blouses are really in right now. My heels from Akira are currently only $25! I’ve had these stilettos for almost four years now, and they’ve held up pretty nicely. Over winter break I got these Hollister jeans for only $25 – keep an eye out for markdowns on their denim, they have randomly had really great sales! I had forgotten how much I love Hollister jeans..Those and Express denim are my two favorites right now!

For a while I never had the guts to wear heels around, maybe just for photos or a blog post, but otherwise I felt as if people would think I was way overdressed. I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s not worth worrying about what others think so much, especially when it comes to fashion. And in my vocabulary, there is no such thing as being
overdressed”
. As cheesy as it may be – my motto has always been “you look good, you feel good, and you do good” and that’s something I live by!

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Chaneling my inner Blair Waldorf

IMG_1986IMG_1716IMG_1987IMG_1989Similar sweater / Similar skirt / Boots

I could not find this skirt or top online anywhere – but they are both from an Express factory outlet. I also have this skirt in white too. I’m definitely channeling my inner Blair Waldorf with this outfit – and of course it’s one of my favorites outfits to wear in the winter time. We had beautiful weather for a few days and it was so nice to take photos outside without absolutely freezing.

I’ve been so busy lately it’s hard to consistently post on my blog – so I could definitely use some help on deciding what posts should be next? Let me know in the comments what you’d like to see on here!

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Getting reorganized and back on track for the new year + Lauren James Planner giveaway!

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Kate Spade Planner / MacBook Case / Stickers / Pens / Desktop Wallpaper

One of the hardest things for me, and probably a lot of other college students who have a month long winter break as well, is getting back on track and adjusting to another routine. During my winter breaks I am so beyond lazy, and it can be hard to motivate myself to get anything done. This is the last week of my break so I’m really trying to reorganize and get things ready for the second semester of my senior year to start. Even though I may not be the most motivated right now, I still remain super organized. As second semester is upon us, I figured I’d share some tips that will motivate you for a fresh start to the new year!

Invest in a nice planner 

Every year I get a new planner, for years I purchased these Lilly Pulitzer ones, but this year I decided to change it up and get a Kate Spade one. Another brand that makes super cute planners is Erin Condren – what I like about these is that you can personalize them! I also am a brand representative for Lauren James – and they have super cute timeless planners as well! My entire life is in my planner. I write every little thing down; to-do lists, class schedules, work schedules, and things I know I may forget. For some reason I’ve never been one to make lists and schedule things on my phone – I always forget about them. Plus, it makes you feel so much more accomplished physically crossing things off of a list. So, if you haven’t already, invest in a nice planner – it makes it more exciting to organize your thoughts and schedules!

Get some cute & colorful pens for labeling your schedule/notes

I know this may sound silly – but organizing my notes for classes and in my planner by color make it less boring to write everything down. I recently purchased these Papermate Flair Pens (my friends also have them and love them) – they’re so cheap too! They write like a thin-tipped marker, BUT they don’t bleed. These pens can make the most boring class notes cute and colorful 🙂

Make lists and set realistic goals 

One of the problems that I have is setting too big of to-do lists, which tends to get overwhelming and I end up multi tasking. So what I’ve learned to do is make smaller lists that I know I can get done efficiently and in the time that I have. There may be big goals overall that you want to accomplish – but if there are steps or things you need to do to get there, writing those down helps you focus on one thing at a time. That’s something that I’m really trying to focus on this semester.

De-Clutter your dorm/space

This is something that has really helped me in being productive and more relaxed when I’m stressed or overwhelmed. Whether I’m doing school work, internship work, blogging or etc. This may just be me being OCD – but I am an organization freak. When deep cleaning my dorm/bedroom I de-clutter by getting rid of things I don’t use, especially at the beginning of the school year or at the start of a new semester.

Get back into a routine

This is one of the hardest things for me after a month long winter break. If I don’t go back to work immediately, I remain in a slump and have a hard time readjusting to being back at school with classes and  work. What I have found is that jumping right in immediately helps me adjust more quickly and feel more motivated. The busier I am, the better I feel. I feel more productive and by the end of the day I fall asleep much easier. It’s always the Spring semester for me where I get motivated to work out – although sometimes that doesn’t last long with my schedule, if that’s something that clears your mind I definitely recommend starting your work out schedule back up!

GIVEAWAY!

I figured this giveaway was fitting for this post! I am giving away a Lauren James timeless 12 month planner, and a Lauren James sticky note set! These are both two things that help me get organized!

In order to enter…

Follow me on Instagram (@alexx_bishop)

Follow Lauren James on Instagram

Like & tag a friend on my Instagram photo about the giveaway

Winner will be announced on Wednesday! 🙂 

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