Save or splurge: Beauty products

SPLURGE: SKINCARE

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On a college budget I’ve learned what I should save money on, and what I should  splurge on. I’ve learned that you should always invest in your skin. Until a few weeks ago I still hadn’t found any skin care products that were friendly to my wallet that worked for me and did everything my skin needed without breaking me out. I recently attended a Caudalie workshop at the Equinox gym I work at. They gave us these free products and I was super excited to try them – not expecting them to work, I was really impressed when I woke up the next morning and my skin felt hydrated and moisturized (but not too oily.) I have sensitive/oily skin so I’ve never been able to moisturize without breaking out – but my skin reacted really well to all of these products!

In the shower, I cleanse with the Mario Bedescu Glycolic Foaming Cleanser – this is so gentle!

After I remove my eye make up with Neutrogena Oil Free Makeup Remover I use a cotton round to apply the Caudalie Micellar Cleansing Water – and then I apply the Vine(Activ) Glow Activating Anti-Wrinkle Serum – this is super pricey, and I only use a tiny amount, a little goes a long way! I then apply the Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet.

Of course none of this is cheap – but it has been a game changer for my skin. If you were to buy only one of these products – I would definitely invest in the Mario Bedescu Glycolic Foaming Cleanser!!

SAVE: DRUGSTORE MAKE UP

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Face – Originally I found myself always splurging on foundation and concealer, but on a college budget, paying for a $40 foundation was just too much, and I knew I could probably find a drugstore foundation that was equally as great. I use Covergirl Ready Set Gorgeous Foundation that is only $9, it’s super lightweight and I only use a little bit and blend it with a beauty blender. I’ve realized that less is more with foundation. My favorite powder that I have used for YEARS now is the Rimmel London Stay Matte Long Lasting Pressed Powder, which is only $6!  Because I have oily skin, this keeps my skin looking matte and less shiny. Something I do still splurge on is concealer – I figure I should splurge on either foundation and get a cheaper concealer, or a higher end concealer with a cheaper foundation. So, I settled for investing in a thick concealer that could work if I just want to wear concealer and powder. My new favorite concealer is the Tarte Maracuja Creaseless Concealer – it’s very thick so a little goes a long way. It’s a life saver for under eye circles, and comparatively $26 is not bad for high end concealer. For contouring, I use the Lorac Pro Contour Palette, this is pricey, but I’ve found that it’s lasted me SO long. For a setting spray, I use NYX Matte Finish Makeup Setting Spray – this is a life saver especially in the summertime.

Eyes – More recently I’ve started buying single colors of eye shadow from Walgreens or Target when I run out of my favorites in the Naked palettes, I don’t want to purchase an entire o palette to only use a few colors. I use the individual L’Oreal Paris Infallible Shadows as a base, and apply a little bit of Revlon Colorstay Creme Eyeshadow to brighten my eyes. For mascara I use Maybelline’s Lash Sensation,  this has been my favorite for years now. I have never been one to splurge on mascara.

SPLURGE: HAIR

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Along with skincare, I believe it’s also important to splurge on hair products. Ever since Emily Gemma shared that her favorite shampoo was the Caviar Anti-Aging Shampoo, I of course had to invest in it, it is by far my favorite shampoo I have ever tried. It immediately makes my hair shiner and softer after one wash. I recently realized that after getting highlights and balayage that my hair was extremely damaged, the Aveda Damage Remedy Daily Hair Repair is another game changer. I put it especially on the ends of my hair where my hair seems to be the most damaged.

OR SAVE..

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Although it’s good to splurge on really nice hair products, on a college budget it’s not realistic to consistently purchase them, recently I’ve become obsessed with a more budget friendly option, the Tresemme Expert Selection Botanique Damage Recovery Shampoo – not only does it smell SO GOOD but it makes my hair extremely soft. The conditioner is also a must have.

Overall, there are obviously cheaper alternatives to everything, but I think investing in your skincare products and hair products is extremely important for healthier skin and healthier hair.

 

 

 

 

 

 

My favorite photo editing apps

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The Airbrush app is by far my favorite – I think I literally use it for every single one of my pictures whether it’s a filter or brightening/smoothing. This one is especially best for selfies or close ups. I use the “Brighten” effect (which is technically for eye brightening) for brightening the background or brightening anything I really want to stand out. This app has a lot of features, their filters are some of my favorites. I like that you can edit to whatever extreme you prefer for a more natural looking photo!

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PicMonkey Collage

The Darkroom app  is my favorite app specifically for filtering, sharpening and coloring. I’ve definitely caved and bought some of their filter packs (oops!) The app has a lot of tools (some of which I don’t understand, but I love to play around!) In my opinion, the sharpness and clarity of a photo is extremely important. I like that you can select a filter, but alter it if you aren’t loving it!

 

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As basic as VSCO may be, it’s definitely a favorite! In my opinion the filters work for really any type of photo – a selfie, group photo or landscape like the one I edited! It also has tools similar to other apps such as sharpening & etc. I like that VSCO is a more relaxed version of Instagram – people post more consistently mainly to edit their photos. I also like that you can see what other people are using for filters!

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PicMonkey Collage-2I use Rookie Cam mainly for the technical aspects of photo editing – saturation/contrast/sharpening and all of the boring stuff, some of their filters are good too! They have a bunch. I really like when the colors in my photos are bright and enhanced – this app is definitely perfect for adjusting color!

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I use MuseCam mainly for photos just like this one, their filters are perfect for landscape/nature photos, with selfies their filters can be a bit much. Even though it may not change the photo a bunch, it adds just enough of a warm filter for summertime. This one has a lot of technical tools as well. I recommend this one if you find yourself editing landscape/nature photographs a lot!

A pop of pink

Blog19Blog20Blog17Blog18Cardigan / Jeans / Tory Burch Flip Flops

This is by far one of my favorite pieces of clothing I own – it is the comfiest cashmere cardigan that you can wear in any season. Along with my favorite white jeans that are so worth every penny! I usually don’t wear white on white, but with a pop of pink I love this combo!

 

Casual and comfy summer look

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Cardigan (similar) / Shirt / Jean shorts / Shoes

I just recently bought these jean shorts at Von Maur because I realized I had NONE, and that is such a necessary closet staple. They were only $38 and they are seriously the comfiest shorts EVER, they are so stretchy. This cardigan was only $12 at Forever 21 but I couldn’t find it online, so I linked one very similar. This is the perfect look that doesn’t require much effort, is so comfortable yet cute at the same time. I literally live in these shoes – they’re so comfy and they go with everything!

Casual summer evening out

Blog7Blog8Blog9Blog10Blog11Blog12 Tank topBlack ripped jeans / Heels / Michael Kors Hamilton Tote / Ray Bans

I put my black jeans away when it started to get warmer, but I recently realized they are perfect for a casual dinner out or date night – and totally doable with a light colored top for summertime. They are by far one of the comfiest pair of jeans I own. With basic rips and a versatile style, this jean can be paired with any color top any season. With new trends in the new year, something I’ve loved this season is mixing metals. Whether it be I’m mixing my rings or my bracelets, I have found that it can really tie together an outfit. With this look I wanted to try mixing my metals in a different way. So I decided to mix the metals from my purse with the metals in my jewelry. The black Michael Kors bag features gold chains and buckles, along with a versatile shoulder strap for a more casual business or daytime look. Throw on a pair of pumps and you’re ready for a night out or if you want to dress up your look 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nordstrom sale favorites

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Collage

The Nordstrom anniversary sale is available to everyone in less than an hour so I decided to share last minute some of my favorite items that were marked down to great prices! Of course on my college budget I will not be purchasing all of these items (you’re welcome Mom 😉 ) but I figured those of you who plan to shop the sale may benefit from seeing some of my favorites that are great deals! Items sell out FAST so if you fall in love with something, snag it and check out super quick!

  1. Off the shoulder bell sleeved romper – Only $35!! Seriously the most adorable romper!
  2. Tory Burch Adeline Boot – Marked down from $498 to $299!
  3. Vince Camuto Off the Shoulder Dress
  4. Voluspa Candles – I am seriously OBSESSED with Voluspa candles, and candles in general. They sell these locally @ Valentina in Lake Forest, but 3 of them for only $29.50 is the best deal. They are usually $20 each!
  5. Tory Burch Wallet
  6. Mario Bedescu Collection – I swear by all three of these products. The drying lotion gets rid of acne WITHIN A NIGHT, and the facial spray with aloe & rosewater makes your face feel so refreshed and can also act as a setting spray (I also use it before bed.)
  7. Zella Leggings
  8. BP Booties
  9. Articles of Society ripped skinnies – Only $42!!

My favorite everyday basic tee (under $20!)

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This white slouchy tee from Target is my new favorite thing – it goes with literally ANYTHING and is so soft. It worked perfectly for a casual summer outfit paired with my favorite jeans and new shoes that I am super obsessed with currently. In my opinion, the key to putting together a “casual but cute” outfit is accessorizing with your favorite jewelry. I like to dress up a casual outfit simply just by accessorizing!

White tee // Light wash ripped jeans // Espadrilles // Michael Kos Buckle Bracelet // Michael Kors Watch // Monogram Bracelet // Kendra Scott Cuff Bracelet // Michael Kors Ring // “Coffee Please” Phone Case //