The Daily: June 13th, 2022

Good afternoon my darlings. it is a hot one today. And I don’t mean summer is actually arriving. This year it seems we have skipped the early part of the summer and just umped headlong into the brutality of late summer. Each morning when I wake up I look at the weather. At this time of year it is kind of important for the garden. There always comes a point in the summer where i need to switch from watering just at sundown, to watering at sundown and then first thing in the morning before the sun really gets going so the plants can absorb the water before it evaporates.

Usually that point arrives mid July. This year, I had to water this morning. This is the earliest I have ever had to do a morning watering in the summertime since we’ve lived here. It was already eighty degrees at 7 am and the exclamation point near the weather report promised the heat index would be in the triple digits. Checking my garden records for last year we hit triple digits for the first time July 8th last year. I got up a little early today so that I could walk before the heat hit, but ended up using that extra time to water so there will be no walking today, just indoor workouts.

Which is fine. Not what I planned but fine. I am well stocked with indoor fitness gear so I should be able to keep moving forward on my fitness journey. I just won’t be doing it outside. I’m just sort of amazed that the first heat wave hit this early in the summer. I imagine it is going to lead to a longer and more violent hurricane season further south this year. (I spent quite a few years living in Louisiana and hurricane season sort of sticks with you even when you leave). For now I think it is going to be a balancing act keeping my vegetables and tender herbs from scorching in the sun. We are about to get our first paprika peppers for drying and I have a spate of carrots just now rising. This year I planted a variety called Parisian and they grow into small round carrots. I’m kind of excited about them. So right now it is one eye on the heat index and another on the garden. And fingers crossed that I can keep everything from shriveling up in the sun.

Today’s Look:

Primer: Tatcha Silk Canvas Primer

Foundation: Pretty Vulgar Cool AF Lava Water Foundation

Bronzer: Trestique Stick Bronzer

Blush: Benefit Cosmetics Gold Rush Blush

Powder: Tatcha The Silk Powder

Eyeshadow: Lime Crime Prelude Exposed Eyeshadow Palette

Brows: Marcelle Nano Eyebrow Liner in Medium Brown

Mascara: ABH Lash Brag Mascara

Lips: TYS Beauty Lip Plumper

I’m actually quite pleased with the way things turned out today. While the Tatcha silk primer is one of my absolute favorite primers (and I noticed I am starting to hit pan in the center of it today which means a reorder is in sight) I chose it specifically because I wanted to try the sample of the Liquid Silk Canvas I received with my last Tatcha order (I am loving the Kissu Mask, btw). I thought I would try the original and then tomorrow open up the sample. That way I can do a close compare. Plus since I will need to reorder primer soon from Tatcha I can see if I want to go with my favorite or try the liquid. I think that one may be offered in the Travel sized products to try out so I may do that instead of the full sized one right off the bat. Of course that is if i like it in the first place. Which I won’t know until I try it out tomorrow. But I used the original today and loved it like I always do. It works well and the scent just makes me feel special too.

What can I say, I am a scent oriented person.

The Pretty Vulgar is also working well. The amount of product is low in the bottle and this is the perfect time of year for this shade so it will be in rotation often in the next few months.

The Trestique is one of my go to products and I will always reach for it if I don’t have something else in mind. I do need to set it to the side and rotate through my bronzers, if only to adjust the location so my summer wear ones are closer to the front of the drawer.

You know I love the Benefit Gold Rush. It too is starting to show pan. I am always surprised when this happens as the Benefit blushes last forever. But Benefit just released new blushes so maybe it is time to try a new shade or two. this one will be hard to beat though. It is just the right tone for me and I really enjoy it. However nothing lasts forever so new things must be tried.

Speaking of new things I am still using the sample of the Tatcha powder that came in with my last order. It is fantastic. Very fine milled and silk soft on the skin. And it doesn’t look powdery. while I love loose powder I have several loose powders to get through at the moment. I am limited on the pressed powder though and really wish this came in a pressed format as it would be amazing to have a compact in my purse at this time of year. With this heat a reliable compact is essential for not sweating through the makeup. I don’t care what products you are using, ten minutes outside and when you reach your location you need to stop by the ladies with a quick pat down with the compact. This powder would be good for that, but alas it is only sold loose.

I love this Lime Crime Palette and I think I am definitely getting the Immortals one. I was debating it, but their shadows are just such a good formula. I just have to do a shadow declutter first. Once I make some space, the new palette will be mine. And since Lime Crime has lowered their prices, it will be mine for less.

The ABH mascara worked fantastically well as always. I enjoy it more with each use and will be picking it up again. I just have to work through my mascara stock pile first. That’s another thing i need to take inventory of soon.

I am the first to admit that I forget about brows a lot. It’s the bangs. Most of the time they cover my eyebrows so I don’t worry. But I do have several brow products and i am going to be rotating through them to see which ones I am keeping, which ones I am letting go of and which ones I want to order again. This Marcelle is a keeper and a reordering product. I love the fine point and the fact that the product is soft enough to apply without warming up but not too soft so it doesn’t smear everywhere like a warm crayon. It is a very good brow product and I love both the shade and the fine point.

And then there is the lips. I had not tried TYS Beauty before but this was in my May bag from IPSY. I do love lip plumpers so I thought i’d give it a go. This is a nice gloss, not too sticky. It smells very peppermint-y and for the first 20 minutes it is very tingly. There is also an almost holographic sheen to it which I like. For as intense as the stinging is, there is only mild lip plumping. Given the intensity of the sting I thought for sure there would be massive results. There aren’t but it is a nice basic lip plumper and a good gloss. I will continue using it, but I might not reorder it. I am glad to hear about a new brand though, so that is nice.

And that was me today. Overall I am very pleased with how things turned out.

Admittedly with the heat set to melt skin off my bones and no video calls scheduled today it is just you and me that get to see it, but I’m okay with that. But now it is back to work for me. I hope your Monday glides through with no complications. And remember, if you go outside, drink lots of water.

Creatives to Promote Hint Still

Testing out the De-Stress Muscle Gel from Aromatherapy Associates

There are some products that announce themselves slowly, their scent gently wafting through the air to tease your senses. This De Stress Muscle Gel from Aromatherapy Associates is not one of those. it is a lavender bomb. Actually that isn’t enough this is a LAVANDER bomb. I’m sorry for shouting but there is nothing subtle about the lavender scent of this muscle gel.

It came sealed in it’s tube and even through the sealant, heck even through the closed subscription box it came in, the scent of lavender made it through. this gel came in a Boxycharm box and even before I opened the box I knew something lavender was inside.

The first thing you need to know is pretty obvious. If you don’t like lavender, this isn’t a product for you. I like lavender but even then I had to think about when i wanted to use it. However, I can always use a good muscle cream. while most of my workouts are walking based, as the weather heats up I have gone indoors more. I recently Signed up for Yoga Works, and online Yoga class website with more than 1300 classes (because I needed something a little bit more structured than what i could find on You Tube but still wanted an at home work out). It’s early days, but I’m liking it thus far. My muscles however have registered complaints, so it seemed like the perfect time to test this muscle gel out.

The product claims…

Aromatherapy Associates De-Stress Muscle Gel instantly cools painful and sensitive muscles, once cooled the gel then provides a penetrating warmth for a refreshed relaxed feeling.

Vegan, Nut-Free, and SLS-Free To use: Apply to aching muscles and joints twice a day.

Aromatherapy Associates

Pretty straightforward. Even though it says gel in the name I was surprised a little by the consistency. It isn’t what i would think of as a true gel and it isn’t really a cream. It has a consistency a bit like a water cream. It is like a hybrid of gel and cream.

Once dispensed, the lavender scent increases slightly but it brings a rosemary backer as well. The combination turns this from floral to medicinal almost instantly. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised as rosemary is listed right behind the lavender on the ingredient’s list.

This gel applies very wet. The water gel texture just turns it to liquid as it comes into contact with the warmth from your skin. Then it takes a while to absorb. If you pull up a pants leg yo apply it to your skin, it will cause the material to stick to you. You need to allow a good five minutes to let this cream absorb.

Once on the skin, a menthol scent joins the lavender rosemary combo bringing it more fully into the medicinal scent arena. It applies cool, which I think is the menthol evaporating and the gel absorbing. The coolness of the gel is very helpful to sore muscles. The feeling doesn’t last all that long.

If you are looking for something that provides the deep muscle relaxing sensations that you get from something like Icy Hot then you will be disappointed. This is not a deep tissue sort of muscle assist. It did do a little bit of cooling on the skin and I did feel that my muscle aches were eased a little bit. It is much more subtle in its effect than something like Icy Hot. It smells much more pleasant though.

The scent is very strong. And it doesn’t go away. The scent lingers in the air and it lingers on your skin. I applied it before bed to ease muscle strain and it worked well enough to relax me enough to go to sleep and the scent was more pleasant than any sports cream would have been, but the scent remained into the morning. When I threw back the covers to get out of bed the next day, a waft of lavender was still present.

If you ae looking for an alternative muscle gel this does have some benefits. It does cool you down and temporarily soothes minor aches. Once it absorbs it isn’t greasy, although it does take a while to absorb. Th biggest drawback is it’s scent. It is strong enough that regular exposure gave me headaches. I know it is an aromatherapy type product so the scent is an important part, but they went overboard with it. It is simply too strong a scent. If the scent was halved I would enjoy using it more. As it is, I can only use small amounts and only in well ventilated places. While I would love an alternative to the scent of traditional sports creams, for me, this De Stress Muscle Gel from Aromatherapy Associates is simply not it.



The Daily: May 19th, 2022

Good afternoon my darlings. It has been a quite pleasant and productive day for me here. I got up a little early and took a walk first thing. Which was nice. It was humid but not overly hot when I started. By the time I got back to the house I felt like i was being smothered in a wet electric blanket, but that was at the end of the walk and I went straight into the shower. Admittedly the first few minutes I kept the water cool and then worked up to hot.

It is definitely time to start thinking about more indoor workouts.

I know, I say that a lot, but I really prefer the nice mind clearing walk in the fresh air sort of exercise to anything indoors. However as even early morning walks are now sweat and sun fests adaptations must be made. It was a great way to start the day. Lately my exercises have been pushed later and later, but I used to do them first thing in the morning. I really kind of miss that. I know I grumble, but that’s mostly because i really don’t like mornings in general. It is actually much easier to wake up, fall into the exercise clothes and get started before actually waking up completely then it is to convince myself to change clothes and begin the exercises mid afternoon.

It’s easier with walking as I can just walk when my brain needs a break. Less easy with planned workouts. I think it is because i am over all not a huge fan of perky people. And to be involved in fitness it seems you have to be perky. Plus they advertise goals that aren’t mine. I’m not trying to look bikini ready or run a marathon. I just want to get to a healthy weight zone.

I think I’d like to do an exercise video at some point. Instead of starting with things like, “Let’s get those bodies moving and feel those endorphins!” or comments about how fabulous you will look on the beach with your new bikini ready bod I think I’d start them with my own phrases.

They would include comments like “we know you’re here because your favorite jeans are a bit snug and you don’t want to break in a new pair in a larger size,’ or “You know moving is good for you after sitting in an office all day so stop whining and just get it over with.’

I admit, my workouts wouldn’t exactly be best sellers. Maybe i could just make them for me. Something to think about.

Today’s Look:

Primer: Lorac Light Source 3-in-1 illuminating Primer

Foundation: Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation

Bronzer: Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Bronzer

Blush: Benefit Cosmetics Gold Rush Blush

Eyeshadow: Tresluce La Flor de Mexico eyeshadow Palette

Mascara: Blinc Ultravolume Tubing Mascara

Lips: M2UNYC matte liquid Lip in SOHO

Today was mostly about the Lorac Primer. I went with the Catrice foundation because it is more matte. I really like the Catrice formula but hate the dropper dispenser. I usually just end up pouring the foundation onto my hand and dipping in with a finger. The dropper is why I don’t reach for it much even though it is a really good long wearing foundation.

It worked well with the Lorac actually. The lorac gave me shine under the matte which I like, especially as it wasn’t too much. I added a little bit of the primer as highlight over my cheek bones which worked well for me today. I have the shade dusk in the primer and the gold tones really work well with my skin. I am finding that with illuminating primers for me the gold tones work better than the clear or silver based ones. I think they look more glow and less wet and greasy. Perhaps it is just my perception, but I do like this on the high points. I am still missing the pore filling of other primers though so it is a trade off.

The Too Faced Bronzer is as always fabulous and we are entering the season where this one comes out more. It is a really nice blendable formula. It is a little dark for me in the winter but right about now it is edging into perfection.

You know I love the Gold Rush Blush from Benefit. And I know I reach for it a lot. I pulled it out today because i spend some time looking at their new blush releases. Yup that’s right, Benefit Cosmetics just released a new line of blushes. You can see theme Here. I am hoping this doesn’t mean that Gold Rush is going to be discontinued as it is one of my long term faves, but I have to admit that some of the new ones look fantastic. I am getting low in the Gold Rush Blush so I was going to order a new one soon. I may just look at one of the newer shades instead. I think they released yesterday in case you were wondering. I can’t wait to try them out.

The Blinc Tubing mascara I love. One swipe, fab lashes. What more needs to be said? Well perhaps that you need a waterproof mascara makeup remover to remove the mascara even though it technically isn’t a waterproof formula. It still defies water pretty well.

Then there was the Tresluce. I went for two of the darkest shades today using a dark green (Jardin) topped with the dark brown of Chocolate Cosmos. they blended well together, perhaps because they were so dark. But then I reached for the shimmer of green Nopal. I wasn’t expecting much but it is a beautiful green shimmer. I am in love. And I don’t say that about a lot of shimmers. I am over all a matte kind of person. But oh wow, I am in love. The dry brush didn’t work and I couldn’t find a setting spray so i used a finger tip and the green was just stunning. I can not wait to play around with the other shimmers. Nopal was just stunning and easy to use.

I think that is all of note today for both my look and my fitness plan. For now it is back to work for me. If I end up making that work out video, even if it is just for me, I’ll post it here for you to enjoy. Until then, it is back to work for me. Happy Thursday everyone.

The Daily: May 18th, 2022

Welcome to Wednesday my darlings. Truthfully my week is a little messed up and I feel that it is only Tuesday, regardless of what the calendar says. It is the danger of taking parts of Monday off. I’m just going to accept that I will be a little off for the rest of the week and then reset over the weekend.

Today however there is no makeup. As you can clearly see from the photo, it was an all natural day, just me and several layers of sunscreen. There was a follow up with the Avene Thermal Water when I came back in the house, but no makeup was going to survive today.

This morning I thought I would get some early gardening in since there was nothing done over the weekend. I pulled the weeds and most importantly the little treelets that were sprouting from the seeds thrown into the garden beds by the surrounding trees. If you don’t get them early they can be a real pain to uproot. They were still at the relatively easy to uproot stage, but there were a lot of them.

After they were gone I noticed a vine growing up and around some other plants. I don’t know what it was but I didn’t plant it and I wasn’t about to let it take over. So I went to pull it. It didn’t want to pull. So I went to the shed to find some trimmers. There were no trimmers. So I picked up the machete. I figured with a careful cut I could slice off the offending vine and be good. Then I got going, found the vines everywhere and just went a little crazy on the offending vines.

barefaced and soon to hit the shower

I can’t lie, it felt good.

I have no illusions about getting all of the weeds but I feel somewhat victorious, even if it is a temporary victory.

Unfortunately by the time I was done I was a sweaty mess. I figured since i was already sweaty I would go on a walk. It was kind of a mega sweat event. When I got back I washed my face and cooled down. In a little while there ill be a shower. (it would have been an earlier shower but there were several phone calls i was pulled into while I was cooling off.

After that i simply didn’t feel like wearing any makeup.

I did however revel in the use of my cleanser. I am currently using the new Clove and Hallow Cloud Powder and after cleansing I just liked my skin.

So bare faced today, but at least i can say that between the lengthier spate of gardening than I intended and my walk, I have certainly hit my calorie count. So I can’t really complain. But now it is off to the shower to get fully clean and into fresh clothes and then I will finish out the paperwork for the day. I took more time than expected but really, I can’t complain. It needed to be done, and it felt good over all to do it.

The Daily: May 4th, 2022

Good afternoon my darlings. I hope all is going well with you today. As for me, my hair is a bit poofy again and there were some makeup issues, but we’ll get to that.

The park was still flooded and the fitness was all indoors. I sweated it out to YouTube videos. As it was more yoga than cardio there was sweating but I felt more stretched out and limber rather than completely sweated out. I know it is good for me and keeping everything limber is a good thing for life both now and in the future but I really do prefer the long walks. It takes up a lot of time, but I can use the time to sort out issues in my head or plan things. When I do yoga the only thing I tend to think is ‘I don’t think my body moves quite like that.’

well maybe that isn’t the only thing. I’m afraid I often think very mean thoughts about the instructors. They are all just a little too perky. It makes me think they are hiding something. Like a love of torturing overweight women and not telling them that they are double jointed and are missing a few vital organs and bones us normal people need to survive. I know it is just my fat getting in the way of certain movements but sometimes the things they do …

But I got through it. I’m still hoping that this week will miraculously erase the damage a month of issues added to my weight, but I am trying to maintain the workout without going crazily overboard in compensation. And yes I am a bit worried about stepping back onto the scale to confront the damage. I’ll be less focused on it once I see the numbers and then I’ll just let it go and deal with the damage. sorry to fixate, but at least it is a temporary fixation.

Today’s Look:

Primer: Ciate Dewy Skin Vitamin C Glass Glow Primer

Foundation: Yensa Super Serum Silk Foundation

Bronzer: Buxom Staycation Vibes in roof top tan

Blush: Illamasqua gel Blusher in Frission

Highlighter: Saint Luxe Liquid Glow

Powder: Kim Chi Puff Puff Pass Set and Bake Setting Powder

Eyeshadow: The Balm and the Beautiful from The Balm

Mascara: Blinc Ultra Volume Tubing Mascara

Lips: Huda Beauty Lip liner in Trophy Wife

Okay this turned out to be mostly about the primer so we will just blaze through the other products. Yensa,. Illamasqua and buxom preformed beautifully. The Illamasqua gel blusher is rapidly rising to the top of my list of fave products and I am thinking about getting additional colors so I can play with it year round. The Yensa foundation I’ve been testing and my full review will be up in the morning.

Loved the eyes, had issues with the primer

I really like the Blinc mascara although today I sneezed when it was still wet and had to deal with the fall out. But a sneeze at the wrong time can mess up any mascara. It still turned out well. It does more or less require a waterprroof eye makeup remover to remove completely, even if it isn’t the waterproof version, so be aware of that when you use it.

The Huda Beauty lip liner was a bit sticky but I ended up putting chapstick over it and that took the stickiness out. And I am now getting the hang of how much of the Kim Chi setting powder to apply to prevent a powdery look and now I love it.

I love the way The Balm shadows worked today and I like the eye look I cam e up with.

The Saint Luxe Highlighter is subtle and disappeared in the face of the primer. I think it needs to be an all over glow or paired with a natural look and a tinted moisturizer.

And so to the primer. Even though I recieved this a while back I never got around to trying it out. For a while it was primer- palooza with subscription boxes and I ended up with a lot of new ones to try, I have several actually that I still need to try out. I decided that since I knew how this foundation worked I’d try a new primer.

This primer is the Dewy Skin Primer from Ciate. First I should have tried it with an all matte foundation. Second, I think I might have applied too much, not only is it dewy to the point of greasy looking it feels heavy on the skin. One of the reasons I like serum foundations is that they feel feather light The Yensa is easy to forget that I am wearing. I felt this primer. Now it is a first use so that could be user error. I also need to check the base of the foundation and primer because they didn’t really want to work together at all. I haven’t had problems with this foundation, but today there were problems.

There was a little separation so I think the formulas might not be compatible. I am going to have to do some label reading. This looked very patchy and uneven up close. I’m not sure f that translates in the photos or if it is just an in person thing. Regardless, I did not like the result and after about an hour of wear I washed my face and spent the rest of the day au natural.

In general I like Ciate products so I don’t mind giving this one another chance. This is also why I tend to test products for at least a week before I decide if I like them or not. sometimes things don’t go so well with the first trial run. Today was not a good first use. However there is always tomorrow.. I’ll just need to spend a little time with the ingredients list before my next use of this primer.

And that was it for me today. Luckily the rest of the day is just me working alone at my desk while the rain pelts down outside. I’m thinking of using this as a face mask opportunity.

The Daily: May 3rd, 2022

Good afternoon my darlings. The rain has returned and the humidity level is high. As a result my bangs have decided that an 80s style poof is the way to go. They won’t get there without the help of a teasing comb a round brush and a boat load of Aqua Net, but they are trying. So I am doing my best to ignore them today.

I made no attempt to go outside. It was raining when I woke up, it rained through the morning and it is raining now. I’m trying to think of the fabulous germination my newly planted seeds are getting and less of the walk I will not be taking. It is the down side to building a walking trail in the flood plain. It rains, the trail floods. But I will not harp on it, even though I am still casting longing looks out of the window.

The reason it is so important is that I know on rainy days like this I always slack off a bit on my exercise. I tell myself to push hard, but I just know that I don’t push all that hard on days like today. In fact I don’t think I did much pushing in April, which is why the waist band of my jeans feels a little on the snug side. I have already accepted that on my first weigh in back I will have gained weight. I know everything got out of whack in April. I spent last week getting my meal plan back into alignment and this week I am ramping up the exercise.

Except today. Today I don’t think I pushed as hard as I could. I’ll be making up for it with lighter meals today, but I need to find something to keep me on track for the days when walking isn’t possible. Sadly I may have to go back to some sort of reward system. I had it in place for my initial weight loss plan then when i went to reward myself with something I wanted I found it was sold out and then I couldn’t think of a replacement so I let the system lapse. maybe I’ll keep the rewards in categories instead of specifics. A new pair of yoga pants instead of this specific pair of yoga pants. I think it was a pair of earrings that threw me last time. I saw this adorable pair of bumblebee earrings, but they were gone by the time I reached the reward point. nd then I didn’t see a pair I wanted. General may be the way to go on that. But that is something to figure out later. Maybe after dinner.

Today’s Look:

Pre Makeup Base: Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

$10.00 OFF on Makeup Compact Powder. Embryolisse – the Dermo-cosmetic expertise.

Primer: Elf Poreless Putty Primer

Foundation: Yensa Super Serum Silk Foundation

Concealer: Dior Backstage Concealer

Bronzer/Blush/Highlight: Ultimate Glow Getter by Real Her

Powder: Kim Chi Puff Puff Pass Set and Bake Powder

Eyeshadow: The Balm and the Beautiful Eyeshadow Palette from The Balm

Mascara: Anastasia Beverly Hills Lash Brag

Lips: Trestique Lip Crayon in Florence Fig

Okay today was a fun one. First off Love the embryolisse as a base. I apply it ten minutes before I apply anything else so my skin has time to absorb the cream in and everything just flows wetter with great hydrated skin and no cakey look to anything.

I am loving the way my eyes came out today

It really helped out the setting powder today as the air is so damp. between the humidity and the cream I needed the setting powder to dial back the shine. It did sort of counteract my test of dry products though. I use the Real Her Palette today because I wanted all powder face products and it was just easiest to grab.

Normally I use this more in the summer time because it goes so well with a light tinted moisturizer natural look, but it applied well today. Ideally though this is a natural look palette. It is well loved though. Pan is showing in all three of the products and I am hoping it will make it through the summer. I don’t think it will make it past this summer so I will probably be replacing it in the fall. it is fantastic with a tinted moisturizer.

It did work well with the Yensa. This is an easy foundation to use actually and I am really enjoying it. My full review will be up this Thursday as I finish out my review.

I am falling in love with this palette from the Balm. I applied the shade Cut and thought wow that is a great all over shade, but since I am seeing how they blend I went for the darkest shade Cliff Hanger and really like the way it blended. I then used the silver shimmer of Roll Credits and it looks great. I am personally loving today’s eye look. If it keeps performing this well during the rest of the test (it is only the second day) I might just have found one of my everyday go to palettes because this was easy to reach for and has workable shades. The trick will see if I still like it next week or if it becomes slightly boring. There is always a fine line with an everyday neutral palette. We’ll have to see where this end up, but I have my fingers crossed for it.

Today I also reached for the ease of the Trestique lip crayon. I love these. This is the Florentine fig and I reach for the color often which is why it is almost a nub. It is comfortable to wear, the crayon is refillable and while one side is a matte color, the other side has a lip balm to go over it if you want a bit of shine. I am really a fan of the formula. It wears a bit like a traditional lipstick though. It won’t dry down and it will wear off. It is very comfortable to wear though.

And that my darlings is me today. my bangs are misbehaving but I love my eye look. I’d be nice if I could get the hair and makeup to cooperate on the same day, but i will take what I can get. And today, the eyes have it.

The Daily: May 2nd, 2022

Good afternoon my darlings and welcome to May. With as much trouble as the April showers caused, the May flowers are beautiful. And of course more showers are on the way. we had on and off rain here this weekend so I did the last of my spring garden planting between rain storms. The bonus was that I didn’t have to water. We have a garden bed I am keeping my fingers cross for this year actually. It has been a battle to reclaim it from the weeds since we moved in. Last fall we stripped it out completely digging down about a foot to get rid of all the little weed rootlets. we then laid down a garden fabric to suppress weed growth and layered card board over that (a fantastic use of old subscription box packaging in case you were wondering) and then buried the lot of it in rich dirt, fertilizer and mulch. It sat all winter and this weekend I went and scattered bread seed poppy seeds. They are the poppy seeds you see in lemon poppy seed bread in case you are wondering. When the flowers are ready to seed they throw the seeds out in heaps and self seed themselves once they get started so I am hoping that the seeds will not only take, but take over. I would much prefer a bed of purple-y blue poppies to snarled masses of bindweed.

That has been one of the major house projects for a while so reaching the stage where i could just scatter seed was a major accomplishment. And now all I can do is wait and hope nature gets on board.

But with May also comes the need for the changing out of the bed linens. once we get a stretch of good weather all of the winter blankets will get washed one last time for the season, strung up in the sunshine to dry and then packed away while the spring/summer covers come out of storage. I don’t know if you have issues with blanket storage but as both my babydoll and I come from families who believe you can never have too many blankets, storage is always an issue. Until we picked up these vacuum storage bags. I picked mine up from Amazon (it is a general link, no affiliation) and they have been a life saver. Not only do they save space by compressing the blankets but my babydoll has major allergies and soring out blankets in the vacuum sealed bags has really helped. The UV of the sun kills any potential dust mites and then the vacuum seal protects them when not in use.

The park is once again flooded so I am back to Yoga today instead. May tends to be an indoor work out and then things dry out a little and I end up on the summer schedule, walking as soon as I wake up so i don’t give myself heat stroke. Even so with my muscles sore from the garden work, I feel okay with the stretching of yoga. I also feel rather virtuous for completing so many of my spring chores this weekend. Now if only my afternoon paperwork goes as smoothly, I will be all smiles at dinnertime.

Today’s look:

Pre Makeup Base: Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

Primer: Tatcha Silk Canvas Primer

Foundation: Yensa Super Serum Silk Foundation

Bronzer: Buxom Staycation Vibes in Rooftop Tan

Blush: bareMinerals Bounce and Blur Blush

Highlighter: Iconic Illuminator in Original

Powder: Kim Chi Beauty Puff Puff Pass Set and Bake Powder

Eyeshadow: The Balm and the Beautiful from The Balm Cosmetics

Mascara: Stila Huge Extreme Lash Mascara

Lips: Persona Cosmetics lip liner in 90210

Today was interesting as far as testing and favorites go. As for favorites I went for the tatcha silk canvas. I have the balm formula. I haven’t tried the liquid version and I am curious to see how it performs but I absolutely adore the creme formula of this one. It is pore filling and helps lock makeup into place. It also has that lovely Tatcha skincare scent to it. I generally find my skin reacts well to this primer as well. I did want a matte primer today because of the highligher, but I’ll get to that in a moment. The long and short of it is that I adore this primer.

One of my other favorites is the Bare Minerals blush. I am always happy to reach for this one. It can be a little too intense in color in the winter (I have the shade Mauve Sunrise) but as my skin gets summer tan it just looks better and better so I will be using this a lot in the coming months. Which is no hardship. I do need to look into a lighter winter shade though, but I have a little bit of time now before that is needed.

The Buxom Bronzer is also more of a spring summer product. It is of a tone that takes me into spring and early summer but generally isn’t worn after July when I am full on summer tanned. Or at least that was last year’s scale. I ended up spending more time outside last summer than I planned. I also wanted to try a powder product today with the Kim Chi powder. On my first use of the powder I overdid it and everything looked powdery. I was just so enthused but the actually useful powderpuff in the container that I couldn’t hep myself. And over use made things look powdery.

Then I tried a lot of cream face products and it worked fantastically well with them. So I wanted to see if it was me over doing it or if it was just layering with other powder products that caused the issue. I think it might be a bit of both. With one powder product and the rest cream the setting powder didn’t look powdery when used with a light touch. I think however it is the sort of powder I will prefer with cream face products. I also think I am going to use that puff with several other powders. I do like this powder though, it just needs to be used sparingly to avoid a powdery look.

I have been trying out the Saint Luxe liquid highlight and wanted to try it against another liquid highlighter. So today I picked out the Iconic Original Illuminator which is an old stand by. It was far more glowy a product than the Saint Luxe. The Saint Luxe is far more subtle of a glow. Which I don’t mind actually. I know that using the Iconic with Natural look makeup (which is sort of my go to in the summer) is too heavy a highlighter. I don’t think the Saint Luxe will be. While I am finishing up my Yensa trial this week, I think that after the trial is complete I will be trying out the highlighter with a tinted moisturizer instead of a regular foundation to see how it performs. I have high hopes. The Iconic was nice today and I like being able to make the comparison.

The stila mascara I love. It needs one coat and I am done. The fact that I reach for it a lot means the tube is almost empty and will soon need to be replaced. But it is now one of my favorite mascaras.

The persona lip liner worked well all over my lips. It is a creamy formula that can be used as a lipstick. After a few hours though my lips do start to feel a bit dry so I add a lip balm over them. That is enough to keep the lips moist. So I am good with this lip liner.

Today was the first use of the Balm’s The Balm and The Beautiful Palette. As a first use I did the one matte all over the lids with a lighter matt in the corners look. I love the Balm formula. The brush didn’t need tapping off and the matte blended beautifully without a powdery mess. I am looking forward to playing around with this palette.

And that my darlings was today’s look. I feel like I went a little long today but I have several products I am testing out. Hopefully you found it interesting. But now my beauty break is over and I must leave you and heed the call of my inbox. It is the first of the month and and it seems everyone has a new project to start. So off we go. Have a great rest of Monday.

A month of Sure Beauty’s MS-12C2 Ultrasonic Cavitation 2.5 Body Slimming Machine 

Over the past month I have been testing out this ultrasonic cavitation 2.5 body slimming machine (MS-12C2) sent to me by Sure Beauty. While this machine was gifted to me, all thoughts are my own.

For me this was a very interesting test. When you look at all of the photos of people using any sort of fat burning tightening machines, they are almost always people who do not have all that much fat to lose or who don’t need that much tightened. I understand the advertising aspect of this, it isn’t rocket science. But if you have been following along with my posts for any length of time now you know that I have 80-90 lbs to lose to be into a healthy range. At least according to my doctor. I will be playing the exact number by ear, but at the moment I have a long way to travel before my weight loss journey ends.

That being said, I don’t expect magic from this machine. I did not go into this thinking that i would be 90 lbs over weight and at the end of thirty days some how magically the weight my doctor thinks is ideal for my body type. That isn’t how these things work. That being said, I do have a lot of fat to test the fat burning machine on. So first let’s look at what the machine is supposed to accomplish.

It is a unoisetion ultrasonic cavitation 2.5 body slimming machine to melt fat and tighten loose skin. This fat burner ultrasonic cavitation machine is just what you need to explosive or blast stubborn fat. That promotes your metabolism to keep your body shape. It is a machine that burns fat cells while eliminating cellulite as well as uses ultrasonic cavitation treatment to enhance collagen production and tighten skin.

Sure Beauty

As you can see from the description, it is not magic.

The process of using this machine was interesting. The manual is easy to read and in case the words are confusing, there are handy pictures for you to follow along. What you need to do when using this is clear and easy. It is an easy machine to use, and easy to keep clean.

The directions suggest that you make sure your skin is damp and that you use the gel with it. Essentially it is yo keep you from using the machine on your dry skin. I used it three times a week and found it most convenient to use it post shower. That way my skin was well dampened and the gel could be applied. The instructions also recommend that you use it after eating so you have food in your belly when using it.

I did try it on an empty stomach and ended up feeling a little nauseated so i’d recommend you follow that direction. I did not try it on completely dry skin, however dry skin was an issue. The ‘Sessions’ with the machine were half hour ones. Even with the gel on my skin (the gel helping to keep the skin moist and allow the machine to run smoothly over the skin) after about ten to fifteen minutes, my skin started to dry out a bit. If I applied more gel, the skin tended to get a little sticky. I found it best, to keep a wet wash cloth (in a bowl of water) handy, then after 15 minutes, take a break, use the wash cloth, then apply more of the gel, and then finish the session. This was the best method for me.

I did go through a lot of the gel. You may notice that the tube pictured is the fresh unopened tube. That is because it ran about about a week ago and without thinking I threw it out. Since then I used Vaseline. The Vaseline kept the machine moving smoothly and didn’t dry out so I only needed to wipe off a little extra Vaseline when i was done instead of rewetting the skin and using a second application. So I would say that the Vaseline did a better job of keeping my skin from drying out and the machine from sticking than the gel. I think the gel just needs a degree of moisture to it to keep from getting sticky that the Vaseline simply didn’t need.

The machine manual suggests that you start on a low setting and work your way up. This too was interesting. When I first used it I didn’t feel anything with the lower settings. So I turned it up until I felt something (About midway up the dial). I left it there as I could feel it doing something. At the end of my session I didn’t feel anything. It was the next morning that I felt I had done a whole munch of sit ups the day before. So that is something to watch. Start low the first day, because the next day you will feel more than you thought you would.

Gradually my tolerance increased and I was not so sore the next morning. When this happened on my next session I turned the dial up slightly. Slowly I increased the vibrations. I had no issues when doing this.

Now as I said, the big issue with machines like this is that you can expect miracles. I did take a photo at the beginning and at the end. i can find no way to edit them to a level of nudity I am comfortable posting, however the fact is the before and after photos don’t look any different. However this is not to say there wasn’t any change. I have lost one inch off my waist. Which is interesting as this month i think I gained a little weight through holiday eating. My bust and hip measurements are the same but my waist has gone down an inch. In addition I have quite a few stretch marks that have appeared as my weight has decreased. A couple of the more long standing ones are not as pronounced as they were. Again, in the photos they look the same, but when I run my finger tips over them they are slightly less.

I suspect that this machine, if I continue to use regularly, will help reduce those marks and possibly keep new ones from forming. I also suspect there would be a more noticeable difference on someone who doesn’t have as much weight to lose and who just wants to work on tightening skin and working off a little stubborn fat. Asking the machine to shift 90 lbs in thirty days is not a reasonable expectation. However it did give me enough reaction to let me know that it was doing something. While I wanted to do a thirty day post, I think given my size it really needs to be a six months on kind of post. Now that I am in the habit of using this, I think that I may continue and see if six months sees some more drastic changes. For me, given the length of time used one inch down was quite impressive and I am looking forward to seeing more longer term results from this Sure Beauty machine.

The Daily: April 27th, 2022

Good afternoon my darlings. Today the sun has returned, even if the temps are remaining low. The park is still flooded though. I walked down there which was a bad idea actually. The water rose with the rain and then faded back slightly which was just enough for the various crawfish, and other aquatic life that was washed onto dry land to be stranded and the stink to rise. You could also see yellow streaks on the pathway and grass where the pollen was left behind.

which meant that I hot footed it home again and took some allergy meds. I’m hoping that if the sniffles stop then later this afternoon there can be some yoga. I think tomorrow I will just plan on an indoor workout and let the allergens do a little receding as well. There is no reason to cause an allergy attack, right?

I thought about skipping the makeup today, but then I saw the red lipstick and thought, nope, I want to wear that today. So I did.

I couldn’t resist the call of the red lip

Today’s Look:

Pre Makeup Base: Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

Primer: OLE Henriksen’s Banana Bright Face Primer

Foundation: Yensa Super Serum Silk Foundation

Bronzer: NudeStix Nudies Bronzer stick

Blush: bareMinerals Bounce and Blur Blush

Highlight: Saint Luxe Liquid Glow

Powder: Puff Puff Pass Setting powder from Kim Chi Beauty

Eyeshadow: Sandbar Beauty The Mirage Palette

Mascara: Wet ‘n Wild Big Poppa

Lips: Elf Matte Liquid Lip in Red Vixen

I love this lipstick and every time I put it on I think that I really need to look into getting more shades of this formula. Red vixen is one of my favorite reds, but as far as liquid lip formulas go, I love this one. Especially for darker colors. It applies smoothly and dries down enough to stay put all day without turning my lips into sandpaper. I think it is the Vitamin E mixed in that keeps it from drying out the lips. It does dry down pretty fast though so you really need to get your lines straight pretty quickly. I thus far haven’t found a lip liner that I like to pair with this one, but it really could benefit from the pairing. I’m not the steadiest when applying lipstick sometimes and having those lines to essentially color in would help. However this lipstick doesn’t seep into the fine lines around my mouth, I just need the outline to keep me from looking wobbly.

I chose the Ole Henriksen primer to pair with the Yensa today because it is one of my favorite brightening primers and I wanted to see how well they paired. It is actually working fairly well. I find myself missing a little bit of the pore filling that I get with some of my other primers but thus far the foundation is holding it’s own without the pore filling. I’m always going to want more pore filling, but I don’t think I have to use pore filling with this foundation, which is good to know.

I used the Nudestix bronzer today because I am still trying to figure out how I feel about it. I think that part of my issue is that is a sample size. While there are other issues, one of my problems is that the sample size had smaller surface area during application so it draws a thinner line on the cheek. It is more defined so I have to blend it out a little more than I would with a wider stick so a lot of it blends away. Today i tried a double line. It worked better but I really had to move quickly. It has a limited window of blendablitity. It isn’t my favorite formula but I am finding ways to work with it. I suspect I’ll just keep it in rotation until it is used up and then let it go. I might actually frequently rotate it to use it up faster.

The bareMinerals blush I love. It is a great formula and one of my favorite shades of blush. I have the Mauve Sunrise and it really works well for me. It is a use and repurchase product.

The Saint Luxe is interesting. It gives a very subtle glow which I like. However it can blend in a little too much to be spotted. I m still playing with it. I think it is a product that you can wear all over your face under your matte foundation. I think that is why it is blending in more than I expected. I’m still not sure how I feel about it.

The Kim Chi powder I really like. However it is definitely something that should be used over liquid and cream products and then used sparingly as a setting powder. It works really well as a setting powder but too much will really make the foundation look powdery. Light amount of product on the puff and then press into the skin. It takes off the shine without a powdery look. And I don’t mind using less because it will last longer. I think tomorrow I may try it with powder products and a little restraint in application. I was a bit heavy handed the first time. We’ll see how it works tomorrow.

I love the Big Poppa mascara, you know that already.

The eyeshadow palette is fine. This is the last day of my trial with it and I am kind of relieved. It works well, but I am just kind of bored. My full review will be up tomorrow so you can read all my thoughts then, but essentially it boils down to good formula and good for office looks but kind of boring. I think that might be why the red lip was calling to me today. I needed just a little bit of color. I have been hitting the neutrals in both shadow and lips pretty hard lately. I think I need to play around with a bit more color for a bit. Today the red lip was enough.

And now my darlings it is back to work for me. The end of the month is neigh and there is so much to do before the thirtieth rolls around. Short months always go by way too fast. I know it is technically only a day, but somehow it feels like someone lopped a week off the calendar.


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The Daily: April 13th, 2022

April showers may bring May flowers but around here they also bring thoughts of Ark building. Do you think Lowes will get angry if I ask for a lumber order in cubits?

The rain came in fits and starts yesterday, but today it has settled in for a marathon. Exercise involves me and my Yoga Mat along with hand weights. Which is fine, but being inside all day makes me a little twitchy. It never used to, but then i started incorporating regular exercise into my schedule and it feels strange to leave the walks out. But at this point I think I might need an Ark or at least a rowboat, to get through the park. It looks a bit like a lake.

And there are snakes. A lot of them. (I took an umbrella down to the park just to see if a rainy day walk could be worked in. It could not. And those snakes did not look happy about being washed down stream.)

So indoor yoga and weights today. With a side of twitchy til the rain stops.

Today’s look:

Pre makeup base: Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

Primer: Elf Poreless Putty Primer

Foundation: Yensa BC Full Coverage Foundation with SPF 40

Concealer: Dior Backstage Concealer

Bronzer: Trestique Bronzer stick

Blush: Doucce Posh Powder Palette

Eyeshadow: Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

Mascara: Blinc Ultravolume Tubing Mascara

Lips: Grande Cosmetics Plumping Liquid Lipstick

Okay we are going to start from the top. I am loving the pre makeup base. It kind of plumps up my skin with moisture before I begin so everything just applies a little better. The Elf Poreless putty is a long time fave and one I consistently repurchase.

This Yensa foundation is from their Skin on Skin line and I can see why, it feels like my skin. It is weightless and applies smoothly with no lines in the product that have to be smoothed out. Yensa sent a foundation brush with this foundation and it is just the perfect combination of stiff and soft with the bristles. I also like the shape. How it performs with other foundations I’ll have to see but it works beautifully with this foundation.

The Trestique is a long time love. It was made even better by now being refillable which cuts down on plastic waste. I for one will happily refill this over and over again.

The Doucce palette is interesting. I reach for it for one blush. The other products I’ll use if it is open, but I will only reach for the one blush in the palette that I like. I’m not sure if that is enough to keep the palette long term, but I love the blush in the shade RSVP and will use it down to pan. Then I’ll feel bad and try and work through the highlighters, which are nice, but not my favorite. If I do repurchase it will just be a single blush.

I took out the Tarte eyeshadow palette because I hadn’t used it in a while. I absolutely love the mattes in the palette. The shimmers are okay but nothing to write home about. but I love the formula of the mattes and as this is mostly a matte palette with a single row of shimmers, I really do need to reach for it more. I tend to use it as a travel palette because it has a hard case and an array of mattes, but I need to think of it when i am not traveling.

With the Grande lips, I came across this sample yesterday and realized it had enough product for one or two uses left inside. I used it today and it ran out so it will be going away. It is a formula I really like. There is a slight pluming to the formula but what I like most is that it dries down almost all the way but not quite all the way. It means that it stops leaving lip prints everywhere but it doesn’t make my lips sand paper dry, which is sort of the best in a liquid lip. But this was it’s last use and it is now going to the empties bin.

And that was todays look. And now I am going to take my umbrella and slog my way to the mail box hoping that the few bills in the box have not turned into a soggy mess. Then I will dry out and get back to my afternoon. I hope whatever you have planned for the rest of the day is simply fabulous.

LovelySkin