Update! The blog is moving :)

Hello readers! It’s been ages since I’ve posted here, and while part of it was because I’ve been extremely busy, another reason is because I’ve been uninspired to write anything for the last three months.

Since my last post on here, I’ve since created a beauty/fashion instagram, @antinakedclub, where I do most of my posting now.

Just a couple of weeks ago, however, I got a notification that my WordPress Premium subscription was about to expire, so I figured that it’d be a good time to move my blog to Squarespace! I’d been thinking about this for a while already, but never really felt the need to, since I hadn’t been sure I wanted to keep the blog yet. I’ve since decided I want to keep it, and so now, I’m on Squarespace at theantinakedclub.com! Find me there 🙂

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My Cruelty-Free Journey | Update #1

So it’s been about three months months since I made my post about the start of my cruelty-free journey, and I figured it was about time I posted an update.

To be honest, it’s been a lot more difficult than I thought it would be. I never thought the transition would be easy or fast – I mean, I’m calling this series a journey for a reason – but I’ve discovered that it’s going to take me a lot longer than I thought to be completely cruelty-free.

While I was conscious from the beginning that living a cruelty-free lifestyle extended beyond just skincare and makeup products, I didn’t take into consideration a lot of other categories of products where I’d have to make a change. Over the last two months, I’ve come to realize that I also will need to replace:

  • Toothpaste: I use Sensodyne, which is not cruelty-free. I have sensitive teeth, so I’m hoping I’ll be able to find a cruelty-free alternative. If not, Tom’s of Maine is cruelty-free, and my boyfriend already uses that, so I might just stick to that if I can’t find anything better.
  • Nail polish: Sadly, I really didn’t think about this category at all, because I really don’t paint my nails at all. The last time I can remember painting my nails was last October… Fortunately, this isn’t too difficult of a category for me to work on, since most of my newer nail polishes are cruelty-free (mainly Smith & Cult and KL Polish), and most, if not all, of my nail polishes that aren’t are old and need to be tossed anyways. I just need to find an opportunity to bring these to a household hazardous waste facility.
  • Fragance: My most loved fragrance, Glossier You (1.7 fl oz, $60), is thankfully cruelty-free. The majority of my fragrances, however, are not, so I’m planning to donate all of my unused deluxe samples, not only because they’re almost all not cruelty-free, but I have no need for so many fragrance samples and would like to pass them on to someone who would have use for them. Thankfully, most of my perfumes are actually not full-size products, so this shouldn’t be too difficult. The only full-size non-cruelty-free fragrance I have is a Chanel perfume that my mom gave me for my birthday a few years ago. I don’t use perfume often, so it’ll take me a while to use up my perfumes, but I will not be repurchasing any perfumes that are not cruelty-free, Chanel or otherwise. I’m actually interested in natural perfumes, but I don’t really want to fall down that rabbit hole until I actually have space in my collection for new fragrances.

At first, I was really disappointed that it was going to take me longer than I thought to reach a point where I was using only cruelty-free products. Though as time went on, I  realized that there was no reason to be disappointed – I’ve already made a lot of changes, decluttering my stash and making it a point to only purchase products from cruelty-free brands. I’m proud that I have no issue with letting go of my loved non-cruelty-free products and finding cruelty-free alternatives, even if it means I still need to use up what’s still in my inventory.

And if anything, I think the fact that I’m using up what I have first, even if it’s not cruelty-free, is better than just replacing everything that I have and starting anew. Being cruelty-free is important and is my ultimate goal, but it’s also important to me not to be wasteful. If I’m not giving something away, I should use it up instead of generating more waste. I’ve been making pretty good progress, and I’m aiming to be completely cruelty-free by the end of next year, though we’ll have to see how that goes 🙂

The good news is that throughout this journey so far, I’ve really become more conscious of what I’m buying. I’m choosing to be more informed about where my money is going, being more aware of what ingredients are in the products I’m buying, and being more selective about what I buy. I’ve always been guilty of being too easily sucked into sales and discounts, and this whole process has helped me take a step back from all of that. I’m getting better about not stockpiling a bunch of stuff that I may never end up using anyways… 😅

Hopefully, my documentation of this process can help those of you who are also thinking of transitioning to only cruelty-free products and ensure that, if you plan to do so, you won’t feel like you have to get rid of all of your stuff and replace them with cruelty-free products in one fell swoop.

Are any of you also currently in transition to a cruelty-free lifestyle? How is that going for you?

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FAVORITES | August 2018

I had been planning to post a favorites in July, but when I couldn’t really muster up enough loved items to warrant a post. It’s the start of September now, and I think I’ve gathered enough items to share with you what I’ve been loving for these last two months.

Ilia Illuminator in Polka Dots & Moonbeams (0.18 oz, $34): This gives the most subtle glow-from-within look. It blends very easily and smoothly, even moreso than my well-loved W3ll People Bio Brightener Stick (0.21 oz, $23.99).

The Leo Oil (1 oz, $46): I’ve written a review already on this, so all I’ll say here is that this is worth every penny.

Alterna CAVIAR CC Cream for Hair 10-in-1 Complete Correction (5.1 oz, $41): My best friend got this for me for my birthday this year. She claimed it was hair crack, and I couldn’t understand why, until I used this for myself. It’s amazing. When I put it in my damp hair and let my hair air dry, my hair dries so smoothly that it’s almost like I got a blowout. It’s magic. I tried using this recently before blow-drying my hair, and it’s great that way as well – my hair stays smooth, soft, and far from frizzy until my next hair wash. My only concern with this product is that Alterna is a grey-area brand on the cruelty-free sites I could find it on.

Glossier Cloud Paints (0.33 fl oz, 2 for $30 or 1 for $18) in Storm and Beam: I’ve already written a review on this, but basically, these are some of the best blushes I’ve ever used.

Glossier Stretch Concealer (0.17 oz, $18): There’s also a review on this already, but tl:dr, I love this concealer’s creamy consistency that makes it great for both blemishes and under the eye.

Mount Lai Mini Jade Roller ($20): I definitely fell into the hype of these facial rollers, but I’ve known for a long time that these are really effective for de-puffing the face, and jade has cooling properties as well. My face doesn’t puff up that much in the mornings, but I definitely enjoy using this after applying my skincare because of how cooling the jade feels on my skin. The facial massages I give myself with this roller also helps relieve any tension I have in my face after a long day.

Anthropologie Palm Leaf Dish ($20): My friends got me this for me as part of my birthday present this year. It’s been a great prop in my pictures, and I love that it’s both extremely cute and functional.

Madewell Oversized Hoops ($24): I’ve been eyeing these for a while and finally picked them up in August when I got a $25 off birthday coupon. I’ve already lost count of how many times I’ve worn them, since they go with almost every outfit.

Madewell Bandana ($12.50) in Strawberry Multi: I’ve gotten obsessed with bandanas in the last couple of months and amassed a little collection, but this strawberry one is by far my favorite. I managed to snag it on sale for less than $5, but unfortunately it’s sold out now 😦 I highly recommend Madewell’s bandanas, because all of their bandana prints are extremely cute. They’re also pretty reasonably priced, especially if you can find one on sale (and there almost always is one on sale).

What have you been loving during these last couple of summer months?

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Wishlist & What to Buy | Sephora VIB Sale, August 2018

Recently, Sephora came out with an announcement that it’d be changing its reward program, and as part of that change, there would be a sale. That sale starts today, and I thought I could share some items on my wishlist (at this point though, I’ve already gone ahead and purchased them) and recommendations for what to buy.

As with usual Sephora sales, Rouge members get first access and the highest discount (20% this time), though unlike usual sales, the code you use to get the discount can only be used once.

Wishlist

As usual when Sephora has a sale, I try really hard to edit down my basket so that I don’t overspend and overstock on items that I won’t get to using for a while. I managed to limit my basket to just 3 items this time around, but to be completely honest, it’s because Dermstore and Biossance both just had sales with 25% off, so I picked up some items there instead. (The Biossance sale is ongoing until Monday! Get your Biossance goods there 🙂 ) Regardless, I thought I could share my Sephora basket items as well as the items I purchased from Dermstore and Biossance that could also be found at Sephora.

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Biossance Squalane + Glycolic Renewal Facial (2.02 oz, $68): I’m excited to use this because it claims to be a scrub, peel, and mask all in one, and glycolic acid does amazing things for my skin.

Biossance Only the Good Clean Beauty Gift Set ($72, $115 value): If it wasn’t evident already, I’m a pretty big fan of Biossance. This set was a no-brainer for me, since it included a full-size Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil (1 oz, $72), a 1 oz Squalane + Micronutrient Fine Mist (full-size 2.53 oz, $32), and a little 0.4 oz Squalane + Phyto-Retinol Serum (full-size 1 oz, $78). I’ve been ambivalent about the oil, but I wanted to use it more and see if I would change my mind, and I’ve wanted to try the latter two since they were released.

Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask in Smashed (0.52 oz, $26): I’m nearing the end with my current lip mask and have been dying to try this one for ages, so I definitely took advantage of the sale this time to pick it up.

Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Coconut Oil Micro-exfoliating Shampoo (8 oz, $42): I’m not generally one that likes spending too much on hair products, but I’ve heard amazing things about this, and I do get dry scalp when it gets dry in the winter.

Saturday Skin No Bad Days Set ($39, $69 value): This is an amazing value, and I’ve been really wanting to try all of their stuff ever since my friend let me try her Saturday Skin eye cream. These samples will be great for me to bring on my travels later this year as well. The set includes a 0.67 oz Rub-A-Dub Refining Peel Gel (full-size 2.53 oz, $28), a 1.01 oz Daily Dew Hydrating Essence Mist (full-size 4.39 oz, $34), a 0.51 oz Wide Awake Brightening Eye Cream (full-size 1.01 oz, $46), and a 1.01 oz Featherweight Daily Moisturizing Cream (full-size 1.69 oz, $49).

Supergoop! Glow Stick Sunscreen SPF 50 (1 oz, $25): When traveling, I love bringing stick products with me, since it means less liquids. I’ve heard great things about this one, so I hope it’ll be good! I love that it has such a high SPF.

What to Get

Rather than list specific things that are good to get during sales, I thought I’d just say that the best thing to buy during these sales are value sets. As you can see, I’ve picked up two value sets – one from Saturday Skin and one from Biossance. Value sets are great ways for trying new products or for getting travel-friendly sizes of products you like. Sales are the best time to pick up these sets because they’re usually pretty pricey, especially for higher-end brands, because you’re maximizing your savings.

For example, the Biossance set retails for $72, which is the price of just the Squalane Oil. This is already a great deal, but with the discount, you’re saving even more money. If you were to buy the set during this Sephora sale, you could save an additional $14 if you are a VIB Rouge member.

When looking at value sets to pick up, make sure you look at the descriptions for each set! The Sephora site is pretty good in that it tells how much each set is worth. If it doesn’t, that means the value set doesn’t actually save you money, and, in that case, it wouldn’t be worth it to purchase the set. Also look at what’s included in the set. If there are more items that you don’t care for than do, I’d say pass – you’d only be spending money on stuff you didn’t want, which defeats the purpose of using value sets to save money.

What are some items you’re planning to pick up during this sale?

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REVIEW | The Leo Oil

Nowadays, Instagram is where I discover a lot of the new products that I want to try, and the Leo Oil is one of these products. I first stumbled upon it because a couple of Instagram beauty influencers that I follow had been posting about it. I got curious about the product, with its beautiful, minimal packaging and raving reviews, so I picked up my first bottle of the Leo Oil when Dena (@leowithcancer on Instagram), creator of Leo Oil, was offering 20% off the first purchase.

The Leo Oil is a blend of Meadowfoam Seed Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, Blue Tansy Oil. This combination of oils has such an amazing and soothing smell. It smells like bergamot, and my dog always wants to lick my face after I use it. The color is a greenish blue from the blue tansy as well, which I think makes it fun to apply.

love this oil. First of all, it’s called the Leo Oil. I’m a Leo, so the name already really spoke to me. Honestly, I couldn’t really tell how much it was helping my skin when I first started using it. However, I’ve been using it pretty regularly for a couple of months now, and I’ve really started to notice a difference. This past month in particular, I decided to start using it every night since I had a lot of breakouts and redness from stress. My breakouts seemed to be going away faster, and the oil really helped calm down any redness in my skin. It was a miracle! I’ve already purchased a second bottle and plan to keep this product in my skincare routine.

You can buy a 1 oz bottle of Leo Oil for $46 or a little sample to try first for $13, and there’s still a promo for 20% off your first purchase. Dena makes every bottle of the oil by hand and in batches, so just a heads up that you may not get a bottle right when you order it. It’s definitely worth it though and makes the product that much more special. By purchasing the Leo Oil you’d also be supporting a small, woman-owned business, which is always a good thing 🙂

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EMPTIES | July 2018

Honestly, I wasn’t expecting to post another empties so soon, but between my decision to transition to cruelty-free and my recent decluttering of old products, my empties box really filled up quickly this past month.

As you may notice as you read through this post, a lot of my empties this month were samples and/or travel-sized products – this is because I did a lot of traveling this month, so I put my large collection of minis to good use. It also made me feel like I made more progress in moving towards being completely cruelty-free, since I tried to reach for the non-cruelty-free products to use first.

belif Moisture Bomb: I didn’t enjoy this as much as the Aqua Bomb, since it’s a little too moisturizing for me, but it ended up being perfect for while I was traveling. My skin always gets dryer on trips, and this was great in helping my face retain its moisture.

Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate: I had wanted to try this for the longest time, since I’ve been a longtime fan of the Midnight Recovery Eye Cream, but it didn’t impress me in the end. It doesn’t matter, anyways, since Kiehl’s is not a cruelty-free brand – had I decided I liked this, I would’ve needed to find a cruelty-free equivalent anyways.

Caudalie Premier Cru Serum: I’d heard good things about this serum, so I got a sample of this with one of my Sephora orders a few months ago. It’s a really pricey serum, though honestly, I didn’t see much of a difference when I used this. The sample was pretty decently sized, too, so I got to use this for two weeks every night before forming an opinion on the product.

Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum: I’ve also heard a lot of good things about this, but like with the Premier Cru Serum, I didn’t notice much of a difference while using this.

Kate Somerville Daily Deflector™ Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 50+ (1.7 oz, $48): I actually hadn’t finished up this sample, but it had been a couple of years since I opened it, and thus time to toss it. This was a decent suncreen, but definitely not my favorite, and I would not purchase a full size of this.

e.l.f. Lip Exfoliator in Grapefruit (0.11 oz, $3): I thoroughly enjoyed this lip scrub, and it is an extremely affordable one. Unfortunately, it went bad pretty quickly, so while I still had product left, I needed to toss it. I will definitely be repurchasing this when I get the chance.

Clinique High Impact Mascara: This had made it onto a favorites post a few months ago, but as I used it more, I liked it less. I started noticing that it would transfer to under my eyes if I kept it on for too long.

Glossier Balm Dotcom in Original (0.5 oz, $12): This is probably one of my favorite lip balms ever, but I’ve had other ones on rotation since I finished this one, so I won’t get back to it in a while. I look forward to trying the other flavors!

Sunday Riley U.F.O. Ultra-Clarifying Face Oil (1.18 oz, $80): I actually didn’t get to finish this little sample. The bottle malfunctioned, and I am unable to open it no matter what I try. I’m pretty bummed, because this was great to use when I was breaking out. Since I don’t breakout often, I doubt I’ll purchase this myself.

Acure Brilliantly Brightening Fruit Peel (1.4 oz, $22.99): This is one of the first products that I used where I really thought, “Wow, natural products can really make a difference!” I actually felt like my face looked a bit brighter after using this. I may repurchase this in the future, after I’ve finished using up the other peels and exfoliators in my inventory.

Milk Makeup Lip + Cheek in Perk (1 oz, $24): This is the best cream blush I’ve ever used. I’m holding off on purchasing though, because I already have other blushes in rotation.

Colourpop No Filter Matte Concealer in Medium 28 (0.14 oz, $6): I started off really liking this concealer, but as I used it more, I realized it was too thin for me, and would cling onto the dry patches and fine lines under my eyes. The smell changed too, so I decided to toss it even though I didn’t use it up yet.

Origins Checks and Balances Frothy Face Wash: This is a really dependable face wash, but alas, Origins is not cruelty-free.

Sumbody Salt Scrub (12 oz, $18.95): I got this sample as part of a Birchbox order. It was a pretty great body scrub overall, and I liked that it was pretty gentle. However, it was a little too moisturizing for me – I like super gritty scrubs because I can always moisturize afterwards.

belif Aqua Bomb: This is one of my favorite moisturizers ever, so I was bummed to learn that belif may not be cruelty-free when I was doing research. Thankfully, I’ve discovered other moisturizers I enjoy just as much, if not more, than this one. I still have a full size of this, but I won’t be repurchasing this again.

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Weleda Evening Primrose Revitalizing Body Wash (6.8 fl oz, $10): I didn’t enjoy this as a body wash. It was so rich that I felt like I was trying to wash myself with a lotion.

Glossier Daily Oil Wash (8.4 fl oz, $18): On the other hand, I loved this. I’ve already mentioned this on an Instagram review, but basically, I will always find an opportunity to repurchase this.

Glossier Solution (4.4 fl oz, currently out of stock): I did not enjoy this at all, and it even broke me out a bit. I actually didn’t even finish this, but unfortunately, I couldn’t find anyone to pass this on to. If you’re looking for a chemical exfoliator, I would say it doesn’t hurt to try it, though, since I know plenty of people that swear by this. A word of caution though – Glossier doesn’t give the exact percentage of each of the AHA/BHA/PHA acids, only a total percentage of 10%.

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W3LL PEOPLE Bio Brightener Stick (6g/0.21 oz, $23.99): If you open the link, you’ll see that this product has a completely different packaging now. That’s how long I’ve had this highlighter stick. This was very well loved, but a little went a long way, so I never got around to using it up. I’ve had this for at least two years now though, so it’s time to let it go.

No7 Lift & Luminate Foundation in Warm Beige (1 oz, $15.99): I really enjoyed this but never found myself reaching for it, especially as I started going for base makeup with less coverage, and then it expired before I could donate it.

Urban Decay Brow Tamer in Dark Brown (0.15 oz, $20): I wrote a review about this a year ago, which really goes to show that it’s time for me to toss this. I did not enjoy this then, and I still do not enjoy this now. It has too wet of a formula for me to enjoy. If you’re interested in trying this still, only the clear version is available on the Sephora site now.

L’Oréal Telescopic Carbon Black Mascara: I bought this because Kathleenlights used to talk about how this was one of her favorites, and I did enjoy it for a while because it made my lashes super long. However, it was way too wet and clumpy for me, which made it way too difficult to use on a daily basis.

Klorane Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk: Dry shampoo is a staple for me. This was one of my favorites.

Bumble and bumble. Thickening Hairspray: This was my favorite hairspray ever. The best way I can describe it is a natural hairspray – it’ll keep your hairstyle in place, but it won’t make your hair too crunchy.

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REVIEW | Glossier Skin Tint, Stretch Concealer, & Cloud Paint

After purchasing and loving Glossier’s Generation G lipstick (review here), I had been dying to try more of Glossier’s makeup. However, for the longest time, I really wasn’t in need of new makeup, so I refrained from buying new stuff.

Recently, I finally was at a point where I could add new products to my collection, so as part of a massive haul, I purchased the Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint (1 oz, $26) and the Cloud Paints (0.33 fl oz, 2 for $30 or 1 for $18). I also opened the Stretch Concealer (0.17 oz, $18) that I purchased a while back to use for the first time with the Skin Tint and Cloud Paints.

The Perfecting Skin Tint

The Perfecting Skin Tint comes in five possible shades: Light, Medium, Dark, Deep, and Rich. Before I go into anything else about this product, I have to point out that the shade names are very misleading. I purchased the medium because I am a very true medium skin-tone, but it ended up being way too fair for me, to the point that I looked ghostly.

Also, since there are only 5 shades, I would think it’s likely that some people would have difficulty finding a shade match – it’s even likely that the shade Dark is too dark for me, and I would have to mix Medium and Dark together to get my ideal shade. I know this is a skin tint, which means the coverage is minimal, but there is enough coverage that you can tell if the shade of the tint doesn’t match your skin tone.

My issues with the shade names and shade selection aside, I really enjoyed this product. Generally, my skin behaves well, so I don’t really need much coverage. This product gives me just enough to even out my skin tone. If I have any blemishes, I’ll go in with a concealer for more coverage (Glossier Stretch Concealer is great for this).

This skin tint is definitely on the dewy side for a face product, but that’s what I like. If you don’t like dewy complexion products, you may not enjoy this, though going over the product with a setting powder does minimize the dewiness a bit.

Surprisingly, this product is also very long-wearing – on more than one occasion, I’d put it on in the morning, and it’d still be on my face after 12 hours of wear. I also didn’t wear this on really hot days, so it may be different in that case. I’ll be bringing this with me to the hot and humid Taiwan later this year, so maybe I can give an update on wear time after my trip.

Overall, great product! It does what I want it to do and is pretty affordable for a non-drugstore product. I definitely plan on re-purchasing in the future if I don’t find something I like more, though next time, I’m purchasing the shade Dark. In the meantime, I plan on mixing in the Drunk Elephant D-Bronzi Anti-Pollution Sunshine Serum and hope that will help deepen the shade a bit.

The Stretch Concealer

The Stretch Concealer comes in the same five shades as the Perfecting Skin Tint, though the shade Medium in the concealer worked for me so much better than Medium for the skin tint.

love this concealer. Colourpop’s No Filter Matte Concealer in Medium 28 had been my favorite for a while, but then it stopped working for me because it would dry out my undereye when I used it. The Stretch Concealer is creamy and not too thick, which is perfect for blending out. I use it to cover my dark circles and any blemishes on my face, and the Medium shade is perfect for both of these functions.

Would I repurchase this? YES, though a repurchase would be far into the future, since I don’t use up concealer all that quickly. Like most Glossier products, the price of this one is pretty reasonable – it may seem expensive for very little product, but since this is a cream concealer, a little goes a very long way, and I can foresee myself using this for a good while.

The Cloud Paints

I thoroughly enjoyed all of the products in this post, but the Cloud Paints were by far my favorite. It may be because blush is just more fun than complexion products. I purchased Storm, a warm rose, one of the newer shades, and Beam, a soft peach.

The shade descriptions are pretty accurate, and these blushes are pigmented. Generally, I’m not a fan of blushes that are too pigmented, but since these are a gel-cream formula, it’s much easier to control how much I’m applying to my face.

The Cloud Paints may very well be my favorite blushes ever. I don’t think I’ve seen another blush formulation quite like the Cloud Paint one – it’s neither a gel nor a cream, and it’s extremely pigmented in the best way. I’ve tried Storm and Beam each on their own, and also mixed together, and the colors are beautiful, no matter how I wear them. The longevity is pretty amazing – immediately I compare it to the Pixi Sheer Cheek Gel that I reviewed recently, which had a similar formula but no pigmentation whatsoever and no longevity either.

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These blushes are great for travel in that they’re very small, though since they would be considered liquids, they probably wouldn’t be my first choice either. Though, I love these so much that I may just deal with the fact that I have to pack more liquids to have these with me.

Overall, I continued to be impressed with Glossier’s makeup, and the brand’s makeup is definitely more of a winner than its skincare to me. I look forward to trying more Glossier makeup in the future 🙂

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BOOK REVIEW | Her Body and Other Parties

From the moment I first heard of Her Body and Other Parties, a collection of short stories by Carmen Maria Machado, I wanted to read it. Reading novels written by women and about women is really important to me, and this one in particular called out my name because it had elements of horror, one of my favorite genres of anything, incorporated into each of its short stories.

The collection of short stories in this novel focus on the violence put on women’s bodies, whether by society, other people, or the women themselves. Machado’s other-worldly and slightly unsettling writing fits perfectly with the topics of her stories, making each and every one all the more engrossing.

To be honest, some of the stories worked better for me than others, but I enjoyed reading all of them, something that I can’t say for every short story collection. And while there is the overarching theme of violence on women’s bodies, each story is very distinct, from a re-telling of the story of the girl with the ribbon around her neck, to a paranormal re-imagining of every Law & Order: SVU episode, to a woman’s recollection of all her sexual encounters as the world ends around her.

The stories in this book are unlike any others, and I look forward to reading more of Machado’s beautiful writing and evocative, creative stories. Her Body and Other Parties is also being developed into an anthology TV series, and hopefully, we’ll be seeing that on TV soon!

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HAUL | Summer 2018, Fashion

And now, the fashion portion of the haul! I have to confess… I’ve definitely purchased more items since I decided to do this haul. I do have a lot of traveling in the coming months, so hopefully, that makes it okay??

 

If you’re interested in what beauty products I got as part of this haul, check out my previous post here.

Abercrombie & Fitch

A&F is probably my most shopped store for clothing, especially after it re-branded itself a few years ago. I always pick up A&F stuff on sale, and it’s easy to do so because there are sales extremely often. If you sign up to be an A&F member, you also get plenty of exclusive discount codes and $10 rewards when you reach a certain spending threshold. It’s also super easy to place orders on the A&F site often, since A&F offers free pick-up in store.

Knot Front Dress in Black Stars ($23.20, originally $58): I had a dress years ago that had a similar shape to this, but it was cheaper and shorter. I loved it regardless, and wore it to death. When I saw this dress in the stars print, immediately I thought of that dress of mine from college. This one definitely feels like an upgrade. I love that it’s so versatile, and since I got it in the tall size, it’s long enough that with a cardigan, I could wear it to work as well. I’m thinking of bringing this with me on my business trip to wear on my time off.

Long-Sleeve Colorblock Tee in Light Blue ($11.52, originally $24): A great basic that’s not too basic. I love pairing this with medium wash mom jeans and the belt that I’ll be sharing next.

Athletic Belt in Navy Blue Stripe ($6.72, originally $14): I’m so glad these belts are in again, because I find these easier to wear than leather belts.

Scoopneck Tee in Off White ($11.52, originally $24): I’m in the process of building up my wardrobe again after clearing out things I don’t wear anymore, and this seemed like a good, quality basic that I can wear with plenty of different things.

Twist-Front Bodycon Dress in Black ($23.04, originally $48): I like getting dresses in the Tall size at A&F because otherwise I find them to be too short for normal wear. Unfortunately, this one was sold out in Tall, but I liked it so much that I got it anyways. It’s a really comfy, stretchy dress that’s easy to throw on and run out the door. Unfortunately, this seems to be sold out in Black now, and the other colors still have XL in stock.

Embroidered Mesh Lace Dress in Cream ($17.88, originally $68): I thought this would be a good dress for occasions that call for something nicer than the typical casual dress. I’ll probably wear it out the next time I go to a nice dinner.

High Rise Ankle Straight Jeans in Light Wash ($20.52, sold out 😦 ): A&F has plenty of denim offerings, but this one was different from the typical A&F denim. Rather than the usual stretchy denim, which I enjoy for skinny jeans, this pair had thicker denim, reminiscent of Levi’s. I love this pair of jeans. They’re high-waisted and hug my butt in a very flattering way. I’ve worn this once so far, paired with a graphic tee.

V-Neck Boyfriend Tee in White ($6.84, originally $18): I bought this because I needed to get my order total to $50 so I could use another discount code… but also because I realized I needed more basic white tees.

One-Shoulder One Piece Swimsuit in Navy Blue and Pink ($16.43, originally $48): I’ve been hunting for new swimwear for my trips to Taiwan and Australia later this year, and this one really called out to me. I haven’t picked this up from the store yet, but I’m pretty sure I’ll love it just fine.

Short-Sleeve Button Up in White Check ($18.07, originally $44): I had actually been eyeing this for a while, but it had never been at a price point where I was willing to buy it, until most recently when I went onto the A&F site to look for swimsuits.

Madewell

Palisade Button-Front Midi Skirt in Indigo ($44.99, originally $98): I had been looking for a midi skirt for ages, so I was glad to see that this one was on sale at Madewell, another one of my favorite clothing stores. By the time I saw this on sale, there were only sizes 00 and 14 left. It was final sale, so I was hoping that the skirt ran big like most of Madewell’s clothing. Thankfully, it did, and the skirt fit me perfectly. I love this so much that I’ll probably find a way to wear it year round.

The Sari Crisscross Sandal in Warm Nutmeg ($69.99, originally $128): I’ve wanted these since I saw Madewell come out with them, so I’m glad I was browsing Madewell when they happened to be on sale.

Bandana in Hayfield ($5.59, originally $12.50): I’ve been getting more into bandanas lately, and this one in mustard yellow and red called out to me. I can imagine this looking great with just a plain white tee and denim.

Lo-Fi Shrunken Tee in Nona Stripe ($13.99, originally $32): Madewell tees are extremely comfortable, and this one is in such a cute stripe print.

J.Crew

I hadn’t been planning to purchase anything from J.Crew, but I was helping my boyfriend order stuff and just got sucked into the July 4th sales. Ebates also happened to be having a 10% off cashback for J.Crew, which only enabled me more to pick up these items.

Tortoise Hoop Earrings ($11.70, originally $19.50): I’ve been building up an earring collection, among other things, and I thought this would be a nice addition. I’ve come to realize that outside of gold earrings, I love tortoise shell or similar looking material for my earrings (see my post on Thrifty Thieves earrings).

Long-Sleeve Crewneck T-Shirt in Slub Cotton in White ($9.99, originally $29.50): J.Crew, like Madewell, makes amazing basics, and I highly recommend picking some up when they’re on sale.

Urban Outfitters

Urban Outfitters had 20% off your whole purchase a while back, and I didn’t limit my haul here to beauty.

Out From Under Seamless Back Bra in Black ($10, originally $16): I love this. It’s not often that I’ll find a bralette, especially a spaghetti -strapped one, that looks good and fits well on my small frame/large chest combination. It’s also the rare bralette that I don’t mind wearing as a top. I’ve paired this with some black high-waisted linen pants, and I can see myself wearing an outfit like this in LA or for dinner by the beach. This also comes in red and white, neither of which I’m really keen on wearing for this top, so I hope they come out with more colors soon.

Out From Under Markie Seamless Ribbed Bra in Medium Orange ($10, originally $16): I love this even more than the previous bra, because the straps are slightly thicker, and the shape is slightly more flattering on my body type. I also like wearing this as a top, especially paired with medium-wash high-waisted jeans. The medium orange is basically an awesome rust color, and I plan on picking up more colors in the future.

UO Wrap Midi Slip Dress ($23.99, originally $69): I’ve come to realize wrap dresses are one of the more flattering dress forms on me, so I tend to go for these types of dresses nowadays. I thought this one was cute, with its blue floral print contrasted with the black of the dress and the slightly asymmetrical hemline. Unfortunately, this is sold out on the site.

UO Wind Song Wide-Leg Pant ($23.99, originally $69): I loved this as soon as I saw it online, but I was a bit hesitant to purchase it at first because it was definitely out of my comfort zone. I’ve only started wearing wide-legged pants in the last year, and I definitely haven’t worn any rainbow colored pants before. I’m glad I got these though, because they are extremely comfortable and look great with a white tee and some sandals. The material is super thin, so it’s great for warm weather, and I see myself bringing these with me to Taiwan.

Princess Polly

I.AM.GIA Pixie Jacket ($68.55, originally $85.68): This isn’t really summer fashion, but I bought this last month when the Youtuber Amy Vagabond had a 20% off discount code, and I have been eyeing this teddy jacket for ages. I won’t deny that I got sucked into buying this because of all the Instagrammers that I’ve seen wearing it, but I’m so glad I did, because it’s so cute. I can see myself getting a lot of wear out of this when it’s colder too, since it keeps me pretty warm. Believe it or not, I’ve already worn this once – it got a bit chilly last week up here in the Bay Area, so I wore it out to a concert.

Indigo Vintage

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I’ve recently been inspired to do some thrifting by various Instagrammers and Youtubers that I follow. Not only is thrifting great for the environment, it’s also a great way to find unique pieces.

However, to be honest, I don’t always have the patience to dig through racks and racks of clothes. Thankfully, I discovered this amazing vintage store near Berkeley campus, Indigo Vintage, which has since become one of my favorite stores ever.

The store is a curated boutique – there are little sections with pieces from different online vintage stores and local makers. I’ve gone a few times, and I’ve since purchased rust orange linen blend pants (vintage), the silk scarf pictured above (vintage), a fanny pack (vintage), and two pairs of earrings pictured above, one from Moonwalker Things and one from Prism Jewels.

If you’ve made it all the way through this post, thanks for reading! If you’ve tried any of these products before, let me know whether you liked them or not! 🙂

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HAUL | Summer 2018, Beauty

So… I went a little apeshit shopping the last couple of months, and now that all of the stuff has arrived and my shopping urge has calmed down, I figured it was time to share what I got.

Since I really went a little crazy with my shopping, I dreaded posted this up for the longest time, just because listing everything seemed so daunting. I’ve since tried a few of these products though, so I’ll be able to share my thoughts on some of them.

I’ll be splitting this haul into two parts – part one will be the beauty portion, and part two will be fashion.

Glossier

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This haul was motivated by my upcoming business trip. I will be interacting with clients, so I wanted to get a complexion product that did more than a tinted moisturizer, but wasn’t a full coverage foundation like my Hourglass stick foundation. I won’t say much about these products, because I’ll be writing reviews on all of them after I’ve used them a few times.

Skin Tint in Medium (1 oz, $26)

Cloud Paint Duo in Beam and Storm (0.33 oz, $18 each or 2 for $30)

Lash Slick (0.29 oz, $16)

 

Colourpop

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I’ve been really inspired to step outside of my comfort zone recently with eye makeup looks, so when I got a 20% off discount code for Colourpop last month, I figured it’d be a good opportunity to pick up a bunch of goodies to try out.

  • Super Shock Shadows (0.074 oz, $5): Super Shock shadows are some of my favorite eyeshadows, but I had always stayed with the more typical neutral shades. This time, I only purchased colors out of my usual.
  • Pressed Power Shadows (0.053 oz, $5 with compact, $4 without):
    • Glass Bull (duochrome lavender icy-blue)
    • Backstage (matte cobalt)
    • I also got the On the Daily Palette (4 x 0.053 oz, $12), which includes the four shades You Know the Drill (metallic light bronze), B-Side (matte warm nude), Optional (matte mid-tone brown), and Paper Crane (true vibrant bronze). I’m planning on passing on my Tartelette in Bloom palette because I only use maybe three or four shades from that twelve-shade palette, and someone else will probably get more use out of it. This mini palette will be great for travel and means I’ll actually be getting use out of every shade.
  • Supernova Shadow in Lucky Penny (0.17 oz, $6): I’ve only used this twice, but I love it. I’ve been wanting a liquid eyeshadow for a while, and I’m glad this is the first one I decided to try. The site describes Lucky Penny as a silver with a teal flip, but I would say that it’s more of a silvery white sheen with a baby blue.

e.l.f.

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e.l.f. products are already ridiculously cheap, so when there was a sale on the site, I couldn’t resist picking up a whole bunch of items.

Aqua Beauty Molten Liquid Eyeshadow ($1.60, originally $4) in Rose Gold: I’ve only used this twice, but I’ve really enjoyed it. On my skintone, there’s not much pigment to this shadow, but it leaves a beautiful rose-gold sheen on my lids.

Beautifully Bare Highlighting Stick ($4) in Fresh Morning Dew: I just tried this for the first time today, and I LOVE IT. This shade is described as a “clear, shimmer-free balm” that gives a dewy glow, and I think that that is exactly what this is. It’s great for super light makeup days, but I also want to try layering this over cream or powder highlights. I also want to give the other shades a try, because the formula is quite nice as well.

Best Friend Eyeshadow Duo ($1.20, originally $3) in Soul Mate and Peach Squad: I haven’t used either of these yet, but I thought they would be nice to have on hand for simple looks. I’m thinking of taking one or both of these with me when I go on a business trip to the UK in a little over a week. Soul Mate includes a shimmery silver and a matte navy/purple, and Peach Squad includes a shimmery gold and matte peachy nude.

No Budge Shadow Stick ($1.60, originally $4) in Blue Steel: I already have one of these in Perfect Pearl, and I like it a lot for highlighting the inner corners of my eyes. I’ve recently been inspired to do more cool-toned eye looks, so I thought I could pick up this blue/grey color.

Tinted Shape & Stay Wax Pencil ($1.20, originally $3) in Dark Brown: I’ve found that I don’t care too much about using the typical brow pencil on my brows, so I thought I’d give this one a try.

Mineral Infused Mascara ($3): I haven’t found a drugstore mascara I love yet, so I figured I’d give this a try, especially since it’s at such an affordable price point.

Lip Balm Tint ($0.80, originally $2) in Berry: I’m a sucker for lip tints, tinted lip balms, in the like, and this was only 80 cents when I purchased it.

Gotta Glow Lip Tint ($6) in Perfect Berry: I redeemed 150 of my points for this. It got decent reviews, and once again, I’m a sucker for lip tints.

Beautifully Precise Blending Eye Brush ($2, originally $5): I’ve heard good things about this line of brushes from e.l.f., and I always feel like I could do with more eye brushes.

Cream Blush Palette ($2.40, originally $6) in Soft: I love cream blushes, and I’ve heard Amy Serrano on Youtube talk favorably about this palette, so I grabbed it while it was at such a steep discount. This will be a good one to bring around while I’m traveling, since it’s pretty compact and is pretty versatile with its four different shades.

Matte Lip Color ($3) in Natural and Wine: I haven’t worn either of these yet, but I thought they could be dupes for the NARS or Laura Mercier lip crayons. I actually purchased two of the Natural one by accident and got another in the gift with purchase, so I’ll be donating one and giving the other to my sister.

Contour Palette in Dark/Deep ($6): I got this as part of the gift with purchase for spending $25. I have no need for a powdered bronzing/contour palette, so I will be passing this on to someone else.

Bronzing Brush ($2): This was also part of the gift with purchase.

CVS

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Beauty 360 Premium Cotton Rounds (80 ct, $3.79): I think I got these when there was a 2 for $7 deal. I like these, and I think they’re comparable to the Glossier ones, which are slightly pricier at 60 ct for $4. Overall though, I think I still like using the Daiso ones the best, because they’re the most affordable.

Beauty 360 All In One Micellar Cleansing Water (13.5 fl oz, $6.99): I also got this when there was a deal, though I forget the exact discount. Regardless, at $6.99 it’s cheaper than the Garnier one, which is priced at $9.59 for the same size. Also, Beauty 360, which is CVS’s own brand, is cruelty-free. I’ll report back on whether this is good.

Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Serum (1.05 oz, $14.99): Glycolic acid works great with my skin, so I wanted to give this a try.

Lumene Arctic Lumenessence Valo Light Glow Boost Essence (1 oz, $25.99): I’ve seen a Youtuber or two talk about this brand, so I wanted to check them out. I’ve been wanting to compare different vitamin C products as well, hence the decision to get this product.

Physician’s Formula Butter Bronzer in Deep Bronzer ($16.29): I bought this because everyone and their mom raves about it, and thought my collection was finally at a place where I could get a new bronzer to use.

Also, CVS shopping tip: There are always discounts/coupons/sales at CVS. Unless it’s an emergency product, you can always wait for some type of discount. Although I listed the original prices for these products, I didn’t buy any of them at the original price.

Marshall’s

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You can always score at Marshall’s. I always make it a point to stop by the beauty section if I’m going to Marshall’s. I scored some Alba Botanica and Acure products this time around, which I’ve seen at multiple stores, including Whole Foods and Target.

Alba Botanica Hawaiian Detox Warming Clay Cleaner (6 fl oz, $6.99, originally $9.49)

Acure Organics The Essentials Marula Oil (1 oz, 6.99, originally $15.99): I’ve been eyeing this for a while because I’ve been looking for an affordable marula oil that’s not from The Ordinary, and when I saw it at Marshall’s for such a discount I grabbed it without a second thought.

Acure Organics Brilliantly Brightening Facial Scrub (4 fl oz, $5.99, originally $9.99)

Urban Outfitters

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Urban Outfitters had 20% off your whole purchase a while back, which was the only reason I placed this order.

Gisou Honey-Infused Hair Oil (3.4 fl oz, $90): I got interested in this oil after seeing Amy Serrano review it on Youtube. I was never going to pay full price for this hair oil, so I took advantage of the 20% off to purchase it. I have yet to use it since I still have another hair oil that I want to use up first, but you’ll definitely see a dedicated review on this. A $90 hair oil definitely deserves its own review…

Pixi Glow Mist (2.7 fl oz, $15): I’ve been wanting to try this since I’ve heard it’s a dupe for the Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Mist (1.35 oz, $48), which I love but is a ridiculously pricey for what it is. I will report back after I’ve tried this.

Frank Body Cherry Bomb Lip + Cheek Tint ($0.51 oz, 12): I’ve wanted to try Frank Body for a while, and the sale was a good opportunity for me to order something to try.

The Detox Market + The Nature of Beauty

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As I am transitioning to cruelty-free beauty, I’ve gotten curious about certain brands that I never really thought to try before. I didn’t want to commit to any full-size purchases either since I still had some to use up first. I then stumbled upon sample programs at The Detox Market and The Nature of Beauty and thus decided to pick up samples from both stores.

The Detox Market allows you to pick samples from pretty much the whole website. Rather than have a list of select samples, it offers sample sizes of most, if not all, of its products throughout the site. You can pick four samples for $7.99 plus shipping, and I picked:

  1. Kjaer Weis Cream Blush in Joyful ($56): I’ve tried this once already, and I quite enjoyed it. It had pretty good staying power, but I’ll have to try it again to form a full opinion on it.
  2. Kjaer Weis Highlighter in Ravishing ($56): I tried this at the same time I tried the blush and will also need to try it again to form a full opinion on it.
  3. May Lindstrom The Blue Cocoon (1.69 oz, $180): I’ve heard great things about this product, but it’s so ridiculously expensive that I’ve never had much interest in trying it until now.
  4. Vinter’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum (1 oz, $185): Same thoughts as the Blue Cocoon.

The Nature of Beauty had more of the standard sample program, where you can choose from a list of select samples. You can choose 5 samples for $1 each and shipping. I chose all RMS samples, including:

  1. Lip2Cheek in Beloved ($36)
  2. Lip2Cheek in Smile ($36)
  3. Cream Eye Shadow in Solar ($28)
  4. Cream Eye Shadow in Seduce ($28)
  5. UN” Cover-Up in 22 ($36)

 

If you’ve made it all the way through this post, thanks for reading! If you’ve tried any of these products before, let me know whether you liked them or not! 🙂

Shop with me on Glossier for 10% off your first order!

Get $5 off your first order at Colourpop.

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