NYX Powder Blush in Peach

Hey guys!  Today I want to share a drugstore product that has a heck of a reputation: NYX blushes. Specifically, this post is on the shade Peach.

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Contrary to the name, Peach is a light, slightly yellow-toned pink blush that gives a very light, natural appearance on the cheeks.

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This up close swatch shows the only small problem with this blush: it’s a touch powdery. It does blend well, and considering the price point of these blushes, I personally don’t mind.

What othet shades of this blush do you guys recommend? I’d love to know! – Alyza ♡

NOTD: 4th of July Mani

It’s that time of year: BBQs, sunshine, parades, fireworks, and the good old red, white, and blue. So here’s my contribution to the, no doubt, onslaught of Independence Day manis that you’ll be seeing!

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The colors I used are: Essie’s Butler Please, Revlon’s Fast Dry Snow Bunny, Sinful Colors’ Ruby Ruby, and LA Colors’ Art Deco White.

I used Snow Bunny alone on 3 nails, Ruby Ruby alone on one, and Butler Please alone on one other.
For two nails I tried layering Snow Bunny over Ruby Ruby or Butler Please for a peek-a-boo color glitter effect. It worked much better over Butler Please than Ruby Ruby. Snow Bunny is quite opaque in just one coat!
I put Butler Please down on my right thumbnail and dotted the Art Deco White over it to mimic the stars on the flag and on the reverse thumb I used a combo of dots and stripes to mock up the flag (and you can see a smudge in one of the stripes, sorry!).

That’s all, folks! Have a happy and safe 4th of July! - Alyza xox

My Everyday Nail Polish Favorites

Hey guys! Today I thought I’d share my favorite nude/neutral nail colors with you guys. Nine times out of ten, one of these colors will be on my nails, and one of them will always be on my toenails. I’m a bit boring in my love for neutral nails, but they just go with everything and it’s so easy, especially during the school year, to not have to think too hard about what you’re painting your nails!

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Essie is a great brand to check out for neutral shades! (I’m totally lemming “Eternal Optimist” right now, it’s next on my list!) A lot of them are quite sheer, but these three have good opacity and are lovely to wear. Sand Tropez is a slightly cool-toned beige, Chinchilly is a grey-ed cool taupe, and Cocktails & Coconuts is a warm tan with subtle white/gold shimmer.

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These three are sort of miscellaneous. Julep Sienna is an odd sort of “everyday” shade, it’s a super shimmery metallic champagne, but I just love it so much and find it quite wearable. Deborah Lippmann Naked is an infamous polish, it’s a nice nude but it’s incredibly sheer up to five coats. If you like a dusty rose/brown nude, then you’ll love Vacation Time by Sinful Colors it’s so smooth, lovely, and affordable!

Hope you guys like this post! What is your go-to everyday polish? – Alyza ♥

NOTD: Essie Cocktails and Coconuts

Hey guys! I impulse-bought this Essie polish on Amazon a week ago because I have almost used up all my nude polishes (I am the rare freak that actually finishes nail polish on the regular) and I’ve been salivating over this shade since it came out this spring with the Resort collection 2014.

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Cocktails & Coconuts is a great nude for summer when you want a break from the usual pinks, corals, neons, teals, etc. of summer. This shade is a warm tan with subtle flecks of shimmer (that really do remind me of shavings of coconut!) and it screams summer to me. It sort of looks like a sandy beach. The formula is smooth and applies like a dream. Looks like it’s giving me lobster hands in this picture, but it really isn’t. I would recommend this for people who are a bit more tan, though. – Alyza =]

Depotting a Bottle of UDPP

Okay, so, like you all, I’ve seen a lot of people depotting UDPP in the old (now discontinued) genie bottles. It’s a bit played out at this point, but oh gosh, guys. I’ve had this bottle of Primer Potion in Sin for 4 years! FOUR YEARS. I thought I had dug it all out by twisting the wand this way and that. Every time I thought it was ready to depot, suddenly it was usable again for another year, but it seemed especially dry today, so I finally cut it open.

IMG_20140605_162948Ugh! It’s great that I’ll be able to use it for another six months or so (since Sin is my all-time favorite primer) but it’s also super messy to depot. I put mine into a nicely airtight piece of Tupperware because it was what I happened to have on hand. I should probably invest in some empty pots.

I see why they changed the packaging after all, but does anyone else hate the squeezie tubes? I used this genie bottle everyday for 4 years (and now I can use it longer) but I bought a squeeze tube of the original UDPP and it kicked the bucket for good six months on! Oh well. - Alyza

 

 

Bake With Me! Mini Vegan Chocolate Cake

Today I want to share my favorite go-to “midnight snack” recipe: a small (fits a pan roughly 5″ x 5″ or 4″x  6″ or slightly larger for a thinner cake) vegan (egg-less, pure vegetable oil) chocolate cake that only takes about 30 minutes from prep to fork!

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PREP. Preheat your oven to 350°. Gather your ingredients. Do not grease your pan -it sounds weird, but you won’t need it, I promise!
Measure out your dry ingredients: 1 cup flour, 2/3 cup white sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 3/4 teaspoon baking soda, and  2.5 tablespoons of cocoa powder.

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BUILD. Combine all your dry ingredients directly into your ungreased pan. Mix thoroughly. Measure out your wet ingredients: 1/4 cup vegetable oil, 2/3 cup cold water, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 2 teaspoons of distilled white vinegar. Sculpt your dry ingredients into four “wells” (think science fair volcano!) and pour 1 wet ingredient into each– they will overflow and begin to mix in such a small pan. Mix thoroughly with a spoon until all the ingredients are evenly distributed– watch out for clumping flour! Place in oven.

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BAKE. Depending on the strength of your oven and the depth of your pan, you’ll have a bake time of 10-25 minutes. Bake until (just until) a toothpick removes cleanly from the center of the cake.

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Your resulting cake will be moist (so moist, I once left one out uncovered and it was still moist a day later!) and chocolate-y without being cloyingly sweet! Hope you guys try this out and enjoy it, I know I’ll be enjoying mine for breakfast! – Alyza

P.S. Can’t get enough? This recipe was inspired by, sized down, and modified from a larger 9″ x 13″ size cake here: at AllRecipes.

Impulsive Drugstore Makeup Mini-Haul!

Oops! I was out doing some shopping this morning and I kept accidentally stumbling across great beauty deals… so of course, I picked up some things, some staple items, and a few new color cosmetics in great everyday, wearable shades.

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First I stopped in to my local Walgreens, where their summer sales are still going strong! Especially if you have a Balance Rewards card.
I desperately needed base & top coats, so I repurchased the Revlon Quick Dry ones, which were on sale for 50% off! So it was basically two for the price of one. Then I got a set of 2 double-ended EcoTools eye brushes because I was in need of a good crease brush- they were on sale for 50 cents off, so I got four eye brushes for just $5.34 (I price checked the same brushes at Walmart, where they were marked at $7.50!) In the clearance section they also had some ELF cosmetics -which I’ve never seen at Walgreens before, and the ELF eyelash curlers were on sale for 49 cents, so I picked one up to give to my mom.
I picked up Sinful Colors Vacation Time polish at checkout because all Sinful Colors polishes were only 99 cents!

Next, at Walmart I bought the NYC Sunny bronzer, because I have to see what all the fuss is about!
I thought I was done there- but while I was grocery shopping at Kroger I noticed a bunch of makeup in the Manager’s Special Clearance section. All the Covergirl Lipsticks were on sale. I picked up mine in Honeyed for only $2.48!

Can’t believe my luck at stumbling on these great deals, but this time I am serious about being on a no-buy! (So I always say, lol) – Alyza ❤