Beauty Bag: Alex, Things that Sparkle

    I am so excited that Liz invited me here today to share whats in my beauty bag! I have always loved this series, it's so much fun to get to see all the goodies that other people use.

    So here is my cosmetic bag!

     This little bag was a high school graduation present that I still absolutely adore. And surprisingly, after 8 years, its still in great condition! I love that it has my monogram and up close the material has a gorgeous texture.

    For some reason I couldn't get this picture sharper, I'm sorry! But this is where I store all of my makeup brushes. I saw this idea on a blog a while back and loved it. Recycling an old candle is the perfect way to store my brushes!

    And here is my makeup... I am definitely not one of those girls with a big makeup collection (although I really wish I was). Sadly, when I put on lots of makeup, I end up looking like a clown, so I stick to the basics. After trying lots and lots of different brands, these are my absolute favorites that I would recommend to anyone!
    1. An Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler but wow is it worth it
    2. Bobbi Brown Bronzer in 3 (Dark). I'm really pale, but this way I can do a light dusting and it makes a big impact.
    3. Nars blush in Desire- the perfect pink cheeks
    4. Lancome Mascara (it vibrates, and as weird as that sounds, it's amazing)
    5. Chanel Waterproof Eyeliner. Again, expensive but so so worth it. I have a problem that within an hour, my eyeliner is greasy and all over my face. This is the only one I've ever used that doesn't do that. Its like a tattoo. We're soulmates.

    Thank you again for having me over today! xoxo
    Thanks to Alex of Things that Sparkle for sharing!

Things that make me happy...

    some leopard print

    a new book

    a new teapot

Beauty Bag: Vanessa, Vanessa and Valentine

    Hello lovely readers of Wallpaper!  This is Vanessa coming to you from sunny Los Angeles!  I was so thrilled that Liz asked me to be part of this series because I've literally been wearing makeup pretty much my entire life!!!  I'm one who cruises the makeup counters and Sephora regularly, checking out new products, and I always seem to make friends with the sales girls.  I love giving advice about makeup and products to my friends and family, and even the friendly strangers that I meet in the stores.  I'm the one who always applied my girlfriend's makeup before we went out to parties during our teens and 20s, and I even did my own makeup for my wedding!  In another life I must have been a makeup artist!  To me makeup is like painting and I apply techniques I learned while studying art to the face.  I also read somewhere that women who wear makeup to work, earn higher salaries!  Whether that's true or not, I don't know, but I definitely am one who "puts on my face" everyday.  I work as a Creative Recruiter in my day job,  and I'm constantly in front of new clients and talent daily, so I think it's important to put my best face forward.  I own too much makeup for it to fit in a bag, so here's what's in my makeup drawer!!!!

    1st "You Can Tell A Lot About Someone By Their Skin" 
    You can own the most expensive makeup in the world, but if you don't have good skin, it doesn't matter.  My sister works for Murad in Manhattan Beach and I'm lucky to get the most amazing products for next to nothing.  MY ABSOLUTE CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT PRODUCT is what I call "botox in a bottle without the needle": Murad's Intensive Resurfacing Peel.  I use this little miracle mask twice a week and my skin glows like it does when I get mircro-dermabrasion facials!  I swear, the next day my makeup goes on so nicely and it looks like I've gotten 12 hours of sleep, even though I haven't (I have a 4 month old, so I will do whatever I can to look well rested). These are my other favorite Murad products: Tinted SPF 15 Moisturizer, Hydrating Toner, Intensive Wrinkle Reducer For Eyes (I use on my entire face - again it's like botox in a bottle),  Hydrodynamic Ultimate Moisturizer, Clarifying Body Spray (for bacne - yuck), Firm and Tone Serum (I used everyday of my pregnancy and have no stretch marks-yay)!  I swear by these products!

    Good Foundation is a Must  
    For great coverage and again to protect my skin from the sun I use Laura Mercier's Foundation, Tinted Moisturizer, and Foundation Powder.  I've tried them all, but these products are my favorites. 

    I can't get enough of Bronzer!  I love looking tan year round, without actually going in the sun, so I use Bronzer very generously.  I love them all (Cargo, Nars, and Smashbox are favorites), but I just bought Estee Lauder's Bronze Goddess because I liked the packaging.  I literally have 3 bronzers going at once, one in my purse, one at work, you get the idea!

    Along with my bronzer I love to apply blush to have a flushed pop of color!  My favorites are Bobby Brown Coral, Nars Orgasm, and a pink mosaic that I got from Victoria's Secret. 

    While doing "research" for my wedding makeup, I found a great product by MAC called Painterly.  I use this daily to keep my eyeshadow and eye liner in place.  It's a miracle and I won't ever wear eyeshadow again without this product!  For eyeshadow, I love Bobby Brown, Nars, MAC, and Smashbox.  I prefer dark browns for a smokey look and creamy whites under the brow to make your eyes pop and look alert!  Eye liner is a must and MAC's Stubborn Brown is my go to for that.  I think brown is less severe for the office and great for daily use.  I am obsessed with having groomed eyebrows that are thick without being overly done so I get them professionally threaded regularly.  To top off the eyes, She Uemura's eyelash curler is the best I've found, and I use cheap drugstore mascara - L'Oreal Voluminous in Blackest Black.

    I think every woman needs a great nude lipstick, a sexy lip gloss, and a classic red lipstick in her bag.  I start with lip liner always - Lorac 05 (the perfect nude that actually shows) and 06 (a rosy color) the consistency is great and easy to wear.  Laura Mercier is my preference for lipstick - my daily colors are Coral (which also mixes great with reds), Caramel for my pinky nude, and my red is Truly Red (it has blue undertones that I love)!

    I love getting mani/pedis every two weeks.  Chanel Vamp and Django are my classics.  I also love great reds like Essie Lollipop!  

    Having great brushes allow you to apply your makeup easier - my faves are MAC, Trish McEvoy, and Bobby Brown.  Sephora makes decent brushes too at good prices.

    I never leave home without it.  The one I use daily is a big bottle of Chanel Gardenia.  I just love the way this perfume smells and it never offends anyone in the office like perfume can sometimes do.  The other ones in rotation are Crabtree and Evelyn's Rosewater, Versace's Crystal Noir (there are notes that remind me of coconut - love that!), Chanel Cristalle is my daily winter fragrance, Tocca's Stella was a Valentine's gift that I adore, Trish McEvoy Gardenia is great for summer nights, and Fresh's Lemon Sugar is heavenly.  

    Warmest Thanks to you Liz for including me in your series!  Cheers Everyone!!!



    Thanks to the fabulous Vanessa from Vanessa and Valentine for sharing all her amazing beauty advice!!

Things that make me happy...

    My new soapstone box

    my ever-growing collection of wine corks 

    and a fury visitor

Flower Arranging: diy style

A masculine/feminine space

    I don't know why but I've always loved masculine spaces, there's something dark, sexy and mysterious about them. I have a love of all things black, white and grey, this is clearly evident from my bedrooom. Even my wardrobe is very neutral, with pops of colour when needed. But I have this other half that loves all things feminine and pretty, I am a sucker for anything sparkly and pretty. I actually think it's best to combine the two! here are two homes that do just that...

Interested in Guest blogging?

    I thought I would take the time and ask all you lovely readers and browsers of this blog if you or anyone you may know would be interested in contributing to the "Beauty Bag" series. I've had such great success with some uber fabulous and stylish bloggers sharing their beauty finds and secrets with us here, and I've received great feedback from readers telling me about how much they appreciate all the recommendations and tips they read in the "beauty bag" series! This makes me so happy!! I love utilizing this blog as a way for all us girls to come together and share with each other and help each other out. So this leads me to my main point, since the new year there have been a lack of posts for this great series. So I am calling all bloggers...any of you want to share your beauty bag just email me:

    Looking forward to hearing from you girls!!

Gorgeous Small Spaces

    Apartment Therapy does these great posts about "cool small spaces" and I usually check it out every year and I am always impressed by what some people can do with their small spaces. I have to admit that this year's entries were really amazing though! Have a look...

    982 square feet

    400 square feet

    375 square feet

    head over here and have a look at all of the entries, there are lots more creative small spaces!

    all images via apartment therapy

diy: Sunburst Mirrors

    I have always wanted a sunburst mirror and have yet to find one at a price I like. But after finding these amazing DIY's I think I may just make one for myself!

    Have a look at these easy do-it-yourself sunburst mirrors from around the blog world...

    via here

    via here

    via here

    via here

    via here

    via here

    via here

    What do you all think, should I try making one?

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