Clinique: A hit and a miss…

Hey everyone! I hope you all are having a great summer so far! I’ve mostly been working and completing two summer courses, so I’m clearly having a fun-filled one!

Anyways, I wanted to talk about a brand that I just love: Clinique. So I’ve always been a huge fan, because of their hypoallergenic qualities and it’s what my Mom usually uses on her face. I’ve just always been exposed to it. I’ve managed to try a boat load of their products between my Mom and I and I’d like to share some of the products that have worked for me and some that just missed the mark.

Hit: Eyeshadow Quads

I always run into the problem where shadow quads are literally just the same color in different shades. Like I want something unique and different, but can still make something cohesive. Clinque does this pretty well. If I want to go for a simple neutral look for work or school I can do that, but it also gives me some options for a going out look. My absolute favorite quad is one that I have pictured below.

 

**Note all of these shades are just part of other duos, so I’m listing what those duos are. Top left-Sand dunes; top right- morning java; bottom left- limited edition gold shade (not part of a duo); and bottom right shade- on safari

That gold shade is my life. Like it’s just perfect. It looks like I haven’t used the darker shades a lot, but really it doesn’t take much of them to show up! I frequently turn to this quad for a smokey going out look whenever I hit the bar with my friends, but I’ll swipe on that gold shade for a ready day look. It might be hard to tell but the safari shade has little gold flakes in it so it matches so well with that gold shade!

Miss: Lip Chubby Sticks

Okay so no lie I own like five of these and still wear them from time to time, but I do have some problems with them. I have some swatches below.

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From left to right: 03 Fuller Fig; 02 Whole Lotta Honey; 09 Heaping Hazelnut; (from the intense line): 06 Roomiest Rose

All cute colors, but I cannot seem to make them last on my lips for more than a few hours. I still wear them if I’m running a quick errand, but I do find that if I wear them I have to take them with me to reapply.

What products by Clinque were hits and misses for you? Let me know!

 

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Book Review: The Book of Life (Book 3 of the All Souls Trilogy) by Deborah Harkness

the book of life

“It’s one thing to wander in the darkness because you know no different, but it’s quite another to enjoy the light only to have it taken from you,”


Author: Deborah Harkness

Publisher: Penguin Books (Viking Adult)

Publication Date: 2014


Goodreads Summary:

After traveling through time in Shadow of Night, the second book in Deborah Harkness’ enchanting series, historian and witch Diana Bishop and vampire scientist Matthew Clairmont return to the present to face new crises and old enemies. At Matthew’s ancestral home at Sept-Tours, they reunite with the cast of characters from A Discovery of Witches—with one significant exception. But the real threat to their future has yet to be revealed, and when it is, the search for Ashmole 782 and its missing pages takes on even more urgency. In the trilogy’s final volume, Harkness deepens her themes of power and passion, family and caring, past deeds and their present consequences. In ancestral homes and university laboratories, using ancient knowledge and modern science, from the hills of the Auvergne to the palaces of Venice and beyond, the couple at last learn what the witches discovered so many centuries ago.


My Thoughts:

Okay, so for this review, I’m going to sort of bounce back and forth between looking at this book itself and the All Souls Trilogy as a whole.

So this whole series for me was a love-hate relationship. Sometimes I was super into it and couldn’t put it down, but other times I was dragging my feet through it. This last book was again a little bit of both, but to be honest, the last half of the book was fantastic. I kept looking at it going, why couldn’t the rest of the series been like this? These books are pretty intimidating because of the size and the font is super duper small. I was determined to finish it. The second book was mostly me dragging my feet through it, but it was really the plot that kept me going.

It is obvious that Harkness has done her research. There is so much detail written into these books, like so much. So much in fact that it can sometimes bog down the story for me. I cannot determine what is necessary to remember or not. I just found myself at times going, really? Was that necessary to go on for a page? It wasn’t. This is probably due to her background as a professor. I have to admit that it sometimes did read like a textbook. I just wish that more of that energy was focused on witches and had a bit more of a creative spin on it.

The plot was original and appealing, with a mix of sorcery, vampires, alchemy, and history (and even some references to other literary works). I liked the spin she took on witches, like Diana’s abilities and the witch hierarchy. I just wish that there was MORE ABOUT WITCHES. Like vampires are cool and stuff but COME ON. I want to learn more about that! I do feel like this would make an awesome television series though.

The one thing that bothered me a lot (and if you read some of the other reviews it bothered other people a lot), was the relationship between Diana and Matthew. It just did not seem okay or healthy. I know that vampires being predatory and territorial is a part of the plot, but it still didn’t make some of the things he did okay. I just felt like Diana’s identity was lost sometimes throughout the story. She became “Matthew’s husband” instead of “Diana Bishop.” He was so incredibly controlling that I just wanted him to go away. I would be okay with this if Diana stood up for herself from time to time, but mostly she allows herself to be treated in a certain way. I will say that in the last half of the book she won me over a little bit more.


My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Review: Christie Brinkley Daily Facial Exfoliating Polish

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Hey there everyone! This is one of my first makeup/skincare reviews, so if this seems choppy or just like not good in general. I’m going to go ahead and give it my best shot.

So I received this little bottle here in a Birchbox pretty recently. I’ve been trying to use up most of my little samples just so I can say that I’m not throwing my money away for a cute box and tissue paper. But speaking of which, my latest Birchbox did not have any tissue paper. Is this a new thing they are doing? I liked it when they have tissue paper because it feels more like a little present.

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Okay, okay, back to the actual product. So I’ve used exfoliators before, but not one that has been advertised as being used “daily.” I’ve always been told not to exfoliate everyday because it strips your face of some of those essential oils. I was afraid this product would dry up my face, but again it says that it is “gentle on all skin types.” This little thing lasted me a little more than a week.

 

The formula wasn’t anything special, it had that sandy, yet creamy texture to it that it typical of most exfoliators. A little did go a long way, but this is about how much I would use on my face daily. It felt nice after my morning workout and that scrubbing action made my skin feel so nice. So I would apply it in little circles all on my face and wiped it off with warm water on a washcloth.

Looking back, I should have posted a before and after pictures. I will say that I did not have as much acne using this product every day. The full size product (3 oz.) is around $34. Do I think that it is worth the $34? It might be something to look into if you have sensitive skin that is acne prone, but for me, it’s kind of a toss up. There are so many exfoliator products out there I want to try, but I’ll definitely keep this one in mind if I’m ever in the market for one.

Most Intimidating Books in my TBR Pile…

So I follow several different booktubers and this tag came up a lot. Basically these are just three books that I’m a little afraid to read (for a variety of different reasons) but I really want to read them. These books are either going to require some extra focus or determination but I think I can get through them (and hopefully enjoy them!).

After Alice by Gregory Maguire

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Uh can we just talk about this cover for a second, I’m in love. I’m all about a fairy tale spin-off, and Gregory Maguire is known for them. And unf just listen to this plot description on Goodreads:

When Alice toppled down the rabbit-hole 150 years ago, she found a Wonderland as rife with inconsistent rules and abrasive egos as the world she left behind. But what of that world? How did 1860s Oxford react to Alice’s disappearance?

In this brilliant new work of fiction, Gregory Maguire turns his dazzling imagination to the question of underworlds, undergrounds, underpinnings — and understandings old and new, offering an inventive spin on Carroll’s enduring tale. Ada, a friend of Alice’s mentioned briefly in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, is off to visit her friend, but arrives a moment too late — and tumbles down the rabbit hole herself.

Ada brings to Wonderland her own imperfect apprehension of cause and effect as she embarks on an odyssey to find Alice and see her safely home from this surreal world below the world. If Euridyce can ever be returned to the arms of Orpheus, or Lazarus can be raised from the tomb, perhaps Alice can be returned to life. Either way, everything that happens next is After Alice.

Cool right? But honestly, I don’t know if I will be able to handle his writing. I read Wicked and that was brutal. Not that it was bad, it was just A LOT. Granted, this one is smaller than Wicked but I’m still a little nervous. It just sounds so cool so I hope that I’m engaged. And it’s just so pretty. (#priorities)

 

Walk on the Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson

IMG_4417I think I’ve only read short stories by Rae Carson, if anything. I’ve heard her writing is good and the plot of this one sounds pretty unique:

Lee Westfall has a strong, loving family. She has a home she loves and a loyal steed. She has a best friend—who might want to be something more.

She also has a secret.

Lee can sense gold in the world around her. Veins deep in the earth. Small nuggets in a stream. Even gold dust caught underneath a fingernail. She has kept her family safe and able to buy provisions, even through the harshest winters. But what would someone do to control a girl with that kind of power? A person might murder for it.

When everything Lee holds dear is ripped away, she flees west to California—where gold has just been discovered. Perhaps this will be the one place a magical girl can be herself. If she survives the journey.

The acclaimed Rae Carson begins a sweeping new trilogy set in Gold Rush-era America, about a young woman with a powerful and dangerous gift.

Here’s the thing: 1) it’s a big book, 2) I’m not familiar with the author, and 3) it’s the start of a series. Some people get so excited to start a series, I get a little nervous. I have this tendency to not finish them. I have book commitment issues. I’m hoping that the writing and plot will be so good that I’ll just have to keep up!

 

Ink by Amanda Sun

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COVER. Oh my gosh it is so pretty. So this book isn’t very long, and it’s got a decent sounding plot (plus it takes place in Japan):

On the heels of a family tragedy, the last thing Katie Greene wants to do is move halfway across the world. Stuck with her aunt in Shizuoka, Japan, Katie feels lost. Alone. She doesn’t know the language, she can barely hold a pair of chopsticks, and she can’t seem to get the hang of taking her shoes off whenever she enters a building.

Then there’s gorgeous but aloof Tomohiro, star of the school’s kendo team. How did he really get the scar on his arm? Katie isn’t prepared for the answer. But when she sees the things he draws start moving, there’s no denying the truth: Tomo has a connection to the ancient gods of Japan, and being near Katie is causing his abilities to spiral out of control. If the wrong people notice, they’ll both be targets.

Katie never wanted to move to Japan—now she may not make it out of the country alive.

Okay so this is a part of a series so there is my book commitment problem. But also, I’ve heard pretty mixed reviews.

 

What are some books on your shelf that seem a little intimidating? I want to know! Have a great day guys!

 

 

My Bucket List

Yep, a random post. There are so many things that I haven’t done yet. Since I’m in my 20s, this is the prime time to do some of these things. I thought, maybe if I wrote them down, I would be more likely to pursue these:

  1. Go to New Zealand- Uh hello?! Lord of the Rings! Yes, this is my nerd showing. My boyfriend and I have always said that if we were to go somewhere together, it would be New Zealand.new_zealand_hobbiton_shire_house_view_copy
  2. Get a tattoo- I think my mom would die if she saw this one, but hey, I want one! Just something small and meaningful. Perhaps one with my favorite bible verse or Harry Potter related? I don’t know, but this definitely won’t be until after I graduated.
  3. Attend Coachella- You all know you want to too! i remember when Snapchat did that little like look inside Coachella and yes I want the whole thing: the flower crowns, yummy foods, and most of all AWESOME MUSIC.landscape-1460484627-coachella-2015-street-style-144
  4. Run a 5k- I know that for some this isn’t that much, but I want to do it to prove it to myself.
  5. Complete the Army 10 miler with my Dad- Okay so this one is sort of a long shot, but my Dad used to do it every year, and I want to be able to run it with him to show him my support!      tablet-logo
  6. Make my own cosplay- I’ve done this before, but it’s been a pretty simple one (Sophie’s dress from Howl’s Moving Castle). I want to make one that is semi complicated, that I can be proud of.
  7. Go back to London- London is one of my most favorite places. I want to go back (preferably alone) to explore. I’ve never traveled alone so I think this would be the place to do it.tumblr_n03bmiInuA1rj0vlno3_1280
  8. Hold a baby turtle- This doesn’t need much of an explanation, who doesn’t want to hold a baby turtle?!
  9. Learn how to knit- Yes I’m a granny. Wouldn’t it be nice if I could knit a nice sweater for someone for the holidays?!
  10. Become more familiar with the sewing machine- So I know my sewing machines basic settings: “on” and “off.” For anything else, I have to get my mom to help me. I’d be more likely to sew more stuff and that always equals happiness for me.
  11. Go on a cruise with my sorority sisters- We have always talked about doing this, but have never followed through. I think this would be an awesome spring break trip.
  12. Get one of those pedicures with the little fish- One of my Mom’s friends did it and she said that it felt really weird, but cool.
  13. Go to a winery/brewery- There are SO many in my area, and it seems silly that I haven’t been to one yet. I will get to this one this summer!bold-rock-hard-cider
  14. Go fruit picking and make a pie- I’ve been fruit picking before, but I only ate it raw, and I think it would be fun to make a pie with it!
  15. Go paddleboarding- I just think this seems really cool and apparently it is a good workout.Paddleboarding
  16. Go to Powells books in Portland- Yeah this is a given. One of my professors said that if you ever go to Oregon, you MUST go to Powells.
  17. Start a shop on Etsy- No idea what I would sell, but I just think it would be really cool.