Spring 2014 Color Obsessions

I am so obsessed with Spring colors it’s not even funny! Of course, my workday wardrobe often consists of greys, blacks, and dark purples. However, I’m working on expanding my color palette and am happy to report that color and teal are back for another round this season! Last season I purchased a neat coral cardigan and my Mom got me a great scarf to go with it. This year, I’m equally in love. Below, here are some of my favorite spring colors and pieces I’m currently scouting for.

Easter

I would wear all of this together on a Friday, I’m not even going to lie. The blazer (currently I am on the hunt for a pink blazer that I don’t have to sell my soul for), and shoes are the focal points and the bangles add a nice touch. I’d probably only wear two or three. I say this outfit is a perfect casual Friday get-up since Fridays usually mean jeans, but I could probably wear this anytime throughout the week, or maybe even on Easter!

Spring Obsessions

The next things on my list that I’m loving this Spring are cardigans and funky accessories. I’m all about bright, chunky bangles and nails to match. Yes, nails are an accessory in my eyes. I’m loving Button London in Trout Pout. It looks great on short, squared off nails and is also cruelty free and vegan. (Bonus!) I’m also looking for a sweet cocktail ring to wear out like this amazing teal one. Lately, it’s been brought to my attention that Old Navy has a sweet line of accessories. I might just have to check it out. What accessories are you loving for Spring?

What I’m Eating Wednesdays

To be honest, I’m not even sure that “WIEW” is a thing…but today it is! For Lent I decided to go Vegetarian (which aligns nicely with my new cruelty free cosmetic and household status). Each year when it comes time to celebrate Lent, I try and sacrifice something challenging. This year it’s been enlightening and exciting. I’ve reignited a passion for cooking and Keith and I have spent more time together cooking different meals. He’s tried some of my vegetarian meals, too! What will happen once Lent is over? I’m not sure! We’ll just have to see. For now, feast your eyes on what I’ve been eating this week. 

 

 

Quinoa with kale, roasted red peppers, roasted eggplant, and asparagus.

Quinoa with kale, roasted red peppers, roasted eggplant, and asparagus.

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Green monster with a water base, 1 1/2 c. Kale, 1 banana, 1 tbsp. vegan raw vanilla protein powder and lots of ice.

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Tuscan vegetables (roasted red peppers, broccoli, zucchini, squash, julien carrots) rice, and marinara.

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Vegan chickpea salad (to sub for chicken salad). 1 c. chickpeas (ground in food processor), 1/2 c. hummus, 1/2 c. chopped celery, 1/2 c. carrots, 1 tsp paprika).

 

Beauty Without Cruelty: Eyes Edition

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Eye makeup remover is in the center and the mascara is at the bottom.

Last week I reviewed Beauty Without Cruelty’s amazing lotions, but my care package from this awesome company didn’t stop there. They also provided me with their Extra Gentle Eye Makeup Remover and their Full Volume Mascara in Black

I’ve been on the search for a new eye makeup remover for a long time. A while ago, I used Neutrogena (before my cruelty free days), and found that it burned my eyes! I then switched to baby oil, cold cream, and then just plain scrubbing at my lashes and eyes. Ouch! I don’t love cream removers (they seem messy to me), so I was excited to try BWC’s remover since it claimed to be extra gentle as well as wouldn’t leave an oily residue. 

 

Right off the bat, I found that the remover was cooling and, indeed, very gentle. The main ingredient was vegetable glycerine and the overall formula worked well even with some of my other eye makeup brands. My eyeliner was easy to remove, and my mascara was too! No pulling or extra hard rubbing was necessary. This product is only $8.95, so when I run out, I’d definitely buy this product again. I’m happy to have an eye makeup remover that doesn’t hurt!

As for the mascara, that’s a different story for me. I love mascara and have been devoted to Too Faced for quite some time. I love to do more than one coat on my eyes for extra oomph! However, with this mascara, I wasn’t able to do much more than one coat before it became a bit clumpy and hard to apply. I had to actually comb my lashes out after applying. I love the packaging, the brush, and the cruelty free stance, but the formula wasn’t working for me. 

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Once my lashes were combed out (top and bottom), this is what they looked like. Is there volume? YES! Do my lashes look full? They do! However, it took some time and work to get them there. My tip? If you try this mascara, wipe the wand before applying and then comb through with your lash comb. The wand tends to grab a lot of product. 

Will I try some of their other mascaras? You bet! But the volumizing one just didn’t work for me. Plus for a cool $24.95, I’m not sure that this would be as budget friendly for me as their eye makeup remover!

What mascaras do you usually use? Do you use a makeup remover? 

 Editor’s Note: The product(s) featured in this post were provided by a representative of the company named in this post for editorial consideration.  I was not in any other way compensated for this post. All reviews are 100% honest and of my own opinion.

Beauty Without Cruelty Lotion Review

As hard as I’ve tried to boycott the never-ending East Coast winter, the ice and cold just keep coming. Despite us having a tease of 60 degree, sunny weather yesterday, I’ve accepted that we have a few more weeks to go. For my body, mind, and spirit, winter takes its toll. I know…I’m living on the wrong coast, but that’s not the point! The point is that a good moisturizer has become a requirement for me all year ’round, but especially during those cold, dry months. 

I loved these travel sized minis. Great for your purse or bookbag!

My care package from Beauty Without Cruelty came complete with two travel sized lotions and Eye Makeup Remover and Mascara. More on the eye goodies next week! For now we’re focusing on getting smooth. 

First up, BWC’s Hand and Body Lotion with CoQ10 and Vitamin C. Can we talk about quick absorbing? I love lotions that absorb fast and don’t leave my hands feeling greasy. I don’t have time for that. I’m a teacher who moves between classes quickly! The lotion is smooth, cooling, and smells a bit like Sage to me. I personally love the more rustic scent. 

The CoQ10 cream is also formulated with some delicious antioxidants that are good for your skin all year round. Botanicals like  Chamomile, Rosemary, Thyme, and Aloe Vera keep skin feeling rejuvenated and replenished. This product is $12.95 for 8.5 oz. 

Pros: Love the natural ingredients, 100% vegan and cruelty free, a little goes a long way! I hate when I have to glop lotion on. 

Cons: Really? None! I did prefer the trendier packaging for the Mascara, but that’s really a non-issue here. 

Next up? BWC’s Extra Rich Fragrance Free Lotion for the body and hands. Sometimes, I don’t want to smell like ANYTHING. This lotion is perfect for those days when scents are just too overpowering. Natural emollients like Shea butter, jojoba and Kukui nut oil combined with Aloe Vera kept my skin smooth. I loved that this lotion was so clean and pure. For that reason it was PERFECT when it came time to use it as an after shaving lotion on my legs. If you have sensitive skin, this lotion is perfect for you, too! The moisture lasted all day long. I loved this product and would definitely purchase it in the future. This product only costs $11.95, for a decent sized package. 

Pros: Amazing ingredients, cruelty free and 100% vegan, price friendly, effective for sensitive skin. 

Cons: I’ve got nothing! 

Since making the pledge to go cruelty free last month, taking the time to find new products has been fun and challenging. Despite the challenge, BWC makes some amazing products that have become new staples since making this important switch!

 Editor’s Note: The product(s) featured in this post were provided by a representative of the company named in this post for editorial consideration.  I was not in any other way compensated for this post. All reviews are 100% honest and of my own opinion.

Celebrity Hairstyles Show Natural Beauty

Even though awards season is coming to a close, I still can’t get enough of the great celebrity hair styles that I’ve seen so far in 2014. There are so many amazing styles, and there’s a blast of multicultural beauty that I’ve never seen before. My friends and I were just talking the other day about all of the short hairstyles for black women worn by the likes of Halle Berry and even newbie award winner Lupita Nyong’o. Everyone seems to me rocking what they were born with, whether it be curly hair, kinky hair, or pin straight hair. I love that the concept of having one iconic seasonal hairstyle seems to be going by the wayside and more ladies are open to rocking their natural locks. 

As a curly haired girl, I often tried to straighten my own hair. It wasn’t until I was a bit older (read: within the last five years) that I finally started to embrace my natural curls. I learned how to get my curly hair cut properly, I learned how to finally style it, and I explored different styling avenues. I even experimented with some of the trendy short hairstyles for women that I had previously been told were reserved for ladies with “normal” hair. 

Now that celebrities are becoming more willing to experiment with their locks and are going public with their hairstyles and hair mishaps, I think that more women will want to continue to follow their lead. Why not instagram your daring chop like Miss Miley? Why not embrace those crazy curls like Beyonce? And, why not just leave it alone if you’re not into styling and putting a large amount of product in your locks. If the natural is beautiful trend continues (which it totally SHOULD!), there’s a chance I might ditch products all together and let my big, crazy, curls shine. 

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