Ulta Beauty Haul

Ulta Beauty Haul

I sure do love me some Ulta Beauty!  I love makeup in general, but Ulta is just the most perfect beauty store, EVER!  At Ulta, you get high-end beauty products AND drugstore products; it’s a one-stop shop, all the employees are so nice and so helpful, and it is my heaven!

A new Ulta store opened up near my work so I took full advantage and treated myself a bit during their Grand Opening weekend! Why not, it is National Splurge Day, right?!

Here’s the goodies that I got:

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Ulta Salon Formula Nail Lacquer in “Blue Right Past You” $6
The most gorgeous robin’s egg blue; perfect for my pale skin tone!

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Ulta Salon Formula Nail Lacquer in “Showgirl” $6
I love corals against my pale skin tone, and this one is PERFECT for the summer!

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Not Your Mother’s Way to Grow Long & Strong Shampoo $5.99
I ‘ve heard SO many great things about this shampoo, and I can’t wait to start using it!  My hair has never grown very quickly, and even though I use a buttload of heat protectants, it doesn’t help that I use heat on it almost every single day – hopefully this shampoo will help my hair grow longer and stronger as it claims to!

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Ulta Matte Neutrals Eyeshadow Palette $20
OMG these shades are GORGEOUS!  I’m in love with matte eyeshadows and this palette is perfect for me!  Cool-toned, matte, extremely pigmented, and easy to blend out – what more can a girl ask for?!

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Ulta Rose Gold Eyeshadow Palette $20
I’m branching out from only using matte shades, and this palette seems like the perfect way to add some shimmer into my matte eyeshadow looks!  Rose gold is very in right now, and I’m into it – it’s my new obsession; these shades are PERFECT!

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Ulta Matte Lip Cream in “Bossy” $9
I’m on the fence about this lip cream, I don’t find it very long-lasting, and it doesn’t really dry down.  It is matte, but by not drying down, it wipes off very easily.  The color isn’t perfect for my skin tone either, but that’s nothing against the product, obviously, that’s just me.

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Essence Make Me Brow Eyebrow Gel Mascara in “03 Soft Browny Brows” $2.99
I always looked for this product in my local Target, but could never find it in the right shade; they always had the darkest brown OR the blonde, but never the middle shade, which is perfect for me, but of course, Ulta came through!

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Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional: Matte Rescue Invisible-Finish Mattifying Gel Mini $10
I’m OBSESSED with this product – the cashier was absolutely right, once I tried it, I never ever want to use a different primer again!  It’s so mattifying, but doesn’t dry out my skin, and it literally sets the best base for my makeup.  I find that when I use this, my makeup just applies differently (SO MUCH BETTER) and makes me look airbrushed.  It’s my savior and my holy grail!!  I will definitely be purchasing the full-size – SO worth it!

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Makeup Revolution Matte Blush in “Beloved” $5
For $5, these blushes are beautiful, creamy, super pigmented, and easy to apply and blend out!  Their only downfall is they don’t last a super long time, but I mean, for $5, they’re pretty fricken great!

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Makeup Revolution Matte Blush in “Fusion” $5

What are some of your favorite beauty products at Ulta Beauty?


I also filmed this unboxing:



Sephora Play! Unboxing May 2017

Sephora Play! Unboxing May 2017


These past few months, I haven’t exactly been wowed by IPSY Glambags, so I wanted to switch it up a bit; I decided to swap out my IPSY Glambag monthly subscription for the monthly Sephora Play! box just to see which one I may like better.

I love myself some IPSY Glambags, but sometimes, you just need to shake it up a bit.  I plan on only subscribing to the Sephora Play! box for the summer, then I will re-evaluate and decide if I want to continue with the Sephora Play! box or not, and if I want to go back with IPSY Glambags.

PROS of Sephora Play! box:

  • all items in the Sephora Play! box are available at Sephora stores and sephora.com
  • bags aren’t always “makeup” bags – they come in different forms
  • brands are wider-known
  • complimentary perfume sample in addition to your 5 monthly items
  • free shipping
  • comes with pamphlet/brochure listing all of the products in the bag, a card that you can bring to Sephora to use for many things (explained in the monthly pamphlet)

CONS of Sephora Play! box:

  • monthly fee is $10 + tax
  • samples aren’t exactly huge…but they’re not foil packets, so I’m happy!

I LOVE Sephora, let’s jump in and see what’s in the May 2017 Sephora Play! Beauty Box:

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trèStiQue Highlight & Perfect Multipurpose Stick $34
This highlighter is GORGEOUS!  I am super impressed by the pigmentation and the creamy formula!

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belif Hungarian Water Essence $42

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NUDESTIX Magnetic Matte Lip Color in “Greystone” $24
This shade is quite deep, and more on the brownish side so for me, this is more of a Fall shade, but the formula seems GREAT!  I swatched this on the back of my hand and it took some serious scrubbing to get it off – should be super duper long-wearing!

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rahua Omega 9 Hair Mask $58
This hair mask is amazing and I’m so glad I got a chance to try it!  When I use this, my hair looks so damn healthy!!!

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Tatcha Pure One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil $48
I have super oily skin so I’m kind of scared of this product, when I tried it just on the back of my hand, it seemed really oily…I’m scared.

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TOCCA Stella $38-72
I really like the smell of this fragrance, it’s sexy and a little woodsy – it seems perfect for a date night…but I’m not sure my husband will love it because it has a slight “old lady” scent to it…fingers crossed!

I also filmed an Unboxing video for this (my very first) Sephora Play! box:



Dear, Abuser

Dear, Abuser

“Dear, Asshead” wasn’t an appropriate title/opening, but either way, you get the gist; I decided to write a letter to my abuser to get some stuff off my chest.  I’m learning that stuff like this is very important for my healing.  Fingers crossed.


Dear, Abuser.

It’s now been 10 years since I escaped and 7 years since I last saw you in person, but I still remember every single detail about you.   remember all of your facial features, your mannerisms, your lisp, the sound of your voice; in an instant, I can recall exactly what your voice sounds like.  To me, it’s like a curse, I’m cursed with never being able to forget you and forget what you look like, what your hands feel like around my throat – I just cannot forget any part of you, both the good and the bad.

Although you were never convicted of the abuse you unleashed on me, and you’ve never admitted what you’ve done, I truly believe you know what you did was wrong and just how wrong it was.  It does sadden me that you were never convicted and never served any time for what you did to me because it just means you’re free to do it to someone else, but in the same breath, you’ve chosen to live a sad and pitiful life of crime by taking advantage of others, which you do actually serve time for, so in a sense, that’s a little bit of a relief because that’s less of a chance that you’re out abusing someone else.  Your choices, both past and present, anger and sadden me because you could be a better person, there are so many parts of you that aren’t completely evil, but you still choose to be a shithead.

I’m still figuring out what it means to forgive you; it’s been a long and tough process, and I still don’t know which direction I’m going in.  The night terrors, anxiety, health issues, depression, and irrational fears that I now suffer from, make it really difficult to forgive you.

I’m thankful that this entire experience has shown me just how strong I really am and has also shown me what I’m worth.  I’ve lost many many friends because of you, but I’ve also grown much closer to my family because of it.  Because of your abuse, I’ve been able to see the best parts of being alive, and feeling what real love truly feels like from my husband and my family.  I have found bliss.  Your actions and choices will forever prevent you from ever feeling true love and true happiness and I believe that is your life sentence, the time you’re going to serve, your punishment, your karma, and your destiny.  What you’ve done to me has been both and worst and best thing to ever happen to me.  Although I do suffer some sort of consequence or reminder of you every single day, I know that the good parts far outweigh the shitty parts of each day.  Your life is the exact opposite of that, and in some way, that sort of brings me relief and helps me to heal; I know that sounds shallow and bitter and mean, but that’s karma, and those are our destinies.

I hope you never unleash your abuse on any other person, ever, but if you unfortunately do, know that you’re weak, you’re a very small, petty boy, and abusing others doesn’t make you a bigger man – so, is it worth it?

I used to think you had potential to be better, even after the abuse, and I sometimes think about the fun, happy times we shared, but I know that’s not the real you, and the thought of you having any potential to be better to someone else quickly fades because of your own choices and actions within the last 10 years.

I don’t wish you anything; I don’t wish you the best, and I don’t wish you the worst.  I really only wish you whatever your own karma brings you.  I dream of the days that I’m no longer haunted by you and all the abuse and all the repercussions that I now have to deal with because of you – I DREAM of those days because then I know my soul can finally be free.

I don’t hate you.  I don’t like you either.  I feel nothing.

I don’t want to live my life with anger inside of me and some days it’s a little harder than others, but my husband is nothing like you, and he makes every single moment worth it.  If I didn’t go through what you put me through, I may not have ever met my husband.  I’m not thanking you for what you did, because what you’ve done is shitty, and stupid, but the path that has led me to my husband involves you, but that’s all there is, there’s nothing to thank you for.  I’ve proven to myself how strong I am, how strong I can be, and just how worthy of love I am, and it sucks that I really can’t say the same for you.

– A


Chaps My Cheeks

Chaps My Cheeks

UGH, we all have those certain things that just get right under our skin and rub us the wrong way, I call them things that CHAP MY CHEEKS!

I’m positive some of these things aggravate others too!  Let’s discuss, shall we?

  • Friends that take FOREVER to text back, but are constantly on their phone in your presence
    • I mean, how can you NOT take this personally?!
    • If it takes you three days to text me back, how come when we’re spending “quality” time together, you’re texting someone else back AS SOON AS THEY TEXT YOU?!
    • That makes me feel like I’m second best…or even worse, less important, and last choice!
  • When nobody tells you you have food in your teeth, a bat in the cave, melting makeup, etc.
    • This doesn’t have to be a big, embarrassing scene, all you have to do is discretely tell me, it’s no big deal
    • Help a girl out, wheat’s the big deal?!
    • I do this for others so they don’t embarrass themselves, why not do it for me too!
  • When people try to turn me into an extrovert AND/OR when people try to shame me for being an introvert
    • I don’t shame others for being extroverts, so why shame me for being me??
    • If you don’t understand introverts, either educate yourself, or keep your mouth shut
    • Don’t call me a “party pooper” or try to help me figure out why I can make it to a party instead of making “excuses”
    • I don’t want to take part in social situations, it makes me very anxious, and I’d rather spend time with myself – deal with it.
  • When people tell me I’ll change my mind about not wanting children
    • This feels like an insult to my intelligence
    • I know me better than anyone else and I know what I want and don’t want, not you
    • Some people just don’t want children, and that’s perfectly fine
    • I don’t tell others that they will change their mind about wanting children, so please don’t do it to me
    • I’ve known for a very long time that I don’t want children, and yes, my husband and I have discussed it in depth both before and after we got married
  • Bullies
    • UGH, bullies are the worst, aren’t they?!
    • People that have to put others down just to make themselves feel better, DRIVE ME CRAZY
    • That’s so rude, don’t do that!
    • If you need to make yourself feel better, why don’t you ask for help, or research for yourself how to feel better…maybe try some daily positive affirmations, or journaling – don’t make someone else feel like crap for your own benefit
    • Being a bully doesn’t make you a bigger person, it makes you a very small, weak person

What chaps your cheeks??

I also filmed a video about this topic:




Unboxing Erin Condren Surprise Box

Unboxing Erin Condren Surprise Box

If you love office supplies and organizing, you’ve probably heard of Erin Condren and her famous “Life Planner.”

If you have not heard of Erin Condren OR the Life Planner, I’m here to help!  Erin Condren is like my GOD!  Erin Condren makes amazingly beautiful planners and office supplies, including the Life Planner, which is THE planner.  The Life Planner is totally customizable and helps you to literally plan your entire life.  The Life Planner is a tad on the expensive side, but believe me, Erin Condren products are SO worth the price, and there’s always site-wide sales and discount codes so be sure to sign up for the e-mails to see all the great deals!

Besides all of the gorgeous organizing/office supplies, Erin Condren also offers a seasonal Surprise Box, which includes all kinds of Erin Condren products for just $35 per box!

I got my first one this weekend, and here’s what was in it:


Floral Ink Note Card $1.50
These note cards are perfect for those quick “thank you” notes for friends and family.  I love that you can choose the print and envelope color!  BONUS, it comes with an adorable sticker to seal the envelope!

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Floral Ink List Pad $15.00
I love having list pads strategically placed around my house, office, car, etc. because you never know when you’ll need to jot something down.  I love to use these for to-do lists!


Watercolor Sticker Sheets $3.00
I LOVE these sticker sheets!!!  They add a great little pop of color and a different pattern to my planner to serve as a different banner for different pages, and some have little quotes on them to add a little pick-me-up on each page.  Super cute!

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“Stay a While” Art Print $38.00
I honestly didn’t even know Erin Condren had art prints, so I was SUPER shocked to see a FRAMED rose gold metallic art print in my Surprise Box, but I guess that’s the point of a Surprise Box!  This will be the perfect addition to our Guest Room!

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Floral Ink Address Booklet $6.00
I absolutely love the “Floral Ink” pattern, and the fact that it’s on an on-the-go Address Booklet, makes this the PERFECT item for me!  I’ve been looking for a smaller, slimmer Address Book, but could never find one that was really worth the money, but I mean, $6.00 for this beauty?!  You can’t beat it!

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Sticky Corner Pockets $5.00
These sticky corner pockets keep me so organized and they’re so cheap…$5 for 20 pockets,  WHAAAT?!  I love to place these on pages that I need to keep notes in, appointment cards, tickets, business cards, etc.


Magnetic Page Markers $3.00
I love that these are metallic, it really gives that extra pop of style to each page, and getting 3 of them in one $3 package is great – I like to use one for my planner, one for the current book I’m reading, and one for my notebook that I use to plan my YouTube videos, and my Blog Posts.

I would HIGHLY recommend these Erin Condren Seasonal Surprise Boxes, you won’t regret it!

I also filmed a video of this unboxing:



IPSY Unbagging – March 2017

IPSY Unbagging – March 2017

YAY!  My monthly IPSY Glambag arrived for the month of March 2017!!!!!


Here’s what was in my glambag this month:

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Eva NYC Mane Magic 10-in-1 Primer $14
What a genius idea!  Primer for your hair!

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Ladykin Affinitic Snail Cream $22
Anti-wrinkle cream in this adorable little snail container!

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Elizabeth Mott Blending Brush $15
Elizabeth Mott makeup brushes are amazing!!

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Tart tarteist Quick Dry Matte Lip Paint in “Rosé” $20
LOVE Tart.  Nuff said.

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mPrincess Pressed Eyeshadow in “Chestnut” $15
A beautiful copper-toned eyeshadow, perfect to pop on the lid on a smokey eye!

I also filmed an Unbagging video for this Ipsy Glambag, which you can watch here:



15 Things to Know Before you get Tattooed

15 Things to Know Before you get Tattooed

You may or may not already know that I have a lot of tattoos…so if you didn’t already know – now you know!

Of course, I started getting tattoos as soon as I turned 18, but there’s always a handful of things you should know before getting tattooed, so I decided today I would write about all the things I WISH I knew before I got my first tattoo. Enjoy!

  1. Realistic Photos are the best references to bring
    1. Don’t make the mistake of bringing a picture of a tattoo on someone else – tattoo artists never want to replicate someone else’s work!  Also, your tattoo artist really won’t be able to get the best small detail from a picture of a blown-out , blurry tattoo; your tattoo will come out so much better if your artist has a nice, realistic photo to reference and grab all of those small details you want in your tattoo
  2. It’s perfectly OK to ask questions
    1. Remember, this tattoo will be on your body for the rest of your life, so do it justice by asking questions that you need answers to
    2. Especially about the drawing/stencil – you’ll be somewhat intimidated to ask questions, but it’s okay to convey if something isn’t what you envisioned
    3. There’s a line though – don’t piss off your tattoo artist with a buttload of unnecessary questions…that’s how people end up with penis tattoos on their back
    4. Communication is KEY
  3. You WILL get shaved
    1. It pretty much doesn’t matter where you’re getting tattooed – they will shave the area before they start tattooing
    2. It doesn’t seem like a huge deal (and it isn’t), but it is somewhat alarming when it’s on a spot where you really thought you didn’t even have one hair…like your back.  As a female, it was a bit of a weird concept to have my back shaved before I started my back piece, but it’s normal, and it’s no big deal
    3. It’s for your own health, so you don’t get ingrown hairs from the needle penetrating your skin over and over!
  4. Pain tolerance varies
    1. Per location on your body, and per person – I thought my arm hurt the worst (and I had my eyebrows tattooed on…three times w/ touch-ups), but thought my ribs didn’t hurt very much.  My husband feels the exact opposite – he thought his arm was easy peasy, but his ribs were no bueno!  Weird, right?
    2. You always hear the same sayings, your foot hurts the worst, your ribs hurt the worst, blah blah blah – that all depends on your own pain tolerance
    3. I think tattoos on more fatty areas hurt more because they pinch more, but others think that boney areas hurt more…it all depends on your own pain tolerance
  5. The pain is not what you expect
    1. Before I got my first tattoo at 18 years old, I had already heard so many horror stories of how much they hurt, so I anticipated the worst, like unbearable pain!
    2. You will probably hype yourself up for no reason, it’s actually a manageable pain, just know that it will all be over eventually, you just have to sit through it and be brave, little one!
    3. I find the pain actually feels like more of a burning sensation, sort of like someone is continuously rubbing a rash (like road rash) that I already have; I thought it would feel like getting a shot at the doctor’s over and over…I’ve never been stung by a bee, so I can’t relate to that saying that “it feels like a bunch of bee stings,” sorry.
  6. The rubbing is the worst part, I promise
    1. They have to rub away the excess ink after a few passes over the same line/area, but it just gets to you after a while because it stings
    2. They’re rubbing an open wound, how can that not sting a bit?!
  7. Every tattoo artist is different
    1. You will not have the same experience with different artists
    2. Tattoo artists have their own preferences on the way you sit or lay for each tattoo, drawing technique, tattoo technique, style, etc.
    3. Some artists prefer to ONLY tattoo black and grey, or color.  Others prefer only one style like photo realism, new school, old school, etc.
    4. It’s important to look through your artist’s book (of previous tattoos) to ensure they tattoo the style and color options you want, and they do it well!
    5. Some tattoo artists take longer to tattoo than others, which results in more sessions = more money
    6. I’ve experienced artists that like to tattoo in complete silence, and others that like to talk and chit chat with you the entire time, but I really have no preference; I don’t mind either way
  8. Timing is everything
    1. Your tattoo should not be in direct sunlight or submerged under water for extended periods of time during the healing process (about two full weeks)
    2. It’s best not to get tattooed in the Summer if it’s on an area of your body that could potentially be in direct sunlight or submerged under water (this is for you, pool junkies and beach go-ers!) for extended periods of time
    3. Time it out right, and don’t neglect the healing process, be patient and follow all the rules and I promise your tattoo will heal to a beautiful masterpiece!
  9. You will need touch-ups
    1. Touch-ups are vital if you want your tattoo to look as good as it did on Day 1
    2. If you’re okay with your tattoo(s) fading a bit, then you might not elect to get touch-ups, but that’s simply personal preference
    3. Touch-ups = more money
    4. I think a lot of people don’t think of this when they first decide to get a tattoo (I know I didn’t) because you’re only thinking about the initial payout for the tattoo itself, but you should plan to get touch-ups (if you decide to), which means you need to plan to pay more money
    5. ALWAYS APPLY SUNSCREEN TO YOUR TATTOOS to keep them vibrant, to possibly avoid touch-ups
  10. Tattoos will grow with your body
    1. If you get tattooed on any area that has a possibility of stretching and growing, know that your tattoo will do the same!
    2. If you want to have children, it’s not recommend to get tattooed on any part of your stomach that would stretch with pregnancy because it probably won’t bounce back to the same size and shape as when you first got the tattoo
    3. We all know that when we get older, we tend to gain weight more easily (that’s just life), so try to plan for that and know that your tattoo will grow and shrink as your skin does
    4. Placement is critical
  11. Everyone will ask WHY you got that tattoo
    1. They always want it to have some sort of deeper meaning
    2. Of course, many people have deep meanings for getting certain tattoos, for instance, my first tattoo, on my foot, I got in honor of my pepere because he used to make rosaries and I remember helping him pick up the beads off the floor when he was done, and I have the last rosary he ever made before he passed away, so I got a rosary tattooed on my ankle/foot
    3. Sometimes, there’s just not a deep meaning for a tattoo, I have some that I got just because I love the look of them, and I feel they compliment my body
    4. People are just curious, it’s okay
  12. People assume you ONLY want to discuss your tattoos
    1. If your tattoos are visible, people tend to assume that’s all you care about and only want to talk about them….NOT true.
    2. I got tattoos for me, not for everyone else, it’s totally fine to discuss other things in life, my world does not revolve around tattoos
  13. You will be judged
    1. And unfairly placed into an irrational stereotype
    2. If you have more than one tattoo, or multiple larger tattoos that are visible, you’ll be judged and people will think you’re a punk
    3. Again, some people have no shame, my husband and I have had people say some really cruel things about our tattoos and how horrible it is to get tattooed, but tattoos don’t define us, they just add character and enrich our lives
    4. Again, we get tattooed for us, not for others.
    5. It’s getting better, but people do still judge people that have tattoos
    6. It won’t ruin your life or ruin job opportunities, good companies know that tattoos don’t affect your job performance, so they easily overlook them
    7. I choose to cover my tattoos at work by wearing long-sleeves, but that’s my choice…it’s basically so that everyone can focus on the task at hand, especially during meetings, rather than waste time discussing my tattoos
    8. I don’t judge people that don’t have tattoos, so it’s somewhat unfair that people judge me for having tattoos, but whatever, that’s their prerogative – do you, booboo!
  14. People will ask SO many questions
    1. What happens when you get older?!
    2. Did it hurt?!
    3. How many tattoos do you have?!
    4. Which one hurt the worst?!
    5. SARCASM is great for these type of questions…it feels like you’re being kissed by unicorns and kittens
  15. They’re addicting
    1. Once you get one, you will immediately want another
    2. SOME people just want one, and know that they only want one, so when they get their one tattoo, they’re satisfied and don’t get addicted like others – obviously, totally fine!
    3. I’ve always known I wanted a lot of tattoos, but I really didn’t know how addicting they really are

Watch my YouTube video here: