Monday, February 25, 2013

Project No-Buy Week 1

Week 1 (February 18-24)

Well, this has definitely been harder than I thought! Mainly because I am just used to impulse buying, see a sale? Buy! A new collection? Get it RIGHT NOW! I'm learning I have to stop and think, plan out what I *really* want and then, save. Plus I have to figure out what I want as opposed to what I want right now, just because I see it. I am learning(slowly) that tomorrow, or the next day, or next week, I don't really need it or want it as much as I thought.


Well I had zero to spend so as hard as it was I bought nothing. Although, I am still getting items I purchased the weeks prior in the mail, so it doesn't feel completely real yet I suppose, although the not buying is hard and I am tempted frequently. Sad as it is, shopping is my coping mechanism for stress, and the last two weeks hav been full of stress! I am learning other ways. So that's a good thing, right?!

Week 1


Finish organizing my makeup. This I did do, but I am still waiting for my vanity to be finished, my dad had to take it home for some adjustments, so my makeup is not all in it's final spot, but everything is in it's drawer/container. +5 (Blog post will be up tomorrow after I try and get pictures with my camera, both my cameras decided to nosedive on me this week :-/)

Playing catch up, since I was gone all the week before I had so much to catch up on and luckily somehow I did manage to finish my to do list. I honestly don't know how I did that, but I did. +5

2. Writing/Blogging. I did manage to put up THREE blog posts this week I think. Surprising even myself! +6

3. Art. Nothing this week. +0

4 Reading. I'm in the middle of two *fun* books. Naked Heat and Stephanie Plum Smokin' 17. 300 pages. +4

5. Empties. No empties this week. Although my foundation is getting close and I think my lip balm is at it's last squeeze. +0

6. Self Control. Didn't buy anything!

Makeup Account: $20

Goals Week 2

1. Post two makeup looks and a review to my blog.
2. I have been avoiding cleaning out my dresser and folding everything neat and proper, so I am going to attempt that, it sounds easy, but trust me, if you saw it, you would think otherwise. :-P

Well w'll see how week 2 goes!!....remember to Stay Beautifully You!

Koren Zander ENKORE Makeup Brush Soap

5 EKZ Brush Soap

I've been looking for something to clean my brushes with, usually I use my Philosophy face wash and it works well enough, but I am not sure how deep cleaned they truly get. I was reading through posts after IMATS and kept reading positive things about Enkore Makeup's new brush soap. For $6 you get a bar of soap, of which, on one side has a scrubby loufah that gives your brushes a little deep cleaning action. I though for 6 bucks why not give it a shot? Especially after seeing Sigma Beauty's new brush scrubber where they are charging over $30! Along with the brush soap I decided to invest in his brush hot oil treatment, used for natural bristle brushes only, it is supposed to help them maintain their luster and last longer. Kind of like giving your hair a hot oil treatment! So for $18 plus shipping I got the soap, hot oil treatment and a free lip glaze. Not bad! Onto the review!

First Impressions: Holy cow this smells good!! Just opening the box I could smell this amazing aroma coming from the soap. Usually I am NOT a fan of scents, but this one is wonderful. The packaging was cute, black and white floral, everything was wrapped nice and secure.

5 EKZ Brush Soap
Key Ingredients: Argan Oil, Coconut Oil, Palm Oil, Safflower Oil, Avocado Oil,
Sweet Almond Oil, Passionfruit (Brazilian Maracuja) Oil and Jojoba Oil.

How to Use: Dampen your brush and swipe it across the soap until the brush runs clean, now if you wash your brushesas often as you SHOULD(which I don't! LOL) it should only take a few swipes. After I swipe it through the soap I rinse it under water until it runs clean, if you feel the need, swipe it again until you feel it is clean. If the brush is extremely dirty, such as a foundation brush, after you swipe the brush over soap use the reverse side which is a loofah to scrub more deeply.

My Thoughts: I really hate washing brushes, but I think this soap makes it easier, of course I think I need learn how to use it better, once it gets wet it's quite slippery! But overall it's a great tool. It makes washing a lot easier, a lot less pruny hands running under water and the water ran clean after a few swipes across the bar. Depending on how often you wash your brushes this bar will last you a while, and for $6 you can easily stock up on a few. :-) I got the soap in the scent tangerine, but there are a lot to choose from, including unscented in case you are sensitive to scent. One thing it could use, a container to hold it in.

5 EK Brush Soap Rating: A+
Customer Service: A+ Great packaging and fast shipment.

Where to purchase:; $6

Stay tuned for a review of the Deep Conditioning Brush Treatment and Stay Beautifully You!!

Disclaimer: All products were bought by All Kinds of Beauty for review.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Sedona Lace Brushes

Sedona Lace Brushes

In November on Black Friday Sedona Lace had an amazing 50% off store wide sale. Unfortunately, unbeknownst to them they ended up getting probably 100 times their regular orders and ended up running out of pretty much their entire brush. It was an extremely frustrating ordeal, people who ordered early weren't getting their orders and people who ordered late were getting their's, all in all it was not handled very well in my opinion. However, Sedona Lace did honor their sale price for those of us whose orders got cancelled due to stock running out and not knowing how soon it would be in. Well, the brush set's finally came in at the end of January, and while I was frustrated with the whole ordeal I decided I wasn't going to deny myself new brushes! So I ordered the seven piece synthetic midnight set, two different types of blending brushes and a crease brush. Once that order went through I received my shipment very fast! So I do highly recommend them at non-sale times. ;-) I do also think they learned a lot from the Black Friday sale for next year. Some people might write them off completely because of the whole ordeal, but seeing as they are a new company I know we all sometimes make mistakes! And as long as you honor your customer and fix your mistakes I will give you a second chance. And I am glad I did because I LOVE these brushes.

Blending Brush- Now I thought this would be my favorite, and I do like it a lot, but the crease brush stole that spot. This is a great blender though, it's a little stiffer I think than say Sigma or MAC, but I think just as good. Does a great job blending outer edges of the crease and in between colors. I snagged two of them.

Sells for $8.95.

Blending Brush- EB 09

Blending Brush- EB 09

Crease Brush- My FAVORITE by far, It is a rounded brush that comes to a tapered point at the end. Now, I don't have huge eyes or a ton of eye space, so sometimes I find brushes just too big for what I want to do, which is why I love this brush, it gets right into the crease and deposits color right where I want it. Great for doing cut creases. I think I bought two or three of these I just loved the first one so much, and the brush hairs are just stiff enough to keep their shape, but they are soft on the eye. The only problem I have seen with these is some don't seem *quite* as pointed as other.

Sells for $8.95.

Crease Brush- EB 15 (my favorite!)

Crease Brush- EB 15

Synthetic Blending Brush- I haven't had the chance to use this one as much. It's a bit bigger than a regular blending brush, the bristles are soft and I can see using this when you're trying to blend things out, a bit softer or up into the brow bone. The size and shape remind me a bit of my Sigma E40 tapered blending brush, which is softer and fluffier than a regular blending brush.

Sells for $8.95.

Synthetic Blender- EB 13

Synthetic Blending Brush- EB 13

Seven Piece Midnight Synthetic Brush Set- This is a great set, including: the Synthetic Small Flat Top - 872, Synthetic Small Round - 312, Synthetic Small Angle - 773, Synthetic Small Tapered - 224, Synthetic Small Round Flat - 847, Synthetic Small Round Dome - 217, Synthetic Small Angled Flat - 618. Now, I am not sure if these are supposed to be for the eyes, personally, I find them a bit big for my eyes but have found them to be amazing as face brushes surprisingly! They are a bit bigger than the average brush size but smaller than the average face brush. I use mineral foundations and these brushes are great for buffing in powder, they get around the nose, under the eyes and in spots larger brushes don't fit. Plus I find I have more coverage control with a smaller brush. When I got them I was hoping they would work well for cream shadows and such, but the bristles(for me) actually seem a bit too soft and when I tried picking up something like a Maybelline Color Tattoo, it just wasn't grabbing product, but I think it could work well with a creamier product, perhaps a liquid concealer, or a softer cream shadow. I really love this set and can see why it's getting great reviews, I actually chose it hoping it would be similar to Sigma's precision brushes, and having a couple of those I would say they aren't quite the same, but definitely in the ballpark. Plus who doesn't love a set of pink and black brushes! ;-)

Sells for $59.95.

Seven Piece Midnight Synthetic Brush Set

Seven Piece Midnight Synthetic Brush Set

Overall, I definitely recommend checking out Sedona Lace for their brushes, as well, they also sell the standard eyeshadow palettes, such as the 120's, gel eyeliners and other cosmetics. Their complete Vortex Brush set has gotten a lot of great reviews so if you are looking for a starter set giving you a range of brushes I would definitely recommend checking them out. The pricing is quite good for the quality. I'm not going to necessarily compare them to MAC or even Sigma, because they are different, but I definitely reach for them just as much if not more than my more expensive brushes. I will update more after I have washed them a bit...which, speaking of washing, I will be washing my brushes next and reviewing my Enkore Brush Soap next! I actually can't wait to wash my brushes, it smells HEAVENLY!! 

Sedona Lace Brushes Rating: A
Sedona Lace Customer Service: A (I did not have the BEST experience at first, but they did rectify the situation, which I think shows putting the customers first.)

Thanks for reading and Remember to Stay Beautifully You!

**Note- Apologies for the less than stellar photographs, both my point and shoot and DSLR have decided to breakdown on me simultaneously, so I had to use my Samsung Galaxy S3 camera phone.**

Disclaimer: All products were bought by All Kinds of Beauty for review.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Project No-Buy

Currently I have been re-organizing my beauty products(further posting on this will be up shortly this week) and I have decided that I indeed need to curb my impulse shopping. At the beginning of this year I made it a decision to become stricter with myself when it comes to buying makeup and with my budget in general. So as part of that I have decided to start myself in project no-buy. Now, I am the first one to tell you I am not sure how well I will do at completely cutting myself off, but, I do think I can do it. However, unlike the traditional no-buy, where you literally can buy nothing but products you run out of I think, it will be tweaked, of sorts. I know if i restrict myself it will only make me want it more! I admit I am a beauty addict, I know I have more than I could every use or need, but it is one of my passions, so there you have it. As I was looking through the concept of a no-buy through other bloggers I saw that Nancy at The Dark Side of Beauty created her own version that I much align with my own ideas. After asking her permission to share on here what she came up with(and a possible adjustments to my own lifestyle) here it is!

Project No-Buy Goals

Instead of a traditional no-buy, she decided to create a project to 1) finish makeup I currently own, 2) not horde so much new makeup, 3) to keep up with my 2013 resolutions and 4) save money for something else other than makeup. I will be updating this project every Sunday and like those people doing the 100-day No Buy, I will make a wish list for myself. If you are curious about the No-Buy project or if you also want to be part of it, keep reading!


As of February 18th, 2013 I will not be allowed to buy any beauty related products, unless...

1. the product is an absolute essential (shampoo/conditioner, cleanser, deodorant...etc.) and I have run out.
2. I run out of a product and I have nothing else to replace it (ex: I run out of my current eyeshadow primer and I have no other primers in my collection)
3. I receive a gift card, money or am gifted makeup and therefore am not spending any of my own money on it.
4. If I am in a place that I usually never go and has products that I am otherwise never able to get (ex: if i am traveling to another country or go to a store that is not available close to me).
5. They are giveaway prizes!

*Remember that I have tons of products that I purchased before February 18th that I have yet to show on my blog! Keep that in mind with any upcoming posts! I will be honest with all of you on this project; I gain nothing from lying to you guys! This also gives a a chance to talk about some of my favorite permanent products and re-discover lots of items!

Although I am calling this a "No-Buy", I am making some exceptions for myself. These are rewards for myself for 1) following the no-buy, 2)following weekly goals, and 3) sticking to my 2013 resolutions. 

1. Weekly Goals. Every week (on Sunday) I will set two goals for myself. Each of these goals should be met by the end of the week. If the goal is met, I will award myself $5 of allowance for makeup (therefore, I have a possibility of earning $10 per week). If I do not met either of them, then I get $0 of spending money. 

2. Blogging and Writing. One of my goals this year is to write more consistently, which also includes my blogging. I started this blog for many reasons, I love beauty products, for one but I also love fashion, art, photography, writing, etc. I consider all of these things as part of beauty, not just how we look but who we are inside. I want to push myself to do more. So for every blog post I will award myself $2. For other writing(essay, poem, story, etc) I will award myself $1 a page, so if I write a 3 page essay I will get $3, a poem, $1 and so on. A lot of people have been encouraging me to write more about my life, so hopefully this will encourage me to do more.

3. Art. This may sound like an odd goal, but art used to be a huge part of my life,   and it's slowly taken a back seat to so many things. This year I am really hoping to get back into it. Painting, drawing, photography, sewing are all things I used to do consistently. So for every piece I do, or if I create something I will award myself $5.

5. Reading. Another part of my life that used to be huge and I let slip. I love to read but tend to do it in "spurts," meaning I will read voraciously for a week or two, a ton of books and then go back to nothing. I would like to be more consistent, because I love reading, I just tend to get side tracked. So for anything under 200 pages, $2, beween 200-500, $4 and over 500 pages, $6.
6. Empties.
It is great to finish a product, especially products you don't particularly care for that are just taking up space. Therefore, for any empty product I have, I will award myself $1 of makeup allowance. 

7. Self-Control. 
This is not really a reward, but a punishment. If I don't follow my no-buy, then I will get negative cash for whatever amount I spent. For example, if I buy a $10 product when I have no reward allowance to spend, then I will subtract double the amount I spent on my total reward allowance, in this case being -$20. This means my allowance will be in a negative number and I will have to work even harder to have money to spend on makeup the following weeks.

During the week's update on Sunday, I will let you know whether I have kept up with my No-buy for that week, show you products I've used up, and update you and show you if I have earned any money through the rewards system. If, for example, I meet both of my weekly goals for that week ($10), perhaps read a 300 page novel ($4), and blogged three times that week($6), then that means I earned $2 worth of makeup allowance that week. Then that means that starting Monday after the update, I can buy makeup with my $20 allowance.Any makeup I buy using this allowance will be shown during that week's update. 

The reward money does carry over to the weeks following if I do not spend it. So If I had $20 and only spent $10 that week, then I will have $10 left over. Then I can add onto that any new allowance I get from the following weeks. I am going to call this my Make-Up Account since it is essentially the money I have to buy makeup. None of my other money will go into makeup/beauty products. This will help me save up for collections I am waiting for, and hopefully help me plan what I purchase better, instead of automatically buying what I see. For instance, I know I really want the Cold Chemistry palette coming out soon by Sugarpill, I know it's going to take a few weeks of saving for it, so before I go out and spend say the $20 I earned over two weeks on something I don't need, I'll be more inclined to stop myself from purchasing it, knowing I really want that palette when it comes out so I better not spend what's in my makeup account. :-) I think it actually helps to see the value of a dollar this way.

This is a bit confusing, but basically what I am trying to do is to control the amount of makeup I buy, not completely stop it. Not only can I more efficiently control the amount of makeup I buy, but I can also become a more knowledgeable person when it comes to my own finances, wise purchasing and researching a product.

If you have any questions or want any clarifications please leave a comment and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Weekly Goals for 2/18:
1. Organizing/Cleaning. I started organizing my collection before I left for a week away, now that I am back I need to finish what I started. So this weeks goal is to clean up my makeup area.
2. I won't kid myself, I have so much to catch up on after being gone a week, my second goal is to make sure I finish my to-do list, including, appointments, tons of errands and chores. I know I have SO MUCH to catch up on I will end up not having time for much else this week.

Wish List: I also mentioned that I am also doing this in order to save up for non-makeup things I really want. One is a new laptop, mine is slowly dying on me, I have already started saving but am hoping I will be able to put more savings towards it and reach my goal faster because I won't be spending so much on cosmetics. Two, is semi-makeup related, in that I want a new makeup vanity including a nice lighted mirror, they are pricey, but so worth it. If I have anything to add to my wish list I will share later on.

Makeup Account: $0.

That's it for this week! Wish me luck, I'm going to need it! :-D