Shifting Gears

It’s been waaaayyyy too long since we last caught up. All I can say is: my bad. No excuses, just ugh, MY BAD.

Even when I’m not posting, I’m thinking of posting, or wondering what you’d have to say about a new lip color I snapped up in my random Monday-caffeine-isn’t-helping shopping binges at Walgreens before popping into the office. And trust me: there have been a lot of them. No judgement, right?

Anyhoo–it hasn’t all been lip colors and manic Mondays. These past few months have been chock full of introspective moments, thinking of the future and making (loose) plans to do things a bit differently. I haven’t figured it all out, but one of my goals is to lead a more balanced life. A life in which I buy a new nail polish, turn in homework on time, kill it at work, but still have time, energy and the desire to pick up new hobbies and most of all: relax a little. Let my hair (read: wig) down and have some fun without regret or anxiety. The recurring theme lately has been to give myself a break. So…I’m trying to figure that all out, without overthinking everything.

Lip color is helping. I’m not even going to begin to downplay how much. I’m looking at you, Covergirl Queen Collection Lipstick in Classy Coral , but alas lip color can only solve our problems to a point. Then we have to take over (feeling and looking fab of course!)

So, what’s my point? I say all of this to say: I’m going to get more serious about blogging and I want this to be a space that more accurately reflects me: a big mix of EVERYTHING. I love so many things and am intrigued by so much, it’s hard to write only about the cosmetic things that make me swoon. So in the coming months, expect to see a new design (details will come as I have them!), more topics (beauty will always hold the top spot in my heart) like fashion items I’m loving or have added to my closet, personal finance tips, tips for crushing it in school, and so on. More of…me :)

I hope you’ll stick around for all the new and exciting changes…it’s going to be quite a ride, as I’ll be doing most things myself, so please be patient! Y’all ready to do this? Let’s shift from neutral…see you in DRIVE.

Classy Coral Kisses  ;) xo

Layla

Secret’s Out! Anonymous Sephora Employee Reveals Hits, Misses Of Our Favorite Store

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Sephora Source: Astrid Stawiarz / Getty

Here at HelloBeautiful, we make regular trips to one of our favorite stores ever, the makeup candy shop that is Sephora (ok, I’m literally salivating at the thought of my next visit!) But with so many products to choose from, we too can confirm that there are plenty of “holy grail” beauty products, as well as a few “not if-you-were-the-last-mascara-on-earth” items we wouldn’t purchase again.

Through a fun, yet investigative report from Jezebel, one anonymous Sephora employee kept it real and revealed what products she truly thought were worthy of our makeup bags and others that, contrary to beauty blogger belief, were just plain overrated. This in-the-know tipster even shouted out some drugstore items!

Makeup lovers, let’s take notes!

MUST READ: Cosmo Apologizes For ‘Killing’ Black Women & Twitter’s Like, ‘Bye Felicia!’

Below is the breakdown by product type (thanks Racked) and, according to tools…

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Work It: 7 Beauty Essentials You Need To Keep At Your Desk

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A well-stocked desk could keep your professional look on point, and we’ve come up with a few must-have items for your workplace beauty arsenal.

We’ve all been there: you’re hard at work when your productivity flow is stopped in its tracks by beauty emergency. You’d really love to focus on that project at your desk, but there just something about your look that’s throwing you off, and it can be hard to get your focus back until it is fixed. Outside of the usual, like a brush and a mirror, here are five items that should have you covered.

Hair Oil
There’s almost nothing worse for naturalistas than to reach up during the middle of the day to brush some hair out of your face than to find that your tresses feel dry and brittle! In this situation, having a mini bottle of hair oil could be a lifesaver for your…

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Dark Lipsticks That Will Create a Bold Look in a Single Swipe

Beauty High

Forget 5-minute makeup routines—a complete look can be accomplished in one single swipe with dark lipstick shades. While you don’t have to completely vamp it out with a black hue, temporarily trading in your nude or red lipstick for something a little bit more rich and dark in pigment is a relatively foolproof and, yes, quick way to test out a trend that has no departure in sight and finish your makeup without the help of sidekick products. We rounded up a few shades that will have you second guessing all those years you spent with your pale pink lipstick.

alima-pure-lipstickWhen a matte or shiny finish isn’t exactly for you, well, you try out velvet. Alima Pure—a pure mineral makeup line that prides itself on producing and selling products that are free of preservatives and harsh chemicals—sells a deep, Merlot-like shade in their wide range of velvet-finished lipsticks. We’ll take…

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Beauty and the Real Girl: The Eyebrow Pencil for a Bold Look

I am completely here for brows!!

Beauty High

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Going backstage and learning tips and tricks from the professionals may be an adventure, but sometimes, the best tricks come from real girls. In “Beauty and the Real Girl,” we learn the best beauty tips, tricks and secrets from girls just like us.

Excuse the pun, but learning how to properly fill out your eyebrows is a defining moment, indeed. Bold brows frame your face and draw attention to your other facial features—and thanks to a certain runway model, they’ve made their impact as one of the trendiest beauty staples of today. Once you get it right, you never look back. But getting your brows to that standout yet shapely state isn’t as easy as growing out your hair. If you think about the thousands of products on the market, (gels, pencils, powders, and more) as well as finding the right match for your hair color, the process can get…

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8 Highlighters That Will Make You Glow, Not Sparkle

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There are staples in everyone’s bag of tricks that you wouldn’t think of leaving the house without. Some swear by mascara. Others refuse to leave home without a bold lip or the perfectly penciled brow. Consider adding a little something to your morning routine — highlighter.  If you’re an expert at the Kardashian-style contour, you’re already familiar with its magical properties. But, if you’ve been afraid of the stuff for fear of looking like you fell face first into tub of glitter, don’t worry. The highlighter of today is subtle and radiant — like the best kind of real-life Instagram filter.

With so many options on the market, it can be hard to figure out what’s going to work for your skin tone and your needs. We’ve done the work for you. Sit back, relax and scroll through our roundup of the best highlighters, and get ready to glow.

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Revlon Skinlights Photo Illuminator
When the cult classic…

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10 Lovely Desktop Wallpapers To Make Your Laptop Prettier

Season’s are changing, change up your desktop too :)

StyleCaster

Let’s be honest—most of us spend an unhealthy number of hours on the computer. With Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and much, much more it’s hard not to check up on the social media world just about every 5 seconds or so.

MORE: 18 Stylish Techcessories to Dress Up Your Gadgets

Since we spend so much time on our laptops, we figure that we might as well be looking at something pretty! This is where desktop wallpapers come in handy. We’ve searched the web for the more adorable and inspiring wallpapers to make your computer that much prettier!

Click through the slideshow to check them out. Let us know which is your favorite!

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