#TheGreat28: Birthday Beauty

#TheGreat28: Birthday Beauty

Photo: SheKnows

I CANNOT believe it’s been a year since I’ve posted. An entire year. Time didn’t feel like it was moving that quickly and yet, it felt it was going by way too fast. Weird how that works.

Last time we had a chat, I was still 26 going on 27. Birthdays make me feel a little reflective, but only slightly. 27 was pretty mild in terms of introspection. This year, I’m a few days into my 28th year of life and it hit. HARD. It’s not jarring, but it definitely feels different in the sort of way that’s frustrating and annoying. The cure: what else? Beauty :)

I had a great birthday. Everything I imagined and then some. I rocked one of my favorite red matte lip colours (Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dragon Girl ), an easy-going and figure forgiving royal blue dress, and a great small bag. Birthday beauty is one of my favourite occasions and a red lip colour always perks me up.

It also gets me thinking about what my beauty looks for the upcoming year might be like, which always leads me to seek out inspiration (hey Pinterest!). Keeping your eyes open to images and other visuals around you is so great for being introduced to new ideas, trends and looks that you might like to try. If you’re not finding yourself stuck in a style or beauty rut, or are just looking to add more to your repertoire, I’d encourage you to be deliberate about finding inspiration and actually following through on any of the new ideas you’re drawn to. It can do wonders for your mood, self-esteem and general outlook. With things the way they are lately, we all could use a boost in any of those areas.

So…28 is here. I’m embracing it and looking forward to what’s in store, so much so that I made myself a little list and can’t wait to celebrate when I check something off. Here goes:

  • Take better care of my skin…including incorporating more preventative products
  • Drink plenty more water (for skin and overall improved health)
  • Go glam more often…why wait for a “special occasion”?
  • Experiment with more eye looks…I love a bold lip, but it’s time I give my eyes some more love, they deserve it ;)
  • Take more selfies!!…because why the hell not?
  • Go with the flow…experiment and have fun, staying confident the whole way–at the end of the day, it can all be undone with the swipe of a micellar water soaked cotton ball

What about you beauties? Any birthday beauty faves or “resolutions”? I wanna hear all about them! Write me in the comments.

P.S. I missed you guys. Happy we could catch up. xo.


NARS Haul! Plus a Proactiv+ Update and a Pretty Monday Lip

NARS Haul! Plus a Proactiv+ Update and a Pretty Monday Lip

Mr. Postman: Be My Valentine? That’s exactly what I said (in my head, of course) when I checked my (overstuffed!) mailbox tonight.

I could have kissed him for all my treats. They’re wonderful and I can’t wait to play :)

So, here’s what I got:

  • NARS Laguna Illuminator (1.1 oz.)

Nars Laguna Illuminator

  • NARS Skin Essential Vitamin Serum (2.5 fl. oz.)

Nars Skin Essential Vitamin Serum

  • NARS Super Orgasm Blush (0.12 oz.)

Nars Super Orgasm Blush

I’m probably going to rock the Laguna Illuminator tomorrow, I feel like being the girl with the good glow tomorrow, especially in light of all of the yucky weather. I’m not going to start rotating the skin serum into my routine just yet, I’m conducting a patch test. Even though the brand says the serum is “for all skin types” I’m still always as careful as possible. I’ll see how the patch of skin reacts to the small drop of serum I applied, fingers crossed because I’ve heard a lot of really good (but to be fair, really bad) things about this product and I’m eager to form my own opinion.

Not sure when I’ll be trying the blush just yet, but I like that I am trying it in this adorable mini size, I’m sure I’ll love it and it’ll be the start of my NARS blush addiction, like many other girls: I now dub this little gem my “gateway blush.”

I’ll be sure to take pics and post them! Stay tuned.

Now…about that Proactiv+ Update: you may recall my January 24, 2014 post about how my skin was fighting dirty and kicking me arse. So, just like I said I would, I ordered the Proactiv+ Kit and it came last weekend. After 48 hours of testing, you guessed it: major allergic reaction. The kind only a double serving of a soothing aloe mask could control. It wasn’t awful but it wasn’t pretty or even a little bit pleasant. Needless to say: I’m returning it. Tomorrow actually. It’s all packed up and ready to go and it looks like, just as with anything else, I’m going to have to put in the hard work (and drink the water. ugh.) that I was trying to circumvent by ordering the kit. But that’s okay. I’m hoping that if I baby my skin, and really just pamper it, it will quit its tantrums and banish the awful breakouts, blackheads and flakes to the time out corner. Like seriously, just go suck your thumb and take a nap already!

One more thing, because I loved how I looked and more importantly felt about myself: here’s a picture of my cute and punchy lip from earlier today. It’s Revlon’s Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in (030) Smitten. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. Disclaimer: I was really lazy with my beat face today, like I didn’t hardly beat it at all. But I had to do the lip: it carried me through the day.

Revlon Kissable Balm Stain in Smitten


Hope you enjoyed this post. Apologies if it was too long, there was so much to chat with you guys about!

I’m off to Twitterland.

xo, Layla

Fire Breathing: NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in DRAGON GIRL

Fire Breathing: NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in DRAGON GIRL

I’m sure you were skeptical about whether or not I was actually going to A) rock a red lip and B) actually leave the house with said red lip intact. So was I actually. But I’m doing new things, so I did it and guess what? I EFFING LOVE IT. 

Today, I’m a more openly kick ass little mama and I’ve got a smokin’ lip color as backup. 

I contemplated wearing the Stila red, but I’ll reserve that for another time because I am now hooked on a bold lip and will be wearing it at all (appropriate, I promise) opportunities. 

Peep the red lip goodness that is NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dragon Girl:

Bold? Check. Cute? Double Check. Saucy? TRIPLE, QUADRUPLE Check. 

Here’s my mini review of the lip pencil: IT’S AWESOME. It is a matte formula, but it’s not a heavy duty matte formula that makes your lips feel like chalk has taken up permanent residence on or in your mouth. 

I exfoliated only 10 minutes before (I know, I know, I should’ve done it last night) but it still looks great. I used a standard DIY recipe: a bit of sugar, a bit of honey and instead of using petroleum jelly, I used Waxelene (a petro jelly alternative).  I’ll review Waxelene on another post. (Wow, these post promises are adding up huh?) and Voila! Soft lips, ready for matte greatness. 

The pencil was $24 at Sephora and it’s worth every flippin’ dime, so just suck it up and spend the $$ (DISCLAIMER: disposable cash that is!! I DO NOT condone getting into debt over any products that are NOT essentially medically necessary, smart gals like us try to spend, save and invest wisely after all remember?) 

I’m plotting my next shade of these out of this world pencils.  Probably something soft, cute and pink, and something not-so-soft, cute and FUSCHIA! Whoo! ;)

Check back for tomorrow’s look and musings…