Thursday, March 1, 2018

From Sweats to Fashion Blogger

I have sat here staring at a blank blog post page for about 30 minutes trying to think about what it is exactly that I want to say and how I want to say it when it comes to my journey with fashion and beauty.  Believe it or not I wasn't at all very fashionable growing up and I didn't really have a clue about makeup until after college.  Luckily for me I didn't feel I had many issues fitting in throughout high school and it was socially acceptable to wear sweatpants most days with your hair in a messy bun, at least it was with me and my friends.  That carried through to college too.  I don't think I ever  dressed up for classes and I only ever wore make up for cheerleading events or parties.  

  I didn't have a mom who bought designer things, much less knew anything about them.  We didn't live in a big fancy house and I certainly don't come from money so most of what I have learned about style and beauty came from my peers and co-workers as I entered into adulthood.  I remember the first time I went to a MAC store with a fellow waitress friend.  She was raving about how great their eyeshadows were so I went and spent lots of money that day.  The brushes were amazing, my eyeshadow wasn't caking and creasing and it actually stayed on all night long.  I could not believe I had spent 22 years of my life living without MAC eyeshadow!  

Somewhere along the way I began to get hooked on a lot of prestige brand make ups and designer clothing and accessories.  Now that I am older and wiser I am much smarter about where to spend vs save with luxury brands.  I firmly believe you can look amazing in anything no matter the cost!  

With age also comes confidence.  During this week as I listened to the 3 other women tell their stories we all shared one common characteristic trait: confidence.  I can certainly say I lacked a whole lot of self confidence for the greater part of my life. I spent so many years on yo-yo diets and crazy work out plans.  The irony for me is when I stopped counting calories and getting on the scale everyday the better I started to feel on the inside and the outside.  

With that new found confidence I started to have fun with my wardrobe, especially my work attire.  Let's face it, office work wear can be so boring but I found ways to mix it up.  I slowly started being the go to for my friends on how to style an outfit and where to shop the best deals.  It felt really great and still feels really great to be able to help other women find clothing that makes them feel like a million bucks.  When you feel good on the outside you can't help but feel better on the inside.  I also firmly believe when you dress for your day you are far more productive.  

My real thought on beauty now a days is the fact that I hate the stigma that putting in effort on your exterior makes you vain.  Who are we to judge what makes someone else feel good about themselves?  They are the ones who have to get up each day and look at themselves in the mirror and love what they see (and I am not just talk what they see externally).  I'll be the first to tell you that if you aren't happy no amount of makeup, botox or pretty handbags will be able to fix that.  You do need to have self care built into your daily life.  You have to find the things that bring you joy and approach each day with a positive mindset.  These are all life lessons that have taken me 30+ years to learn myself so don't worry we are all still works in progress.  

And to all of you mamas out there, don't forget being a mom does not have to change the clothes you love to wear.  I am struggling with this on daily myself but I hope that by putting this out into the universe it will help me get over my thinking that being a mom means I can't still feel a little sexy from time to time.   I don't need to cover up just because I brought a human into this world.  I have to stop worrying about all the mom-shamming that is happening and just rock the clothes I love to wear no matter the length of my shorts :)  At the end of the day we all just need to be our own authentic selves so we can truly love the skin were in.    

Friday, February 2, 2018

Friday 5: Current Favorite Beauty Products

Happy Friday Friends!  I am launching a new series called Friday 5.  Each week will feature five of my must haves or things that I am currently into that I feel are worthy of sharing.  Then I will take to Facebook and do a live session to elaborate that weeks post.

This week I am kicking it off with five of my current favorite beauty products.  I did a full round up and tutorial over a year ago and need to get around to doing an up to date version. To view last years post click here.  But until that happens, enjoy a quick peak into some of the products I am loving!

I got this as a gift over Christmas time and I love them!  First of all, how cute are they?  I pop the top off of the container and just leave them standing on my sink exposed.  It's an instant decor piece!  Aside from the cute factor this is a great brush set.  I use the two larger brushes daily (to set powder and to apply blush) and when I actually apply eyeshadow I use a few of those brushes as well.  It makes for a perfect gift at $44 for the beauty lover in your life or a great set to add to your own collection.  There are 12 brushes in total making this a huge bang for your buck product.

This has been all the rage lately so I decided to give it a try.  It lives up the hype, 100%!  Its an in between blend, not too thin or too thick.  I actually take my ring finger to the tip now and apply most of it that way then take my sponge to help even and blend it out.  It lasts all day long and while no concealer will ever not show some lines, this one doesn't get too built up or cakey which is a huge plus for me!  I posted about this one my instagram stories around Christmas time and I have had several followers message me about how much they love it.  Did you know they just released a Shape Tape Foundation?  Everyone has been freaking out over it so if you have tried it let me know your thoughts!

I must first state that on most days you will see me wearing my IT Cosmetics CC Cream.  It's still a favorite for day to day.  When I am shooting photos, going out on date night or have a special occasion I want a foundation that lasts a bit longer with more coverage then my CC cream.  I have recently wanted to try something new so I tested out a few medium coverage foundations and this one takes the cake for me.  It's buildable (I tend to apply two coats) but breathable, I don't look like I am wearing a ton of make up yet I have a full coverage look that I love.  My skin looks fantastic all day long with this foundation.  It's a total win, a must have and I can't sing its praises enough.

Most of you know I don't wear eyeshadow from day to day.  I spend 10 minutes on my make up and focus more on what my skin looks like then my eyes but I must say, I love this little palette.  I use 4 of the 6 colors when I do decide to throw on some shadow and I think it's a perfect look for day to night.  These warm tones are really in right now too so it makes me feel like I am up to date on the latest trends.  I am doing a Facebook live today on how I apply these colors and products so be sure to tune in around 9am (or 11:30am depending on my baby!)  If you missed it then go to my Facebook page to check it out!  If you can't make the Live time, no worries!  You can always view the video on your own time and feel free to ask me questions or give suggestions in the comments section :)

There literally are not enough words in the english dictionary to describe my love for this highlight palette.  I am totally straight forward that it isn't cheap at $62 but this is my second one (meaning I scrapped the bottom of my first one for weeks until I caved and bought a second one) and if I only had one highlight product to keep, this is it for me.  I use the darker color to blend my bronzer and blush with a big fluffy brush and I use the middle color on my cheekbones, nose and upper lip.  I will also use the third color on my eyebrow arch.  I don't waste any of the colors and I love them all for their own specific purposes.  I can't say it enough, just buy the palette if you love a good highlight!

  I am excited about this new weekly series.  It's going to be even more fun to start doing Facebook Live sessions each week to showcase the products I highlight.  I might even be giving away something (hint, hint) so you will have to follow Sandy Toes and Stilettos on Facebook too!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Super Bowl weekend.  Don't be afraid to have a few drinks and eat lots of wings and dip.  I know I sure will be!