September 30, 2014

Introducing: Color Clutch

Last week I saw a bunch of bloggers 'liking' these Instagram photos of a little blue box that stores your nailpolish. Being the nail junkie I am, I was instantly intrigued and did some research.

I found out that this little gem is called "Color Clutch" and it's just a little baby entrepreneur project!

"Color Clutch" is a box that takes up only 2.8 inches of space and holds 18 bottles of nail polish. The best thing about this is that it stores ANY type of polish, any size bottle. It fits neatly in this cute little box!

I love this because as a nail polish addict, I have two makeup bags filled with polishes. It's very unorganized and I could never see what colors I have. This also makes my bottles more prone to breakage, which has happened too many times. 

The reason that I'm writing this post is because the ladies over at Color Clutch reached out to me to help spread the word about their Kickstarter campaign!

To make this product readily available to customers, Color Clutch needs the funding to actually make the product--that's how early you're hearing about this product.

I think this is a fabulous idea, something that beauty gurus everywhere can really use. It's a product I would buy and that's why I'm supporting and pledging whatever pennies I have to help kickstart Color Clutch.

You can make your own pledge here(pledge as little as $1) and help bring this awesome idea to life! 

September Favorites

How is September over already? Seriously, how is it over? I'm utterly confused as to how today is the last day of September. 

It was a wild month, emotionally, but a boring month, socially. September was weird and for the first time in my life, I wasn't sitting in a hot, sticky classroom. This was and still is an adjustment. 

I'm kind of glad to see September go and for October to start. October has always been very good to me so I'm definitely looking forward to it. Also, my social calendar is filled to the brim with fun events all month so hopefully that'll help me get out of my post-grad funk.

Even though September wasn't my favorite, there was still a lot of stuff I loved--hence, my favorites.

I'm still getting the hang of these favorite posts so bare with me.

//Beauty Blender: Do I even have to say it? This was in my "Recent Beauty Haul" post and I'm obsessed. I was skeptical at first because it's "just a sponge" but it really is so much more than that. It applies concealer and foundation flawlessly and effortlessly. I haven't tried it out with a true liquid foundation but I used it with my Rimmel Stay Matte Mousse foundation and it applied like a dream. This is a staple that everyone should have-- I use it everyday.

//Pumpkin Spice Lattes: #BasicBitch and I don't care who knows it. I usually reserve all fall related things until it gets crazy cool outside but I was so tempted this month. I did wait, until the 2nd week in September to start enjoying PSL's but I couldn't help it. I get mine iced from Dunkin Donuts before work and hot from Starbucks on the weekends. Give me pumpkin everything!

//Color Whisper in Mocha Muse: I've had this color for almost a year now and I just rediscovered it. Color Whispers by Maybelline are the perfect mix of lipstick and balm, in a fun little tube. I've been experimenting more with actual lipsticks but sometimes I'm lazy or don't want a full blown lip color so I've been reaching for this. It adds a touch of shine and moisturizers at the same time so it's perfect.

//Milani Runway Lashes in Black: During the day, I don't like to look too made up. Sometimes I won't eveen put on face makeup, just throw on some eyeliner and mascara. I have a few different mascaras that I use for different occasions because they give me thicker and fuller lashes. Sometimes I just want a natural looking lash and this is where Milani Runway Lashes come in. I got this in my HerConference goodie bag and just started really using this. It has a thin brush which still makes my lashes thick and full but not too much. It gives a very natural, no mascara look that I love. You can however, build this up to give you dramatic lashes as well.

//Bustle App: Okay, this is a weird favorite to have but it's recently discovered and I love it. I follow Bustle on Facebook and love reading their articles, everything from entertainment to lifestyle to beauty, it's an awesome website. I discovered a few weeks ago that they have an app and it's made my life. I love reading articles on my way to work and at night before I got to sleep. It makes things easier and is just really cool.

//Once Upon a Time: I spent the entire month watching this show on Netflix and I'm obsessed. I was in need of a new show and there didn't seem to be a better time to start one. I tried watching Once Upon a Time when it first premiered four years ago but couldn't get into it. Now, I can't get enough. I finished the third season on Friday night, just in time for season 4 to premiere on Sunday. Fairytales, curses, and love stories? What more could you want from a show?

//Big Little Lies: I received this book courtesy of the Birchbox/Birchbloggers monthly book club and was so excited to read it! I finished it within two weeks and am floored at how incredible it was. There is nothing like getting lost in a good book! Look for a full review on this baby in the next few weeks. 

What were your favorites of the month? Tell me in the comments!

September 29, 2014

How to Save Time and Money

I do not enjoy being late to any event. I hate feeling unprepared and rushing to get out of the house. I don't like feeling as if I don't have enough time to do everything I need to do. I'm all about having enough time.

The other side of this post is about saving money. This is something I definitely need help in (all suggestions welcome). I love spending my money and always have. Where I become a hypocrite is when I feel suffocated that I don't have enough money to do what I want to do. I always have severe buyers remorse. 

I've heard it time and time again from my family and friends, I need to not spend money on frivolous things. I don't need another $7 lipstick nor do I need to order another piece of jewelry. It's a severe problem and I've recognized it over the past few months.

Whenever I have a teeny bit of money in my pocket, I feel the need to spend it. Seriously, the feeling overtakes me and I have to satisfy it. It's an addiction. 

I may be an expert on saving and cherishing time but the money part, I could use some help but I've already discovered some great tips and tricks to help. 

How to Save Time:

//Do things the night before: If you know you have to get up early for work or school or an event, make sure everything is done the night before. That means making your lunch, packing your bag, and laying out your clothes. This is a habit of mine that truly has become second nature. I can't get a good nights sleep if I know I haven't prepared for the morning. It saves me time when I wake up (a few more minutes of sleep never hurt anyone) and I'm not thinking about what I have to do when I go to sleep. It's the simplest of tasks but saves a world of time in the morning.

//Organize: If you haven't realized it by now, I'm a huge organizer. I love being prepared and being organized for anything that comes my way. When you know you have a lot on your plate, it can be very overwhelming. If you know you're going to have a lot to do in a short amount of time, make a to do list and keep a planner. Tracking your time and obligations will save you time and energy in the long run. When I know exactly what I need to do, I get it done right and quickly, giving me extra time at the end of the day to relax and unwind.

How to Save Money:

//Budgeting: I never thought about creating a budget plan until I saw one of my friends tweet that she was creating her own budget excel spreadsheet. It was like the heavens opened up and gave me this great idea. I haven't created mine yet (maybe I'll share when I do) but I'm going to google some examples and find what works for me. I think creating a plan will help me track where I'm spending my money and limit myself to few frivolous purchases through the month.

//Coupons: Some people, including myself, forget that coupons exist. On any given day there is a coupon for something you need or want. Simply googling coupons or downloading a coupon app before you go out shopping will save you loads of money and provide fantastic deals for you.

//Subscription services: This may seem silly to include because you're SPENDING money but it combines both saving time and money. There is now a subscription service for anything you need, from food to beauty products to clothes--you can't go wrong with subscription services. They're more practical than in the past and can create a more convenient lifestyle for you. 

A great subscription service that is a "no brainer" and guaranteed to save you both time and money is "Dollar Shave Club". This service sends you the razor of your choice for less than $10 a month. Razors are one of my most expensive purchases and ones that I dread going to the store for. This could make that a lot easier because high quality razors are being delivered right to your door, for almost half the price of purchasing in store. 

I'm hoping to better use these tips (especially the budget plan) in my life on a day to day basis and am always looking for more resources and suggestions! 

Please share your own ideas on how to save time and money in the comments :)

September 26, 2014

Links to Love

I'm writing this as I'm sipping on Moscato, wearing a face mask, and watching #Scandal. I'd say that's a pretty great way to end the week.

I will admit, I had a fantastic week. It started off we me seeing my best friends on Sunday and ends with Scandal. I was in good spirits aside from some minor mood swings because hey, I'm a girl.

I will also admit that I think writing my post grad update post and sharing that with the world helped. I received a lot of kind words from my friends and from all of you so thank you. It's very scary writing something as intense as that and clicking publish. You know I don't get personal with you and some personal posts have bit me in the ass so yeah....

Anyways, I hope next week is just as good as this one but for now, I'm in need of a relaxing weekend and some R&R, maybe even a digital detox.

For now, here are my favorite links from the week:

What are your plans for the weekend? Let me know in the comments!

September 25, 2014

Fall Beauty Wish list

Last week I posted my Fall fashion wish-list and what items I was coveting for this fall season. While I love clothes shopping, buying new fashions and staying up to date on the latest trends, sometimes clothes aren't my favorite thing to buy. 

My first love is always beauty products, whether it's a good moisturizer or the latest nail polish color, I cannot get enough. The more I read beauty blogs, subscription services, or watch my favorite vloggers, I find more and more products I want to try.

I have a hefty list of items that I'm desiring but for the fall season, there are certain items that are calling my name. With cool weather and dark colors upon us, there is nothing better than a vampy lip color, smoky eyes and a natural finish foundation look. 

There are so many beauty looks I want to try out this fall season and I know these products will help me with that.

Here's my fall beauty wish list:

//Too Faced Coco Powder Foundation: I'm still new to the foundation game and powder foundations confused me till no end. I saw this in Sephora  few weeks ago but didn't think much of it till I saw Tiffany D's review of it. I'm sold and this will be my next big splurge.

//Loreal Tru Match Foundation: This drugstore liquid foundation has won every beauty award this season and I've seen a lot of people rave about it. Every time I go to buy it, I stop myself and don't really know why. I know I need a foundation with more coverage (my Maybelline Fit Me isn't cutting it much longer) so I definitely need to buy this ASAP.

//ELF Matte Lip Colors: I have one of these from last winter in Praline and I'm obsessed. ELF released three new shades this season which are currently waiting in my cart, ready to buy. Aside from dark nail polish, dark lips are my second favorite fall beauty trend.

//Benefit's It's Potent Eye Cream: I need a new night time eye cream and this is the one I want. I had a sample of this a few months ago and it was amazing. It was super hydrating and left my eyes bright and awake. It's a little pricey so I'll be saving up for this. It's important to keep under-eyes smooth and moist since the dry, fall air will affect your skin greatly.

//Mario Badescu Rose Water Spray: This baby is only $7 and smells like roses. HELLO! It's perfect. Beauty bloggers everywhere have been talking about this and I've been wanting to experiment with facial sprays. I think the fall, when the air is driest, is the perfect time to start playing around.

//Coastal Scents To Go Palettes: I thought my Naked3 palette would satisfy my eyeshadow needs but I've noticed recently that it's not. I want more color, like plum and burgundy. I've seen these all over recently and I think they're super cute. Coastal Scents is supposed to have pretty good quality shadows for the price so I may splurge on one of these.

//ELF Studio Blush Palette: Blush is something I don't have much of because I'm not crazy about it but like so many other things, I've been wanting to experiment. The dark shades in this quad are great for everyday or dramatic, night looks. Also, you can't beat the price of ELF products.

As usual, my list of "wants" is super long...and to think I was just saying how I need to save money. When will I learn?

Anyways...what beauty products are you dying to try for the fall?

September 24, 2014

Post Grad Update

Oh hello there. How are all of you today? I'm writing this on a Saturday night at home, with my mom and sister after I just cleaned my makeup brushes (post on that up and coming) and eating macaroons I found in our local Keyfood.

That is usually how my life goes nowadays. 

Saturday nights are no longer spent pre-gaming with my sorority sisters, getting ready to go to my favorite fraternity's mixer and waltzing in at 4am. Yeah, my Saturday nights aren't like that at all anymore and it saddens me.

I'm a post grad, welcome to my life.

At the beginning of the summer, I was scared as to what my post grad life would bring. I was jobless, living at home and desperate for the nurturing factor of my college campus. It was surprisingly fun, though. 

With a slew of graduation parties, birthdays, and a few beach days, I saw my school friends a lot. One of my closest friends even lives a block away from me so we hung out constantly. It was a really great adjustment and I was enjoying post grad.

I was still jobless most of the summer so my days consisted of working out, blogging, tanning and applying to every job I saw. Every day was the same but I didn't mind at all. I love to relax, I love doing nothing and it was refreshing to just be for a while.

It did start to take a toll on me and just before things got ugly, I got an offer and it's incredible. I love going to work, I love traveling into the city, I love being an office environment. I will admit I was really scared in the beginning, very nervous but who wouldn't be. I would be doing an actual "job". I wasn't an intern, I had responsibilities. How would I handle it all? How would I get used to it? 

The anxiety attacks I had leading up to my first day and even two-three weeks after were terrible. Traveling into the city kind of scared me and just the idea of being a working person scared me. As I said before, I love my down time and was just not used to being in one place all day. 

I have to say though, I have gotten used to it over the past two months and I love it. I look forward to Monday mornings, I like getting dressed and getting coffee before going into the office. I like the subway rides, I like packing my bag to go in. It's weird but I'm enjoying it.

I will say though, I am exhausted at the end of the day and it's still weird to get home and see that the clock says 7pm. Sometimes I'm so tired, I will actually get sick and that is by the far the worst feeling. 

My sleeping pattern has been messed up the past few weeks so once I get back on track, I'm sure that will be fine.

On the train, months ago, riding to the rest of my life
Even though I am happy with my job, that is not all post grad is. The first few weeks of school back in August, when I saw all my underclassmen friend head back to campus killed me. I cried a lot, I couldn't listen to "American Pie" (a special song to all of us Gaels) and longed for the feeling of my off campus apartment and the sticky floors of the fraternity basement. Still, it pains me to think that I am never going back to school and it's weird.

Aside from being weird, I'm also very lost. I have a great job, I see my friends from school and talk to them everyday, I have a great life but I'm very lost.

I'm scared and lost and confused beyond words. I'm an adult and that thought it scaring the crap out of me. 

How do I know what's best for me? What will be my next move? How am I going to find the energy on a Saturday night to get out of my pajamas, shower, and get dressed to go out for a night. How am I going to live at home in this apartment with my mom and sister for an indefinite amount of time?

How am I going to live the life I want to live? What IS the life I want to live? Who am I and who do I want to be?

I realized that my college life defined me. I knew exactly who I was in college. Briana Luca, sister of Phi Sigma Sigma Sorority, VP of Communications on the Greek Council. I was Vice Archon, Rose Queen of Pi Kappa Phi, Sorority Woman of the Year. I went to my Mass Communications classes, wrote for the Ionian Newspaper. I could spit out my elevator speech like a mad woman in college but now, now I don't really know who I am or what defines me.

It's really scary.

I'm going to be 22 in November. I'm in my twenties for real now. Life is real now, this isn't pretend. I have to make decisions for myself, in career, friendship, love... it's terrifying really and it just kind of hit me.

I don't really know what I'm doing. I don't really feel like I have my shit together and it's weird. I have never been one to never have a plan but now, there isn't really a plan to put together because anything can go.

Anything can happen.

It's both exciting and scary but all I could really do is accept it.

Whatever will be, will be. Everything happens for a reason. This too shall pass.

Whatever inspirational quote you can think of, I've said it to myself.

So for now, I'm going to enjoy what I do have and do my best to let go of the planner in me and let the universe take it's course. 

Post grad has treated me pretty well so far. It' not as bad as I thought and despite the terrifying feeling I have on a weekly basis, I am enjoying it.

We'll see what else happens :)

September 23, 2014

So.Many.Hauls, So.Much.Stuff

I've been doing some shopping recently...but seriously, what else is new? I've come to the realization that I have a severe shopping problem. The minute I have some spare money, I get the overwhelming feeling to buy things I really don't need.

I get the worst buyers remorse afterwards and almost always consider returning my purchases. As I'm writing this post, I just came home from Target (the worst place for shopping addicts) and was considering actually going back to return two of the items. 

It really hit me the past few days that I have a problem and it needs to stop. The first step is acceptance, right?

Anyways, I'm still going to show you some of the stuff I've bought over the past few weeks. The beginning of a season always brings this out in me because I want new clothes, makeup, bag--everything!

I've gone everywhere from TJ Maxx to Target to CVS and the things in this haul are completely random. Some I've used, some I haven't. Warning, the items are random!

The reason I'm doing this is because these are my favorite types of posts, next to "What's in my bag" because I love seeing what people buy/use on a daily basis. Let me know in the comments if you want to see more posts like this because I will gladly do them!

Lets get started, shall we? 


//Milani Lipsticks: These babies strike again! I'm obsessed with them. I've noticed that they slightly dry my lips and it's best if you use a lip balm beforehand but still, I love them. I bought the "Pretty Natural" shade which is more pink than nude but it's a great all year color.

//Eye Masks: I've gotten used to sleeping with a sleeping mask over the past few weeks but mine broke and I needed a new one. I found this satin one at CVS and there was a sale on Essence products so I also bought a gel eye mask that can be used cold or hot. It's the perfect product to pamper yourself with.

Maybelline "Touch of Spice" on top; Milani "Pretty Natural" on bottom


//Logitech Mouse: The trackpad on my Macbook has been glitchy for a few years now and I've gone through two mouses previously. Usually I could handle using the glitchy trackpad but with work and me using my laptop more, I needed a new one. This is what I originally went to Target for, by the way.

//Maybelline Matte Lipsticks: Everyone has been ravving about these babies and I needed them. Target had every shade in stock but I knew I wanted "Touch of Spice", a mauve/nude color that can be described as "Kylie Jenner's color". It's super moisturizing and gives a perfect matte finish. I may need to buy another one.

//ELF Small Stipple Brush: This is a classic brush that most beauty vloggers on Youtube swear by and it's been on my wish list for months. It's mostly used with cream products and some blushes but I feel like this could be a very versatile brush and I'm excited to use it. 

//Benzoyl Peroxide Gel: My skin has been obscene lately. I seriously don't know what it is (I'm blaming it on the NYC subway) but it's been a real issue. I've never had bad skin and to have a bunch of white heads and black heads take over my face. I did some research and some strong acne medication, such as this. I'm hoping it works. If anyone has any suggestions for treating whiteheads, let me know :)

//Marie Claire: For the sake of showing you everything, I picked up the October issue of Marie Claire with Ariana Grande on the cover. I don't usually read Marie Claire but something about the cover compelled me to buy it.

Bauble Bar: 

I bought this evil eye necklace a few weeks ago and I've been wearing it constantly. I've always loved the idea of evil eyes and when I saw this as a Buried Bauble (every week BaubleBar puts a few items on sale for $10 for 24 hours) and knew I had to get it. 

Honorable Mention: American Eagle and TJ Maxx:
A new shopping center opened up near me fit with a JC Penny, TJ Maxx, Burlington Coat Factory, Nordstrom Rack and DSW. I am going to go insane here but I already hit up TJ Maxx with my grandma.

She treated me to a nice striped sweater and this lovely smelling Yankee Candle in Autumn Harvest. I need to buy more Fall scented candles. Bath and Body Works anyone? They have such great scents!

From AE: I bought myself two new pairs of jeggings, both the same type--black and dark blue. I haven't taken either pair off. American Eagle jeans are the only ones I wear.

I'm pretty sure I covered everything I've purchased within the past few weeks. Looking at it all laid out, I could see I definitely have a problem but hey, it's ok for now ;)

What new items have made it into your bags recently?