Splurge vs Steal: The Straw Tote

Splurge vs Steal: The Straw Bag
Saint Laurent Tote / JCrew Tote

I am currently on my annual beach vacation in Greece (follow me on Instagram to see what I’ve been up to) and I realized I need to update my beach bag. I need something that is big enough to fit multiple beach towels, sunblock and books but stylish enough to take to the pool bar. I love straw tote bags and these two are exactly what I’m looking for. Which of the two do you prefer? Splurge or Steal?

 

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Vita Liberata Luxury Tan

Vita Liberata Pink-Layers.com
I don’t know about you, but I have a love-hate relationship with self tanners. Yes, I always use them during the summer, but I hate the application process. It takes less than 10 minutes for me to tan my entire body so it’s not time consuming, but I hate the waiting part afterwords and the horrible smell. With my annual beach vacation just around the corner, I decided to try a new self tanner called Vita Liberata Luxury Tan. My friend keeps raving about this so I decided to try it out. I chose to try the pHenomenal 2-3 week tan in Dark, which means that the tan actually lasts for 2-3 weeks! Amazing right?

The self-tanner is a mousse, which I always find the easiest to apply with a tanning mitt. It’s easy to squirt out the same amount for each leg and arm, making the tan look even throughout the body. The first thing I noticed is the smell, or actually, the lack of. This is truly the first self-tanner I’ve used that doesn’t have that offensive odor, and because of that, you can actually apply it during the day and go about your business without smelling like self-tanner all day long.

The fast-absorbing mousse formula gives instant natural bronzing and develops to a deep, natural-looking tan, that lasts up to four times longer than regular tans. I am currently on week two and my tan is still going strong. Vita Liberata does recommend for a longer lasting tan, to apply three times over 12 to 24 hours, showering with only water before each application, but I think that might be too dark for me. Just one application gave me a gorgeous natural-looking bronze tan, so I didn’t want to mess that color up. Overall, this is the best self-tanner I have tried to date. It is fast-absorbing, easy to use and the color lasts longer than any other tanner I have ever tried. All Vita Liberata products are made with organic botanicals and a unique Moisture Lock™ system that draw water to the skin’s surface and provide up to 72 hours of hydration. Skin looks soft and glowy after each application. If you’re in to self-tanning, definitely give this one a try and let me know your thoughts.

 

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Marc Jacobs #Instamarc Light Filtering Contour

instamarc contour - pink-layers

When it comes to contouring, I am still trying to master the art of sculpting but I’m slowly getting better at it. Up until now I’ve been using the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze & Glow and have been loving it, but I wanted to try something else with a little less shimmer.  I wasn’t planning on purchasing the Marc Jacobs #Instamarc Light Filtering Contour, but the color drew me in. I swatched the bronzer while I was in Sephora and the color was simply amazing (I picked up the lightest shade, Mirage Filter 40). What drew me in more though, was how buttery and blendable the contour powder was. This was going to make my blending job much easier! The powder is very finely milled and velvety soft, which makes application a breeze. It’s also very buildable which is great for the days I want my contour to be a bit more dramatic.

I knew I loved the bronzer as soon as I saw it, but I never thought I would love the highlighter so much. When I first saw it in the pan it looked a bit bland. A simple, yellow based color with no shimmer. I just assumed that I would only use the bronzer side. I always assumed that highlighters needed to have some sort of shimmer in them so make cheekbones pop. Well I was wrong. This is the perfect highlighter for day and night because it doesn’t have shimmer. It highlights the skin without adding an overpowering shine. My cheekbones look bright and illuminated from within. It brightens the skin very softly and naturally, and it’s perfect for everyday use. I will be going on vacation in a few weeks and this is the only contour/bronzer/highlighter combo I’m taking with me, so that says a lot! If you’re in the market for a new contour kit, give this a try and let me know your thoughts!

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My Updated Nighttime Skincare Routine

Updated Nighttime Skincare Routine

NeoStrata Glycolic Wash/ Drunk Elephant Glycolic Serum/ Clarins Multi-Active Night Cream/ Clarins Extra Firming Eye Cream/ NeoStrata Retinol/ NeoStrata Skin Active Perfecting Peel

Hi lovelies! I wanted to post an updated skincare routine because I’ve changed up all of my skincare products lately. I used to use NeoStrata years ago and for some reason I stopped. Bad idea! If you’re looking for a cleanser that will literally transform your skin, you have to try the Glycolic Wash. It has not only cleared up my skin, but it has changed the texture of it as well. If you’re new to the brand, it’s worth checking them out. They have some amazing products! I know by looking at my routine you’re thinking I’m on a glycolic overload. I probably am… but my skin is currently loving this combination of products. My skin’s texture has completely changed and I owe it all to this combo of products. If you want to take a look at my old skincare routine, click here! Let me know if you have any NeoStrata favorites. I would love to try out some more things from this brand!

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YSL Touche Eclat Blur Primer

YSL Touch Eclat Primer - Pink-Layers
I think I have finally found THE ONE! The one perfect primer that is! I haven’t had the best relationship with primer over the past few years. Some would break me out, some would dry me out and some just didn’t really work. Yes, I’ve tried a few that I liked, but nothing worth re-purchasing. Until I tried the YSL Touch Eclat Blur Primer that is! Let me just start off by saying.. yes, it’s worth the hype!

I had heard so many bloggers rave about this primer so I really wanted to try it. The way I would describe this is “glow in a bottle.” The primer illuminates the skin, blurs imperfections and boosts the radiance of the foundation. Once I put it on, my pores seem smaller, my skin feels smoother, and my skintone is more even. It’s enriched with four nourishing oils… corn oil, apricot kernel oil, passiflora oil, and rice bran oil. The primer does have a golden shimmer that gives the skin that soft glow, but it’s not overpowering. The best part is, I haven’t broken out using this. If you’re looking to achieve that luminous glow, definitely give this primer a try. It is truly the best one I have tried.

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Rita Hazan Ultimate Shine Gloss

Rita Hazan Shine Gloss
I’ve been coloring my hair for as long as I can remember, and one of the things that I always ask my stylist to do is use a gloss. I absolutely love professional glosses! They give my hair a semi-permanent shine and make my strands look healthy, shiny and well… glossy! That being said, I always hated having to wait until my next hair appointment for my hair to look “alive” again, so I decided to try the Rita Hazan Ultimate Shine Gloss. Since I have blonde hair, I decided to try the Breaking Brass version, which is intended to break down brassy tones and orange hues in blondes.

I first was impressed at how easy it was to apply. The gloss is a foam and is applied in the shower and rinsed off immediately. After I conditioned my hair and jumped out of the shower, I couldn’t believe how smooth my hair felt. This was even before I styled it. Once my hair was dry, I noticed that my strands looked shinier, and my color was brighter. No brassiness in sight. This was 4 weeks after my color touch up so the fact that this little gloss had revived my color was amazing! I’ve been using this little gem twice a week for a couple of months and my hair color has been looking great. My color is vibrant and my hair is shiny. Two months without a single “bad hair day?” This gloss is definitely a keeper!

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UNOde50 – Trendy Jewelry Handcrafted in Spain

UNOde50 Jewelry
1)Star-Tremendous ring; 2)Lady Marmalade bracelet; 3)B12 necklace; 4)Tif Taf bracelet;
5)And Yes necklace; 6)Flash earrings; 7)Ibiza bracelet; 8)B12 ring; 9)Wakame ring; 10)Breakfast with Lovers necklace

When it comes to jewelry, I usually prefer minimal understated pieces. My key everyday pieces include my Cartier Love Necklace and my diamond studs. Up until now I stayed away from bold chunky pieces, but ever since I discovered UNOde50, my jewelry philosophy has completely changed. The Spanish brand began with the exclusive philosophy of creating 50 units of each design, hence its name. Over time and through its rapid success, the brand increased production but still retained the name to remember, just as on the first day, that quality and exclusivity of each design are a priority. Today the company also continues to fulfill its promise of exclusivity through limited editions of 50 pieces that are released with each collection.

All of the pieces are very unique, trendy, but also timeless that will last you for years to come! What I love about all of the pieces is that they can be worn casually or dressed up for an evening out. They are very versatile and can add a certain “edge” to an otherwise boring outfit. I currently own the Lady Marmalade bracelet and the Flash earrings in pink and I absolutely love them. My next lust item is the Ibiza bracelet in gold. It looks absolutely gorgeous in person. All pieces are 100% handmade in Spain and available in over 40 countries. If there’s an UNOde50 store near you and you haven’t checked out their jewelry… pop in. Their items are simply breathtaking and look even better in person than they do online.

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