Lisa Unger: Heartbroken (2012)

Hi everyone. I have to say, today was fairly disappointing - the weather was shit and that ultimately meant I couldn't take any new pictures for reviews (not that I, honestly, wanted to, and it isn't like I don't have pictures for products on the ever-growing waiting list), nor could I go walking (which is what I wholeheartedly wanted to do). The rain, one could argue, was the appropriate soundtrack to get through the last bit of the star of today's post - Lisa Unger's thriller, Heartbroken (2012) - but, honestly (again), I didn't even feel like reading. I didn't feel like doing anything.

Reminds me of my pajama shirt that reads "It's one of those days." Oh yes, yes it is.

Surprise, surprise - I don't want to write a review right now! But I'm pushing myself to do it because I did indeed finish Heartbroken and the best time to write a book review is, literally, as soon as possible after the book is done. 'Sides, it's not like I didn't like the story!


FOTD: April 26, 2014

Hi! When I went to IMATS two weeks ago, one of the products I was waiting for months to buy at the show's discounted price was Stila's In the Light palette. I was so excited to finally use it today, and I'm really happy with how everything turned out so I thought I'd share it with you here!

This isn't really a review post, though my opinions on the products I used will be peeking through here and there. I mainly wanted to show a look my mediocre makeup skills could come up with using this palette, and how it pairs with other products (both new and old). =)


Sarah Addison Allen: The Sugar Queen

Yay! Another book review! I'm finally getting into the routine of reading again, and it's great. The book today's post is about - The Sugar Queen (2008) by Sarah Addison Allen - is a book I've been meaning to read for a couple of months now, and I'm both sad and happy that I finally got around to it.

Sarah Addison Allen is an author that is fairly new to me, in a way, as I discovered her at the end of 2012. This is the third book of hers that I read out of the five that she has published, and it's this book that made me realize something. The anticipation of her next novel - whenever that is, since she just published one this past January - pretty much mimics that anticipation I have for all of Sakamoto Maaya's releases.

What I'm trying to say is, in the short time that I've known this author, and from the three books I've read of hers, I feel confident in saying that Sarah Addison Allen is my new favorite (living) author. The sadness that exists in this is the fact that, as I mentioned before, she only has five novels, and I'm now done with three of them. I almost feel forced to take my time getting to the last two because the thought of having none left to read is awful.

In any case, the reason I love Sarah Addison Allen's work enough to declare her my favorite author has much to do with The Sugar Queen, and the themes it shares with her other two books that I've read - The Girl Who Chased the Moon and Lost Lake. Which brings us to this post.


Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Toying Around" (LE) [Playland 2014]

I was going to just call it a night and save my review of "Toying Around" for tomorrow, but no. I'm going to plow through to the end, while I still know what I'm doing (lol!).

Some colors are winners. It's as simple as that. From the moment you put them on, you know that they're winners. You know you'll get a lot of use out of them, that they're what you've been looking for - that they make you feel totally confident whenever you wear them.

"Toying Around" is one such color.

I knew I wanted it from the start, and as much as my list changed between January and April, it was the only color from my initial list that stood put. I did take a risk in buying it - I love a lipstick that's a perfect balance between pink and orange, but most inevitably fall too pink, or too orange. You can see examples of such lipsticks in my comparison post here, where I compare "Toying Around" to an example of each.

That's not to say that "Toying Around" is perfect, because it's not. If you view it next to the other pinker colors in the collection - as I have swatched in my master post here - you'll see that it's more orange than pink. But still - there's just something, something about it...

Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Happy-Go-Lucky" (LE) [Playland 2014]

Review #3! We're almost there! "Happy-Go-Lucky" is the lipstick I was curious about after hearing it being compared to "Candy Yum Yum," which I own but have such a hard time using due to the streaky, drying application. You can see a comparison of the two here.

When I tried "Happy-Go-Lucky" at my MAC counter, the ease with which it applied convinced me to purchase it. It's definitely the most fun color of the four Playland lipsticks I purchased, in my opinion.

If you want to see "Happy-Go-Lucky" beside other lipsticks in this collection, check out my master post here. With that being said, let's move on to the review.

Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Sweet Experience" (LE) [Playland 2014]

When MAC's Playland collection first launched, I only planned on purchasing two of the collection's lipsticks, and "Sweet Experience" was one of them. I wanted to own a pale pink in a more opaque formula, compared to my other pale pink from MAC, "Rose Lily." "Sweet Experience" was perfect.

Also, for anyone that's ever been curious about "Saint Germain," an amplified cream lipstick from MAC's permanent line, but just knew in their hearts that it would look awful, give a warm welcome to "Sweet Experience."

Before we get into the review, just know that you can click here if you want to view my master post for Playland, where you can see "Sweet Experience" beside the other three colors I own from this collection.

Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Red Balloon" (LE) [Playland 2014]

Here we go! The first lipstick I'll be reviewing from MAC's Playland collection is "Red Balloon" - the one that seemed to be the less stellar option of all the colors available. I initially wanted this lipstick, then I decided not to get it, and then I saw more pictures of it and ultimately bought it. It's the darkest of the four amplified lipsticks in this collection, and perhaps the easiest to wear everyday.

If you want to see "Red Balloon" beside its fellow Playland lipsticks, you can check out the master post I created for this collection here. If you want to see a comparison post, click here. Otherwise, let's get to the review.

MAC's April 2014 Collection: Playland

LEFT TO RIGHT: MAC Playland lipsticks in:
Red Balloon, Sweet Experience, Happy-Go-Lucky, and Toying Around.

Hello, hello! As of yesterday, I finally have all four of the lipsticks I purchased from one of MAC's April 2014 collections, Playland. I already did a separate post with quick swatches and comparisons, which you can find here, but today I'll be doing a master post with all four of the lipsticks side by side, swatches, and full-face pictures - much like what I did for MAC's February collection, A Fantasy of Flowers.

As with that post, this post is meant solely to allow you to see the products I purchased beside each other, so you can see what differences exist within the collection. Playland featured permanent and limited edition products, including eye, cheek, and lip products. In terms of lipsticks, there are six limited edition colors, of which two are in the frost finish - "Playland" and "Head in the Clouds" - and the remaining four are in the amplified finish - "Red Balloon," "Sweet Experience," "Happy-Go-Lucky," and "Toying Around." I purchased all four of the amplified finish lipsticks, which I'll be sharing with you today.

This post is not a review of the products. Once reviews are up for each product, I will link them at the post's end. 


IMATS NYC 2014 Recap - April 12, 2014

Just over a year ago, I went to my first IMATS in NYC. It's kind of crazy to think that so much time has passed already.

IMATS NYC 2014 was last Saturday, and my mom and I had a great day. We got there right after the doors opened, weren't waiting on line a ton, got to visit a variety of booths, purchased some new makeup, and were out by 11:30! Three whopping hours, haha! Then we went for a walk through shitty Manhattan because it was one of the most beautiful spring days we've had to date (yesterday was a close contender, though), and we got home by 4 P.M. It was one of the most eventful weekend days I've had all year (in New York, anyway).

Since I basically explain what IMATS is in my first recap of 2013's, linked above, I thought I'd keep this post brief in terms of text and focus on pictures. I didn't take as many pictures as last year - but last year was also calmer than this year, in my opinion. The crowd was intense from the start - in fact, I didn't visit two booths I planned on purchasing from - Sigma and Sugarpill - because their lines were ridiculously long (one stretched across the entire space and the other literally made it out the door...or was that Lime Crime???).

Either way, my mom and I had a lot of fun, and she enjoyed her first IMATS, even though she couldn't care less about makeup! Haha.


Kristin Hannah: Firefly Lane (2008)

Whenever I go to Barnes and Noble, I always visit the fiction aisles to see if anything catches my eye. I love my tried-and-true favorites, like Agatha Christie and Stephen King, but I am as eager to discover a new love as I am to read another of their stories. I view my list of authors as I do my list of music artists: one that I work to expand on, so that the possibilities to experience become endless.

I've never heard of Kristin Hannah, but the covers of her books along the shelf were what drew me in, and the summary of Firefly Lane is what won me over. A story of friendship between two completely different girls that goes over the span of thirty-plus years. Horror and mystery novels are my favorites, but stories of life and all of its ugly and beautiful faces have been meaningful to me lately. And, of course, I love stories that really go in-depth. I rather know too much about the characters than too little. I want to feel - to realistically feel.

As such, I purchased Firefly Lane (2008). It has been my go-to read during my time on the elliptical, so I didn't expect to finish it this soon. But I've been wanting to read it - wanting to see what happens next, how the friendship between these girls ends or goes on forever. That's why I sat down today and read what was left.

Now I'm here, unsure of how to organize this review, but wanting to tell you that Firefly Lane is one of the most touching, powerful, and submerging novels I've ever come across.


MAC's Playland Lipsticks Sneak Peek: Quick Swatches, Comparisons, & First Thoughts

LEFT TO RIGHT: "Sweet Experience," "Toying Around," and "Happy-Go-Lucky"

It's the weekend of the week of MAC's Playland online and in-store launch dates - which means I have (some) lipsticks in my possession to share with you (and WEAR!), yay!

I don't know what collection Playland is supposed to be, except one of many April collections, so I can't say much about that. But I will say that I've been anticipating the release of this collection since January for two reasons: (a) the lipsticks are in bright pink-related shades, and (b) they're in the amplified (creme?) finish, which is my absolute favorite MAC finish.

So when it launched on Nordstrom's website this past Monday, I ordered my first two picks: "Toying Around" and "Sweet Experience," which I received in the mail yesterday. Then on Wednesday I ordered "Red Balloon" off of Belk, which has yet to arrive (one of the reasons I consider this post a 'sneak peek'). And finally, last night, I went to my local MAC store and swatched the collection's other lipsticks in person, settling on "Happy-Go-Lucky." That essentially means I bought all four lipsticks in the amplified finish for this collection, as the other two are frosts.

This post is a 'sneak peek' because I do not yet have pictures of me wearing the lipsticks, or full reviews on them since I've owned them for less than a day. I also will not be writing those until next week, when all four lipsticks are in my possession and I can create a master post for the collection. In this post I will share semi-detailed comparisons to lipsticks that have been said to have comparable colors, and I will share my brief initial thoughts on some of the lipsticks that I have worn already.

UPDATE 04/22/14: I received "Red Balloon" today and have since worn it and "Happy-Go-Lucky" so this post will include updates here and there to add my opinions on them (and swatches in terms of "Red Balloon").



Hi! Tomorrow is the first of the two public days of IMATS NY 2014 and I'm happy to say that I'm going again this year! Thankfully my mom is coming with me this time, so it won't be as boring as last year (when I was all by my little self).

I'm so excited, and have been looking forward to this since I bought our tickets in January. Apparently Sigma, Sugarpill, and NYX will be around this year so yeah, it's nice to see more brands that I recognize (especially the ones that are normally shop-online-only for me).

Anyway, if any of you are going to IMATS tomorrow or Sunday, I hope you have a great time! I'll post my 'haul' (which will still be small haha) as soon as I can. :)



Lips: Revlon's Super Lustrous Lipstick in "Jungle Peach" (LE) [Vintage Collection 2014]

Hi! I can't believe I'm saying this, but I think we might actually have a spring here in NYC this year, and thank goodness for THAT, as this winter was brutal. seems whenever we have nice weather, the wind is total shit. It just blows nonstop, and it has a tendency to be icy. Ugh.

Anyway, yay for a review that isn't on a MAC  product!

This post seems almost fitting. Today I'm going to review another Revlon Super Lustrous lipstick - and I italicize 'another' because a long time ago (roughly a year and a half!), I published my first lipstick post ever on this blog, which reviewed a Revlon Super Lustrous lipstick. You can find that review here. Going with the theme of time, Revlon Super Lustrous lipsticks are one of the most timeless drugstore lipsticks around. And, on top of that, the color I'll be reviewing today is a perfect example: it's a color that's being re-promoted in a limited edition collection dedicated to vintage shades that customers voted for. Sounds kind of like the MAC collection mentioned in my previous review, no?

The color is "Jungle Peach," originally released in 1963! To be honest, "Jungle Peach" wasn't my preferred color choice. I originally wanted "Snow Peach," but every display I found was sold out of it. That's because Revlon is doing the usual "2 per display" fail-tactic that a lot of drugstores have been implementing lately with their limited edition collections. One can never understand.

In any case, I did manage to find and purchase "Snow Peach" later on, and I'll be reviewing that as soon as possible. But for now, let me just say that "Jungle Peach" pleasantly surprised me. 


Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Hoop" (Satin) (LE) [By Request 2014] + Comparisons

Hi! This past Tuesday, MAC released their spring 2014 By Request collection. "By Request" collections are essentially collections made up of previously released products that are voted to come back for a limited time due to popular demand. MAC offers a choice of products to vote between, and then the products with the top votes become part of the collection. This time around, the products were all colors released in the '90s (yay!), and the collection is exclusive to MAC's website. No in-store try-it-before-you-buy-it here.

I didn't know anything about this collection, nor did I vote for any of the colors (or hear about them, really). Honestly, I didn't learn anything until just over a week ago. As usual, I was mainly drawn towards the lipsticks, and of the three that were voted highest, the only one that caught my attention was "Hoop," which was apparently first released during a 1991 collection (my birth year). This might be lame, but I do find that pretty cool.

Anyway, I got my package in the mail yesterday and have worn the lipstick since, so I thought I'd share my thoughts on a limited edition item early for once. I also decided to include a comparison to two other lipsticks that I already have, for those interested in other choices with similar colors.