my favorite boutique in philly…

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whenever i’m in philly, vagabond is my first stop. their style is simple, elegant, & organic. when you walk in you’re instantly aware of their uber-coolness. the store kind of makes me want to redecorate my home, if not my life. they carry labels such as stellapop, which is a local philly designer, delphine, just female, level 99 jeans, & shoes by sven & dieppa restrepo (a personal favorite of mine).

best jewelry in brooklyn…

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some may say they invented ‘ring stacking’–& i believe they have. why? because when you enter this boutique, cat-lover or not, you will understand that their artistically displayed accessories will bring out your inner artist–thus, you will create the most elaborate & creative collaborations of gold or silver to adorn your appendages.

product review: omorovicza refining facial polisher

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product: omorovicza refining facial polisher $95
uses: this face wash does more than just exfoliate. it promises to regenerate skin cells & restore dull skin–leading to reduced wrinkles & brighter skin tone
verdict: i was lucky enough to get this as one of my samples after ordering from sephora online (i love the choice of 3 samples you get!!)–otherwise, i wouldn’t even give this product a glance due to its price tag. well, breaking the bank might be in order. this product is incredible. yes, it is a neon teal color, but the marine micro-algae worked wonders on my skin…it looked absolutely alive & refreshed after one use! i also noticed that my face felt squeaky clean–all remnants of make-up, air pollution, & other impurities were wisked away by ‘lava powder’ & ‘tropical fruit extracts’ 5 out of 5

product review: diorshow iconic waterproof mascara

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product:diorshow iconic waterproof mascara $29
uses: diorshow iconic aims to curl & separate every lash for a “fanned out” look
verdict: i didn’t like this mascara at first–but then i realized i just needed a couple more coats. now i am completely obsessed. the ingenious wand separates & coats each individual lash so with each coat my eyelashes become more & more luscious. the curling effect is pretty spectacular as well. my only complaint is that i need at least 3 or 4 coats to get the look this mascara promises. i believe this will be my new go to dior mascara. 5 out of 5

product review: kevyn aucoin’s the volume mascara

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product: the volume mascara from kevyn aucoin $28
uses: the product claims to add volume & length to every lash with its innovative formula & skinny brush.
verdict: i am so excited! i found a new favorite mascara! this is the best mascara i’ve ever used. i only need one coat–the skinny brush touches every single lash–& instantly my eyelashes are a mile high & oh so dark & luscious. i was worried at first to try this mascara because it’s not waterproof, which i always prefer since i like to use oils on my face, but the volume mascara stayed put. not a single smudge (except for when i was stuck outside in a blizzard, but no non-waterproof mascara can survive that!) over time the mascara gets a bit clumpy with application, but that perfect little brush separates them easily. 4 out of 5 stars

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the results!

best beauty of the past year!

eyes
diorshowdiorprimertoo facedShu-Uemura-Eye-Lash-CurlerBobbiBrownCaviarInkAnastasia Beverly Hills Tinted Brow Gelbenefitwattsup ecotools
best mascara: diorshow waterproof black 090 $25 best eyelash primer: diorshow maximizer lash plumping serum $28 best eyeshadow primer: too-faced shadow insurance $20 best eyelash curler: shu umera eyelash curler $21 best eyeliner: bobbie brown long wear gel eyeliner $23 best brows: also winner of “product i can’t leave the house without” anastasia tinted brow gel (espresso) $18 best highlighter: benefit watt’s up! mini $8 best eyeshadow brushes: eco tools brush set $9

eyeshadows

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they’re all mac–because i won’t settle for anything less: best gold: amber lights best for a little drama in your everyday: folie best brown: mulch best on the town: antiqued

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best natural: sephora cocoa 21
also winner of “product i can’t leave the house without”

face

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best powder blush: nars blush in orgasm $24 best cheek stain: tarte cheek stain in flush $30 best foundation: chanel perfection lumiere long-wear flawless fluid sunscreen make-up broad spectrum spf 15 $55 best loose powder: josie maran argan matchmaker powder foundation spf 20 $34

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best cleanser: josie maran argan cleansing oil $32 best exfoliator: st. ives fresh skin apricot scrub $4 best anti-ager: skin ceuticals retinol 1.0 $60 best moisturizer & eye make-up remover: also winner of “the best multi-tasker” award: vitamin e oil $8

lips

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best healing: burt’s bees lip balm $4 best everyday lip gloss: also winner of “product i can’t leave the house without” award dior addict lip glow $31 best lip stain: (i don’t do lipsticks b/c they look too unnatural on my thin smackers) tarte lip surgence matte lip tint in fiery $24 best tinted lip moisturizer: fresh sugar rose tinted lip treatment spf 15 $23

skin

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best moisturizer: organic coconut oil $8 best sunscreen: the naked bee 70% organic vitamin c enriched moisturizing sunscreen spf 30 $12 best firming moisturizer: vichy laboratories destock stomach firming & refining treatment $38 best self-tanner: jergens natural glow (i like the one with sunscreen) $9

hair

organix-renewing-moroccan-argan-oil-conditioner-350x350 nexxusdry aveda-smooth-infusion-shampoo-eight-five-ounce-278x278 treshairspray
best conditioner: organix renewing moroccan argan oil conditioner $8 best dry shampoo: nexxus youth renewal dry shampoo $15 best shampoo: aveda smooth infusion shampoo $7-$63 best styling product: tresemme tres two hairspray $5

avedamadder Amika-Maskkmsblowdryt3-featherweight-luxe-2i-blow-dryer
best color enhancer: aveda hair care enrich color pure plant shampoos & conditioners $18-$32 best hair mask:amika nourishing hair mask-sea buckthorn berry with argan oil $28 best for on the go: kms free shape quick blow dry $15 best hairdryer: t3 featherweight luxe 2i $250 (i don’t have one, but since its dry is more healthful than air drying…i’ll have to save up)

beauty product of the year:

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lilash purified eyelash serum $80-$140

beauty tip of the year: use oils! you’re skin will love you. i personally favor: vitamin e, k, c, argan & coconut. they’re cheap too & can be a facial moisturizer, body lotion, eye make-up remover, & can even replace mascara for a more natural look. bring a bottle of one of these oils when traveling so your bag of toiletries is lighter!

product review: josie maran matchmaker powder

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product: josie maran argan matchmaker powder foundation spf 20, $34
uses: a light dusting on the t-zone instantly conceals redness & shine
verdict: i don’t like to wear face make-up, but with argan oil and spf i feel i am nourishing & protecting my skin with this powder. it conceals perfectly, & blends flawlessly so i look like i’m not wearing any make-up! i can work up to 16 hour days sometimes & it seems to stay put pretty well! it will not conceal zits or dark spots though–you’ll need something liquidy for that… 4 out of 5!
beauty tip: if you drop your compact, just glue the powder pieces together back in it with a little rubbing alcohol, let dry for 30 and, voila! almost good as new!

product review: benefit’s watt’s up

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product: benefit‘s watt’s up highlighter, sample size (lasts forever) $8
uses: to highlight under brow arch–can also be used on the face
verdict: this product is now a mainstay in my make-up bag. it is the perfect champagne color, blends easily, & does its job without fail! 5 out of 5!
beauty tip: i like to put a little bit of highlighter in the corners of my eyes near the nasal bridge–it really makes your eyes pop!