February Beauty Favorites

To be honest I wasn't wearing all that much makeup this month...save for a few days. I've just been tired, and lazy. But there are some beauty products that I have that are just waiting to be tested and reviewed. But yeah, here are my tried and true favorites this month!

My Bridal Shower

This past Saturday, I was showered with love by my mom, sister, future mother and sisters in laws, and friends.

Planning a wedding as a shy/anxious bride.

Can I be transparent with you guys?

My entire MAC lipstick collection

My entire MAC lipstick collection

I have too many lipsticks, more than the average woman could possibly ever have. And yet, I still have some more that I'm lusting over from brands such as YSL or Besam√©. 

There's something special about MAC though. When I was a teen, I was so attracted to MAC's bright colored lipsticks and eyeshadows, yet obviously I couldn't afford them. They were the first high end brand that I liked. My mom was more into Clinique and Estee Lauder, yet I thought that they were older lady, more "boring" brands (though that's certainly not the case). I do want to share with you the  lipstick shades I own.

Now over the years, I was accumulated a lot of MAC products. I have been meaning to use them, especially to empty them for a free lipstick. 

Let's Talk: The feud between InstaGurus vs. Professional Makeup Artists

editorial spread tartelette in bloom flower necklace origins gingzing eye cream chanel lipstick

There's a bit of tension in the beauty world as we know it. 

Valentine's Day Makeup Look

Valentine's Day Makeup Look

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! I know you either love or hate this holiday. Cecilio and I celebrate it, but usually February 15 is our holiday. Because it is our dating anniversary! Long story short, 8 years ago I was out with friends on V-Day and he got off work at 10 pm. I came back way past midnight, and there he was, with a guitar in his hand, strumming to "True Love Waits" by Radiohead. That's when we knew we wanted to be more than friends. As for tonight? We are going to go to our private dance lessons for our first dance. We have been having so much fun with it.

Here's a romantic, sultry look I created for today. Whether you have a bae in hand or not, pamper and love yourself! Practice self-compassion in this world that constantly reminds you of your flaws.

What is The Bar Method? And why do I love it?

the bar method, the bar method dancers body, the bar method super sculpting 2

I did the classic New Years Resolution to get in shape, get fit, and maybe lose a few pounds without going too drastic. If I couldn't lose weight for the wedding, then I would've liked to at least tone and tighten my body. And I did start working out with my Ballet Beautiful DVDs. Because I haven't used them in a while, I was surprised with how much I was able to endure the never-ending bridge workouts (about 40 reps). I should've taken it slow because that resulted in a foot injury for the next couple of weeks. The inner part of my left foot, under my ankle, was swollen and I could barely walk without pain and limping. My mom pulled out her Trigger Point workbook, and found that the trigger point of my pain was located at the back my calf. So she massaged my calf really really hard. The next day, the pain went down from 8 to 3. I started to massage my calf on my own. Time healed it, but I know it's a tender part of my body now.

Prior to that incident, I started working out since August using some of my ballet/barre DVDs. I resubscribed to The Bar Method streaming workouts, which are only $15/month (the same price as an Allure Beauty Box subscription). I have a few of their DVDs, and I even got to take live class when I was in LA. (Note: when your workout videos start to get stale, try and take a live class. It was no joke for me, and there were much more reps. The instructor was also correcting me, to make the moves more challenging and effective. And when you see 20 other women busting their asses, you don't want to stop as well. When I work out at home, it's so easy to pause and lay down on the floor when I feel like it. And it's something I do a lot, and am trying to break the habit)

Physicians Formula #InstaReady Full Coverage Concealer

Physicians Formula #InstaReady Full Coverage Concealer, Physicians Formula #InstaReady, Physicians Formula

I was scrolling on my Facebook page a few months ago, and saw an article from Allure Magazine about the new Physicians Formula #InstaReady Full Coverage Concealer. I was reading about how affordable it was and how it banished dark circles. Had an inadequate night's of sleep? This has you covered (no pun intended). I screenshotted the article for reference since I was interested. As I was walking around Rite-Aid (my new pharmacy for now), I found them! The price was pretty steep for the drugstore at $10.99 and 0.35 oz, but I figured that it wasn't too bad considering that it came with a pink sponge, like a mini beautyblender.

Beauty Wishlist Wednesday

I'm patting myself on the back right now for not buying any beauty product in February. Except, I am going to need some makeup remover wipes. February is the month of final payments for my wedding, and Cecilio and I searching for an apartment or house. We are going to keep our Valentines Day/8 year anniversary very simple. Except, my idea of a fun date at the moment is going to SF and playing Pokemon at Pier 39, and going to Toppings (Filipino restaurant in the Bay Area) and order sizzling sisig, one of my favorite dishes. The sisig at the Filipino restaurant in Sacramento sucks.

But I'd rather we take it really easy and have a nice, home-cooked meal. I know that on Valentine's Day, Cecilio and I have another private dance lesson for our first dance. We've had so much fun with that. Dancing helps us keep our mind off of the stresses going on in our lives (wedding planning, my mom wanting to add more people to the guest list when I'm constantly reminding her that the space is limited, exercising and panicking about my wedding/honeymoon body, searching for an apartment, job hunting, paying bills, the possibility of me being the caregiver for my autistic younger sister, etc.)

With the exception of makeup removers, biodegradable sunscreen, and facial mist (all of which are my honeymoon beauty essentials), the Tarte teeth whitener (I purchased it on my last Sephora haul of 2016, but my dogs chewed on it), I will be doing a makeup ban until after I come back from the honeymoon. Before you know it, the Sephora VIB Rouge sale will roll around. So any beauty reviews I post will be from products I purchased in the last few months.

There are a few things I have been jonesing for the past few months though:

Wedding food tasting at Grange Restaurant

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Grange Restaurant in Sacramento, CA

I know, I know, another wedding post. Last week was quite the busy week for me, especially for planning. As I am typing this right now, we have 39 days left. My schedule last week went like this:

Sunday (1/29): Celebrating Cecilio's birthday with my future-in-laws
Monday (1/30): Cecilio's actual birthday
Tuesday (1/31): Taking 1-hour private dance lessons for our first dance
Wednesday (2/1): Meeting with our church wedding coordinators for the ceremony
Thursday (2/2): Our food tasting!

And that's not including DIY projects, receiving our RSVPs, finalizing our guest list, gathering addresses and information for our B-list guests, and searching for an apartment.

Last Thursday, we had our food tasting at Grange Restaurant, which is The Citizen Hotel's (our reception venue) very own restaurant. Grange is known for its fine dining and farm-to-fork menu, with ingredients no further than 150 miles from the region. Sacramento is the farm-to-fork capital of the US, so we take local fare very seriously. Grange's menu is seasonal, so our wedding coordinator Tina, emailed us the menu just last month to let us pick which foods we wanted to try. Our hotel only allows catering from Grange for weddings, which makes it convenient so we don't have to search for other caterers. However, it is not cheap. Even if you do a buffet style vs. plated style.

We brought my mom's boyfriend, Bart, my sister (matron of honor) Trixie, and Cecilio's parents. Unfortunately, my mom couldn't make it because she had a business trip. We sat with Tina, sampling delicious food for the reception while talking about our decor, logistics, and corkage (my mom and Bart are bringing a few cases of wine in addition to having our open bar).

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We first sampled the hor d'oeuvres: olive/cheese skewers, deviled eggs, mini grilled cheese sandwiches (with jam on top), and fried risotto balls.

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Laura Geller Piece of Cake Collection

Laura Geller Baked Balance-N-Brighten Color Correcting Foundation, Laura Geller Baked Blush-N-Brighten Roseberry, Laura Geller Baked Marble Shadow Duo Amethyst/Unearthed, Laura Geller Glamlash Dramatic Volumizing Mascara, Laura Geller Luscious Lips Liquid Lipstick Peach Buttercream, Laura Geller, Laura Geller Piece of Cake Collection

I sometimes walk by the Laura Geller section at Ulta, mostly interested in their Baked Gelato Swirl blushes. But I personally have never purchased anything from them. I was pretty excited when my best friend Rebecca gifted me with the Laura Geller Piece of Cake Collection for Christmas, whereas I gave her the Too Faced Sweet Peach palette.

Laura Geller Baked Balance-N-Brighten Color Correcting Foundation, Laura Geller Baked Blush-N-Brighten Roseberry, Laura Geller Baked Marble Shadow Duo Amethyst/Unearthed, Laura Geller Glamlash Dramatic Volumizing Mascara, Laura Geller Luscious Lips Liquid Lipstick Peach Buttercream, Laura Geller, Laura Geller Piece of Cake Collection

The Laura Geller Piece of Cake Collection retails at $59 (valued at $155) and comes with 5 full-sized beauty products and 2 brushes. Rebecca picked the set for medium skin tones for me. From what I'm researching, it's no longer available anywhere.