First Impressions: 2 new Smashbox products


I used to do “first impression” videos, or “get ready with me” live videos over on Periscope and then Periscope pretty much died so I moved to Snapchat.

And now Snapchat is dead to me so I’ve moved on to Instagram Stories.

But for those who aren’t on Instagram, or prefer to watch on Youtube, I decided to film one of these quick little “first impression” videos for Youtube.

Because Youtube isn’t going anywhere (at least for now)!

Anyway, as a beauty blogger I’m sent samples of new products either from the brand itself or PR firms. It’s a way to get product in the hands of influencers and could spark up potential partnerships as well!

Anything that is “gifted” like that comes with no strings attached. I’m not required to say anything about it other than that it was sent as a gift.

I was intrigued by a box Smashbox sent me of their new foundation stick. And a day later I received a gifting with their new primer in it. I tried it out yesterday and decided to film the experience!

Overall it was a bit more work than simply applying powder contour with a brush. I think I’ll default to that method just because I’m better at it than using cream. But I will say that this looked very natural, despite being a touch too warm for my skin. It didn’t seem like the contour was sitting on top of my face and I was happy about that! There are a ton of color options so I may try one shade lighter just to compare!

The primer held up well and I didn’t get shiny in my t-zone like I anticipated since I used the stick foundation. I wish it felt a bit silkier in the skin, but all in all it delivered what it said it would!

Update: Really loved how the foundation wore. Didn’t fade nor get shiny as the day went on!

I’m wearing this lipliner all over my lips, my earrings are from Madewell, and my t-shirt is from Nordstrom.

Smashbox sent me these products as a gift, all opinions are my own.

In this post:

Stream of Consciousness life update


First of all, just want to start off by apologizing for missing a few days of posts here! When Justin and I planned our trip up to Wisconsin, we talked about planning for me to have a couple work days while we were there so I wouldn’t fall behind.

He ended up coming back to Raleigh for a work thing for a few days, and we both found ourselves busier than we anticipated! We were much more focused on relaxation, time with family, and helping out before the wedding, which was absolutely wonderful, but that meant I fell behind here!

Thanks for your patience while I get back on track!

Regular content will resume tomorrow, but in the meantime I thought I would just type up a quick blog post like the good old days. I used to write posts in the morning and then hit publish. Nowadays with the lack of free time, I prefer staying days or sometimes weeks ahead of schedule! That allows me to really get a good picture of what content is going out and where I can fill in the holes. I’ve always struggled with the balance of sharing personal stuff along with information/tutorials, and the longer I do this the harder it is!

So I’m pushing myself a bit today to just write like I’m writing to a friend!

I miss being here! I wasn’t posting on Instagram nearly as much as usual, and was “checked out” from blog posts for a bit during the wedding time. While it felt very strange to not be checking my phone, it felt really great too. I didn’t even have my phone near me the entire day of the wedding. In fact, I didn’t get a single photo with my sister other than the ones that Jordan shot with her professional camera! So I can’t WAIT to see those!

I’ll write a full post about her wedding soon, when I have photos to go with it, but I just have to mention that it was the perfect day. The weather was perfect, the setting was incredible, and she + mike were happier than ever. It was so sweet to stand by her and witness her marrying Mike! And Justin performed the ceremony, did I ever mention that? That was a really sweet thing to see too. Anyway, I’m gushing already so I’ll wrap this up and wait for the wedding recap blog post to share more!

Our time in Wisconsin and Illinois was just wonderful. It was so great to be up there for that long and settle into a little life for a few weeks. We started in Wisconsin at the lake house, and then at the end of that first week Justin, the boys and I headed back to Illinois to stay at my parent’s home (also my childhood home). We wanted to give them some uninterrupted time to get the lake house ready for the wedding.

We only had about 3 days in Illinois but they were jammed packed. I visited my sister in Chicago one day, had a bit of train drama that made for a great story on Instagram (which, by the way, a followers husband joked me about at my sister’s wedding and that absolutely cracked me up), and ate at all my favorite restaurants. It was bittersweet, though, because my parents have sold that house! They are moving out of that home in the end of August, so that was my very last time ever being there! I was more emotional than I thought I would be, and Justin was very sensitive and patient when I randomly broke down in tears upon leaving.

I’m happy though, because it’s an exciting move for my parents. They bought a home in South Carolina, and will live between that house and the lake house. They will only be 4.5 hours from us when they are down south, and I’m thrilled about that. My brother lives in my hometown still, but we will get to see him easily when we visit the lake house in Wisconsin.

My sister and her husband are moving to Virginia later this summer too! They will actually be 4.5 hours north of us! I have a feeling my house will be the meeting place for both my parents and Lauren and Mike!

It seems like everyone is going through big changes this year, and while they are all good things, it’s requiring a lot of adjustment for all parties involved.

It was strange to return home and still feel like we have the entire summer left. I can’t wait to get back in our pool and catch up with friends. The cats were happy for us to return, and the only casualties from our time away were my plants.

The boys will be going to preschool on the same days this fall, so this is the first season since having children that I won’t need to hire a regular babysitter. I’m curious to see how Luke will do going 2 days. Last year he went 1 day a week for a short time as sort of an introduction to preschool. David was in 2 days last year, so he’ll be experiencing the same schedule this fall.

If you missed it, Justin started his own business and left his previous job. He hasn’t had a ton of time to really dive into his business with all this travel, but I know he’s ready to pour more time into it now that we are home!

Speaking of home, Justin and I both agreed that we have WAY too much STUFF. We both lived with so little in Wisconsin and realized that there is so.much.junk that we simply don’t need in our home. While he is more of a hoarder than I am, I have learned that I hang onto things from guilt quite a bit. I feel like, “oh I paid $$ for this so I can’t bear to part with it” even if it was like $15 and is 4 years old. I’m much better about purging clothes than home stuff. I’m bought Marie Kondo’s book on tiding like everyone else did earlier this year but just never read it. I feel like I got the general idea just from listening to people talk about it!

I’m also feeling tempted to redecorate our bedroom and freshen it up a bit. I’m looking for painters to paint my office a brighter color, and actually looking for local interior designer/decorators to help me think through a layout that will work up there.

The biggest and most special event of the summer, my sister’s wedding, is now over but I still feel like we have a lot going on. I like it this way though, and always enjoy having multiple things to work on!

So that’s kind of it, sort of a life update about things going on behind the scenes. Thanks, as always, for reading!

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Picks


Listen, it may have been a combination of being out of town and also being totally amped and focused on my sister’s amazing wedding, but the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale isn’t striking a chord with me this year.

I went last year with a friend for the first time and found some great things! And maybe if I was shopping in person it would be a bit different, but I didn’t have time to get over there so I’ve just been scrolling through the “early access” items online.

Between using Trunk Club and shopping at Nordstrom somewhat regularly, I thought it was time for a card. And that card granted me (and anyone else who has it) early access to the sale. The sale opens up to the public on July 21, and runs until August 6th. The sale is on brand-new arrivals at sale prices, heavily focused on the upcoming fall/winter season!

Anyway, there are a few great things available, especially in the beauty department, so I thought I’d round up a few things that caught my eye here. I purchased the lush tee and I’m hopeful that the v-neck won’t be too low! I’ll report back, likely over on Instastories!

one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, twelve, thirteen, fourteen, fifteen

I found a great pair of booties last year that I’m looking forward to wearing again in the fall and winter, so I don’t think I’ll add any new ones into the mix this year. But if you are looking, there are a lot of really great “classic” booties that can go with anything. I wore booties almost every single day last fall/winter, and I’m sure I’ll do the same thing this year!

There are also a lot of long sweaters and cardigans on sale, but I just can’t get there yet! It’s going to be 100 degrees all week!

As far as beauty goes, that fresh set with the Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask is a great deal. And the NARS lipsticks are such pretty colors that would work with so many skin tones.

Anyway, this is just a quick round up of some things that caught my eye, that pretty much fit into my style perfectly!

p.s. I know this is random, but having just flown to Illinois and back, I must let you in on the secret that bright orange suitcases are the way to go when you check your bag! With all the black and dark grey bags coming through, it’s so easy to spot an orange one!

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