Nectar of The Dogs – Wine Review

July 22, 2017

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IT’S NOT REALLY DRINKING ALONE IF THE DOG IS WITH YOU

 

If the label alone didn’t catch my eye, the catchy slogan would. Yes, I am reviewing wine! First of all, those of you who know me are probably wondering why I’ve never done this before, with my love of wine. Second of all, yay! I’m reviewing wine!!

I’ll address the first of all first. Makes sense, right? Well, while I’ve read about the skin benefits of drinking wine, I’ve never written about it. Mostly because I’ve been busy drinking it. Also, it didn’t align with what I was doing with my blog, but now in my direction of broadening my horizons and making my writing more about lifestyle than just beauty, it seems like a great idea.
And the second of all, well, yay! I’m reviewing wine!

Ok, let me make one thing clear…I’m not a wine snob. I simply tend to stick with what I know and like. Chardonnay if I want white and Cabernet if I want red. That doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy a good Zinfandel or Merlot, or even a Pinot Grigio every now and then, I just happen to be a creature of habit and grab what I’m familiar with.

I was recently gifted a bottle of  Nectar of The Dogs Sauvignon Blanc. While I was thankful for the gesture, me and my habitual ways were skeptical. Any time I’ve ever tried a SB in the past, they’ve been way too sweet, therefore, I tend to veer away from them.

First a little bit about the brand:
Nectar of The Dogs Wine was established in 2015 by two women with an
entrepreneurial spirit, a deep connection to their dogs and a love for wine; Melanie
Garibay and Donna Graves. We create elegant, easy drinking wine for everyone to
enjoy, while also supporting our true passion of protecting four-legged angels across the
country. A portion of all sales are donated to selected dog rescue organizations, and our
goal is for each varietal we create (as a limited edition production) to be paired with a
specific charity.
Currently, Nectar of The Dogs Wine is partnered with All American Dachshund
Rescue and Barkparty. As the portfolio expands, we are in search of additional dog
rescue organizations to partner with. To learn more about Nectar of The Dogs Wine,
please visit www.nectarofthedogswine.com.

Now a little bit about the wine:
2015 SAUVIGNON BLANC
This wine is intensely fragrant, rich with aromas of sweet juicy pear, pink grapefruit
and lime zest. Accented with flavors of honeysuckle, pear-cider and a touch of crisp
minerality on the finish~ Perfect after a warm spring day walk with your best friend!

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Wine and dogs?!?! Seems to me life doesn’t get any better than that! I love their connection to dog rescues, and of course, dachshunds! (Best dogs, ever!) And, I love this wine. It was very light and refreshing and their description of it is perfect; crisp and fruity! An exceptional wine, certainly worthy of a pour! But, hard to share. My husband and I fought over the last glass, so it’s clear I need more of this in my life. You can order online, just click on the link to their website.
Currently, they only sell and ship within the state of California. If you live outside of California, you can contact them with questions.

Have you tried this wine? If so, I want to hear from you! If not, you need to try it and report back to me. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

You’ve Been Beautified!

 

 

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LuLaReview

July 2, 2017

Every now and then I veer off the path of beauty. As I mentioned in a previous post, I’m wanting to broaden my horizons. That being said, I’m doing my first fashion review, so bear with me and be nice to me. 🙂

By now I’m sure you’ve heard of LuLaRoe. And if you haven’t, well where the heck have you been?

I was first introduced to the clothing about a year ago. My first initial thought was, ok, leggings, good to know. I didn’t realize leggings were making a comeback. Or maybe they never went away, I don’t know. What I did know was that I hadn’t worn them in a long time. But, I understood the appeal of leggings for not only working out, but for every day wear. My love affair with leggings ended when yoga pants came onto the scene, so to hear this hype for leggings had me intrigued. What was so covetable about LLR leggings? (FYI, I’m not sure if covetable is a word, or not, but today I’m making it one!)
I was told they are so smooth and buttery soft and the most comfortable leggings you’ll ever wear. Not to mention, they come in a variety of prints and those prints are limited, therefore making them covetable! But, there are many other clothing options than just leggings. LLR has shirts, skirts and dresses, too! And you know what? They’re all crazy comfortable!

My friend Rachel has an amazing LLR business and she offered to let me try some of the pieces and give my honest opinion in my blog. I was excited for the chance to wear the clothing, so I said yes. Obviously, or I wouldn’t be writing this right now!

It’s funny how I’ve come to associate discomfort with work clothes, or better yet, comfort with frumpy. I didn’t think I could pull off the leggings and sassy shirt. Why not? Well, because I’m not the tiny size 4 I used to be in school. And before you can say, “Are any of us?” I can firmly say, yes, there are some people I know who are still the same tiny size they were in high school. And, because I love them, I can’t say that I hate them.

First up, the leggings. They come in two sizing options, OS (one size fits 00-12) and TC (tall & curvy fits sizes 10-22). They are super soft. I mean that. Any time I wear them, I keep running my hands over them to feel their softness, they’re truly amazing. And they keep you very warm in the cooler months. Right now, for me, it’s too hot to wear the leggings, but I’m looking forward to the cooler months so I can add them back to my wardrobe.

Next is the Perfect T. It’s a fun swing shape with side slits and a little bit of a longer sleeve. It’s a very flattering fit and it’s comfortable. In fact, as I was unpacking the box of generosity Rachel sent to me, my oldest daughter snagged this item right out of my hands. Here is a pic of her wearing the Perfect T and black leggings. I have to say she looks pretty darn cute! (Leggings retail for $25 and Perfect T retails for $36)

LLR Em

I was sent 2 dresses. The first one is called The Julia. It’s a form fitting, knee- length, knit dress with mid-length sleeves and a high neckline. I think this is such a cute dress, but I’ll be totally honest, I don’t have the confidence to wear something that hugs my curves so nicely, so I passed this on to someone I knew would rock the look, and she does! With her consent, she let me use her photo. I think Katelynn is adorable and this dress looks fantastic on her. (Julia retails for $45)

Katelynn

The second dress is the Carly Dress. We all want a cute dress that lets us breathe and move easier. This is a swing dress that is very flattering. It’s flowy and breezy with a high-low hemline. The neckline is a low scoop and the sleeves are open so it’s perfect for the hotter months. I snagged this pic off Rachel’s FB page, and that’s her modeling Carly. She’s adorable, too! (Price on picture)

Carly

I had the pleasure of trying the Cassie Skirt. This is a pencil skirt that can be dressed up or down. I love when clothing gives you the option of taking it from work to play. Versatility is always a good thing! (Price on picture)

Cassie

The last item in my review is the Irma Tunic. It’s a loose-knit with a high-low hem and mid-length sleeves. I love the hem on this because it pairs nicely with the leggings and covers your booty at the same time! I love Irma, it’s so flattering! (Price on picture)

Irma

Yes, I know I didn’t include pics of myself wearing these items. Why? Because Brookie doesn’t do selfies, that’s why. So, thank you to my daughter and Katelynn for allowing me to share your picture, and thank you to Rachel for letting me use her pictures from her FB page.

LLR encourages mixing patterns and having fun with your look, making the options endless. But if you prefer to stay safe with your wardrobe (Like me!) that’s ok, too. There are plenty of solid colors that can be paired nicely with a subtle pattern. All the items come in various patterns and prints and are perfect for any body, no matter your shape or size. I think that’s the main thing that appeals to me with LLR; celebrating your figure. I’ll be honest, that’s something I need to relearn to do.

While I didn’t get into the tips and tricks on styling and wearing the clothing in different ways, there are so many creative options to try, just check out Rachel’s Facebook Page Let The Good Times Roe And if you want to pick up a few items, you can Shop with her, too! Be sure to catch her when she’s live, she’s fun to watch and will make you laugh! Here’s proof: This is us in high school cracking up! (The review aside, this is probably one of my favorite pictures, ever!)

High school

Thank you, Rachel, for introducing me to the world of LuLaRoe, I’m a fan!!! I can’t wait to introduce some other pieces into my wardrobe!

What about you? Are you addicted yet? Have you not tried LLR yet? I want to hear from you! And, as always:

You’ve Been Beautified!

 

Product Review – Urban Decay Vice

June 3, 2017

I am a huge fan of Urban Decay. On any given day, I use multiple products from this line. Eye shadow primer, face primer and the original Naked eye palette. The products are top of the line, excellent pigmentation; not to mention A+ for staying power.

In case you haven’t noticed, liquid lipsticks are all the rage right now. If I were to look at my list of Facebook friends, I could pick out at least a dozen of them who are Lipsense consultants and they can’t keep their colors in stock!

I had noticed UD going this direction not too long ago and when I was recently at Sephora, I decided to go ahead and treat myself and grab one of these babies and give it a go. The color I picked was Amulet. With my skin color, I have a hard time finding that beautiful neutral pink that doesn’t turn too pink or orange on me. But, this color spoke to me, practically begged to come home with me. Never one resisting to take someone in and give them a good home, naturally, I bought it!

Vice

Here is how UD describes this hot product: This is Vice Liquid Lipstick—a waterproof formula so life-proof, it’s not going ANYWHERE until you take it off. (Just imagine the possibilities.) What makes Vice different? Our high-tech formula provides longer-lasting wear with ZERO transfer. Like our original formula, Vice Liquid Lipstick lays down intensely pigmented color. And the comfortable, nondrying wear sets it apart from other liquid lipsticks. (Ok, I’m sold!)

This is how they tell you to apply it: Vice Liquid Lipstick gives you endless color in three steps. First, line lips with the precise applicator; then apply one coat to fill. Do not press lips together. If desired opacity is achieved, let dry. A little goes a long way, but for more coverage, apply a second coat. Let dry completely and you’re good to go. (Easy enough, right?)

I knew going into this that most liquid lipsticks can be very drying to your lips. According to an article I came across online, your lips only have 3 to 5 cellular layers of skin, as opposed to up to 16 layers of skin the rest of your body has. Translation: The skin on your lips is super thin.

I followed directions specifically and after I knew the color was set, I applied a moisturizing gloss to keep my pucker hydrated.

So, what’s the verdict? For staying power, this was amazing. The color lasted me all day. Even when I indulged in the #9, fully loaded from Jimmy John’s for my lunch, this color stayed put! However…………

I wanted to love this. I really, really did. I’ve not once been disappointed with anything UD has to offer, but the drying factor was more than a factor. I think out of the 3-5 layers of skin my poor lips have, I lost at least 2 of those layers after only one day of use! It’s taken me weeks to get my lips feeling normal again. And, what baffles me more than anything? All the 5 star reviews this product is getting online! The colors are beautiful, there’s no denying that! I realize that products affect people differently. Unfortunately, this one didn’t work for me.

Enough about me. What about you? Have you tried Vice by UD? Are you a lover, or did you experience the same fate that I did? Are you a UD makeup artist? If so, reach out to me, tell me what I did wrong or how to make it right! I hate not loving a product, especially by a brand I’ve supported for so long!

As always, I look forward to your responses!

You’ve Been Beautified!

 

 

 

 

 

 

What I’ve Been Up To

May 1, 2017

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted anything. Life has been pretty busy. I’ve relocated twice in four years and that takes a decent toll on a person. I tried to get back into blogging a few years ago, but then something happened.

I found myself in perhaps the most boring job, EVER. I was working front desk at H&R Block for tax season. During the height of the season, and by that, I mean April 10-15 when everyone is rushing to get their taxes done, it was a very busy job. But between January and April, it was boring. And by boring, I mean total snooze-fest. Internet access is extremely limited for the safety of the customer’s information, so really the only sites I could get on were Google and Amazon. But, if I browsed too often, it was clear Big Brother was watching, and soon the sites that I could navigate were blocked.
No music plays in an H&R Block office. Why? Because they say it can distract the tax pros, therefore it stays quiet. Even quieter than a library. You hear every sniffle, every subtle cough, the rustle of clothing as one reaches for a pen, the click of the pen as its put into use; even the sound of the pen as it swishes across paper. You could literally hear a pin drop.
I asked one of the tax pros how a person is supposed to keep their sanity with the silence, no internet and an already clean office, because 2 hours into a shift and that was taken care of. They had plenty of work to do, I did not. One day, one of them told me that a former admin used to do his homework to pass the time. Well, that’s all fine and good for him, but I wasn’t in school, so what was I to do? As I would sit, being bored to tears, I started to daydream. I’ve always been very good at daydreaming. My mind would drift into that wonderful world of imagination and fill my hours. Then I thought, hmmm, maybe, do I give it a shot? What happens if I do? Or, more importantly, what happens if I don’t? I had nothing to lose and plenty of time to kill, so I went for it.

Here’s what happened.

I wrote a book.

Oh, a beauty book, you ask? What a great idea since I have a beauty blog.

Um, no. I wrote a romance novel. Whaaaaaaaaaaaat? What the heck am I doing writing a romance novel when I have such a passion for the beauty industry? If I ever figure out that answer, I’ll be sure to tell you, because I don’t know what happened. The floodgates opened and I went with it! And the funny thing is, I didn’t just write a book. I wrote a series of books. Mid-way through my outline, I thought maybe I had enough for a trilogy. Then I kept going and realized I had more than enough for a series.

So, hopefully you’re on the edge of your seat, waiting for the first book to come out, because it’s coming. It’s in the final edit and I’m self-publishing. As soon as it’s ready to go, I will share the news, and hopefully you’ll all help me spread the word.

In the meantime, I do want to post product reviews and offer any advice that I can. The platform of my blog will change slightly as I want to focus not only on beauty, but on fashion, accessories, lifestyle and anything that defines beauty. So, stay tuned, I have a few reviews I’m working on that are coming your way.

Tell me what you’ve been up to! What beauty products have you been loving lately? Looking forward to interacting with all of you again! And, as always:

You’ve Been Beautified!

Product Review…Fekkai Brilliant Glossing Cream

July 28, 2013

For all your beauty advice…

Fekkai

I recently had the opportunity to sample Brilliant Glossing Cream, by Fekkai. Olive oil is the main ingredient in this product. It’s used to add shine and a pretty polish to your hair. The directions say to use it on damp, or dry hair. Use it on damp hair as a styling cream, or use it on dry hair as a finishing cream to add shine.

I tried it both ways. As a styling cream, I really liked it. My hair is wavy, and is desperate to be curly, but it tends to lean more towards the frizzy side. I put this on my damp hair and let it air dry, and it really brought out the natural curl in my hair…not many products do that for me! I was very impressed to see some actual ringlets in my hair!

When I tried it as a finishing cream, I liked it, but I used just a little too much, so my scalp felt a little oily through the day. The next time I used it, I made sure to use a little less, and I loved it!

When your hair is damp and you add a product like this, the “wet” in your hair tens to dilute the product and not make it feel so heavy. When you use it on dry hair, it’s more concentrated, so a little truly goes a long way.

The directions state that you should only use an amount the size of a pea…take this advice! More is not more; less is more! Nothing feels worse on your hair than having that “coated” feeling.

Pros: Smells great, makes your hair feel and look smooth, and it makes you feel like you were just in a high-end salon. Cons: It’s pricey…BUT, since a little goes such a long way, one tube should last a very long time!

Have you tried it? Let me know what you think!

You’ve Been Beautified!

Beauty From The Inside Out…Recipe

June 30, 2013

For all your beauty advice…

This has become one of my favorite egg recipes, so I thought I would share with you. I love Feta cheese, and I wanted to think about what other dishes I could add it to, and I think it tastes great with eggs. This inspired me to come up with my Greek-inspired egg cups. Here you go:

6 eggs
4 egg whites
Eggs

2 cups chopped spinach
1 small shallot
1/2 cup chopped roasted red peppers
1 cup chopped mushrooms
1/4 cup Kalamata olives
1 tbsp. water
1 cup Athenos Feta Cheese (my favorite ingredient!)
Feta

Mix the eggs, egg whites and water together and add the remaining ingredients and mix together. Pour into greased (I use spray to keep it light) muffin pan. Fill cups about 3/4 of the way.
Before 1

Bake at 350 for 18-22 minutes and enjoy!
After 1

Serve with a small amount of plain Greek yogurt instead of sour cream! They’re really hot at first, so let them sit for a bit. These are great, let me know if you try them!

You’ve Been Beautified!

Movado ESQ One

May 14, 2013

em>For all your beauty advice…

When I think about the color of spring, I think orange! And, I love ESQ Movado’s new ESQ One – a watch that can be sporty and pretty! No need to switch this accessory from day to night, it works with any outfit. I love the look of it with white skinny jeans. It can look pretty with a sundress of any color! The comfortable silicone straps allow you to move with ease, so you wear it during your favorite workout.

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Celebrity Fragrance

May 7, 2013

For all your beauty advice…
It seems like every time you turn around, there’s a new celebrity fragrance to be bought. My first thought is always, “how many new blends of fragrance can there possibly be?” Well, apparently, a lot. Here is my take on a few of them!

j fragrance

I know I’m a little late to the game with the fragrance by Jennifer Aniston (WAY late to this game, I’ll admit), but I finally got to try it! I’m a huge Jennifer Aniston fan…Team Aniston, all the way! I love the pictures, and the packaging of the fragrance, but I was so disappointed with the scent itself. It’s been described as clean and light, but to me it smelled heavy and flowery…WAY too much floral going on here. It didn’t smell “clean” to me. It was overbearing and I just didn’t like it. I tried it on, and hoped that maybe it would smell better after I wore it for a bit, but nope. It smelled just as bad on me as I thought it smelled in the bottle. When I think of Jennifer Aniston, I think of words like warm, elegant, classy, stylish. Sorry Jen; this was grandma in a bottle to me.

lady g fragrance

Another one I’ve been late trying is Fame by Lady GaGa. It’s unique being that it’s the first fragrance made of a black liquid that turns clear once it evaporates. The bottle is unique, so it gets an A+ for packaging. I really like how it smells in the bottle, and it blended well with my chemistry, so I liked the way it smelled on me. Lady GaGa is very over-the-top with her image, so I expected her fragrance to be odd. Nothing odd about it; it’s really nice!

Lovely

I’m not a huge fan of buying into celeb scents, there are just too many of them out there, and they’re really just annoying. However, I do have a favorite and it’s Lovely by Sarah Jessica Parker. I resisted ever trying it, but once I smelled it, I was hooked!

Ok, what do you think about celeb fragrances? Which ones do you love, and which ones can you not stand? Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

You’ve Been Beautified!

Product Review…Dr. Brandt Pores No More Cleanser

March 29, 2013

brandt

For All Your Beauty Advice…

I’ve been using this cleanser for about 3 months now, and thought I would give you my thoughts.

Dr. Brandt skin care is a well-known skin care line that is known for its quality products, with high performance, without a prescription. Usually that means expensive! The entire “Pores No More” line is pricey, but overall, I think it’s worth it.

This cleanser is designed for combination to oily skin, and since my skin falls into that category, I thought I would give it a try. It’s a really nice consistency with small granules to gently scrub on a daily basis. It’s not heavily scented, and I know that’s important to a lot of you.

It did a great job of keeping my oily skin in check, and over the 3 months I’ve been using it, I’ve noticed a big difference in the texture of my skin, and my pores looking smaller.

It costs $35 for 3.5 ounces, but a look at the website today showed a sale price, so if you are looking to try it, now is the time! Even full price, I don’t think this is too bad for a cleanser, when you think about how long it will last.

But, there is ONE thing I need to warn you about…most products have the disclaimer on them to “keep away from the eye area”. If you try this cleanser, this is something you want to take VERY seriously! Get this product anywhere near your eyes, and you’ll think you’re dying! I’m not kidding! When you’re washing your face, it’s impossible not to get water near your eyes, but I’ve never used a cleanser that has burned my eyes this much. So, if you try it, hold a wash cloth over your eyes while you’re cleansing.

Bottom line: I would buy this again because of what it does for my skin, but the excruciating eye pain would make me think twice before I spend $35 on it!

Have you used this cleanser, or anything by Dr. Brandt? Tell me your thoughts!

You’ve Been Beautified!

Beauty From The Inside out…Days 20 & 21

March 21, 2013

20-21

Well, my challenge is over today. Thanks to all of you who encouraged me to do this, and to all of you who followed my days!

Day 20: Not a bad day. I did get hit by the snack monster on this day, but I’ve realized this is a huge sign of boredom. I get bored, I snack, I feel like crap when I’m done. A clear indication that I have to get a hobby and keep my mind and my hands busy!

Day 21: Today has been a good day. I had my chocolate/almond breakfast shake to start my day, did day 4 of my new workout, and only snacked a little on some Special K popped chip/rice cake things. Big victory for me when I passed the box along to share with my kids instead of inhaling the whole thing!!

I haven’t checked yet to see if there was any weight lost with this challenge, but I have noticed that taking care of me on the inside has affected what’s on the outside when it comes to hair, skin, and nails.

My hair looks healthier…shiny and it doesn’t feel lifeless. My nails look great. I keep them pretty short for a few reasons: #1 long nails get in the way of typing, and #2 I tend to be a biter! (Horrible, I know!) But they keep growing, and they haven’t been splitting or peeling.

I noticed the biggest improvement in my skin. It feels less oily because I’ve been drinking so much water, it’s been pretty clear of any breakouts, and it just has a healthier glow than it did 21 days ago.

The biggest thing I’ve noticed is, how fast 21 days goes by! I’ve looked at challenges in the past and thought there was no way I could do something consistently for 21 days or more. Well, I proved myself wrong! I did it, and that’s a victory in itself!!

So, what’s next? Well, I’m doing a new workout and it starts with a 28 day challenge and I am 4 days into it. It’s fun, but it’s hard! I won’t be documenting that on a daily basis, but I will mention it every now and then. Now that I finished 21 days of paying attention to what I’m eating, 28 days of following a workout program doesn’t seem so daunting.

Other than that, it’s back to product reviews! Once I started this challenge, I was truly amazed at how many people told me to get back on those reviews. Well, I have a bathroom full of products I can’t wait to tell you all about! Thanks again for all the kind words and encouragement!

You’ve Been Beautified!