Yes, Oh Yas! October 2018

Hey, y’all!

This month’s theme was “Resting Witch Face” (appropriate since I suffer from RBF), and I got 5 full-size bewitching products.

*Note: prices listed as photo captions are what I found on the respective product websites. Retail values listed below my descriptions are what was listed by Yes, Oh Yas!

Lipstick in “Tangerine”

from STIKS Cosmetiks

Photo of STIKS Lipstick in "Tangerine"
$18; STIKS Cosmetiks

I really dig the idea of this lipstick. It has a flip top so you can apply it one-handed, and the packaging looks cool and futuristic. It’s just not my kind of lipstick (I love longwear liquid). I swatched this beauty, and the color isn’t really my jam, either. It’s also weird that this color isn’t on the website. Maybe it was seasonal? Anyway, it does seem that the color is buildable, which is nice. It went on a little sheer at first, but then I was able to amp up the color with another coat. Bonus: you can also use STIKS on your cheeks and eyes. This lipstick will be going to a good home with my friend Danielle, who is the queen of lipstick. Her collection is legendary. 🙂

Retail Value: $20

Nail Lacquer in “I Been Drinkin'”

from NCLA Beauty

Photo of Nail Lacquer in "I Been Drinkin'" from NCLA Beauty
$16; NCLA

It’s always nice to get a new nail polish that isn’t similar to colors you already have. This lovely watermelon pink is a great addition to my collection. It’s a little bright for fall, but when you live in Florida and it still feels like summer, it’s easier to get away with. 🙂

I was really happy with how this lacquer applied. It was opaque enough that I only needed to do one coat. It’s also free of yucky things like Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin, DBP, Toluene, Camphor, TPHP, and Xylene, AND it’s cruelty-free. The only thing left is to test out it’s staying power. Time will tell.

Retail Value: $18

Visionary Longwear Eyeshadow

from Mirabella Beauty

Photo of Visionary Longwear Eyeshadow in "Charmed" from Mirabella Beauty
$29; Mirabella Beauty

This eyeshadow may be longwear, but it also has a nice and light creamy texture. True to its name, it stayed in place all day long. I haven’t tried this out yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this shade also works as a gorgeous blush. Since it has a shimmer, it would probably take care of highlighting your cheekbones, too. BAM!

If you want to try it, I’d recommend you get on it now. At the time of writing this post, it’s on sale for $10! You have this and 2 other shades to choose from.

Retail Value: $30

Luxe Pro Smudger Brush

from Skone Cosmetics

Photo of Lux Pro Smudger Brush from Skone Cosmetics
$12; Skone Cosmetics

I’m a brush collector–I have more than I know what to do with. I’ve used other smudged brushes, but they’re so stiff that they end up feeling scratchy and irritating my skin. Thankfully that’s not the case with this one. It’s stiff enough to do its job, but it didn’t hurt my skin. It has a nice wooden handle and nylon bristles (cruelty free!)

Retail Value: $20

City Limits Eyeshadow Palette

from IBY Beauty

Photo of City Limits Palette from IBY Beauty
$20; IBY Beauty

Yes, Oh Yas! promised a palette every month, and they delivered. There’s a variety of shades and a mix of matte and shimmer. A couple of the darker shades are patchy, but I’m less likely to use them often, so whatever. Similar to the Desert Vibes Palette I got in July, there are 12 Rosehip Seed Oil-infused shades arranged from light to dark, and they apply and blend smoothly with no fallout. This product is also cruelty-free!

Retail Value: $20

Total Package Value: $116*

*If you go off of the website prices, it’s $76 (using the sale price of the Mirabella eyeshadow). For $14.99, no complaints here!


November’s palette will be a lip palette from Aesthetica–can’t wait to see what else!

What treats did you get in your beauty subscription(s) this month? Anything you recommend?

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

Ireland Adventures Pt. 2: Blarney Castle & Killarney National Park

Hey, y’all!

Last time we left off in Waterford. Time to keep heading west to the famous Blarney Castle!

Day 3

We started off with our favorite breakfast experience of the whole trip at Faithlegg House Hotel & Golf Club. We were able to order a proper Irish Breakfast: the best bacon ever, sausage, baked beans, eggs (which I didn’t eat), mushrooms, grilled tomatoes, roasted potatoes, and toast. They also brought a lovely pastry tower to our table with homemade pastries, small cups of fresh yogurt with fruit and preserves. Of course, no breakfast in Ireland is complete without tea!

For all of our castle hotels, breakfast was included as part of our package, so it was nice to be able to eat a hearty breakfast and then be pretty well satisfied until dinner. It saved us some money and time not having to stop for lunch.

After breakfast it was time to check out and head to Blarney Castle! This was our first real day of country driving, and we learned a few things:

  1. There are a lot of REALLY narrow roads in Ireland–like just wide enough for one car.
  2. Many roads are lined with stone walls–mind your side view mirrors!
  3. There aren’t very many straight roads to be found in Ireland.

Blarney Castle

Blarney Castle was about 1.5 hours away from Faithlegg. Some friends had recommended we get there as early as possible to avoid having to wait in a really long queue to kiss the Blarney Stone. We got a later start than planned, so we were concerned we’d be wasting a lot of time waiting in line. God was looking out for us, and even though we didn’t get there until about 11am, we managed to get there just before a tour bus arrived, so our wait was less than 5 minutes. Perfection! It probably helped that it was a Monday, but I’m not questioning it.

Travel Tip: Buy your tickets online ahead of time and receive a discount. They are valid for 6 months from the date of purchase and can be used any day you like within that 6 month period.

We didn’t really realize before we got there how much more there is to Blarney Castle than just the castle itself and the Stone. There’s a Poison Garden, which was interesting, acres of beautiful grounds, Blarney House (not open to the public year-round), miles of walking trails, a lake, and even a small cave under the castle. We also wandered around Rock Close, and of course we had to make sure we made a wish and walked down the Wishing Steps (backwards with our eyes closed) then back up again with our eyes closed, as the superstition requires. The greenery everywhere was absolutely stunning; we ended up spending a total of about 4 hours here before getting back on the road.

Ring of Kerry/Killarney National Park

For the sake of time and safety, we chose to just drive the short portion of the famous Ring of Kerry. We had been warned that tour buses plus absent-minded tourists and narrow roads made the drive somewhat dangerous for those unfamiliar with the area. From Blarney we headed 1.5 hours west to Kenmare and then took the Ring of Kerry through Killarney National Park to the town of Killarney.

Now we were starting to see some REAL mountains–and some rain. I will say that while we were in Ireland it never poured rain like it does in Florida, but it would be a fairly constant mist that lasted the majority of the day. The intermittent light rain didn’t stop us from making a few stop along the way through the park, though.

We stopped at a few of the lookout points along the way (driving the ring counterclockwise meant it was easier to pull off to admire the view and then get back on the road.) We also stopped at Torc Waterfall, which was breathtaking. There were some stairs nearby, so of course we had to climb them to see where they led and to see if we could get a top view of the waterfall. There were a lot more stairs than we anticipated, and I had hyper-extended my knee in Silks class a week and a half before, so it was mad at me. What can I say, though? I’m determined (and a little bit stubborn.) We made it to the top of the stairs only to find that they led to multiple hiking trails with no top view of the waterfall. It was starting to get dark, and we still had a bit of a way to go to our hotel, so we headed back to the car.

Ballyseede Castle

We made it to Killarney (fun fact: there’s a roundabout there called The Haha), but we pressed on to our hotel outside of Tralee, Ballyseede Castle. We thought we’d be able to check in, then go get something to eat nearby, but that didn’t work out according to plan. It was raining, getting dark, and the hotel was in the middle of nowhere via some very narrow and winding country roads. Plan B: despite the fact that we were way under-dressed, we nabbed the last dinner reservation in the hotel restaurant and had a 5-course dinner. It was definitely more than we had planned on spending on dinner, but it was delicious!

Ballyseede was our favorite hotel because of its charm. They have a resident wolfhound, Mr. Higgins, and it’s easy to see from the pictures why it’s such a popular wedding venue. It looks like an actual castle, and our room was absolutely beautiful. Instead of being numbered, the 44 rooms are named for famous Irish people. Different groups of rooms had different themes (poets, presidents, etc.) We stayed in the Hyde room, named for Douglas Hyde, the first president of Ireland. After an adventure-filled day (about 5 hours of drive time) and that delicious dinner, we slept like babies.


Coming Up Next: Cliffs of Moher and Kylemore Abbey. The adventure continues!

Love,

Sarah xoxo


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Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

ipsy Glam Bag Review: October 2018

Hey, y’all!

This month’s theme was “Ipsy After Dark,” and I got some really great products in my cute red bag!

L50 Lilac Sparkle Eye Blender

from SLMISSGLAM Beauty

Photo of L50 Lilac Sparkle Eye Blender from SLMISSGLAM Beauty

I love a good blending brush, and if it sparkles and has rhinestones, that’s even better! All SLMISSGLAM brushes are synthetic and cruelty-free, but the one drawback for me is that they don’t sell individual brushes. Their sets are absolutely gorgeous, but I like having the freedom and flexibility to curate my own custom collection of brushes over time. So you can’t buy this one individually, but if you ever happen to get it in a set, it’s a great brush to have.

My Rating: 5/5

Tone Up Primer

from Yensa

Photo of deluxe travel size Tone Up Primer from Yensa
$15 for .24 fl. oz.; Yensa

I ended up being pretty “meh” about this primer. It’s thicker than my normal primer (NARS), which has a similar to feel to what I was using before (Smashbox Photo Finish). My normal primer also has SPF 50 to boot. This isn’t a bad primer, but I didn’t love it enough or see enough difference in my skin to want to convert. I’ll probably just use up the sample and that will be that.

My Rating: 2/5

Northern Lights Eyeshadow in Norrsken No. 3

from Nomad Cosmetics

Photo of sample size Northern Lights Eyeshadow in "Norrsken No. 3" from Nomad Cosmetics
$12 full size; Nomad Cosmetics

This is the second Nomad Cosmetics eyeshadow I own, and I have to say this brand makes a really nice eyeshadow. Gorgeous color, no fallout or kick-up, blends easily, and a reasonable price point. I got a lot of compliments on this color when I wore it to work.

My Rating: 5/5

Olive Oil Deep Cleansing Face Mask

from Aphrodite

Photo of sample size Olive Oil Deep Cleansing Face Mask from Aphrodite
$16.99 for 2.53 oz.; Aphrodite

I used this mask for Spoil Me Sunday last week; you can read my full review here. PS: it’s still on sale as of today!

My Rating: 5/5

Shape Tape Contour Concealer in “Light Sand”

from Tarte Cosmetics

Photo of sample size Shape Tape Contour Concealer in "Light Sand" from Tarte Cosmetics
$27 for .34 fl. oz.; Tarte Cosmetics

I already like and use Shape Tape as my concealer, especially under my eyes, but I typically use “Light Neutral.” This “Light Sand” is lighter than that and too light for me to use as regular concealer, but I can use it as a highlighter. It goes nicely over my liquid foundation and blends well.

My Rating: 4/5


This month’s bag had an average rating of 4.2. How many of these products have you tried?

Any items in your October beauty subscription(s) that you can’t stop raving about? Tell me all about them in the comments!

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

Ireland Adventures Pt. 1: Kilkenny & Waterford

Hey, y’all!

As I mentioned in previous posts, we recently went on our belated honeymoon and decided to go to Ireland. It was absolutely gorgeous, and we were so sad to have to leave. We did a “Fly & Drive” travel package from Gate1 Travel, which was perfect. We had the freedom to go at our own pace and be spontaneous if something caught our eye.

Day 1: Getting There

We flew United Airlines from Orlando to DC and then DC to Dublin. The flight from Orlando to DC was delayed because the AC wasn’t working (oh hell no). With a 4 hour layover in DC, it was no big deal. The flight from DC was delayed because one of the windowsills in the exit row came off (what the what?)

Day 2: Hit the Road!

We flew overnight and landed in Dublin a little before 10am local time. Customs moved slowly but steadily, and then it was time to pick up the rental car and hit the road! Jeff did the driving for the majority of the trip because adding another driver cost an extra €10 a day. Driving on the left took some getting used to, but he got the hang of it pretty quickly. The Irish love their roundabouts, even when it comes to highways!

Kilkenny

 

Our first destination was the town of Kilkenny to see Kilkenny Castle. It was built in 1195 and was restored and added onto over the centuries, so it’s a combination of different architecture styles (hi, nerd here.) There were also some lovely gardens, and we were really enjoying the cool weather–okay, me more so than Jeff, but whatever :). We didn’t go inside because we couldn’t stay long. We had to get to Waterford!

Waterford

Waterford is the oldest city in the Republic of Ireland, and it’s the home of the House of Waterford Crystal (big surprise there). We made it just in time to catch the last factory tour of the day! The level of craftsmanship was incredibly impressive to witness in person. We bought a souvenir sterling silver Christmas ornament from the gift shop. We would have bought crystal, but we still had a whole trip and flight home ahead of us.

After our first pint and real meal in Ireland, it was time to head to our first castle hotel of the trip: Faithlegg House Hotel & Golf Club. After a long 2 days of traveling, we were happy to finally take a hot shower and get some sleep.


Coming Up Next: Blarney Castle, Killarney National Park, and our fanciest castle hotel of the trip. Stay tuned!

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

Spoil Me Sunday: Feeling Fresh for the First Day Back

Hey, y’all!

We’re back from our honeymoon in Ireland, and tomorrow it’s back to work, the gym, and all those other real world things. (sigh) I’ll be posting about our trip soon, but there are about 850 photos to go through.

We got back on Wednesday and took the rest of the week off from work, so we had time to get over the jet lag, do our grocery shopping, etc. Now it’s feeling like the night before the first day of school all over again. We’ve only been gone for 2 weeks, but it feels like a lot longer.

I don’t know about you, but when I was in middle school and high school, I always liked to do a mini home spa day the day before the first day of school. I’d give myself a facial, do my nails, and all that jazz. I didn’t have the energy to do the full shebang this time, but I tried out one of the items from my October ipsy bag:

Olive Oil Deep Cleansing Face Mask

from Aphrodite

Photo of sample size Olive Oil Deep Cleansing Face Mask from Aphrodite
$16.99* for 2.53 oz.; Aphrodite

I’ve got to say, Ireland agrees with my skin. My complexion cleared up noticeably (I think not using cleansing conditioner and getting more sleep both helped), and my skin felt healthy and moisturized throughout the trip. The one exception to that feeling was when we were flying. A total of 10 hours on planes each way dried my skin out like crazy. I brought some refreshing spray to mitigate it, but that could only do so much. Needless to say I was very excited to get this mask in my ipsy bag this month!

To start off with, I liked the fact that this mask has a very subtle scent that doesn’t smell artificial. Its thin texture meant that it applied easily, dried quickly, and washed off easily. After washing it off, I splashed cold water on my face to close up my pores. My skin feels so soft and fresh! I followed up with my normal nighttime skincare regimen, but I skipped the toner this time.

Key Ingredients:

  • Olive Oil: fabulous for your skin because it’s chock full of Vitamins A & E plus antioxidants that protect your skin
  • Witch Hazel: reduces inflammation
  • Aloe Vera: soothes skin
  • Spirulina Extract: draws out toxins from your skin
  • Chamomile: soothes skin
  • White Lotus: source of vitamin C, B complex, antioxidants, and several minerals that nourish and brighten your complexion. It can also help control sebum production, hydrate, improve elasticity, reduce inflammation, and promote healing. (Wow, that’s like a superfood for your skin!)

Once I get through the sizable collection of masks I have, I would definitely consider buying this one!

* At the time of writing this post, this mask is currently on sale for $10.99 on the Aphrodite website.


Do you incorporate olive oil into your beauty regimen in any way? How about lotus? Tell me about some of your favorite products in the comments below!

Hope you have a great week. Stay tuned for my monthly ipsy post, as well as posts about Ireland!

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

Ulta 21 Days of Beauty September 2018 Pt. 4

Hey, y’all!

All good things must come to an end. This was my final purchase from the event.

Samples

Sexy Amber Eau de Parfum

from Michael Kors

Photo of sample Sexy Amber Eau de Parfum from Michael Kors
$64 for 1 fl. oz.; Sephora

This perfume has a complex scent, and I can’t decide if I like it. At first it comes across as a pretty strong floral, but then the amber and sandalwood balance it out. It’s definitely strong, and I’ve got to say this sample sprays really well (the nozzles on some of these little bottles are crap.) I’m not a huge Michael Kors fan anyway (overrated), so the chances of me buying this are slim regardless.

Notes: Amber, Sandalwood, and Jasmine

PHA Moisture Renewal Power Cream

from Cosrx

Photo of sample PHA Moisture Renewal Power Cream from CoxRX
$26 for 1.69 oz.; Ulta

Ah, one of my favorite K-Beauty brands! This moisturizer is meant for sensitive skin that doesn’t handle AHAs and BHAs well. Having sensitive skin doesn’t mean you can’t glow! As an alternative, this moisturizer uses polyhydroxy acids to soften skin and clear away dead skin cells. In addition, there’s Coconut Fruit Extract and Niacinamide to moisturize and balance skin. I don’t have super sensitive skin, but I’m still looking forward to trying this out!

Beauty Steals

Green Tea Blend Detox Mask

from Teami Blends

Photo of Detox Mask Green Tea Blend from Teami
$29.99 for 4 oz.; Teami Blends

This cruelty-free mask is recommended for all skin types. It helps to heal and nurture your skin to prevent signs of aging.

Key Ingredients:

  • Matcha Tea–pulls out toxins and gives skin an antioxidant boost
  • Bentonite Clay–soothes skin
  • Lemon Grass–brightens skin

This was a beauty steal on September 19th, so it was half price.

Petal Purifying Bubble Mask

from Mamonde

Photo of Petal Purifying Bubble Mask from Mamonde
$25 for 3.38 oz; Mamonde

Mamonde is a South Korean skincare brand that focuses on natural ingredients. I love rose scented things, and this mask is actually made with real Damask rose petals. I can’t wait to give this and the green tea mask a try for future Spoil Me Sundays!

This was also a beauty steal on September 19th, so it was half price.


What was your favorite item from 21 Days of Beauty? Can’t pick just one? Tell me why in the comments!

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

Ulta 21 Days of Beauty September 2018 Pt. 3

Hey, y’all!

This was definitely the day I was looking forward to the most during this whole event.

Samples

Viva La Juicy Soirée

from Juicy Couture

Photo of sample Viva La Juicy Soiree from Juicy Couture
$98 for 3.4 oz; Juicy Couture

I don’t know why Juicy Couture perfumes always catch me by surprise. I always I assume they’re going to be overpowering florals or tummyache-inducing gourmands. This one is fresh and fruity with some subtle hints of spice. Like your parents always said, “Never judge a book by its cover!”

Top notes: Pink Kiwi and Mandarin

Middle Notes: Indian Sambac, Jasmine, and Water Lily

Bottom Notes: Amber, Musk, and soft woods

Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation

from NARS Cosmetics

Photo of sample Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation from NARS Cosmetics
$49 for full-size; NARS Cosmetics

This foundation comes in 33 shades; the sample came with 8 of them:

  • Punjab (Medium 1)
  • Patagonia (Medium 1.2)
  • Vallauris (Medium 1.5)
  • Santa Fe (Medium 2)
  • Vanuatu (Medium 3.5)
  • Barcelona (Medium 4)
  • Valencia (Medium 5)
  • Aruba (Medium 6)

I’m leaning towards trying Punjab or Patagonia first, maybe Santa Fe. Vallauris has too much pink undertone for me. It claims to be fade-resistant, sweat-resistant, and transfer-resistant for 16 hours. I’ll have to put it to the test…

Beauty Steal

Hyaluronic Dual-Response Serum

from Strivectin

Photo of Hyaluronic Acid Dual-Response Serum from Strivectin
$79 for 1 oz.; Strivectin

I have been obsessed with this serum since I first tried a sample of it maybe a year ago. It makes my skin look so healthy and feel so soft. I can’t think of another product that my skin has responded so quickly to before. As soon as I saw this on the calendar of 21 Days of Beauty deals, I was pumped. The Hyaluronic Acid, NIA-114™, and Ceramides hydrate your skin and then help it to retain moisture.

This was a beauty steal on September 15th. Since I got it for half price, I went ahead and bought 2. 🙂


Were there any products during 21 Days of Beauty you love so much that you bought more than 1?

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!