Ciate: Flower Manicure

After not painting my nails for 2 months, I figured it would be good to come back with a real whiz-bang! I picked up this kit a month or so ago on a trip to TJMaxx for $9.99. The set retails for $25, and considering it was the only thing I walked out of there with, not a bad price.  Ciate is coming out with more and more fun manicure kits like this one, denim, feathers, foil, and neons to name a few! Oh, and with the exception of denim and neons, I have since picked them up for $7.99 at Ross. Go now and get you some.

Albeit a fun manicure to do with some downtime, this really isn't a "practical" manicure. And by not practical I mean it has a texture to it, the flowers definitely stick up as you can see, and irritate the you know what out of me. As gorgeous as it is, if it lasts the night I'll be impressed. Oh, and application took a bit of time too.

After applying the flowers to my left hand- for photographing obvs, I almost removed the manicure entirely. And by almost, I was in the bathroom reaching for cotton balls and remover. Then I decided I had nothing better to do, why not do the other hand and enjoy the manicure, it is absolutely gorgeous after all! I was dreading doing my dominant hand (my right,) but decided to follow the directions this time and use the enclosed nail file to shape the flowers. Omigosh, so much better than trying to trim them shakily with cuticle nippers! The mini polish itself is gooping, streaky, and overall a bad formula. It took 3 coats to get uniform coverage.

Going forward I will definitely use this for accent nails, but will forego the full manicure. Although it's stunning, like I said before, too much work and slightly annoying. As I type this, I'm thinking it would make a BEAUTIFUL pedicure...

You can pick it up full price here for $25, or look for it in Ross or TJMaxx. Here are the others I have since picked up- which should I try next?

BareMinerals: BareSkin

I never really struggled with bad skin, acne, etc as a teenager and young adult, but I feel that since I've passed 30, my skin has backtracked. I am now seeing more imperfections, pimples, blackheads, red bumps, etc than I did at 16- seriously WTF. I will be honest with you and say I have been extremely blessed with pretty clear skin- a combination skin, neither oily or overly dry. That being said, ever since I started wearing makeup, blush would be the only product I applied on my skin, I rarely wore foundation, powder, etc due to my complexion.

Now that I'm getting older, I'm finding I'm not comfortable in my skin and would like some kind of coverage, light, but strong enough to even out the redness. My sister in law Megan hooked me to Bare Minerals 4-5 years ago, but honestly never finished the products I have. Come to think of it, I should throw them out, I'm sure the shelf life on them is not 5 years...

I then graduated to BB Creams, all the hype 2-3 years back. BB Creams have now accelerated to DD creams, but wasn't enough coverage for my liking. I wanted essentially what BB Creams promised- moisturizer with light coverage, but was totally disappointed each time.

I first saw this in an Ulta catalog, and with my interest piqued, set out to look at some reviews on a few of my favorite beauty blogs.  From everything I read and saw, this is exactly what I was looking for. I did ask for help in choosing a shade as well as application, and I HIGHLY recommend you do. I consider myself somewhat knowledgeable when it comes to beauty products, but was close to tears in Ulta trying to figure out the shade I needed.  Ok, maybe the tears were due to it being my last day at my job, but it didn't help matters that I couldn't pick a shade!

BareSkin is promoted with an application brush that is not included, which I did purchase. If that is not in your budget, you should be fine applying the foundation with a makeup wedge from the drugstore.

As with the majority of BareMineral's products, less is more. The sales associate who demonstrated and applied the makeup to me advised me to start out with 2 small drops on the brush (after shaking!) Since coming home and adjusting to applying this myself, I have since started using 3 small drops, but I advise starting off with 2.

Here is the before picture- In these photos I only have Aveeno lotion on my face after a shower.

And immediately after:

Pale girls unite! I am wearing shade: 01 Bare Porcelain, the lightest of the shades. The sales associate told me that the 01 and 02 are the most popular shades, if that helps when you go to sample!

Here I am all finished up, ready for dinner and a movie:

Overall I am quite happy with the product and highly recommend it if you're looking for a lighter coverage. It is a little steep, and if I wasn't out on a retail therapy trip, I might not have picked it up. The foundation is $29 and the brush is $28.

Although $60 is a lot for face makeup, I kinda regret all the $$ I invested in BB Creams and other failed products!

Have you tried BareSkin?