The main reason people try making their own makeup is to reduce exposure to the potentially harmful chemicals in many traditional cosmetics. However, homemade products can also save you quite a bit of money.
One easy makeup item to create at home is a face powder. The base for your homemade face powder should be either cornstarch or arrowroot powder. Arrowroot powder is finer and produces slightly better results, but it is harder to find in some areas. I had to order mine from Amazon.
To tint your powder, you will need to figure out what colorants work best for your skin tone. Cocoa powder is the most commonly suggested, but nutmeg and cinnamon can be added to give you a slight bronzing effect. Add small amounts and blend well to see what works for your skin tone.
I suspect you will have the best results if you’re relatively fair skinned. I used a pinch of cocoa powder and a sprinkle of nutmeg to about two tablespoons of arrowroot powder, but I’m so pale my husband jokingly calls me Casper. I avoided the cinnamon because I’ve heard that cinnamon sometimes causes skin irritation and my skin is definitely on the sensitive side.
Store your powder in a clean glass jar and apply with a kabuki face brush. If you want to make a pressed powder compact, you can add a bit of rubbing alcohol to the powder mixture to make a thick paste. Smooth it out, then let it dry overnight in a small tin or an empty makeup compact.
Rubbing alcohol evaporates, so it doesn’t leave a smell or a residue. But, if you’re not too fond of the idea of using rubbing alcohol to bind the powder together, I’ve heard several people recommend 10-15 drops of lavender essential oil. Lavender oil smells lovely and is a natural antibacterial and antiseptic agent.
For me, this seems moderately comparable to purchased face powders I’ve used in the past. I really like how smooth it feels on my skin and it seems to do a good job of absorbing oil when applied over top of my regular liquid foundation. However, getting an acceptable tint is difficult and the smell of the cocoa powder on your face takes some getting used to.
Have you ever tried making your own face powder? If so, what did you think of the results?
Photo credit: Maria Morri
A pretty purse is a great way to make a style statement, but busy moms don’t always want to juggle kids and a bulky handbag. For those times when you’d rather leave your purse at home, hipS-sister has the perfect solution.
HipS-sister is a 5” band that goes around your waist like a belt. It has a front secret top loading pocket ideal for a phone or iPod, a front zippered pocket for your cash and car keys, and a back zippered pocket.
The newest hipS-sister collection, sportS-sister, comes in a variety of reversible color combinations, from forest green/gold to black/red. You can also buy hipS-sisters with crystal embellishments or funky patterns. For example, the Vegas collection includes black snakeskin, leopard, zebra, and camo print products.
Since they are made with a Micropoly and Lycra mix, hipS-sister products are machine washable and very easy to clean.
HipS-sister products come in A, B, and C sizes. A size items fit women who wear pants size 0/2 to 8/10. B size fits women who wear pants size 10/12 to 14/16. C size fits women who wear pants size 16/18 to 20/22.
Prices vary according to the style you select, but most hipS-sister products are less than $30.
For times when you want to keep your hands free or when you’re visiting someplace that doesn’t allow purses or backpacks for security reasons, I think the hipS-sister would be a handy wardrobe addition. They look comfy and the different colors that are available would add style to almost any outfit.
What do you think?
Photo credit: HipS-sister
For many women, their engagement ring is the most valuable piece of jewelry they own. Protecting this investment is crucial.
Lavalier.com, the top name in jewelry insurance, states that it’s vital you obtain an appraisal from a reputable jeweler to accurately determine the value of your ring. If your ring is ever lost, stolen, or damaged, an appraisal will be needed to repair it. The GIA website can help you locate appraisers in your area.
Many women don’t realize that your homeowner’s or renter’s policy often provides very limited coverage for fine jewelry. It’s common for policies to only insure jewelry valued at $2,500 or less, which is inadequate when you consider that the typical engagement ring costs slightly over $5,000.
Manufacturer’s warranties typically only cover defects in the ring and won’t pay in the event of loss or theft.
To protect your investment in your ring, you should buy a policy specifically for jewelry. In most cases, the policy costs less than 2% of the jewelry’s value. This means you’d pay about $20 for every $1,000 of the ring’s value.
As you’re evaluating possible insurance carriers, remember to look for one who will work with your jeweler if you ever need to repair or replace your ring. This option is not always offered, which can be problematic for something with the sentimental value of an engagement ring.
To prevent damage to your ring, you should get in the habit of taking it off when you’re gardening, swimming, or playing sports. Do not take your ring off in a public place, however, since it is likely to become accidentally misplaced.
Jewelers recommend that you have your engagement ring checked every six months for loose prongs that could cause stones to fall out. A professional cleaning will also give your ring a sparkling appearance.
Photo credit: Blue Nile
I’m not a big fan of swimsuits in general, but I was extra self conscious about my swimsuit when I was pregnant. I wish I had known about Seraphine Maternity so I wouldn’t have spent my pregnancy avoiding the beach.
If you’re looking for a flattering suit to accommodate your baby bump, check out the styles from Seraphine Maternity’s glamorous maternity swimwear collection. In recent months, Seraphine swimwear has been spotted on celebrity moms like Jessica Alba, Kate Hudson, and Sienna Miller.
Seraphine offers colorful swimsuits crafted with fabrics and cuts to flatter a woman’s pregnancy shape and show off her curves. All options include panels to support and hold the tummy and chest areas.
Styles range from a classic full coverage one piece to a sexy bikini, so there’s something for everyone. My personal favorite, however, is the halter tankini style. I like that the ties are adjustable so you can show as little or as much skin as you’re comfortable with. Also, when I was pregnant, I had to pee constantly and a one piece suit is really hard to get on and off all the time!
Seraphine Maternity suits range in price from $60 to $89 and most swimsuits come in XS through XL sizes. Although this is a little pricey for a suit you’ll probably only be able to wear a few times, I think it’s well worth splurging for a little extra confidence at the beach.
Seraphine Maternity offers free US returns, which I think is a huge plus for anyone who isn’t sure what size they will need when swimsuit season arrives. Visit the Seraphine Maternity website for details.
What do you think of the Seraphine Maternity swimsuit line?
Photo credit: Seraphine Maternity
Today’s link round-up has tips for cutting your own bangs, chocolate chip cookie dough stuffed cupcakes, ponytail tips, and more.
Chocolate Covered Katie shared a recipe for chocolate chip cookie dough stuffed cupcakes.
A Beautiful Mess showed us how to cut our own bangs at home.
Suzy Sitcom shared a review of a new show that teaches about science as it entertains.
Pet Scribbles shared a copper pipe vase tutorial.
A Mom’s Take shared a recipe for a healing salt scrub.
Cupcakes and Cashmere showed us three ways to wear a ponytail.
Photo credit: Chocolate Covered Katie and Kenarry
Rush star Olivia Wilde posed for a Glamour magazine fashion shoot dressed in couture. The dress is a luxe Roberto Cavalli paired with strappy Prada wedges. She is seated in a restaurant booth next to the windows, and she is nursing her 3-month-old baby.
The photo is meant to turn feeding her baby into a style statement. I admit she looks great, and I am thrilled to know she has chosen to breastfeed. However, I can’t help but consider the contrasts between the photo and real life.
First of all, moms who are on this side of reality know that we won’t look like that when we sit feeding our babies. Instead, we’ll be thankful for a moment to sit down. Wilde is portrayed as a working mom on the go, and she is. But for most of us, we don’t have someone to fix our hair, put on our makeup, and dress us.
The other thing that really strikes me in the photo is that Wilde is nursing her baby in a restaurant because it is “lunch time.” Her dress is completely off the shoulder.
In society, breastfeeding has become a hot topic regarding whether or not it is okay to nurse in public. A recent example is the mom who was asked to leave Barnes and Noble when she breastfed her baby while browsing. It’s not unusual for moms to be told to cover up or even that they need to go into the bathroom to feed their babies.
The last thing I noticed is how good she looks considering her baby is 3 months old. I take my hat off to her for that accomplishment. She told the magazine, “Breast-feeding is the most natural thing. Being shot with Otis is so perfect because any portrait of me right now isn’t complete without my identity as a mother. Now it feels like Otis should always be on my breast.”
The photos featuring Olivia Wilde can be seen in Glamour magazine’s September issue.
Photo credits: CelebTV
While I’m not a die-hard baseball fan, I am married to one. And because I love him, I have spent more time than I’d like to say in the stands watching the game. I’ve even been known to wear a jersey. In fact, I’ve even had friends tell us they’ve seen us on TV! One time my sister said, “It looked like you were reading a book.” The truth is I was.
I do watch the game some, but some baseball games are about as exciting as watching the grass grow. Like I said, I go to games more for my husband than for entertainment. However, even when reading a book I do pay attention to what’s going on.
If I’m sitting on the first base side and a left handed hitter comes up to the base, I’ve learned there is a greater chance of a foul ball coming my direction…or a piece of bat…or even the whole bat if it happens to slip from the batter’s grasp.
At one game, I saw a woman taken away on a stretcher after being hit by a bat. It is important to pay attention and be aware of what’s going on.
This weekend when Eileen Depesa was at an Indians/White Sox game, she had a rouge bat fly straight at her. It hit the top of the dugout and ricocheted straight at her. What did she do? The man beside her ducked, and in his defense, that’s what I would have done.
But Eileen knew there was a baby sitting behind her. Her brain didn’t have time to think about all her options. She only had time to react one way…and for her that ended up being a one-handed grab and catch. And she did it with style!
Why would she do such a foolish thing and risk her safety? According to MLB.com she said, “I was more concerned with protecting the baby seated behind me.”
Photo credits: MLBTube
Traveling with a baby can have its challenges, and I have to wonder about the big picture for Kate Middleton and Prince William as they made a trek to New Zealand.
First off, they didn’t have the freedom to just make a trip together with their son because typically two heirs to the throne are not allowed to fly together. But the Queen gave special permission, so they could check that off their list and fly as a family.
They traveled together from London to New Zealand – a 25 hour trip to Sydney where they transferred to a New Zealand Air Force jet for the last leg of the journey. That’s a long-haul even without an 8 month old. The flight’s arrival had been delayed because of stormy weather. Yet, when they arrived, Kate stepped off the plane looking as fresh as ever.
Not only did she look great, but Prince George cooperated with the cameras as they disembarked. Later, when he joined other young children for a “crawl-about”, it made for a perfect photo op, too.
No one yanked a toy away from anyone else or pulled anyone’s hair. It all went smoothly as he crawled around like a royal in his navy-blue shorts and white shirt. Makes one wonder if the children were screened ahead to be sure they were all mild-mannered tots.
Life “appears” to go so smoothly for them! Kate’s figure is back to perfect, her baby plays well with others, everyone is healthy, she and her husband seem to get along…no I’m not jealous. My kids are all grown.
I’m just saying, it would be fun to see behind the scenes wouldn’t it? Because there’s one thing we all know. Stuff happens and no one’s life is perfect. However, I have to say, Kate has stepped into royal shoes and portrays the royal image thing flawlessly. I applaud her. It can’t be easy.
If you’ve recently gone up or down a size or are just prone to buyer’s remorse, Swapdom is an excellent resource. This newly launched website lets you swap unwanted clothing and accessories for exactly what you want.
Swapdom uses a special algorithm to organize multi-person clothing swaps. This is how the site describes the process:
“In traditional swaps, A might want something C has, but C is not interested in A’s items; they want something B has, so no swap is made. Swapdom connects A to B to C (and to D, E, F, G … if needed) and loops it back to A, so that everyone gets what they want. All you have to do is tell us what you’d offer for your requested item and box up your item when we find a swap.”
There’s no charge to list an item on Swapdom. A small fee is built into the shipping cost when you trade items, but the fee is a percentage of shipping and never more than $2.
Swapdom only offers women’s clothing and accessory swaps at the moment, but the site has plans to eventually expand into the children’s clothing and home furnishing categories.
The selection of items is obviously going to change on a pretty regular basis, but I saw a nice variety of items when I was looking through the site. There were sizes ranging from XS to XXL, including both casual and business appropriate clothing.
I haven’t had a chance to personally try out Swapdom yet, but I think this is a wonderful idea. I haven’t had close friends who wore the same size of clothing since high school and there are quite a few things in my closet I don’t really wear anymore.
What do you think of Swapdom?
Photo credit: Swapdom