Category Archives: Personal

Girls Meets Glitter? Girl has Already MET Glitter, and She Loves It!: Review of Ipsy’s November Beauty Bag

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I know you guys have been long awaiting my review for my beauty bag I received for the month of November from my Ipsy subscription. It’s been a hectic couple of days with the looming Thanksgiving Break and the current wrap up of all of my group projects and assignments I need to complete for my classes. I feel like my head’s going to explode! But on the brighter side, after using the products I received, I am now able to give you guys an honest, first-hand review!

In this gorgeous, glittery bag, I received a ton of products. Sometimes they only give you a couple, but I was pleasantly surprised by what my makeup bag had in store! I got 5 different beauty products total: An eye base by Be a Bombshell Cosmetics in “Submissive”, a J.Cat wonder lip paint in “Mad Splatter”, a S/B highlighter by Temptu in “Pink Pearl”, a Star Looks gem pencil in “Ultra Olive”, and finally, the oil of Morocco argan oil hairspray by Marc Anthony.

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The image above shows a few swatches of the products. From top to bottom, the picture shows the “Ultra Olive” gem pencil, the wonder lip paint in “Mad Splatter”, and the “Submissive” eye base. I wanted to swatch the highlighter as well for you guys, but unfortunately it doesn’t show up as well as the other products because it’s meant to be more of a subtle pearly glow.

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I’m gonna start us off with one of my top products from the beauty bag that I received: the eye base in “Submissive”. At first glance, I didn’t think it would be anything special, and I was completely wrong. When I opened the container, the color was a gorgeous brassy gold. I could imagine that this would look incredible on darker skin as well. I have a more medium/olive tone (aside from during Winter, when I begin to lighten up), and this shade surprisingly looks outstanding on my skin. I used it in combination with a gold shadow this week and I can honestly say that it helps tremendously to keep the shadow from crumbling and falling off, and maintained the shadow look that I had created for an entire school day. I like the creamy texture of the product and that it applies evenly without clumping. It’s difficult to find a color that would probably look equally as good on differentiating skin tones, but I believe that this color could do justice to any skin shade, so if you’re darker or fairer than me, you should give this product a chance as well. You may be pleasantly surprised!

This product is only $14 on the Be a Bombshell Cosmetics website, which isn’t really all that bad for something that I imagine would last a while. You don’t really need all that much product to apply this effectively.

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Next, I’d like to go to my absolute favorite, must-have product from this bag: the wonder lip paint. Above is a picture of the lip paint in action! I was not expecting the color to be so vibrant at first glance, because many of the lip glosses and lip colors I’ve purchased prior to receiving this bag seemed like they’d be solid, thick colors, but later proved to be a bit transparent. This lip paint, however, applies as the exact same shade as the tube. Not even kidding. There’s no false advertising in this product, and probably for this entire line of lip paint. What you see is exactly what you get. The texture of the lip paint is a little on the weird side if you’re used to smooth color, but I’ve come to realize that if you squeeze the tube a couple of times with the cap on before you start to actually use the product, the sandy texture won’t be as prominent. I think the product just separates in the tube after a while. Once it’s mixed, however, it’s definitely not as noticeable. The color lasts for hours, and when I say hours, I mean hours. It endured eating, drinking coffee, and wiping my face. This lip paint is long lasting which I think is a wonderful change. Just make sure that when you apply the color that your lips are dry (don’t lick your lips beforehand) and try to stay within the lines of your lips. Once it dries, it’s done, so it’s important to get your lips exactly how you want them before it seals. It’s a gorgeous color that maintains its shade throughout the day! What’s not to love?

Try it out! It’s amazing! It’s only $4.99 at Ulta!

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Now we’re onto the highlighter. I think it has a pretty glow, but I was disappointed that I couldn’t capture it in a photograph, which leads me to believe that it doesn’t show up all that much. It has subtle glitter, but with my skin tone, it fades quite a bit. I do have to say, though, that it has a very pretty, pleasant smell to it. However, I don’t think that this product is going to do much for me. I will try to work it into my beauty routine, but I’m somewhere in the middle on this one. I’m not really sure if it’s going to make much of a difference in the long run, as my WINTER skin overwhelms the color. I guess we will see.

It’s $27.50 on the website, which I think is a bit much, but if you’d like to try it out for yourself, go ahead and click here.

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The “Ultra Olive” eye pencil is pretty on my blue eyes. It doesn’t smudge all that much, which is always good, and the pencil has subtle glitter which helps transition between day and night looks. I don’t generally deviate from the eyeliners that I use, so I thought it was pretty neat that I received a new eyeliner in my beauty bag this time around. I think Ipsy’s trying to tell me that I need to be more experimental with more neutral, toned-down eyeliners. I certainly wouldn’t buy a new neutral eyeliner on my own, unless the color was a must-have. I’m more of a jet black or crazy bright eyeliner user, never really in between, so I didn’t know exactly how to feel about the olive just yet. This olive pencil is nice, though. It looks great on me so far, and I don’t think it’s all that crazy to try out, so if you’re a little nervous about trying an olive tone eyeliner, I would definitely suggest giving this pencil a go. I’ll probably use it from time to time. It’d probably look great on a grey-eyed gal.

If you want to check out this pencil, click here. It’s $17, so it’s really your call if you have the money and would like to give it a chance.

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Finally, we have the Marc Anthony hairspray that I’ve increasingly grown to love. I was disappointed at first because I don’t like receiving hair products from Ipsy, but when I tried this product out, I was much happier than I thought I’d be. I think it’s quite functional for many different hairstyles and doesn’t harden your hair to the point where it’s uncomfortable. I used this to seal my hairstyle on Friday, and when it came time to take my hair down, it actually ended up looking amazing. This hairspray is great for teasing and styling hair and is useful if you’re like me and sometimes just want to get your hair out of your face for a few hours. It has an amazing smell, completely intoxicating, and keeps my hair shiny and sleek. Love, love, love this hairspray! And the even better part? It’s only $8.99 at Ulta!

Go check it out here! Let me know what you think!

I hope you enjoyed my review, and if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask! Leave a comment below!

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Grateful and Guilty – Barnes & Noble: The Scene Before Me

Grateful and Guilty – Writing Prompt

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Note: The prompt asks the writer to discuss a guilty pleasure. If you haven’t guessed, my guilty pleasure is spending my free time in Barnes and Noble, preferably in the seated cafe area, and soaking up the environment. There’s so much more to learn beyond the books that line these aisles. Following this statement is my description of the scene before me on today’s trip to Barnes and Noble. I hope you enjoy it.

As I sat on the floor of my local Barnes and Noble accompanied by my purse and laptop, the building swamped with locals taking shelter from the rain, I took a good luck around at the faces present among me at the filled seats. Students, potentially from my university, families with small children giggling at the sight of a new picture book, middle-agers catching up on the latests magazine publications, hot coffee warming the palms of their hands. There’s a lot you can learn about the people you see around you just from observing their choices. What do I mean by that, you ask? What they’re eating, what they’re dressed in, how they present themselves among the crowd. Do they smile back when they catch your gaze? Are their faces buried into a novel, concealed? There are so many factors that come into play when you’re evaluating strangers. I often do this before I sit down, if there are choices to be made between seats. I like to scan the area and make mental notes. Who could I see myself talking to? Who seems to have the same interests? Are they reading that psychology book for study, or for pleasure? Do they look intrigued, bored, indifferent? Are they accompanied, did they bring their work from home?

This time, however, there are no seats. I begin fiddling with my fingernails, picking off the remnants of my icy blue nail polish. I can feel my leg falling asleep, and shake it out from under my other leg, stimulating the blood flow to my dead limb. I look up to see a woman packing her work in a rushed manner, the individual on the other side of her phone line consuming her thoughts. Purse and laptop in both hands, I wait for my approach. As I wait, I catch a glimpse into the conversation of the woman sitting behind her joking with the cafe cashier about prioritizing the production of the pumpkin spice latte. I feel like gagging at the mere thought of pumpkin. She evacuates, and I claim the table before anyone has the chance to grab it first, a little table in the center of the room. The room has grown silent, aside from the scattered orders at the cafe every couple of minutes. An increasingly apparent chatter has grown with the expansion of the cafe line, attracting the attention of the readers. They seem agitated by the sudden introduction of noise. And that is simply what it is at this point: noise. Words exchanged between the ten individuals are essentially indecipherable. Even with such a diverse audience, such a broad spectrum of types of people, Barnes and Noble still captures the essence of calmness, focus, productivity. It’s an environment that sparks and nurtures my creativity.

What would you say is your guilty pleasure?

Comment below.

The Personality Fluctuation of an Anxiety-Ridden Student of Life

Ready, Set, Done! – A Response to the Daily Post prompt

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It’s strange.

I feel like I am a different person every day, or maybe every other day. One day, I will be confident, persuasive, extroverted, rambunctious. The next, I will be reclusive, introverted, perfectly happy surrounded by nothing more than my drawing tablet, cup of coffee, and my laptop on full-charge playing some Ingrid Michaelson as background music. How does this change? How do I transition between two completely different phases, two personalities that could essentially house two different bodies but instead cozy up to each other in this one individual: me?

Some days, I am pained by the glance of strangers, while other days, it’s perfectly easy to return a smile, strike a conversation. On the days when I don’t wish to return the favor, I can feel their eyes burning into my cheek like they’re branding me with their look. I can actually feel the blood rush to my face, rising and burning like flames under my skin. But when I smile back, there’s mutual acknowledgement, and the glance is dropped. Something about people avoiding elongated eye contact… At these points, I feel like I reversed the reaction.

There are days when I enjoy the spotlight, basking in the glow of my accomplishments. And then, on the opposing end, there are moments when I hope to god that no one mentions that I was the culprit of something, even if it were a wonderful thing. The pressure to perform on these days makes me feel like a seasoned actress.

The weirdest part of it all is that I’m never really too sure which personality will be more dominant each morning I wake up. I accept them both lovingly though. I adore my extroverted, loud-and-proud side just as equally as the less showy introverted side I possess. I believe it all really depends on the anxiety I experience on a day to day basis. When its grip isn’t as strong, I’m more outward and upfront. There’s no barricade preventing me from projecting myself. But this isn’t to say that on the days I prefer being alone, I am generally anxious. Anxiety certainly contributes though, at least to some of these days. I have to wonder if the anxiety I experience is what maintains my ambiversion, or if naturally I am comprised of elements from both sides that sometimes just separate more distinctly on specific days.

Anyone else feel like they’re housing two opposing personalities in one body sometimes?

Do you prefer one side over the other?

Mass Produced Comments: Are They Productive, or Just Pestering?

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I would like to take a moment to address the actual, physical act of blogging. Blogging requires a great deal of marketing, writing talent, and persistence. You have to be prepared to commit the time, money (if needed), and of course, your blood, sweat, and tears. I, as a writer and blogger, can relate to and commend other bloggers for the work that they provide, the reviews they release, and the wonderful content they exhibit each day. Heck, sometimes I don’t even know how I do it while being in college and holding a job now. It’s shocking to me to see how students, college students just like me, manage to market and publish each day effectively. I’ve had periods where I physically could not write and had to take some time away from the blog to reevaluate the content (I believe in quality over quantity) and redirect my energy toward schooling temporarily. I know it’s difficult to be a committed blogger and I struggle each day to make everything in my life cooperate successfully.

But then there’s a side of me that feels like some (not all, thank goodness) bloggers and writers want to build an audience as quick as possible, and will resort to unprofessional tactics that I don’t agree with, which brings forth an ugly side to the otherwise inspired and intriguing writing community. I often get comments from individuals, including their business emails, with an attached, mass produced spiel about how fantastic and wonderful their company blog or personal blog is. They’ll preface this with what I believe to be a half a**ed response to the post they’re commenting on. A little “awesome job” and “great post”, followed by a novel-long comment about why I should drag myself over to their completely unrelated blog. I can’t help but roll my eyes. I get that you want to be successful and you want to bring in more views. So do I and the rest of the writing community. Success does have to do with readership. However, I don’t mass produce comments. When I take the time to comment on another blog or several other blogs, no matter what category it falls under or who is producing the physical blog, I refuse to spam others with my own advertisements. If the post is relevant to something that I’ve posted as well, I feel it is perfectly appropriate to follow my legitimate comment with a reference and perhaps say “Hey, I wrote something very similar that you might want to check out! *insert url here*”, but pushing your blog on me without any rhyme or reason doesn’t possess me to want to browse. It actually deters me and would make me significantly less likely to give your blog a chance. I don’t tolerate rude blog etiquette.

Writers, bloggers, many of you are like me. Many of you take pride in your work and your brand, and choose to represent it with dignity. You don’t mass produce your comments and spam them across the blogosphere, and I respect that immensely. I ooze respect for people who do the right thing, even if it feels “less efficient” at times. I know it takes time to produce your own blog, let alone respond to the posts of others. I know it’s difficult to respond to comments all the time and to interact within the writing community, one blog at a time. Whatever you do, try to avoid the impersonal, copy/pasted spamming of your blog, the long comments trying to “sell” your writing instead of genuinely responding to the post you may or may not (probably not) have read. Effective content brings viewers to your work just as successfully and ensures that your audience is legitimately interested in the topic you present. It’s essential to build a fan base that respects your literary talent and believes in the methods you incorporate in your writing journey. Easy isn’t always better.

What are your thoughts on advertisement-ridden spam comments?

What are some tips you could give towards blogs that are looking to build a more diverse, larger readership that don’t involve spamming?

Comment below.

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xo Mandirito

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Sassy Saturday: Brights and Fall Style Highlights

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I am not one to follow seasonal trends as I don’t have the money and patience to research and coordinate/purchase my outfits to conform to what is believed to be “Fall ready” wardrobe. Sure, I like fall style, comfy sweaters, messy buns, accessorized with pumpkin spice (*barf* why?!) cups of coffee (who doesn’t love that? I mean….the coffee thing. Not the pumpkin spice. Again, barf.). I am all for comfortable and cute, but what college student has the means to buy a new wardrobe for every season? That is why I recycle and restyle my outfits based on the season. If it’s hot, which it inevitably always is except for the couple of days in Florida when we have what is widely known as, and forgive me if I am using the wrong term, “winter”. “Winter” is it? I don’t really know. Regardless, this Sassy Saturday will be all about what I enjoy during the fall, style wise and whatever else.

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One staple that I love year round but especially in the fall is the amazing maxi cardigan style. Ah, it’s gorgeous! I think it also helps even out all the short little dresses in my closet. When I wear something short, I like to balance it out with a cardigan that is significantly longer. Plus, it ends up making me look longer and taller, too, which is always a plus! However, so far, I’ve only found three maxi cardigans that fit the specific criteria of what I like. I want them to be matchable but not black preferably, patterns are a plus, and colors are crucial but if they’re done in a creative, tasteful way. I don’t want to go out looking like I upchucked a super sized bag of skittles onto myself.

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This is also the ideal time to temporarily bring out the boots in my closet that are so tall they make my calves sweat on a regular Florida day. They’re beautiful, but are they appropriate for 95 degree weather? Not a chance in hell. I’m thinking maybe when I come home for a break I’ll gather up my boots and bring them back with me to celebrate the couple days of cold I’m hoping we’ll receive in the coming weeks! Wearing slouchy boots with dresses AND cardigans is about as wonderful as Fall style can get, and if you haven’t tried it yet, you basically haven’t lived. So please bring out the pairing for yourself and realize the beauty and functionality that it holds in this moderate weather!

 

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Next up is the fad of leg warmers, which I currently don’t own but am secretly begging to try. Do they really keep your legs warm, and do I really need to be warmer than I already am for fashion sense? I think they look a bit silly and impractical with heels, but wouldn’t mind trying them with some boots. Maybe, just maybe, I will give them a chance this Fall, but I think they are very cute. I think I’d find myself wearing them at home more than anything because nothing says cozy like socks for your legs. Or something.

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Ever since I began my Tumblr all over again (for the blog), I came to realize how much I love brightly colored lipsticks, even the ones with the unconventional colors. I don’t know if I’d have the balls to go out with blue lips, but I have the temptation to try. For heaven’s sake, I’ve already bought a teal wig. Might as well give blue lips a shot, too. I’m still considering it, really. But I feel like this trend is rising, maybe even beyond Fall. I’ve seen quite a few divas lately working bright lips with their subtle Fall get ups and it feels inspiring. I feel like my problem with typical Fall-wear is that so much of it is dark and neutral. Blah. But with these lips? There’d be nothing dreary about any outfit! If I muster up the courage, I promise you guys will be the very first ones to know of my breakthrough!

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And finally we have beanies! Beanies in every color, size, and texture! This is the one accessory I am tempted to basically pair with anything in any season, just because it’s such a cute, spunky addition to any look. Plus my style is very ambiguous. I have dominantly feminine pieces with dominantly masculine pieces. I pair my combat boots with my ruffled dresses. I like my style to be as spontaneous and quirky (I couldn’t find a more suited word, so I dearly apologize) as I am, and beanies add that kind of artistic flair that I desire in my outfits. Plus, if you’re having a bad hair day, they are quite possibly the best way to make it look like you’re going for something “effortlessly sporty” and secretly help tame the knotted beast if need be. When my hair gets rugged, a beanie will always be my go-to, and if I don’t have a beanie, well, I guess leaving the house just isn’t an option. Let’s hope it’s not an exam day

 

What Fall styles would you like to try this season, and which styles make you want to ditch the sweater weather for good?

Would you try some unconventional lip colors to spice up your look?

Comment below!

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15 Accomplishments/Goals I Want to Achieve by the Closing of this Year! Bring It!

I am surrounded by people who only have short-term goals, who only know what they’re going to eat for dinner later on or what supplies they need to get for class this week, which isn’t necessary wrong per se, but what about the future? What about a couple months from now, half a year from now? I don’t want to have just short-term goals, and I don’t even think I can only have short-term goals at this point. I have quite a few projects in the works and they require a lot more planning than I’m actually used to. I would like to share with my lovely readers the achievements I hope to accomplish by the looming closure of the 2014th year (crazy to think we’re so close, right?). When I put the milestones I hope to accomplish in writing or print more like, I have found that I strive much harder to complete them by the deadline, and it inspires me knowing that the people who have been rooting for my success for so long are reading what I hope to make of myself and pushing me to continue to gain experience and grow as a creative individual. If you feel inspired by this idea, by all means, make your own list of 15 accomplishments (or however you feel necessary) and link me to it below! Making goals as a group actually proves to be the most successful method of prioritizing because there is a mutual pressure to perform amongst the participants. It’s like positive peer pressure!

With that being said, here are my 15 goals for the rest of the year!:

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1. Reach at least 100 “likes” on the Mandirito Facebook fan pagehttps://www.facebook.com/Mandirito.the.blogger

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2. Reach at least 400 followers on Twitterhttps://twitter.com/Mandirito_blogs

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3. Restart my Youtube channel and actually keep it going for a while!

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4. Achieve at least 100 followers on Youtube. I worked on a Youtube channel for a while but got discouraged when I realized I wouldn’t have enough time to do it. But now, I’m more determined than ever to get back on the horse! When I start again, it will be a bunch of tutorials. Makeup tutorials, Outfit of the Day videos, Makeup of the Day videos, maybe some art tutorials, and whatever else my readers and viewers want to see.

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5. Become masterful at Adobe Photoshop 3D. I am amazed by how much you can create in Photoshop and would love to be able to manipulate in 3d as well!

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6. Get to 200 followers on Tumblr at the very least. I just created an affiliated Mandirito Tumblr which incorporates all of the things I find important or interesting. It’s more random stuff than anything.

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7. Get my writing shared again on a notable website. For a while, I worked for Local Heroes Today (you can read my writing at localheroestoday.com), but I miss the thrill of getting published now that I don’t work there anymore. I would like to reach a more dynamic audience!

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8. Sit down and actually learn how to use Reddit. I’ve always wanted to learn but alas, I have yet to get to it. So here’s to Reddit and all that it has to offer!

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9. Attempt to get all of my grades to A’s. Currently I have A’s and then one C (Grrrr), but I’m working hard and I’m willing to put in some hours to get the work done right.

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10. Try to drink more water. I hate the taste of water and have no desire to drink it, but I know it’s good for me. It’s incredibly conflicting. Why can’t coffee be the thing that’s good for me?

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11. Get down to my goal weight. No, I’m not one of those people that wants to look half of my body weight but I do want to get down a few pounds for the sake of being healthy. I’m already cleaning up my diet tremendously, so I doubt this should be an issue by then.

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12. Find a job/internship that I am passionate about. I have some potential positions lined up, but I’m waiting for confirmation before I determine anything. Fingers crossed!

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13. Start maintaining a healthy sleep schedule. I feel like I never sleep.

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14. Learn a chunk of a new language. I’m in the process of learning Spanish but I want to be able to know enough to conversationally speak it.

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15. and last but certainly not least, learn how to efficiently expand my online presence!

Do you have a list of goals you would like to finish by the conclusion of this year?

Comment below if you’d like to share!