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30 September 2014

Life Changing Beauty Hacks You Need to Know

Uh oh.  You just ran out of your favorite product.  Or you want to try a new look, but you don't have the right color.  Your hair just won't cooperate today.  What is a girl to do?  Try one of these beauty hacks, and you'll be ready to go in no time!

Some of these hacks are pure genius.  Some will save you time, some save money, and some save frustration.

Links in this post may be affiliate links, which means that I earn a small commission from sales.

Foundation too dark?

If you use a liquid, mix the dark foundation with a lighter one to get the right shade.  If you use mineral or powder foundation, add some arrowroot powder to lighten it.  Arrowroot goes on smooth and absorbs excess oil and sweat too!

Out of eyeshadow primer

Or if you've never used primer before, use a liquid foundation or even concealer on your lids.  It helps keep your makeup in place and last longer.

Lipstick on your teeth

Don't you hate it when your lipstick rubs off on your teeth?  Me too!  After you apply your lipstick, put a clean finger in your open mouth.  Close your lips around your finger and pull it out.  It will pull the extra lipstick off, especially any product lingering inside your mouth that could transfer to your teeth.

No more lipstick smudges

Set your lipstick with some powder.  Hold a tissue over your lips and use a brush to apply some translucent powder.  This helps set your lipstick so it won't budge.  Using a lip liner also helps it stay put.

Out of eyeliner

Oh no!  You misplaced your eyeliner or it's gone.  Use an eyeliner brush to use mascara as a liner.  You can also wet the brush and use a darker shade of eyeliner to line your eyes for a softer look.

Pencil eyeliner too hard

If your pencil is tugging at your skin, it's too hard.  This can happen if they get dried out, so try sharpening it.  If that doesn't work, use a lighter to heat the end of the pencil for 1 second.  Let it cool at least 15 seconds before you use it.  This turns your pencil in to a gel liner.

Lip plumper hack

Lip plumpers work by temporarily increasing blood flow so your lips are fuller.  They can cost $20 or more per bottle, but you can make your own.  Add 1 to 2 drops of peppermint essential oil to your favorite lip gloss.  The peppermint stimulates blood flow and is safe to put on your lips diluted.  Do not use it straight from the bottle.

Thicker lashes

Want thick lashes?  You can buy a special mascara just for one reason, or you can use your daily formula.  Just dip a cotton swab in baby powder and run it along your lashes after the first coat of mascara.  Add a second coat over the powder.  The powder thickens your lashes,  so you'll get the same effect at a fraction of the price.

Dry hair

If your hair is a little dry, make your own leave in conditioner by combining 1 part conditioner to 3 parts water in a spray bottle.  Shake well and spray on your hair.

Static hair

Static making your hair stand up?  Run a dryer sheet over your hair.  You'll smell great too!

Soft, smooth legs

Out of shaving cream?  Use conditioner for silky smooth legs.

Acne redness

Reduce redness by putting a drop of Visine on blemishes.  It reduces blood vessels in your eyes, and it works on your face too.

French manicure

Can't get a straight line?  Hold a rubber band over your nail to make a stencil.  You can also use clear tape on your nail.

Glitter Nails

Want to use glitter nail polish but hate removing it?  Paint your nails with white glue and let it dry.  Paint glitter over top of that.  When you're ready for a new look, just peel off the glitter.

Chipped manicure

No time to remove polish and start over?  Add glitter in a similar color over top.  It will help hide the chips.

Cracked cuticles

Use lip balm to soften dry, cracked cuticles.

Have you tried any of these beauty hacks before?

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photo credit: Idhren via photopin cc

29 September 2014

Must Have Drugstore Beauty Favorites

I've been slacking on my blog for the last week.  If you are regular and have noticed, then I love you for noticing!  I also sell handmade items on Etsy and vintage on eBay, so I took the plunge and rented space in a new vintage and handmade store.  I made the commitment last Monday, so I had 9 days to have everything in place for their opening day.  While I have plenty of inventory for Etsy, I didn't want to pull it all out to put in the store.  I also didn't have any displays for my stuff.

I did have some well-loved shelving that could look cool with a coat of paint.  I normally paint teeny little things, like picture frames, so I said to myself, "Cari, if you can paint a picture frame, you can paint a shelving unit!  In fact, you can paint 5 of them PLUS a peg board!  Easy peasy!"  And then my other voice said, "LOL"  But the first voice was louder, and now I can't move.

But I am now the proud owner of some rocking shelving units all painted a beautiful blue, distressed just right, waxed, and sanded.  This weekend, I still have to pull everything I have for sale and price it.  Then I can finally get back to writing!

In the mean time, enjoy this post that I've been working on for a while.  There are my top drugstore beauty favorites.  I wish I could afford to have all high dollar makeup and beauty essentials because they are great quality, but these are easier to find brands that cost a whole lot less.  Enjoy!

Links in this post may be affiliate links, which means that I earn a small commission from sales.

ELF Makeup Brushes

In full disclosure, I have never tried an expensive brand of brushes.  I heard good things about ELF makeup brushes, and the price is definitely right, so I got them.  They definitely meet my needs, so I don't have a reason to buy the expensive ones.  I might splurge on an expensive foundation brush because that is so important, but for my eye brushes, I will stick with ELF.  I clean them regularly, and they've held up to a few years worth of use and washing.  They are inexpensive, so I won't feel too bad about replacing them after a year or two anyway.

ELF Eyeshadow Palette

For my every day makeup, I use ELF eyeshadow palates.  I don't think they last as long as more expensive makeup, but I do like them the best of any drugstore brand of eyeshadow.  If I were wearing my makeup for a full day at work or needed it to last for 8 or more hours, then this wouldn't be my go-to shadow.  But for me running to the store or volunteering at school, it is perfect.  Using an eyeshadow primer definitely helps it stay longer though.

Maybelline Eyeliner

This is my all time favorite eyeliner.  Tears will be shed if this ever gets cut from their line!  The Maybelline Unstoppable line is a pencil liner, but it glides on so smooth like a liquid.  It's also self sharpening, so I don't have to mess with a sharpener that I always lose.  My favorite colors are Pewter and Espresso.

Maybelline Great Lash Mascara

I'm pretty sure Maybelline Great Lash Mascara has been around forever, and there's a reason for that.  It is awesome for every day use.  This won't give you the big, full, extra long lashes that everyone wants for hot dates, but it will give you definition to go to the store or work at an office job.

Oil of Olay Moisturizer

I love the price of Oil of Olay Moisturizer, and I love how it works.  It has an SPF 15, so it helps protect my face from sun damage every day.  It gives my oily skin just enough moisture without making my skin oily.  They also have a sensitive formula.  I do use a more expensive anti-aging cream under it as I go further in to my 30s.

Sally Hansen Nighttime Heel Repair Ointment

Dry, cracked heels?  Just  few nights of this Sally Hansen Heel Repair Ointment will get your feet soft in no time.  It does have petroleum in it, which I usually try to avoid, but this stuff works.  I also use it on my cuticles when they crack and bleed in the winter.

Aussie Sprunch Hair Mousse

I have curly hair that can get dry, so I love Aussie Sprunch Hair Mousse.  It has just enough conditioner in it to moisturize my hair.  It gives me a soft all day hold without being stiff.

Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant Whitening Booster

I actually got this from Arm & Hammer to review for my blog, and I really like it.  It's so much easier to use than strips or trays because you use it with your toothpaste.  I love that it doesn't take extra time.  I didn't see dramatic results like I would with a professional treatment, but I did see some results. For the price and convenience, it is totally worth it.

Suave Professionals Moroccan Infusion Shine Shampoo

My curly hair just loves this shampoo and conditioner!  It really makes my hair soft and shinier.  The shampoo is pretty thin, so I do use more than I would with an expensive brand.  But I like it so much and the price is right, so I can definitely deal with that.

And there are my must have drugstore beauty favorites!  I do often make my own products, but when I am out of time, these are my trusty standbys.  I've used all of these and gotten great results.

What are you favorite drugstore products?

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23 September 2014

Easy Lip Balm Recipe

One of my least favorite part about winter is constantly having chapped lips.  All three of my kids have chapped lips all the time too.  We have propane heat and have fires daily, so the air is crazy dry in this house.  It just sucks the moisture right out of our bodies!

We were using store bought lip balms, but they would only work for a few days or even hours.  It seemed like we were constantly reapplying them!  Then I found out why.

Read the label of your chapstick carefully because some ingredients can actually dry out your lips.  Alcohol can really dry out your lips and make chapped lips worse.  So can camphor, menthol, and phenol.  Some formulas also have petroleum, which many people try to avoid because of negative long-term effects.

I started making my own lip balm because I wanted all natural ingredients.  This is my favorite natural lip balm recipe because it's easy.  I don't have to remember a complicated recipes, just 1:1:1!  I'll use ounces for the recipe below, but you can make it bigger or smaller.  If you want to use lip balm pots, use a little less beeswax for a softer balm.

Links in this post may be affiliate links, which means that I earn a small commission from sales.

DIY Easy Lip Balm Recipe

What You Need

*For an inexpensive double boiler, I fill a larger pan half full with water.  I set a canning jar ring on the bottom and set a glass Pyrex measuring cup on the ring.  I heat the water to boiling over medium heat.  Make sure the water doesn't bubble into the Pyrex cup.


  1. Add all ingredients to a double boiler.  
  2. Heat until melted, stirring occasionally.  
  3. Remove from heat and let cool slightly, but don't let it set up.  
  4. Use a hot pad to carefully pour into lip balm tubes. 
  5. Let cool completely before capping.  

Use this all winter for soft lips.  If your lips are already chapped, this will heal them.  You can also use a lip scrub to jump start the healing process.

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19 September 2014

Top Fall 2014 Fashion Trends

This post is sponsored by Tracking Pixel VSP Direct.  As always, all opinions are my own.

It's fall, y'all!  Are you ready for cozy sweaters, great boots, and fall jackets?  I am! While I am a little upset about retiring my flip flops for the year, I am excited for football games, bonfires, and picking apples.

Here are the the top fall 2014 fashion trends so you can look great whether you are going to work, on a date, or volunteering at the kids' school!

A-Line Dresses

Women everywhere will rejoice that these classic dresses are back in style because they are flattering for all body types!  This style looks great with bare legs or over tights, so you'll get a lot of wear from this outfit.


Wool knits are big this year!  The chunkier the better.  This is good news for those of us who live in a cold climate.  Here in the Arctic Ohio, we need all the help we can get to stay warm!  This is a great casual look for every day.

Wide-Leg Pants

I know, I know.  Skinny jeans were just in, but for Fall 2014, wide-leg pants are in.  I, for one, am very happy about this!  This is another great look for every day, but it can also be great for the workplace or date night.


Accessories always make the outfit!  If getting a new wardrobe isn't in your budget, try accessorizing with this fall's hottest colors and treads.

In the fall, you'll want to look for earthy colors like dark blue, burgundy, gold, and brown.  Look for jewelry or glasses to accent your favorite pieces and update your look for the new styles.

Yes, you read that right.  Your eyewear is an accessory, and your insurance will help you pay for it!  Don't have vision insurance?  You can buy an affordable vision insurance plan from VSP Direct.  

Have you priced frames and lenses lately?  Designer frames will set you back a few hundred dollars, but VSP Direct insurance covers even designer frames, so you can get a great fall look with this year's hottest frames for a fraction of the price.  Plans start at just $17 a month for individuals!  Unlike other vision insurance companies, they give you access to dozens of the top names in glasses.
How can they offer such low premiums for great coverage?  Because they are the only not-for-profit vision insurance plan in the country!  They have plans in every state, and you can check for local providers on the VSP Direct website.  There are more than 30,000 providers in their network!

Their plans include:

  • A low co-pay for eye exams.  
  • An allowance for contacts and glasses.
  • Several lens options.
  • Low out-of-pocket expenses.  Most people save $227 per year!
  • A 100% guarantee.  If you aren't satisfied, call them and let them know!
Want to win a year of free coverage and an outfit from bebe?  Sign up for the contest on the VSP Direct Facebook page.  Simply pin your favorite outfit from their selections on Pinterest for a chance to win.  Contest ends September 30, 2014.  

Do you need vision insurance?  Check out the different plans for families and individuals at VSP Direct!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of VSP Direct.  

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17 September 2014

Calming Chamomile Eye Serum Recipe

As the seasons start changing, my allergies go nuts.  I'm allergic to something to do with leaves, so I've been sneezing and coughing the last few weeks.  Of course, this leads to dark circles under my eyes.  Dark circles under your eyes can add years to your appearance.

Dark circles can be caused by stress, allergies, not getting enough sleep, or genetics.  Unfortunately, if your mom was prone to getting dark circles under her eyes, you probably are too.

This easy to make calming chamomile eye serum recipe works by calming irritation and moisturizing your skin.  Use it daily for best results.  You can also use this easy eye cream for under eye circles.

Links in this post may be affiliate links, which means that I earn a small commission from sales.  Thanks for supporting Everything Pretty.

Calming Chamomile Eye Serum Recipe

What You Need

  1. Mix the jojoba oil and essential oils in a small bowl.
  2. Pour in to a small bottle.
  3. Use one drop of the serum per eye twice a day.  
  4. Use after washing your face.
Easy peasy, right?  

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Photo from zole4 via