Tuesday, February 28, 2017

February Favorites and Fails

february product roundup, favorite products,

Hey Friends! I can't believe I'm already back with a monthly round-up of monthly favorites. In today's post, I'm sharing my favorites, my fails, and products I've used up in the month of February. Read my January Favorites + Fails here if you want to see what I loved last month.  These Favorites and Fails will go under my "life" category if you ever want to find them in the future! 

February Favorites 

Beauty Favorites

BareMinerals Original Foundation

This month I've switched from liquid foundation back to an old classic. Ever since getting back from my honeymoon my skin has not been it's best, but at least it behaved leading up to the wedding! I wanted to try switching foundations to something lighter on the skin, and I remember their tagline saying "so good you can sleep in it". I had an old container in the light shade, but it was too yellow for me. I also didn't care for the original brush I still had in the back on my makeup storage because it felt scratchy compared to my other brushes. I found this kit on the Sephora website and thought it was the perfect solution. Both the makeup and brush have made it to my favorites list! The brush is so soft and I love to buff in the product, plus its rose gold.

Salley Hanses Miracle Gel in shade Little Peony

This color was love at first site in the Target aisle. Light/ white pink polishes are my go-to almost year round, and this is my favorite formula for home manicures. Essie Fiji has never worked for me because it always streaks, but this formula is so thick and easy to apply! The top coat is also my favorite, but it will give you bubbles in your polish if you use too much of it. It also dries really fast!

BareMinerals Matte Lipstick in Slay

This is the newest product to make my favorites but I did want to mention it for the girls who haven't fallen in love with liquid lipsticks (like me!). I always found liquid lipsticks to be way too drying and intense for every day. I'm a chapstick / lipgloss girl at heart. But when I tried this it actually feels way lighter on the lips and I love the color (Slay). I recommend swatching them next time you're at the beauty counter!

Loreal Lash Primer + Dior Overcurl Mascara

This was a favorite last month, so I'll probably stop mentioning it in upcoming favorites. Unless you see a new combo, assume this is still a favorite! I've been using this combo since last spring. I've never been one to splurge on mascaras, but after trying the Dior Overcurl mascara my mom and I have been hooked ever since! The primer is also better than three other's I've tried in Sephora.

O.R.G Skincare Mineral Peel Face 

I received this product in my Editors Box from Fab Fit Fun (I purchased the box out of my own curiosity). This was my favorite product included in the box. You spray it on and let it sit for 5 seconds, then as you rub your skin you will start to feel your skin ball up! Sounds gross, but I love it in the morning before applying makeup. I also like to use it on my dry lips.

Aquaphor Healing Ointment

 This little sample was included in an Ulta order and I've been loving it to treat my dry lips! I have a few others that just feel like vaseline,  but this product really feels like it does something to my lips when I apply it. It has more of a wavy texture. 

Lifestyle Favorites

blush tops, shop bop top, endless rose

Endless Rose Top

I'm slightly embarrassed by how much you're going to see this top here in the next few weeks. I pre-shot a lot of photos for future posts (not fashion related) and never switched tops! But, I'm ok with it because I just love the top. It's probably my favorite purchase for the upcoming season, I'm tempted to buy it in white as well. I recommend sizing up if you have broader shoulders like I do, I purchased a small and a medium and returned the small.

See this top styled here

Kate Spade Rose Gold Case

Tim spoiled me with a new MacBook on my birthday and I've been on the lookout for a case that wasn't boring and/or masculine. My patience paid off because I found this metallic rose gold case this month. It's actually designed for a Microsoft pro, but my computer has plenty of room inside. This hard case is also tempting me, but I'll probably just go with this case alone for now.

women nike juvenile in bright melon, cute nikes, cute workout shoes

For Valentines Day Tim gifted me these new Nike's and they're way more comfortable that I was expecting. They're very flexible and they barely feel like anything on top of your feet. I've been totally accepting the athleisure trend and wearing them with jeans (and even to work ;) as much as I can. I always have to size up a half size in Nikes, and these were no exception. I've sent the link to four people at work, so they're definitely a hit!

Sugarfina Candy

On my birthday I decided to treat myself to this Cheer's box and ever since these boxes have been my guilty pleasure. I recently bought 3 valentines boxes while they were offering buy 2 get 1 free and have been snacking on them all weekend! My favorites are the champagne and bubbly bears, I even had them at my wedding while we were getting ready.

Sugar Paper Pocket Planner

I could include everything from Sugar Paper + Target on my favorites, they just speak to my little organization heart. When I found this little planner in store, I somehow justified a second planner for 2017 because my other planner was too big to carry with me everywhere. I still take it to work, but this one is always with me to jot down appointments and reminders.  Some other things I love from their line: this scalloped business card holder and this file organizer. 

February Fails / What I returned 

Tarte Shape Tape

I'm bummed this didn't work out for me because I haven't stopped hearing about it! The coverage was ideal, but the fragrance is what made this a fail for me. I even got a random clogged pore under my eye and I blame the chemicals in the product. I should have referenced my girl Paula before purchasing to save me the trouble.

Lush Surplice Tee

Other than the color I really have no positive things to say about this tee. It felt scratchy and was thin, the cut was way too low in the bust and too cropped at the waist, and the wrap didn't lay like it does in the model photo. I definitely returned.

Products I used up in February / What I repurchased

Tula Day and Night Moisturizer

This moisturizer lasted longer than I expected, and I did repurchase it while they had a promotion for a free cleanser with purchase. It's light on the skin and has kept my skin balanced through the winter months. You can read about my skincare routine here. My only complaint about this line is that it has a slight "grandma" scent, but I'll take that over a synthetic fragrance any day!

Moroccan Oil Dry Shampoo

I've repurchase my 5th bottle of this stuff and I'm not even done with my 4th! Tim always picks them up for me at this work because it gets a slight employee discount on it. It's definitely the best I have tried, and I've tried a lot! If you want me to do a review on the dry shampoo products I've tried, just let me know.

Donna Karen Deodorant

This lasted much longer than my regular drugstore deodorant, which is good since it was like triple the price ;) I repurchased it during the fall Sephora VIB sale only because Tim would actually compliment on how I smell when wearing it. Now that he know's it's from a department store, he no longer likes to encourage that behavior ;)

 Loreal Voluminous Primer

This primer beats three other's I have tried from Sephora. I only use it on the weekends, because ain't no body got time for mascara primer before work. Already repurchased!

These were really easy to remember to take every morning because they were like candy, which is good if you really struggle with vitamins. I didn't repurchase however because I didn't like the first two ingredients - high fructose corn syrup and sugar.

It Cosmetics CC cream

This is the second tube of this I've gone through. I didn't repurchase for reasons I will share in my upcoming review!

Mac Brush Cleanser

This is such an old product in my beauty cabinet, which shows how often I clean my makeup brushes.. ouch! But really, I use something else to deep clean my brushes. This cleanser is good for quick clean ups if you're using the same brush to blend eyeshadow colors or blush. I don't love the strong alcohol smell, so I don't plan on repurchasing. I will Back to Mac it, though!

What I'm looking forward to in March?

  • Celebrating Maw Maw's (my grandmothers) 90th birthday
  • St. Patricks Day in Savannah with my girlfriends
  • Friends wedding
  • Spring weather and fashion

Have any favorites I should know about? Leave them in the comments below! I would also love to hear about something you're excited for in March.

xo Amanda John 

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Nordstrom Winter Sale

Throughout the weekend I've been scrolling through the Nordstrom Winter Sale and y'all, it's enormous. Like 300+ pages to scroll through enormous. So you can enjoy the rest of you weekend, I thought I would hop on here for an unusual Sunday post to share my picks from the sale.




What's your favorite item / What did you purchase from the sale?
xo Amanda John 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Bow Details

long hairstyle ideas, hair bow,
kate spade bow heels, bow heels, kate spade heels
long hair styles, hair bow styles, how to wear a bow in your hair
How was everyone's Valentine's Day? Tim and I actually went to my parents for an unplanned spaghetti night and there's no other way I'd rather spend our first married holiday together! Tim wrote me the sweetest love letter and it meant so much more than a store-bought card. My favorite line talked about how he hoped I didn't feel special just one day of the year - and he truly makes an effort to do that every single day. 💕 

We haven't really gone all out for Valentines Day because after Christmas is my birthday and our dating anniversary, so we always just take a breather on the celebrations. I remember on our first Valentines Day 4 years ago Tim sent me flowers and they never showed up! We had just started dating two weeks prior, so I remember it being slightly awkward because neither of us had any expectations. 

I adore this top from Banana Republic because it's really stretchy and I love a feminine sleeve detail. I also linked a similar top in the widget that I purchased because I just love the detail so much! Both are pretty, but if you just want one or the other I would recommend the pink one because it's a little longer and the material is a bit softer.  

I twisted my hair back into this big bow which can be used in your hair or pinned into your skirt, which I'm planning to do soon! I wanted to tie in the black and white together so I paired it with these Kate Spade Peggy heels that also have a bow detail. I found these at Nordstrom Rack last year, so I'm linking other shoes that I would wear with the look if I had them (aka on my wishlist!).

Thanks for reading!
xo Amanda John 

Monday, February 13, 2017

Office Tour

blogger office tour, clothing rack inspiration, office inspiration, closet office, strawberry chic
Today I'm very excited to finally share my office space with you! Since Tim and I found this little townhome to rent I've been dreaming up this post for y'all. It's a three bedroom, so we each have our own little space in it. His space is of course for gaming, and mine is where I get to spend my time blogging. The very first weekend I was in the home I went to Ikea for office furniture. I mean we didn't even have a mattress yet #priorities

When you first walk into the room, I have a clothing rack to keep new purchases and organize outfits to style so they don't get lost in my closet. I didn't need a fancy clothing rack, so I opted for this cheap one from Ikea ($12). Just like my closet, the pieces are organized by color to be appealing to the eye. 
When I'm prepping for shoots, I like to put complete outfits together and hang all the accessories going with them so I don't leave anything out. Of course, even if you're not a blogger you can benefit from a clothing rack. Use your's for extra storage and inspiration to avoid wearing the same outfit over and over. It also helps me get ready faster because I can easily find all my favorite pieces. 
I still have a little holiday sparkle on my clothing rack, because the pieces are too pretty to be hidden in my dark closet! You can see I'm ready to transition into spring with lighter whites and pinks. I'm loving tops with feminine details on the sleeve including ruffles, peplums, and cut outs.  I've linked as many tops as I could at the end of the post!
I purchased the wood hangers from Ikea while I was there because I couldn't beat the $4.99 price tag. The total to put together my clothing rack was only $21 plus tax, so you don't have to spend a lot to put something together! 
sugar paper boxes, super paper for target,
You may recognize the white and blush boxes from my holiday photo shoot. They're from the Paper Source + Target holiday collection and I purchased them for storage. Inside, I have winter hats and gloves, along with just random junk that doesn't have a home. To the right, I have my wedding planner, and to the left, I have my wedding reception shoes along with my reception dress and robe. Read about my wedding accessories here, plus there's a video about them!
This is the mirror where I take quick selfies of my outfit, though I haven't been doing that recently because I prefer to have my Instagram husband take them for me ;) The lighting is usually not optimal in this room when I would need to take those pictures (in the morning before work). If you're wondering where the frame is from, it's custom from my family's art gallery. The white rug is a HomeGoods find and I always seem them in there! A little tip - compare a few side by side to get the whitest one. 
I've had this desk all throughout PT school, so it's been through some studying for sure. It's actually larger than it looks in this photo, but I enjoy never running out of desk space. My makeup was previously stored in the left drawers, but I decided I needed the extra space for storage. I found this GLAMbox look-a-like from HomeGoods but I'm still feeling out whether I like the cluttery look of it. Though it does help me see and use different products more frequently! 
desk diaries, office tour, desk tour, school supplied, chic desk inspiration, gold desk inspiration
I recently purchased this desk calendar to help plan out my posts, but mostly to prevent all my makeup from staining my white desk. It was getting old using a magic eraser every weekend! The vase with our wedding date was a gift from my MOH. It's sad how happy seeing all those perfectly even numbers make me, haha! Am I the only one who had to get married on an even date? Just me??

Also random story- I've been looking for the SanDisk reader in this picture all weekend... grr! My new Macbook doesn't come with any ports (cool, Apple), so I can't upload a new video until I find it. My zebra trinket dish is currently not available online from Francesca's,but I linked the original designer below. 
I always use cute coffee mugs for storage and I'm not really sure why, but it works. I also have my makeup brushes in one. I may do a future post on my makeup collection + storage. Let me know if you'd like to see it! Washi tape is great to always have on hand. I purchased mine from Target and Hobby Lobby, and use it when planning all the time. I also used it in my wedding planner to stick on inspiration and I could switch it out as needed.
gray jewelry storage, jewelry storage, closet office
This is my little jewelry storage that used to be my Moms. She painted it for me while we were on our honeymoon and I'm obsessed with how it turned out! I've already shot pictures and film for a collection post, so stay tuned :) And yes, that's my wedding dress just hanging on the door still. I need to figure out what to do with it...
Ikea home tour, Ikea furniture, Ikea shelf inspiration
Another Ikea purchase that I'm sure you've seen sprayed gold in other office tours. I went the lazy route and decided it was fine white, but I did want to cover the wood base with cheap marble contact paper, which was super easy to do. I had to make two Ikea trips for this bad boy because the first box had a huge dent in the unit, but that's what you get with Ikea. This is definitely the space that changes most in my office because I'm always re-organizing it. 

At the top, I store my framed DPT diploma with my most used clutch. On the right top shelf, I have a tray of smaller perfumes and samples, my vows, some fake florals from Hobby Lobby, and a printed Pinterest quote (shameless plug in - follow me on Pinterest here).

On the second shelf, I have a few wedding items on display including my shoes, the cards from our guests in the clear gold case, and a framed invitation in this pretty frame. 

The second to last shelf is where I've stored a few nail polishes in a cute gold scallop container and my sunglasses inside an acrylic tray I won at Swoozies during a raffle. 

Along the bottom shelf I store clutches and two of the bags I use more frequently. I found the clutch organizer in the office section at HomeGoods, and it was one of those things I've been on the hunt for a while! 
office tour, shelf styling, how to style a shelf, feminine decor inspiration, blogger decor

That wraps up today's office tour! I filmed a short video of my office tour and picked out my favorite pieces on my clothing rack. Check out the video on my new Youtube Channel, here!

I will try to link everything I can here, but not everything is still available. If you have a question about a particular piece, let me know in the comments! 




xo Amanda John


Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Bow Leggings

kate spade leggings, kate spade bow, bow leggings, beyond yoga leggings
 It was love at first site when I spotted these Kate Spade Bow Leggings on the sale rack. I've been looking at the Beyond Yoga + Kate Spade collaboration since it hit the stores but didn't want to splurge that much on athleisure wear. Now, I'm waiting on my second pair in pink to arrive at my doorstep tomorrow because there's nothing more me than some pink bow leggings. 

These are definitely a bit thinner than my Zella and Lululemon leggings, but they're not sheer after a bend test in the mirror. They almost feel like second skin. When I held up my normal size, I was convinced they would be too small, but they definitely stretch to fit! 

I received this Lululemon top for my birthday and another color from Tim for Christmas. I love how fitted it is in the sleeve to layer under jackets and vests, but it also looks great on its own! My vest is an older version from Lululemon, I hope they come out with it again because it's so lightweight but warm and soft.

I went with a braid for this look, mostly because it was so windy when we shot it. Afterward, I heard to Target for my usual Sunday trip. See some of the goodies I found in this post from earlier this week!

xo Amanda John

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Cropped Blush Sweater

At first, I wasn't too sure about this top when I saw it online, but I added it to my cart and wanted to decide in person. I don't own anything cropped. But I'll be honest with you, it was the first piece from that order that I wore out because I fell in love with it! If you're curious, I'll also link the other items from that order below. 

The crop hits right below my waistband, so I don't have to worry about showing my food baby after dinner. It's also very comfortable and flowy, and since I'm basically over anything fitted after the holidays I'm a fan of that!  I love the little flare sleeve because if you haven't noticed the flare/bell sleeve is pretty popular among other bloggers. Fun sleeves add so much interest to your look!

Originally, I wore this outfit for date night with these heels, but since they're sold out I wanted to re-wear the look with a classic leopard heel that you probably already have in your closet. I couldn't share as many photos of this look as I would have liked because on this day it was so windy, my hair was just flying in front of my face in most of them!

xo Amanda John