New Years Resolutions

New Year’s resolutions are an unrealistic introduction to goal-setting. Surprise! That’s why there are thousands of articles floating around on how to keep them. That’s why you’re going to forget you ever made resolutions in March.

I’ve been working at becoming better organized for two years and I’m just now at the point where I felt like making resolutions were realistic. Setting out on a two year journey for the purpose of being able to keep a New Year’s resolution is silly, but setting forth on a lifelong journey to becoming more organized and better prepared sounds pretty okay.

1. Get a planner/calendar situation that helps you to meet your immediate deadlines. This isn’t about goal-making, this is about keeping your shit together. I started a bullet journal after running out of space in regular day planners and obsessively put things into Google Calendar.

2. Start planning out your weeks and months a little in advance. Some goal making naturally creeps in here. Planning out your months allows you to see when you have free time to schedule that dentist appointment you’ve been putting off for months.

3. Physically writing down monthly goals naturally evolves into having longer range goals. Some of those turn into New Year’s resolutions. Acclimating yourself to goal setting avoids this bullshit mentality of “either I keep my New Year’s resolutions or I am a complete failure.”

Some of my resolutions:

– Start planning for retirement
Update my skincare routine
       This still isn’t cutting it.
– Clean out my bookshelves
This is one that started as a monthly goal in the bullet journal, and oh man did I need more time.
– Regularly exercise
– Set a better daily routine

What boring, adulthood things are you doing in 2018?

ipsy, makeup, reviews

Is Ipsy Worth the Money? Six Month Update

This is a follow up from this post.

Items I used up are bolded and  go towards the total, items crossed out were trashed or given away.

Skip to the bottom for the summary!

From July:

Trestique Mini Porcelain Concealer – $10.83
EYEKO Skinny Liquid Eyeliner Travel Size in Black – $13.20
Winky Lux Double Matte Whip in Angel Food – $5.85
Hanalei Lip Treatment in Rose – $6.67
tarte cosmetics Amazonian clay waterproof bronzer – $11.23

From August:

AURORA Pro Cover Up Concealer in Pale Ecru – $8.00
Crown Brush SS035 – Medium Face Contour Brush – $6.99
Eyeko Black Magic Mascara – $6.33
Juara Rice Facial Cleanser – $5.45
Steve Laurant Precision Tip Liner in Black – $24.00

From September:

Luxie Rose Gold Medium Angled Shading Eye Brush 207 – $12.00
Pixi by Petra Beauty Blush Duo in Peach Honey – $7.00*
Smashbox Cosmetics Photo Finish Radiance Primer – $9.75
Manefit Beauty Planner Mask – Mugwort, Astringent + Pore Care and Beauty Planner Mask – Lily, Whitening + Brightening – $6.00 **
Adesse New York Organic Infused Gel Effect Nail Lacquer in Deception – $18.00

*I estimated this price because you can’t buy this blush without a brush anywhere.
** Okay, yes, I technically used these. They were single use and hurt me, so I trashed them EMOTIONALLY.

From October:

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Perversion – $13.33
Nail Medic Charcoal Infused Nail Polish in Lava or Volcanic Ash – $7.99
MDMflow Liquid Matte Lipstick in Retro – $23.37
MEECH AND MIA Loose Eyeshadow in Purple – $11.50
BioRepublic SkinCare Sheet Mask Duo – $10.00

From November:

MARC ANTHONY Hydrating Coconut Oil & Shea Butter Oil Treatment – $1.24
COLOURPOP COSMETICS Pressed Powder Shadow in Paper Tiger – $2.80
LIME CRIME Diamond Crushers in Lit -$9.00
TARTE Deluxe Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in Feisty – $7.78
TRÈSTIQUE Mini Brow Pencil in Espresso -$12.00

From December:

PURLISSE BEAUTY Coconut + Rice Nourishing Sheet Mask AND Green Tea + Ginger Treatment Sheet Mask – $16.00
CHELLA Eyebrow Defining Gel -$18.00
SMASHBOX COSMETICS Be Legendary Lipstick in Legendary – $16.80
NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Faux Blacks Eyeliner in Midnight – $4.00
CITY COLOR COSMETICS Shimmer Shadow in It’s A Girl -$3.99

Total Used: $73.27
Total Trashed: $123.97
Total in Limbo: $111.86
Possible Total: $309.10

First Six Months Conclusion

I still have not used $110 of product, though it looks like I will before the year is up. I still don’t plan on purchasing any of the items I’ve used, so “getting my money’s worth” in this case was more of “using things because they met a very low bar of ‘usable'”.

I do not plan on renewing my subscription in July.

We still have six months to go.

book recommendations, monthly review, television recommendations

December 2017

What’s up, hangovers?
I’m assuming that’s you. I’m spending my second new year in a row convinced that I have the actual plague.

Good riddance to 2017. On to December’s list of neat stuff!


The Good Place
I binged the whole first season on Netflix in one sitting. Kristen Bell accidentally gets into The Good Place when she dies and struggles to blend in.

Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit
Okay, it wasn’t the most groundbreaking book. I skimmed a lot of it..with wine. Still, it was the most palatable white feminist book that I read this year. Worth a look.

We won lottery tickets for Hamilton and got to see it AGAIN FROM THE SECOND ROW. Have you heard that Hamilton is a good show? It’s a good show.


We drove 1000 miles for the holidays and primarily ate fried food and took naps.

Food that is terrible for you but good for your happiness:
Fatz Cafe
They fry their poppy seed rolls like little donut holes. Menu still seems to be in an active transition, but as long as they have these rolls I will sit and eat an entire basket.

I thought that Sheetz was basically a southern 7-11 for a long time. I was wrong. I’m sorry. Endlessly customize-able fast food menu coffee menu. It’s good if you like your coffee to taste like candy..which I do.

Boiled Peanuts
My mom got me, like, a whole Wal Mart plastic bag of these at the flea market and I left them in her fridge. I am heartbroken. Both because I left my peanuts and because of how southern that sentence was.

Congaree National Park
It was too muddy to do anything but the boardwalk, but we saw some neat trees and will be back when it’s not so rainy.

ipsy, makeup, reviews, skin care

December 2017 Ipsy Bag

I was worried DHL ate this one, which would be my luck the month that ipsy finally sent me red lipstick.

Ipsy’s proofreading is still going strong this month, as well. All of my items were consistently capitalized for the second month in a row. Are things looking up?

What’s in my bag


PURLISSE BEAUTY Coconut + Rice Nourishing Sheet Mask AND Green Tea + Ginger Treatment Sheet Mask

I was scared to try this one. Do you remember the mugwort masks? Those stung without having ginger in them. Luckily, the ginger one mostly smelled like green tea and I didn’t die. Weird.


Pros: Smells great, relaxing, is made of the nice thick sheets that I liked instead of the paper thin ones.
Cons: They cost $6 a piece at their cheapest.
Purchase or pass: My sheet mask stash is running low, so I looked into buying them. I can’t justify spending $40 for six sheet masks.

CHELLA Eyebrow Defining Gel
It does absolutely nothing. It’s clear. It has no hold. I thought that maybe I trim my eyebrows too short, so I also tried them on the very patient boy’s. Nothing happened.
Purchase or pass: It’s in the trash now.

Swatches of everything else:

SMASHBOX COSMETICS Be Legendary Lipstick in Legendary
Pros: Is red (middle swatch).
Cons: Do you remember when everyone realized that you could melt crayons into coconut oil and make your own lipstick? I’m pretty sure that’s all this is, even though the ingredients list a bunch of other things. It’s very watery. You need to put a fair amount on to get the nice red color. It immediately feathers. If you blot it, it’s okay? Definitely not legendary.
Purchase or pass: I’m going to experiment with some lip liners before I throw it away.

NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Faux Blacks Eyeliner in Midnight
I’ve taken all eyeliner off of my ipsy profile despite genuinely wanting to wear it.
Pros: Color is neat. It’s dark without being black, but blue without being that 80’s blue.
Cons: Smudges with my primer. Can’t get crisp lines.
Purchase or pass: Is all eyeliner terrible?

CITY COLOR COSMETICS Shimmer Shadow in It’s A Girl
You know my spirit is broken when my favorite thing in an ipsy bag is metallic pink eye shadow.
Pros: Doesn’t crease with my primer, high color payoff. Shiny.
Cons: Rubs off very easily, even with primer. Pink.
Purchase or pass: The other colors look pretty nice. I really like City Color’s Be Matte lipsticks, so I might buy some of them.

book recommendations, monthly review, podcast recommendations

November 2017

I was considering doing some cute end of year top 10 lists for 2017 but they’re all Hamilton. I saw Hamilton. It’s the best everything.


The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
I’ve read some reviews that claim The Handmaid’s Tale is making a hyperbole of the patriarchy. Those people are wrong. After reading this, I’m having stress dreams about my bank account and name disappearing.


Dollhouses of St Louis (Episode 283) by 99% Invisible
Have you ever seen re-purposed brick and wondered if it was ethically sourced? Now you will.

Secrets and Seances (Episode 79) by Criminal
Was anyone else obsessed with “true” ghost stories as a kid? This episode about a medium in the 1940’s scratched my grown up itch for the genre. Please click the link and look at what was considered believable photographic evidence of ghosts. Now wonder what things we’re going to be laughed at for believing in 60 years.


Hamilton is the most perfect piece of theater I have ever seen in my life. It is worth the money and the hype. I cried the whole time.

The Met
We spent our whole first day here. Pro tips: 1) Admission is a suggested price. Don’t pay $25 if you don’t have $25. 2) The Memory Palace recorded some really lovely episodes about some of their pieces. I recommend finding someone to run briskly walk through the storage space scavenger hunt with.

Trinity Church
I generally think that graveyards are a waste of space, but Eliza is in this one.
(And A. Ham, and Philip, and Angelica, and Hercules Mulligan. Worth a visit.)

health care, skin care

My Current Skincare Routine – November 2017

I’m skeptical of a lot of routine posts. They tend to come just after someone has posted a product haul. It’s not always evident from my posts where I slap weird products on my face with no regards to the consequences, but I genuinely am into skincare.

You can’t work out a skincare routine overnight. You will not immediately know what works for your skin. Sometimes you’ll use a product for months and then realize that it is the actual worst and you’ll have to start over.

The past two years I’ve been through three major cleansers, two short term “fun cleansers”, two major moisturizers, and briefly flirted with chemical exfoliation before backing off. And then there’s, you know, all of the weird stuff.

Those long, multi-step routines are super intimidating. I don’t believe that they help anyone build a routine. So, before I ruin my basic routine with that haul from The Ordinary I’m planning, here is my basic routine that I have spent over a year working out.

Step 1: Go to the dermatologist.
This isn’t always feasible if you don’t have health insurance. If you are an adult with health insurance and the means to go to a dermatologist, but you have not, I am judging you. Get your moles looked at. Get that intense steroid cream for your weird dry patch of skin.

If you’re looking for product recommendations, my skin is both super oily AND prone to dryness. Almost nothing breaks me out.

– Cleanse with konjac sponge and CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser
If you go the physical exfoliation route, make sure that your konjac sponge gets super soft. I got these sponges in February and I’ve still got one or two that are unused.
– Toner 
I’m using Dickinson’s Hydrating toner because Influenster sent me a full sized bottle ages ago. I thought toner would be drying, but my oil didn’t get under control until I started using it. I think the hyaluronic acid is helping to hold in my moisturizer. I have no real evidence for this.
– Eye cream
I’m using a vitamin C cream from TJ Maxx that does nothing for my under eye bags or discoloration. I can’t wait to finish it to use something else.
– CeraVe Moisturizing Cream
GET THE TUB, NOT THE PUMP. It lasts forever.
– Sunscreen if I’m going to be out.
I hate sunscreen. I hate sunscreen so much that I monitor my sun exposure with an app to feel better about not wearing it more often.
– Probably ruin everything I’ve just done with makeup.

– A mask once or twice a week. The bubble clay and these sheet masks are my current favorites.
– Cleanse with konjac sponge and CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser
– Eye cream
– CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

ipsy, makeup, reviews

November 2017 Ipsy Bag

I “only” have seven months left of my year subscription. Oh boy.

This month’s theme is “All You”, which sounds suspiciously like something that a “market your product to millennials” random word generator spat out.

And side note, this month ipsy decided to capitalize the brand name of ALL of my items instead of one or two! You’re finally doing great at proofreading, bby.

What’s in my bag

MARC ANTHONY Hydrating Coconut Oil & Shea Butter Oil Treatment
Pros: Smells great. It does actually smooth my hair without making it a greasy mess.
Cons: The bottle doesn’t close. It’s oil. If I even think about this bottle tipping over, everything in my bathroom will be ruined.
Purchase or pass: I can’t figure out where to buy this in a bottle instead of a foil packet. No one wants to buy a foil packet that contains more than one use of a product.

Here’s a swatch of the rest:

COLOURPOP COSMETICS Pressed Powder Shadow in Paper Tiger
I was pissed that I was being sent yellow eyeshadow. I don’t wear yellow. I don’t have the complexion for yellow. I’m pale with pink undertones. Yellow is BAD. This yellow is…passable, though.
I still have no idea what I’m going to DO with it, but I could probably smoke it out with some brown eyeshadow and look okay. Bonus points for not budging when I washed everything off my face.
Purchase or pass: One day I’m going to do a ColourPop haul, so I was happy the quality was good even if this is the last color I would ever pick.

LIME CRIME Diamond Crushers in Lit
I have some feelings about Lime Crime. On one hand, there is all of the drama. On the other, people really like the velvetines. This lipstick wasn’t the greatest introduction to them. There isn’t enough pink under the glitter to get a crisp line, and the glitter is too dense to really wear over a darker lip. It’s an awful color for me. I think ipsy knew this was going to be a weird one, so the website insists that it can also be worn as a highlighter.

If you like your highlighter to look like straight glitter, then sure.

It does smell really good. I want to eat it.
Purchase or pass: I want to throw it away, but I’m inexplicably attached to it.

TARTE Deluxe Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in Feisty
There is absolutely nothing wrong with this blush. I have no snark for you. It blends. You can build up coverage. It works nicely with my skin tone. My only reservation is that the bronzer from this same line broke me out
Purchase or pass: It’s $29. I have student loans, so we’re gonna pass.

TRÈSTIQUE Mini Brow Pencil in Espresso
Hey, did you notice how irritated my arm was in that swatch picture? It’s because this thing’s wax-to-pigment ratio is way off. It wont write. It’s also too orange to match my eyebrows.
Purchase or pass:  Direct to trash.