Charm Bracelet for Adults = DROOL!

A friend of mine has one of these, and I always just thought it was a really cool bracelet. Then I found out that it was a charm bracelet! WOW! I like the idea of charm bracelets, but I don't like the look of the traditional charm bracelet with all those charms hanging off of it - seems childish.

The Pandora charm bracelet is different - to most people, it looks like it's a fun bracelet with random silver beads. But a closer look reveals that it tells the story of your life! You can get them here.

You start with a base bracelet - the silver one I want is $50.

Then you add charms. Here are some of the ones that I have my eyes on.

Daisy Safety Chain ($35) - Not only because I think a safety chain is a good idea, but also because I LOVE daisies - they have always been the flower a doodled, just like the daisies on my blog!

Graduation Cap ($30) - I'm out of grad school in a couple of weeks - and FINALLY done with school. This is a major milestone for me.
Doggie ($25) - After years of house sitting I finally got a dog of my very own. I love having her in my life.

Suitcase ($35) - I have been moving my whole life - and will be moving again after I graduate. I also would like to travel more.High Heel ($30) - For the new girlier side of me.
I also would like to get a bike - for the less girly part of me. I haven't found one on the Pandora website, and if they don't have one I'll probably get one custom made. I see on the website that you can order custom charms! :)


MAC Blacktrack Fluidline

photo: MAC

I finally got a pot of this much raved gel liner. I'm excited to try it! I do love the MUFE liner so far though. Sometime in the near future I'll do a head to head of the two. Just gimme time to play with Blacktrack!


NARS Releases New Blush

Photo: NARS
NARS makes the nicest blush. That is a fact. The colors are so natural (even if they don't look it in the container), and it applies smoothly for beautiful results. The new blush, DOLCE VITA, is described as a 'dusty rose'. I love the color, I love that it's a matte blush, and I want it...despite the $25 price tag!


Favorite Things - A Little Piece of Bath Heaven

There are two Lush bath bombs that I absolutely love. From the scents to the fact that these are the slow fizzing bombs that leave the water creamy and fantastic, these bath bombs really are - a little piece of heaven!

Photos: Lush.com
SupernovaThis is the same scent as my Christmas LE bath bomb called 'Christmas Party'. The only difference is that the Christmas Party bomb has some really sharp glitter to it, so when it melts it leaves behind a plastic shrapnel that is less than pleasant when you accidentally roll over it in the bath. Supernova has 'confetti' in it - pieces of colored paper that soak up water and just sit there in your tub. Therefore, I 'sock' both bombs - I wrap them in cheese cloth so the stuff doesn't get into my bath water. Even with this slight inconvenience I love Supernova. It is a slow dissolving, lovely bomb, with a fresh clean scent. It leaves the water slightly creamy and slightly pink. This is the perfect bomb on a hot day, or when I'm taking a pick-me-up bath.

My all time favorite Lush bath bomb! Haagenbath smells like chocolate mint, not my favorite of ice cream flavors, but it makes a lovely bath. Like Supernova, this bomb also leaves your water slightly creamy and pink, but it also has two bonuses. The first is a minty tingle. The second is the fact that this bomb is LOADED with cocoa butter! I LOVE THAT! Plop this one into a nice hot bath and you will be rewarded with the softest, most moisturized skin you've ever had. This is a great bath when the weather is super dry and your skin feels like it's two sizes smaller than your body.

The drawback to these two luxurious bombs is their $6.15 price tag, making them way too pricey for an every day item. But it's certainly worth every penny to treat yourself once in a while with one of these bombs in your bath. And yes, there are many imitations to the lush bath bombs, but scent wise you really just can't beat the original.


Review: Rosebud Salve

Photo: www.rosebudsalve.com
I have heard raves about rosebud salve for YEARS before I tried it. Why bother? It's just another lip balm. Not only that but it's one that's in a pot, and I HATE sticking my fingers into lip products. And to top it off it smells like ROSES - a bona fide grandma smell to me! However, on a recent trip to Sephora I saw these little tins at the check out line, gave it a sniff - not as grandma rose-y as I expected, so I decided to try it out. The verdict: this stuff is pretty nice for a glorified petroleum jelly. It leaves your lips silky smooth. It is not at all sticky and the smell is actually ok. The tin is big enough to stick your lips directly into, hence no need for getting your fingers all yuck.  At only $6 at Sephora for a considerably large tin, it doesn't break the bank. I smelled the strawberry one, but it was too sweet - sickeningly sweet - smelling, so I passed. Another tip: this is a salve, so not only can you use it on your lips, but anywhere else you have dry skin - elbows, feet, hands. Keep in mind that petroleum jelly does not soak into your skin, it forms a barrier.  As such, I use it on top of a moisturizer (after it sets) on dry bits to seal that moisture in. 


Favorite Things - The Magic of the Wet Wipe

Photos: Everyday Minerals, Pampers
I discovered the magic of the wet wipe when I started camping. There is nothing better when you don't have access to a shower for a couple of days! I rediscovered wet wipe magic when Everyday Minerals came out with their makeup wipe. These wipes smell like lavender and grapefruit, and are great to have around. My other fave is the Kandoo wipe by Pampers, available at every grocery/drug store. Kandoo wipes don't smell like baby (powdery, etc), and are a good size, plus I'm attracted to the lime and purple packaging. I use wet wipes for wiping my face after a workout, wiping my makeup brushes after I use them, and even wiping the sink area of residual mineral makeup. I take wet wipes camping, and when I travel. I have even used wet wipes on my dog! Both brands are great smelling, great value, and do the job. Neither will take off makeup very well, especially anything water resistant or water proof, but they're good for just about everything else. The Kandoo wipes win the race by a nose however, because the EDM wipes have to be mail ordered, and the packaging is not very airtight (the seal does not reseal very well), so you have to store them upside down and be very careful so they don't dry out on you. Either way you go, wet wipes are great, so get some.


Head to Head: Kabuki Brushes

I have two favorite kabuki brushes. One is a synthetic brush from Lumiere and the other is the MAC 182 buffer brush.

Winner - MAC 182
This is the top criteria for me when considering kabuki brushes. I have used some not so soft BareEssentuals brushes before, and I was happy to give those away when I finally invested in better quality brushes. Though the Lumiere brush is incredibly soft, the MAC brush is the softest Kabuki I've ever used. It's like soft downy feathers dancing on your skin.

Winner - Lumiere
The Lumiere brush is definitely denser than the MAC 182 - when buffing minerals onto my skin, this brush really does a lot of the work for me.

Winner - TIE
These brushes both apply mineral foundation incredibly well. I especially like the Lumiere brush for a wet application of minerals (load minerals onto brush, spray toner or fix+, buff onto face). I love the MAC brush for dry application, and for blending my blush.

Winner - Lumiere
I got the Lumiere brush during their pre-buy event for around $20 or less. It is not for sale on their site anymore, but I believe Kim is planning another pre-buy event, so keep your eyes peeled! The MAC 182 is $45!!!! That is the major reason why I hesitated so long before buying it. I hear they sometimes have them at the CCO's (Cosmetic Company Outlets) for around $30. I bought mine on ebay for $15 shipped - mind you I got lucky with both price and the fact that I was not scammed and got the real deal - there are a lot of fakes out there, so be careful!
Other Consideration
The lumiere brush is synthetic, so if you're vegan and/or prefer synthetic brushes, I really believe this is the best synthetic brush out there.
Honorable mention
The Everyday Minerals long handle kabuki and long handle flat top are FABULOUS brushes for their value. These brushes are both incredibly soft and very effective at applying your minerals. Hint: if you get them part of one of the kits, they're even cheaper!

If I was stuck on a desert island with a can of mineral foundation and could only take one brush, it would be the MAC 182. This is the best kabuki I have ever used, and it is my favorite face brush.


Deal of the Moment

Image: www.beautycrunch.com
Stila Rouge Pots (3 for $15)

I just got these from www.beautycrunch.com. They're great! They go on smoothly, and blend well and the colors are great. Just be careful with these little beauties, a little color goes a long way...so apply with a light hand or you'll end up looking like a clown. The down side to these is that the little pots make it virtually impossible to get a brush in there - so you're pretty much forced to use your finger. I dab them on my face with a finger, then blend a little with my finger, and then finish blending with a kabuki. This technique is serving me well, though I'm not a fan of sticking my finger into the product directly. I wonder if the MAC 188 would do....hmmm....time to go shopping????

Here are the swatches:


NEWS - Lumiere is having a SALE!!!

Photo: Lumiere
Check out the summer sale at one of my favorite MMU companies - Lumiere!!! I am not sure how long it's running for, so get 'em while they're hawt! Man, I wish I hadn't spent all of my money at Sephora...


New Goodies - MUFE

I got some awesome new goodies at Sephora the other day. Make Up For Ever Eye seal, Cream Liner (in Brown, no. 2), and Concealer (no. 1). I will work a little bit more with these before I post official reviews, but so far so good...

Favorite Things - Honey Mango Shave Cream

There is a gem waiting for you to be discovered at your local Trader Joe's. Hidden between vegan lotions, handmade soap and Tom's toothpaste, is by far the most superior shaving cream I have ever used. I had heard good things about it, but I was hesitant - I am not one for supermarket brand beauty products, believing that you do sometimes get what you pay for. But this orange tube of magic, with its $2.99 price tag, is the best thing to happen to my legs and underarms. Not only does this shave cream smell great, it is also LUXURIOUSLY thick and moisturizing. Don't expect this shaving cream to lather into a foam, but do expect it to leave your legs the silkiest they have ever been. I gave a tube of this to a friend of mine, akin to giving someone their first hit of a mind altering substance, and the next time I saw her she had just purchased 3 more tubes. Apparently not only is she a convert, but her hubby is as well. Once you try this shave cream, you will never go back to anything else. The only draw back to this one is that you will be throwing away your unused cans of Skintimate shave gel, and other foamy and drying shaving gels/foams- what a waste!


Favorite Things - Taking Care of the Feets

Yes, it would be nice to get a professional pedicure every two weeks, but unfortunately I just don't have enough disposable income at the moment to make that happen. Some day...

Photos: lush.com and kaboodle.com
Lush Pied de Pepper ($14.45/3.5 oz)
Again, the credit for the best foot lotion goes to Lush (www.lush.com). Pied de Pepper is the most moisturizing foot lotion ever - that is - moisturizing, but not greasy. Most foot lotions I have tried just sit on your feet like a layer of crisco, and leave you wondering if anything actually penetrated the skin, or if you just have the thickest most disgusting foot calluses in the world, and I might as well name them as they are impermeable to any softening agent in the world. Pied de Pepper lets me cling to my self esteem as it soaks into my feet and moisturizes like a dream. Smelling like a delicious home made Chai tea, the only drawback to this puppy is that it may stain your sheets, or sleeping socks, or whatever it comes in contact with. This has not been a problem for me, but definitely something I keep in mind when I use it.

The PedEgg ($9.99)
Yes, I saw the cheesy infomercials about this one - and I thought to myself - no way this thing is as good as they claim...no way! I even went as far as to make fun of friends who bought this beauty when it became available at the local drug store. I believe I compared it to the spray hair, and that hair cutting device you attach to your vacuum cleaner. Then I saw it while waiting to check out at the drug store. I had just been thinking over the course of the previous couple of days how my feet needed some attention. There was a lot of crusty on those heels, and it was not pretty. So acting purely on impulsive, I bought the darn infomercial-ed egg, and soon thereafter realized that I was wrong - very wrong. The PedEgg is great at removing calluses and leaving your feet softer than you ever thought possible. Sure, getting your callouses removed by a professional is nice, but if you can't afford that pedicure regularly, this will keep nasties at bay in between appointments. There really is no draw back to this one, so go get one - especially if you wear flip flops!!

Favorite Things - Lush Hair Care

When it comes to my finicky tresses, Lush (www.lush.com) hair care is king. I was originally attracted to this line of hair products because they are silicone free. Since my hair is super straight (read: flat) and very fine (read: fly-aways), I was excited at the possibility of hair products that decrease build-up.
New Shampoo ($9.25/bar)
I absolutely love solid shampoo. It is the most portable wonderful product ever invented. Use it like a soap: lather in your hands, and then rub into your hair. Just remember to let it drain and dry in between uses, so that it doesn't turn into a slimy mess in a similar fashion to that abandoned soap in a pool of water in your soap dish. New shampoo leaves my hair beautifully clean and manageable without being drying. It smells lovely of cinnamon, but the scent does not last past the rinse, which is good news to perfume wearers and those who are not fans of cinnamon.
Veganese Conditioner ($8.75/3.3 fl.oz.; $17.45/8.4 fl.oz.; $25.75/16.9 fl.oz.)
I must admit that when I first contemplated silicone free hair care I was terrified that my hair would regress back to the consistency it was when I swam competitively. Veganese conditioner ensured that my hair not only maintained a straw-free consistency, but also left it softer and shinier than it has ever been. And the best part is that there are much fewer fly-aways! This conditioner smells slightly citrusy and works best for me when I mix it 50:50 with water. When diluted this conditioner spreads more evenly in my hair, and I end up using less to get an even coat.
Jungle Solid Conditioner ($9.95/3.5 oz)
Solid conditioner? Yep I know, it's weird. But this stuff works once you get the hang of it. The easiest way to use it is just to take a chunk and rub your hair with it. This takes a while longer than if the conditioner was a liquid, but the results are well worth it. If the idea of rubbing a hunk of solid conditioner does not sound appealing, then take a piece, cut it into small chunks, add water and melt in the microwave (in 30s increments, with stirring in between). This will form a paste that makes use easier. Also, this makes a great leave-in conditioner. Just rub a little into your hands and then spread on your wet hair. The smell of Jungle is very unique. It's a relic scent from Lush days gone by, and the best way to describe it is - it smells like the outdoors. Fresh cut grass, wild flowers, and a fresh breeze. It reminds me of laundry that was hung outside on a fresh summer day. Either way I use it, this conditioner makes my straight hair glossy, but not greasy...shiny, but not greasy...manageable, but not greasy. Wonderful.

The cons of Lush hair care is that it is not cheap. It seems like you're not getting much for the ding your wallet takes. But you get more than you think, as this stuff lasts for ages.

Now I must admit, silicone free hair care is not for every hair type. I have certainly read many accounts of night mare experiences with this haircare. However, there are even more accounts of people who started using silicone free hair care and have never looked back. Just remember, if you are going to give up silicones, you will have anywhere from a day to a week of yuckiness while you're stripping all the silicone off your hair. Call this a 'cleansing' or 'adjustment' period. And once you get through it, you will be rewarded by incredibly healthy hair!

Disclosure Policy

I love to try new products and then tell you my thoughts on those products.  All of my reviews are my honest thoughts and opinions. 

Most of what I have reviewed for you I purchased myself.  However, if I accept a product for review, I will let you know, as per the FTC guidelines.  I am, and will continue to be, very choosy about what I accept for review.  And I will always share my honest thoughts with you, even if that means writing a negative review.


About the Girly Tomboy

I have created this blog because I am a Girly Tomboy.  I love getting muddy and beat up on my mountain bike or hiking off the beaten path.  And I also love high heels, dresses, jewelry and makeup.  I also love to read, watch movies, cook, refinish furniture, organize, explore, people watch, make my own jewelry, and talk.  Especially talk.  I talk all the time.

This blog is my way of sharing my experiences with you, as well as what I have learned, where I have been, and what inspired me.  Since I'm a NERD who does excessive research on EVERYTHING, expect some encyclopedia-like posts as well.  So if you're a tomboy and want to know where to start with makeup, or you're a girly girl that needs to buy a pair of bike shoes for spinning class, I'm your gal.

So when you come here, expect randomness - part journal and part reference.  And always fun.

I also love spending time with my pooches, Amelia and Miss Kitty.  They are a big part of my life, and hence have a blog dedicated to them.  So if you want to see what we've been up to, check us out at The Playful Pooch.

So keep in touch, make requests, and give me feedback - through comments, the chatter box, by email: tomboysRgirls2(AT)gmail(DOT)com.  I love hearing from you!

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