Alicia Keys- No Makeup Movement

I remember hearing something stirring up about Alicia Keys starting up her own #NoMakeupCampaign a while back, and I just now recently saw it in action at the 2016 VMA’s, and can I just say…. SHE. LOOKED. FLAWLESS. RADIANT. BEAUTIFUL. It was inspiring.

GET IT GIRL.

I could have just stopped there and I would have already made my point.

But in typical rambling fashion, you know a michelleleighwrites post is never short. So let’s talk.

After seeing how amazing she looked on that red carpet, I wanted to dive into the story behind this movement. So I found and read a few articles that dug a little deeper.

Articles:

POPSUGAR

YAHOO! NEWS

The most powerful thing I found was Alicia’s essay she penned for Lena Dunham’s online feminist newsletter “LENNY,”  entitled “Time to Uncover.” Her reasons for making such a bold choice stem from her own insecurities. Like many of us women out there, including myself, we have this intense pressure we feel to live up to a standard of beauty that the media inflicts upon us from a very young age. And the older you get, the more serious the impact can feel. I used to rarely ever wear makeup. Other then if it were a holiday or special occasion, I was usually make up free all the way up until my college days. And even then, I didn’t go the whole crazy route that you see makeup artists or beauty guru’s go nowadays. Don’t get be wrong I LOVE watching those videos just as much as the next girl, and I do think makeup can be this incredible artistic expression. But sometimes I just sit back and think “How much stuff are you putting on your face?” Even personally, when I sit down to do my makeup, sure I’m more of a drugstore makeup girl, but sometimes between the concealer, and the foundation and the powder and the primer, by the time I finish, it feels like it took me forever.

Watch Alicia discuss her movement in a radio interview with HOT 97- [@ the 2:05 mark]

 

 

Ever since I started working more regularly, and having to come face to face with more people each day, I’ve started doing a regular simple makeup routine. It doesn’t take too long and I like the outcome. But I’ve felt more of that pressure to have to put makeup on lately. I have started to really feel like I have to cover up my acne scars, blemishes and under eye circles. And I used to never really feel like that. I would just wash my face, moisturize and go. What happened to that? That freedom?

In Alicia’s interview she notes that going makeup free and sporting her bare face for all the world to see has been “a beautiful challenge.” Stating that the movement is about being yourself. She emphasizes that she doesn’t want this to be “taken the wrong way,” it isn’t an anti-makeup campaign it’s just a campaign to encourage women to feel beautiful in their own skin, “to be free, to be who you are, to be yourself.” She also states that she believes in being “perfectly imperfect.”

Alicia’s words-her message, has really resonated within me and I think it’s having an impact on many people. Even though I’ve seen she’s gotten some criticism, I am a complete supporter. Her husband is as well.

Screenshot_2016-08-31-18-57-54swizz-beatz-and-alicia-keys-zoom-eecb7868-fa96-4413-8f17-2a71538efad6[1]

Alicia’s newest video-no makeup-and gorgeous.

Alicia has said that this raw real no makeup movement was inspired by a photographer who was shooting her new album artwork. The photographer wanted to shoot her as is, free of makeup, just from the gym, in a head scarf.

Screenshot_2016-08-31-18-58-54

Further explaining that the realness of her appearance will balance out with the realness in her new album.  I haven’t come across an album release date, but I will certainly be checking up on it, once it’s out!

Do your thang, Alicia. We get it. And we’re here to join. I know I am. Everything I’ve seen about her lately is filled with such beautiful messages, and inspirational good vibes. She seems so centered and happy, even though she admits to still working on things, aren’t we all? There is so much positivity she exudes that it’s beautiful to watch and it inspires. There’s a rich realness there and it’s freakin awesome that she’s from New York too!

 

*I do not take any credit for any music, images, videos used.*

-<3-

 

 

 

 

DIY Dress-Up Trunk Gift Idea

As promised…here we go.

20160609_204731(0)

So every time my God daughter’s birthday rolls around, I always strive to come up with a gift idea that’s really special. Special to her likes and special to what she’s currently into. Because let’s face it kids go through their phases.

I spoil her on the regular, BUT her birthday is cause for some extra special spoilage. 😉

I was toying around with the idea of buying her a Dress Up trunk. But the more I researched, the more I became discouraged with the quality of these so called “trunks.” They were simple flimsy cardboard, and well that just wasn’t going to cut it for my little Soph.

So I decided to create my own Dress Up Trunk; personalized with costumes that would fit her little personality.

Here is the finished wrapping:

20160610_234748

I used these decorative keepsake boxes to act as my trunk(s). They are sturdy, have a lid, are perfect for storage and can just be left out in a playroom on their own. And they are cute as a button.

I ended up having to pick up a smaller one to hold all the accessories because the big one just wasn’t enough. Yes I splurged a bit. Once I get an idea, it kinda spirals. I just can’t stop myself. 😉

The top gift wrapped box is actually her Disney Princess Birthday Train “3” Doll. 3 is Aurora a.k.a. Sleeping Beauty. It’s a tradition I’ve started with her, I get her one every year. My God mother did it with me and now I get to pass along the tradition.

20160609_203451

Here are the outfits I chose to include:

20160609_203428

20160609_203344

20160609_203245

How freakin’ cute is this! (I love the tutu!)

Some pretty dresses (because every little girl wants some fluffy princess dresses), A chef set (she loves to pretend to cook), and A Wonder Woman costume (her favorite superhero.)

A tea party hat, purse, and white glove set with feather boa and pearl set; because we play tea party sometimes.

20160609_202904

A purple tutu and an assortment of shoes.

20160609_20304220160609_202727

Accessories included:

20160609_202203

Left to Right: Feather Boa, Beaded Necklaces (she loves her beads! she uses them for everything! Even pretend spaghetti dinner #multipurpose) A princess crown, Chap sticks in fun flavors, headbands, rings, coin purse, sunglasses, bracelets, princess wands, light up princess wand, and a brush.

 

 

20160609_20224120160609_202249

Purple was a bit of a color theme, because it’s her FAVORITE COLOR! (And she will tell anyone who will listen all about it…at that decimal!) Since the outfits didn’t really have purple in them, I went all purple on the accessories and accent pieces.

Her little shocked smile when I brought out her gift at her Birthday party was the best. I got a bunch of videos and pictures from her mom recently of her playing with everything. They are the best photos ever. I am obsessed. That was my ultimate thank you, to see her having a fun night playing dress up with her mommy. She even sent me a video of her putting on the chap stick I got her and smacking her lips together like any grown girl putting on lipstick would. It was the cutest thing ever. I had to include them because she watches me put my makeup on and always wants to take it and put it on herself, especially the lipstick. She puts it on and goes “Kissy!” Lol. So cute. It’s adorable.

*Extra Fun Tips:

When gifting any kind of purse or coin purse you should always put some money in them for good luck. So I placed a dollar in her little purple purse and some coins in her personalized coin purse.

Where I found these products:

Her accessories were found in Dollar Tree-Deals; Jewelry, wands, sunglasses and headbands.

The pretty purple crown was ordered from Party City when we had a little “Purple Party” for her on her actual birthday.

The princess pretty dresses and shoe set was found in Christmas Tree Shop, along with the coin purse, chap stick, and brush.

The Tea Party Set was found on Amazon as was the Wonder Woman Costume and Chef Set.

The decorative boxes were found at Telco; a discount store.

*Hope this was helpful!

******

This gift was really fun to create for my God daughter. She’s only three and she likes to play pretend, and I don’t see that going away any time soon. If you ask me dress up trunks are a perfect idea for little girl birthday gifts, because playing dress up never goes out of style. Even I still feel like I do that when I get all dressed up to go out with friends or to a special event. Putting on the makeup and deciding on an outfit and how to accessorize it perfectly. It’s fun!

So if you have a special little girl in your life, and you’ve been wracking your brain for a gift just as special, look no further.

Let me know how it turns out. Or if you want any other ideas! I’m all ears. Comment down below!

-<3-

*All photos are my own.*

#crappycellphonepics

Birthday Money Drugstore Haul!

QUICK BLOG NOTE: I just want to quickly apologize for not posting to schedule. I’ve been a little all over the place and I just started my new job, so I am just trying to settle into a new schedule. Things will get figured out SOON! 😀 Thanks for reading!

***Read my last Drugstore Haul HERE.

Hola my drugstore makeup lovers!

20160331_234139

Last weekend was my 25th Birthday. I celebrated by dressing up and going out to my favorite Mexican restaurant with a large group of some of my favorite people; some close friends and my family. I ordered a chimichanga (my favorite dish there,) and flan for dessert, while I sampled both pitchers of white and red sangria. *Spoiler Alert: The red was better. *Spoiler Alert #2- There was also salsa, homemade guacamole and tortillas as an appetizer. #Yes #Bliss

Oh and my parents got me the huge numbered balloons in GOLD…which I asked them for! 😉

As you grow older gifts tend to come in monetary form…and you know your girl is not complaining! So as the responsible “Adult” in me plans to put some in the bank, the blushing birthday girl full of excitement set aside a little fun spending money for some beauty products. Now as we get further into the prices and the products, I want to inform you that I understand that not everyone has the opportunity to be able to spend $50 on makeup in one shot. And trust me when I say I looked for the cheaper stuff because I wanted more bang for my buck (for lack of a better saying). I would not have spent that money if it wasn’t a gift meant to buy what I wish. With that being said let’s get into the haul!

I think for the most part, I bought some great items, which I will show you now… via crappy cell phone pics. #TakeMeAsIAm 😉

Capture

TOTAL AMOUNT SPENT: $50.20

I set aside $50 of my birthday money to allow myself to splurge on some fun makeup and skin care products. Now even though this is drugstore makeup, it isn’t always super cheap, but I think I got a pretty good amount of stuff for $50. I visited my local Rite Aid first; gathering some new Simple skin care products. I have their foaming cleanser which I like and find really gentle on my skin. So being that I needed a moisturizer I figured I’d continue along with the brand. I’ve also heard loads of rave reviews about their Micellar Water so I picked that up as well, along with some Rite Aid brand cleansing pads for application purposes.

20160331_235312

 

**For my guilty pleasure buys- meaning lip products and nail polish we kept it simple-

Sinful Colors- and LA Girl.

Sinful colors is my jam; cheap line and has a variety of colors.

In fact at my birthday dinner one of my friends was wearing the color “Let’s Talk” on her nails (the deep electric purple color pictured above) and I made a mental note to pick it up because I was obsessed, it’s a color you can just spot from across the room.

The LA Girl pick is a first for me trying out this brand, but it was there and I thought this shade GNL842-“Extra! Extra!” could pair well with the lighter frosty purple color “Let Me Go” or just by itself for the upcoming Spring season.

I also picked up this wet n wild eyeshadow palette in the Shade A229-“Coming In Latte.”

20160331_234608

How gorgeous are these colors?

20160331_234637

I have really been into the golds and browns lately, and this is just a gorgeous Palette and I am so excited to try it out!

Last but not least lip products were my last splurge items which I found in Walgreens. I featured a wet n wild Velvet Matte Lip Color in a prior post, which you can see how I styled the look HERE. And so I picked up this more muted berry color for a more natural look in the shade A366- “Berry Tales.”

20160331_234809

20160331_234829

What a nice neutral pink to pair with the eye shadow palette!

20160331_234848

 

And I paired it with wet n wild’s megaslicks Balm Stain in the shade 161A- “Made You Pink”

So here’s to my exciting new adventure into trying out these new products. I can’t wait to try them and create fun new looks. And thank you to my Aunt Linda for the generous birthday gift, I certainly put it to good use and only had to add 20 extra cents. Now that’s impressive! 😉 #ShopSmart #LookForTheDeals

 

*All crappy cell phone pics belong to yours truly.*

-<3-

 

 

Mini Drugstore Haul-Products Getting Too Expensive?

So I’ve never really done a makeup haul of any kind on this blog. I’m not one to shop for name brand makeup, I’m a drugstore makeup buyer. I keep my makeup routine pretty simple, if and when I choose to wear it on a daily basis, it’s just the basics- Under eye Concealer, Coverstick, Powder, Lip Balm, Brows, and maybe mascara. Sometimes I won’t even use mascara, I’ll just curl my lashes, and lightly pinch my cheeks for some color, instead of adding blush.

So when I noticed the products that I use everyday started to finish and some were a bit old, I went to pick up a few key products from my local Rite Aid.

Products:

prices for haul post

Facial Cleanser- (was originally $8.29…so I was happy to catch this product on sale, I love that it’s a foam facial cleanser.)

20160202_013114

Make Up Wipes- (I buy the cheap ones! But still it only has 15 wipes, which is a bummer.)

20160202_013124

Cover Stick (in Medium 802)- (I happen to like wet n wild products, and I needed a new cover stick and didn’t feel like breaking the bank.)

20160202_013136

Under Eye Concealer (in Medium 130)- (I love this stuff, but wish it was cheaper, the applicator is really the perfect size and function to roll it onto those dark under eye circles.)

20160202_013219

Mascara (Mocha 034)- (this mascara is pure hypoallergenic and volumizing and suitable for green eyes. I have hazel eyes but depending on the day they can look green. So I went for this one. I also have sensitive eyes so hypoallergenic is a must for me.) 

20160202_013242

Liquid Eyeliner- (This is a new purchase for me, I’m trying to strengthen my wing game, because it’s pretty non-existent. As they say practice makes perfect, so being that this is a test run product, I went for the cheapest I could find. Thank you wet n wild.)

20160202_013346

So I know these purchases are mostly pretty cheap, but the few that weren’t just kind of anger me. $9.49 for that tiny tube of concealer. Seriously. I paid $33.14 in total and only walked out with 6 items. Thankfully I had a $25 gift card so I didn’t have to add too much on, otherwise I probably would have gotten one or two things and left. In fact if I would have gone with my plan to purchase a new covergirl lipstick from their Oh Sugar line (which was $8) my total would have been in the $40 range FOR MAKEUP in a DRUGSTORE. It’s nonsense if you ask me. Which is why I steer clear from brand names. Drugstores should be ashamed for charging so much. Who’s with me?

What do you think of Drugstore prices on makeup?

*All photos are my own* #crappycellphonepics

-<3-

How I styled Lilac lipstick…

makeup

Products used, & and a little bit of Tori Kelly fangirlin’ #herfirstmagazinecover

MAKE-UP & HAIR:

This eye shadow trio from wet n wild is called “I’m Getting Sunburned.” I thought these colors were so gorgeous and it was only about $4 in the drugstore, so I thought why not? The application was pretty self explanatory- the goldish/copper color is for the eyelid, the darker brown color is for the crease, and then the purple/pink color is for the brow bone. I basically just followed that guideline. I also dragged the copper gold color under my lower lash line and placed some in the inner corners of my eyes to brighten up these sleepy eyes of mine. Then I added some mascara, bronzer, blush and filled in my eyebrows. Lastly I added the staple…wet n wild’s velvet matte “Lie Lack” lip color crayon. I actually really like this lip pencil, and the quality of it. I paid about $4 for it in the drugstore as well, and I was pleased with the wear ability of it. I also think you can layer this and get more color out of it. I just did a light layer but it seems like it would build nicely into a darker shade.

I was running late for church and let’s be real my hair was going on it’s second day so it was a bit ragged so I did what any lazy girl in a rush would do, threw some dry shampoo in it and threw it up in a messy bun. I like to pull out some baby hairs on the sides of my face to add more of a messy look to it.

20160110_15052720160110_15051920160110_150414

OUTFIT OF THE DAY:

The makeup look was pretty bright, so I wanted the outfit to be a contrast of light and dark pieces. So, I wore black combat boots, black jeans, a black graphic t-shirt, a thin black cardigan, a leopard puffy vest, and a polka dot scarf. I love mixing patterns, I think it works because the colors are similar. Some people may not dig the mix and match vibe, and hey that’s okay. We’re all unique. I was just going to hang out with some friends from high school -a mini reunion of sorts- so I wanted a really comfortable, laid back look.

outfit edit

Would you rock a Lilac lip?

If so, how would you style it, what would you wear it with?

*All images are my own.*

-<3-

How I styled Blue lipstick…

A few days before New Year’s Eve I remember thinking “I want to wear a really obnoxious color lipstick.” I thought a bright blue would be really, funky and fun for New Years. And I saw this YouTube video and thought, hey why the hell not?

I was just going to hang out with some family, I wasn’t really worried about feeling strange. In fact, I just embraced the freedom the bold color gave me, to strike up a conversation. In fact my grandfather was like “Oh is this a new thing? You look beautiful.” in his heavy Spanish accent. It was kind of hysterical.

This make-up look is very bold and so I thought it needed an edgy outfit to accompany it. I also think this look can work for a night out with friends. You can even swap it out for a funky black dress and some heels to make it fancier.

Here’s my New Year’s Eve look (in mostly crappy cellphone pictures) 😉

MAKE-UP & HAIR:

20151231_173054

Blue lipsticks and hair jewels. Fun Fact: The iron ons were $1 in Mandees. And when they say they last for a week, believe it! I had to fight to get those suckers out, I washed my hair thoroughly 3 times and still had to brush them out with a comb and some conditioner once I got out of the shower. Got my dollars worth that’s for sure. AND the lipsticks were $3 each in a local beauty store. NOT BAD! (I’m dying to go back and by all the other funky colors, like Green and Purple!)

PLEASE EXCUSE– the abundance of weird selfie faces,  you are about to endure, this blue lipstick went to my head. 😉 #alterego

 

IMG_20160101_012008

My attempt at a winged eyeliner. Eh. My shadow is made up of a lot of bronze, gold, brown colors, with some black liner on the top and bottom water lines. I layered some gold glitter on top of the black liner on the top water line too. Also some silver glitter for the outer portion of my eyes.

20151231_201045

Silver iron on hearts on one side of my hair- I just used a flat iron for this. The directions are included in the package, it’s pretty self explanatory. Although I had curled my hair, so when I had to flat iron the hearts onto my hair, it kind of lost it’s curl. And it was a bit difficult to try and curl it again, while the hearts were in. So I kind of just sprayed it and scrunched it up with my hands, just to get the body back.

20151231_201022

Gold Hair Jewels on the other side. These were very easy to apply and to remove. They were just stick ons.

20151231_201813

Gosh. So sassy. #missthangovahere

nye 2nye

FULL OUTFIT SHOTS:

outfitoutfit 220151231_202008IMG_20160101_123713

Basically I wore black skinny legged pants, a black and white mesh/lace shirt with a cross on it, a black sparkly sequined cardigan, and my funky pair of black and white boots. I paired my outfit with some gold jewelry to accessorize and I don’t know if you can tell by my nails were basically silver, and gold, with gold glittery sparkles.

IMG_20160101_005021

So I know this isn’t exactly a tutorial. I don’t really put a lot of emphasis on brands, I use what I have and just make it work for me. So you guys can totally do the same. And I don’t really tell you exactly how I did my make-up because I think everyone develops their own style and I’m not even close to beauty guru status, so I’m going to stick with doing things this way. I just watch tutorials on YouTube for tips and tricks. Some of my favorite beauty gurus include Carrie Rad, Ingrid Nielsen, Rachh Loves, Sierra Furtado, LaurDIY, Michelle Reed, TalkBeckyTalk, FleurdeForce, and of course the beautiful Bethany Mota.

This look is just to spark some inspiration for those looking to spice things up for a night on the town or for wherever you choose to go, or whatever you choose to do. Trust me, my parents were kinda like whoa, ok. And, my brother has issues with change, so he had something to say. But I didn’t let it bother me- it was super fun, and I felt kinda extra cool, because I knew it wasn’t about me doing it for attention. It was about me doing something cool and funky for me. I’ll admit I went a little overboard on the makeup and hair, but hey if I’m going to overdo the sparkly on any day, let it be New Year’s Eve, right?

I like to be different. I like to do things that are out of the box when it comes to fashion. I love experimenting. I love dressing up, and being festive for the holiday season. Every holiday you will find me in some kind of festive head dress. It’s fun to be weird, to be funky. I was always the shy girl as kid, and although I’ve come a long way, that still is a part of me. Regardless, I also think I’ve always had this attraction to strange trends and strange patterns, and things like that. I feel like I have a gypsy soul of sorts. I dance to my one drum, that I create the beat for.

Dare to be different. Turn a few heads.

Make 2016, your year to *sparkle*

****QUICK NOTE****

I will say the lipstick held up, and definitely had staying power. But if I ate or drank anything instead of just gradually blending off like regular lipstick, this matte finish kind of streaked and lingered, to the point where I either had to reapply or just take it off completely by wiping it off with a tissue. That was kind of frustrating to be talking and feel like your blue lipstick was all wonky. But never the less, its the price you pay for cheap lipstick, no biggy. I still enjoyed rocking my blue lips. When can I wear them again? 😉

**********

So would you rock blue lips?

*All images are my personal images…(although I stole some from my dad’s camera ;))*

-<3-