Sensible Stylista

Monday, July 6, 2015

My VA Beach Trip

Hey guys! I hope you all had an amazing 4th.  I had a really fun week - this summer's been amazing.  I was vacationing in Virginia Beach with the fam!  I had such an awesome time there.  Incredible food (for the most part, ha) + relaxing in the sun = heaven.  They had a lot of awesome events on the boardwalk, and their aquarium was surprisingly nice.  I say "surprisingly" because I have high standards - the one in Baltimore is totally BAMF.  

Anywho, VA beach is def. not glamorous by any means, but the company was great so I'm not complaining.  I've got to say though, their food was on point.  I was REALLY surprised.  If you're ever in the area, check out Terrapin & Judy's Sichuan Cuisine.  They were RIDICULOUS!  The best American and Chinese food I've EVER had.  Bold statement, but even my parents agree.

Alright, enough about my travels.  Let's talk fashion!  For today's OOTD, I styled a casual look for you guys.  I stuck with a simple color scheme: gray, cream, and gold, and I centered my outfit around my new Almost Famous top.  You guys know how I feel about their clothing!  I'm seriously their no. 1 fan.  Their line is so stylish and affordable - I really couldn't ask for more.

The crochet detailing on the sleeves = money.  I tied the top to show a sliver of skin - it IS summer after all.  This piece is also work-friendly.  Pair it with white pants and gray pumps, and you're good to go!
A close-up shot of my new bag c/o Avber.  Isn't this piece super cute?  I can't get over how adorable the bow is.  Although this item's made of faux-leather, the quality's VERY good.  Here's some info for you guys...

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Top 5 Best Eyeshadow Palettes

If you haven't been able to tell by my Beauty Trend posts, I'm completely and utterly obsessed with makeup! I love mostly everything, but there are certain products and brands out there that are pretty horrible. So, today I'm going to share my top five favorite eyeshadow palettes with you guys!

1. Lorac Pro Palette

If you haven't tried this palette yet, you need to. It's basically a cult classic -- everyone who tries it becomes obsessed. Although Lorac sells tons of different palettes, they only sell two pro palettes (PRO and PRO 2.) Their other sets (ex. Unzipped and Dream Girl) are good too, but they don't have the same kind of formulation.

Both Pro Palettes contain 16 shades - their top rows are all matte shadows, and their bottoms are shimmery. The colors are all gorgeous, and they're really easy to work with. They blend effortlessly and have amazing color payoff. 

If I had to criticize either of these palettes, it'd be that their shadows can be a little chalky. You have to be really careful and tap your brush before application, or you could have some serious fall out! If you want warmer colors, go with the Lorac PRO -- it contains warm browns and golds.  For cooler tones, go with the Lorac PRO 2 - it's my personal favorite. It contains pinks, purples, and grays!

These palettes retail for $42 and come with a sample size "Behind the Scenes" eye primer.  They're expensive but well worth the splurge!

2. Tartelette

If you're like me, you love rocking a sparkly bright eye, but sometimes it's nice to tone it down with a clean matte eye. If you want to rock the latter, the Tartelette palette is a must-have. I've always known that Tarte was a good brand, but I'd never tried their eyeshadows before this palette. Now I'm officially obsessed!

This palette comes with twelve shades. I view it as three separate quads. The top row has warm browns, the second row has purples, and the third row has cool browns. Each "quad" then has four shades, ranging from light to dark.

Like the Lorac PRO palettes mentioned above, these colors are amazingly easy to work with and have a really strong color payoff.   Tartelette sells for $44, but all its shadows are exclusive to the palette.  Although it contains fewer shades and is pricier than the Lorac PRO/PRO 2, it's a necessity for simple day looks. 

3. Naked Palettes

Even if you know nothing about makeup, you've probably heard of Urban Decay's Naked Palette. That one palette turned into three palettes, which then became a full line; now you can purchase Naked foundation, Naked blush, Naked bronzer, etc.

At first I was definitely obsessed -  I'm a little ashamed to admit that I have all three + the Naked basics palette - but now I think they're a little overrated. They're definitely good palettes with gorgeous colors, but personally, I'd go with the Lorac PRO/PRO 2 or Tartelette.  However, they still do rank #3 on my favorite eyeshadow palette list!

Back when I bought the aforementioned palettes, they sold for $49 each, but due to their popularity, Urban Decay hiked up their prices. Now, each palette is $54 - they come with an eyeshadow brush and a sample of Urban Decay's Primer Potion. UD calls the first palette "bronze-hued," the second "taupe-hued," and the final "rose-hued."   Personally, I think the third palette's kind of a filler because none of the shades really work alone.  You need to mix them with different colors from the first two sets. 

4. Wet and Wild

So far, all the palettes listed have been pretty steep, as far as money goes. If you just want to  experiment with fun new eyeshadows, I recommend going with Wet and Wild! Their packaging isn't fancy or eye-catching - it's really just plastic - so they don't get a very good rep, but their products are amazing! As you guys know, I own a lot of expensive eyeshadow palettes, but I often find myself reaching for my Sweet as Candy trio. 

Wet and Wild has 12 of these trios, and they have inscriptions on the shadows that tell you where to put the shade -- BROWBONE, CREASE, and EYELID. I don't really follow them thought - I like to pair other shades with the trio.

In my opinion, the quality's comparable to Urban Decay's Naked palettes - they don't have random sparkle chunks like a lot of lower end eyeshadows - and each set only costs $3. If you want to experiment with eyeshadow or try new shades, go out to Walgreens or CVS right now and buy some Wet n Wild eyeshadow!

5. Sonia Kashuk Eye Couture

This is another palette that won't break the bank.  There are two in total: one with matte shades and one with shimmer shades.  Each set contains 12 different shadows. I've only tried the matte palette, but the shimmer one is next on my list of new makeup to buy! The palette's pretty warm for the most part, and it has varying shades of brown with a few pink/purply shades. 

These colors are extremely creamy and, like all the other palettes, have a really strong color payoff. Use a really light hand when applying because they can be a little difficult to blend. I don't typically use this palette alone. I like to put a shimmery shade on my lid and then use a deep chocolate brown (in this palette) for my crease.  The palettes are available for $20 and are sold exclusively at Target. If you're looking for perfect day-time matte shades try this palette! 

On a related note, make sure you purchase a set of solid brushes for application.  Without good tools, the quality of your eyeshadow/s won't even matter! You can't achieve a gorgeous eye look without using the right brush. I recommend adding these brushes to your collection: 
What do you guys think of these palettes? Do you like any of them? Are you gonna try any of them?

Written by Zoe Luiz

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Celeb Style For Less: Beyonce

Photo credit - USA Top Stars

Beyonce is, unsurprisingly, killing it in this outfit. She really knows how to put herself together and can look amazing even in a simple jean-white tee combo. She wore this outfit to Coney Island where, as you can see, fans surrounded her. Even though she's just wearing a white tank, there's no doubt that top's hundreds or maybe even thousands of dollars. Keep reading to see how you can rock this look for less!