NYX Can’t Stop Won’t Stop (Please, don’t stop)

While I love dropping $40+ on a foundation (I’m a recovering Sephora addict who could literally relapse at any moment) I have reached the point where saving money is more important than ever. I’ve been trying to cut costs everywhere I can and keep my splurging to an absolute minimum. With that being said I’m trying to keep my usually skeptical mind open to affordable options. As I try to remember what turned me off of the affordable makeup genre I picture my middle school self who was only allowed to wear clear mascara but secretly transformed into a racoon with a wet and wild eyeliner pencil as soon as I left my mother’s sight on a daily basis. (It was the Avril Lavigne s8er boi era, leave me alone)

NYX Can’t Stop Won’t Stop Foundation is the lightweight matte full coverage dream I didn’t know I had. I’ve used so many foundations and this shattered all my expectations. I feel that with the shade range, formula and buildable coverage this may be the holy grail. For the first time in my life I actually know that my foundation will last all day! Even when my shade is slightly off, this camouflages to my skin and still looks natural. It never appears heavy on my skin, even when I’m feeling a bit textured and need to build up coverage.

  click here to find your shade!

On their website NYX has a great feature set up to help you select your proper foundation shade. Since there is such a huge range of shades it is a little overwhelming to choose the one that is right for you. They’ve broken it down into categories based on the depth of color in your skin and then into subcategories by skin tone (whether your cool, neutral or warm). This allows you to narrow down the shades that are a potential match for you. I definitely suggest stopping into your local Ulta and testing out the potential shades you’ve selected to really choose the right one. Going online prior to the store will definitely save you some time though.

I highly recommend giving this foundation a try I never thought I’d be endorsing a $15 foundation but I’m obsessed and I  think you will be too. 

this has been day 3 of blogmas
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The Ultimate Gift Guide for Your Besties ($25 or Under)

The holidays can be so hard because you have so many people to buy for! For most of us, family comes first and then we end up feeling guilty when the funds run out and we’ve purchased nothing for our loyal girl squad. I’ve searched high and low and I think I’ve come up with an amazing list of 10 gifts $25 or under that your Bestie(s) will actually want!

photo via @MorpheBrushes on Instagram
  • One of the MorpheX Jaclyn Hill Vault Collection Pallets. The actual vault retails for $49 and it includes all 4 pallets. However, the pallets retail separately for only $15! These are seriously some of my all-time favorite eye shadows and no matter which color scheme you choose, you really can’t go wrong. They are so AMAZING! Better yet, if you have 4 best friends buy the vault and split up the 4 pallets among them. I guarantee they’ll want to share because each pallet has it’s own unique assortment of colors. I linked the whole vault below, because it’s the best value but you can easily find the individual pallets on the website. Make sure you google coupon codes before you purchase, a lot of YouTubers have them with Morphe. I usually use JACATTACK for 15% off.
  • Girl Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis. I’ve seen this book retail for a lot of different prices! The lowest I’ve seen it was around $10 and the highest I believe was about $16. It’s definitely available for under $20. I know this book has gotten a little bit of backlash but I honestly think some people just didn’t understand it or else just didn’t give it a real chance. Everyone I know who actually read the book LOVED it and I honestly think it should be given as a right of passage to all millennial women. This is a book that I really can’t say enough good things about and if you want my more in depth thoughts click here! I did another post with a full review and all my thoughts.
Image Via Miley Bear Market
  • A Customized Mug! Have an inside joke? Something unique and special to your friendship? A saying that makes you think of your best friend? Why not put it on a mug? We all have seen someone local who has a crafting business whether it’s full time or just something they do on the side. We see their Facebook posts promoting their business and we probably scroll right past. We should consider them when we are looking for holiday gifts because they can usual create something beautiful, customized and amazing with a personal touch that can’t be purchased at a store. Besides, purchasing from them may be helping them provide a better Holiday for their family rather than just putting your dollars into another corporation. However, if you do order from them just be aware, they are humans and won’t be able to compete with Amazon having your item on your door step in two days. They are usually one person and they have to take time to create your custom item. I should also mention, prices may vary depending on the complexity of your request. If you don’t know of any local crafters, I use
    Miley Bear Market! She can be contacted most easily via Facebook. Just tell her Ashley sent you

 

Image Via Bath And Body Works 
  • A candle. Candles are SO underrated. A candle is a gift you may not be super excited when you open, but as soon as you smell it you are in heaven. This is how you can give the gift of relaxation. I wait for the Bath and Body Works Sales on their 3 wick candles and I stock up. Those babies will make the whole house smell glorious for weeks on end… longer if you don’t burn it during every waking hour like I do. Sorry Yankee, Bath and Body Works just beat every brand with their candles. They usually retail for $24.50. PLUS they have a lot of sales this time of year that will for sure bring it below $20. WATCH FOR CANDLE DAY! I don’t know when it will be this year but it’s usually in the beginning of December and 3 Wick Candles go on sale for like $8. I will update this post when I get official word but if you hear before me COMMENT BELOW. I don’t even want to link them because you really need to go smell them in person, but just so you know what I’m talking about, this is them.
    http://www.bathandbodyworks.com/c/home-fragrance/3-wick-candles
  • Okay this one might seem strange but just trust me for a minute! Tyler Glamorous Wash in the scent DIVA! Yes, it’s laundry detergent. Yes, this may seem like a very bizarre gift. Yes, your friend might look at you with a confused look on her face but, when she uses it for the first time she will understand. This stuff might be a little pricey to wash everything in so I use it exclusively for bedding. The aroma is one of the most luxurious things a person can experience and it fills the entire room not only while washing, but it sticks to the fabric of whatever you wash with it for a very long time. I don’t wash my comforter nearly as often as I wash my sheets and I’ll tell you the fragrance lingers for weeks. I guarantee this gift will be a huge hit. It’s currently retailing on Amazon for $25. Click the image above!  
Image Via Fandango
  • A Fandango Gift Card. Or really any movie gift card. Sometimes we can’t justify the expense of going to the movies when we are subscribed to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime but when someone gives you a gift card that gives you the opportunity to enjoy the magic of the big screen. I received a Fandango Gift Card for Christmas last year and it really was a treat to be able to go out and not feel bad for not looking for something I already pay for through streaming.
    https://fandango.wgiftcard.com/responsive/personalize_responsive/chooseDesign/fandango_resp/1
  • A Phone Tripod. This is for your Instagram Obsessed Bestie. Selfies are kind of going away, all the it-girls on IG are taking more modeling type shots to fill their feed. Having a phone tripod will allow them to set a timer and get much more interesting poses. You will be your bestie’s new hero with this gift. I LOVE this Jelly Fish Tripod because it’s not bulky, so portable and easy to set up on the go whether I’m trying to take a group photo, solo pic, quick video or really anything! Click the image above! 
  • A Stick Immersion Blender. This is another one that might seem odd, but your health obsessed friend will love this gift. This thing is so portable and easy to take on the go. It’s going to be perfect for that lunch time smoothie at work, way easier than lugging around a bulky blender. There are a ton of scenarios where this thing comes in handy, don’t believe me? Just Google it. Click the image above. 
Image Via Aldi
  • WINE. Need I say more? This is another underrated gift. When you don’t know what to get someone you can never go wrong with a bottle of wine. AND GUESS WHAT?! Aldi has a surprisingly remarkable selection for unbeatable prices and most of them are in really cute bottles. You’re Welcome.
  • Wireless Bluetooth Headphones. I don’t know about everyone else, but if there’s one thing I can’t seem to keep track of it’s my damn headphones! Having a separate pair for my gym bag and my purse has been kind of a game changer for me and I’d like to have a spare for when one of those two decide to run away from home. I strongly believe you can never have too many pairs of these and they will always come in handy. No one will ever be disappointed to get some new headphones. Click the image above! 

I hope you enjoyed this gift guide and more importantly got lots of gift giving inspiration! I know most of these gifts were more geared towards your female besties. If you want to see a gift guide for male friends, significant others, parents, or anyone else, please leave me a comment down below and let me know. I’d be happy to write up another guide for you.

The Secret To Good Hair While Gallivanting

Traveling is great, don’t get me wrong! It’s just been my experience that I take a lot of things for granted and don’t realize how vital they are until I go away and forget to bring it. Like most of you, I have approximately 75,642 hair products and various brushes and tools. Why not start getting rid of some of it? Well, because I need them. I once heard a girl award herself with the title “Goo Hoarder” I can’t for the life of me remember who originally coined the term but it couldn’t be a more accurate description of where I’m at in my life. Here’s the issue though, when we have so many products we aren’t always keeping track of what we actually use. What ends up turning this scenario into a tragic moment in our story is the fact that when we travel, we end up with nothing we actually need.

 

So, here’s what I suggest: Start keeping track of what you’re actually using on a regular basis weeks before you go on a trip, or heck! Even when you don’t have any travel planned at all. This will give you plenty of time to observe yourself and figure out what your must-haves are. Then what you do, is you either go purchase travel sizes or you make your own. Making your own travel sizes will work most the time. The only time this will not be an option is with aerosol sprays so in that case you might want to go ahead and spring for the official travel sizes from whatever company the product is from. There are some great fillable travel containers on Amazon that I really like because I find them to be very durable! They’re also easy to clean and reuse so if you want to check those out, I will leave a link at the bottom of this post. After you have collected your travel sizes in whatever form you have chosen, it’s time to pack them into a nice clear travel bag. You might say, “But I’m not going anywhere yet…” Yes, I’m aware of that but having this bag put away and ready to go is going to simplify your life in the best possible way when it is time to travel.

 

I don’t unpack my travel hair bag when I return home. I just check to make sure nothing needs to be refilled, if it does, I take care of that immediately and then I put everything away until my next adventure. I usually leave my travel hair bag somewhere on my vanity where it’s out of my way but still on my mind in case I discover a new favorite product in between trips that I want to add.

 

Now, let’s talk about my travel hair bag! I’m going to share with you what currently lives in there and why. Your hair color, type, texture and various other factors are going to determine what belongs in yours but this is just an example for you.

 

Redken Blondage Shampoo & Conditioner: This lives in my Hair Bag because I have blonde hair and this is going to help me combat brass and keep my otherwise fragile over-processed hair strong. At home I generally use this system at least once a week but when we are on the road we have no idea what the water situation is going to be like so it’s great to have this on hand incase bizarre circumstances leave me feeling a little more yellow than I prefer to be.

 

Redken Glow Dry Shampoo & Conditioner: While I will fully acknowledge MOST people don’t need two different Shampoo/ Conditioner systems on the go, I feel like this is a complete necessity for the blondes. We can’t live without our toning shampoo (in this case it’s Blondage) BUT we also don’t want to overtone our hair on vacation and potentially turn it purple. For that reason, we need something to switch it out with. I LOVE the Diamond Oil Glow Dry products in general! They are formulated to assist with styling and create the perfect blow-dry and styling situation. The Shampoo and Conditioner leave the hair with mirror like shine and are just the perfect duo for getting your hair looking it’s best when you’re on the go.

 

Redken Two Day Extender: Fun fact, did you know you’re supposed to put dry shampoo in your hair when it’s clean? That’s why Redken calls one of their dry shampoos Two Day Extender. They’re trying to get the point across that it’s supposed to extend the life of your style rather than try to save it when it’s already too late. I keep a travel size version of this product for travel because it’s going to minimize the need to wash my hair and keep my style looking fresh. Bonus- It smells amazing and has touch activated fragrance.

 

Redken One United: This is a multi-benefit spray that I will not put a brush or comb in wet hair without! I use it mostly as a detangler but I’m grateful for the other 24 things it’s doing for me without me having to think about it.

 

Redken Outshine 01: This is the perfect product to create a flawless, shiny frizz free blow out! Usually I’d cocktail and layer products when I’m blow drying my hair but, in a pinch, and not a lot of space in my bag this is the product I prioritize.

 

Redken Iron Shape 11: This is a heat protecting spray with a nice little hold factor to it as well. Anything that can do more that one job for me is always going to make me very happy because that means more room in my bag! I love to curl my hair and heat protection is not an option it’s a necessity.  I’m not letting my vacation cause permanent damage on my hair due to skipping this step.

 

Redken Triple Dry 15: This hairspray is brand new in the game from the Dry Texture line! If you’d like to see a blog post where I dive into the whole line a little bit deeper, let me know. This is the best smelling hairspray I’ve ever used and the hold factor is just enough to get the job done. It gives me the hold I’m looking for without being too much. It also gives me the ability to create the most amazing texture when I have waves or curls in my hair.

 

I hope you found this content useful. I do a decent amount of traveling for work and also for fun! For that reason, I have found many ways to make life easier and less stressful. If you’d like to hear more travel and packing advice, leave me a comment and let me know! What are you going to put in your travel hair bag?