Tag Archives: RMS Beauty

It’s the final (summer beauty) countdown

I’ve gone through phases with my summer beauty wardrobe. On one hand, I might have given myself too many options and on the other, just enough so I didn’t feel limited. It’s all psychological isn’t it? Really, though, I’m truly loving this experiment and got excited when I realized I should probably start thinking about fall. I’m going to stick with summer for another three weeks, just past Labor Day.

I did a mini audit of what I’ve been using and realized there’s some things I’ve used almost every day and some things I’ve barely touched. I’m going to do a rotation and make the most of my summer beauty.

First, things I’m close to finishing up.

I’m almost coming up empty on my IT Cosmetics CC Cream and Glossier Skin Tint – these have definitely been my summer workhorses. The coverage on the IT never ceases to amaze me. I’m also almost done with my NARS Velvet Gloss Pencil in Frivolous. I’ve gone through a handful of these over the years but for such a low maintenance pink color, it’s high maintenance to use. They need sharpening often. And, they are pretty glossy, so they will fill your sharpener with gloss. Regardless, I’m really glad I included Frivolous in summer. It’s the perfect I’m wearing makeup but you can’t tell lip color. I keep it in my purse and then usually curse when I pull it out and it’s a stubbie.

As for makeup I haven’t really used…

There are some surprises in here. My custom MAC palette. I made a point to put it on my bathroom counter now. I think with the move and travels, I haven’t given it enough love. It’s big and doesn’t fit in my travel makeup bag. I wish I had a slightly smaller size that didn’t have Cream Colour Bases in it. Cream products don’t last quite as long and looking at it every morning reminds me of how wasteful I am.

Ilia Cucumber Stick. Isn’t that weird? I was sure I would use this nonstop but the truth is it confuses me. Is it a toner? Skincare? Should I use it when I wake up to wake me up? Do I reapply it over my makeup? I’m deeply torn on the right way to use it. I feel like I missed a huge opp to bond with this by not bringing it to Mexico. I so needed the refresher in that heat.

MAC Strobe Cream. Nothing against you, MAC, I promise you’re a fav. It’s just that I haven’t used this peachy strobe cream more than a few times. I think I’ve wanted less on my face and I equate this more with winter beauty. When I want a strobe-y moisturizer under my makeup.

There have even been a few additions.

I apparently go through eyebrow pencils at rapid pace. I finished the It Cosmetics Super Skinny Brow Power in June and then broke an Anastasia replacement (not user error – super frustrating). TrèStiQue sent me their brow pencil, which has a built in brow setting gel not dissimilar to Boy Brow. However, Boy Brow is a perfect color match and I prefer the texture. The combo of the two has been working great for my brows.

I’ve also tried a few new mascaras. I knew this would happen because I was almost finished with my Lash Sensational and was looking for something easier to remove. Funny, I did not choose formulas that were easier to remove but I’m still pleased with my options. Dior’s new Pump’n’Volume formula has been such a worthy splurge. I also love L’Oréal Lash Paradise – the wand has really dense soft bristles that grab on to lashes well.

Last, I’m trying some new complexion products. I’m working with Make Up For Ever and am remembering how much I love the Ultra HD foundation. This isn’t so much new as it is a classic. I brought it to Mexico with me and ended up using it on four of the bridesmaids (we’re all about the same shade – Y245!)

I’ve also been testing Glossier Wowder. My first impressions are the packaging is straight genius. It has what Glossier calls trampoline mesh instead of those little holes that sift powder usually unsuccessfully. And the inside of the lid is custom fitted so it fits over the mesh circle. It’s dream packaging! I am trying it out now and going to be comparing it to my RMS Tinted Unpowder, which is what I’ve been using for years to set and reduce shine.

I’ll do a full recap when summer wraps. Definitely learning more about what I really love.

What’s In My Summer 2017 Beauty Wardrobe


If you’re just joining me here, make sure and catch up with yesterday’s post all about the inspiration for my summer beauty wardrobe. I’m calling it peachdrenched because, well, it’s very peachy! This is a tone that I’ve always liked on my eyes because anything that leans slightly orange-ish always makes them look even bluer. And, when I started looking through my products, I realized I had a lot of peach. I’ve mixed in tones of bronze and beige to balance it out and am so excited with the final list.

Presented to you in the order I actually apply my makeup! Side note on that: I’m fascinated by people who can do their eye makeup first.

Prep and Prime

ILIA Cucumber Water Stick | MAC Strobe Cream Peachlite |Juice Beauty Phyto-Pigments Illuminating Primer | trèStiQue Magic Mattifying Balm & Blotting Sheet Duo

Skin prep is key in summer. I’ve got quite a bit here, actually. The ILIA Cucumber is something I recently picked up – I always love how ILIA’s summer collections are so functional for how you live in the summer. I can’t wait to use this to refresh or prime skin on a really hot day. The Juice primer is something I loved when I first got (from Gwyneth’s collab) but in typical fashion found that I wasn’t using it at all.  Part of the Beauty Wardrobe is to use and love the things I’ve invested in. I got a sample of the trèStiQue and have been saving it for the weather to warm up – it’s so useful for touch-ups! I actually apply highlighter just after concealer, so technically Haloscope is out of order. But, sometimes I do apply it before any face makeup!

Face Makeup

Glossier Skin Tint |Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet | IT Cosmetics CC Cream

My plan is to wear less makeup this summer. But, for when I do, I chose the formulas that work well in the summer. Glossier Skin Tint is an always on for me – I use it alone (because it’s perfect!) but also mix it with other foundations, too. The Chanel is really lightweight and has a velvet satin finish. I love how it wears on my skin in the heat. I’m guessing I’ll use this entire CC Cream – I did last summer. It is the best of any BB/CC cream and helps you skip a bunch of steps. There’s SPF, it primes, conceals, covers and even gives you a glow.


Glossier Stretch Concealer |Too Faced Born This Way Concealer | Glossier Haloscope Quartz

Stretch Concealer is another staple that I’ll always use. I’ve also included Too Faced Born This Way because I really like the liquid formula under my eyes. I picked this up last year and it’s gotten hardly any love since. Another note on why I included Haloscope in Quartz as my only highlighter. It’s all I really need – betting I’ll need to replace it mid-summer, though, it does last a long time.

NARS Sunwash Diffusing Bronzer Laguna

I think it took me more than a few years to finish my original Laguna bronzer so it was with MUCH delight that I replaced it with this special edition version. I just started using it and love how soft the finish is.


MAC Melba Blush | MAC Cantaloupe Blush | Glossier Cloud Paint Beam, Dusk | Bite Beauty Multistick Blondie | Olio E Osso No. 2 French Melon Stick

Last spring (as in 2016), I built a custom MAC palette. It’s the only palette I’ve included for summer. It has everything in it – cream highlighter, cheek and eyeshadow. The two blushes are awesome with this color story and will be nice if I want a powder option. Let’s be real, though, I’m probably going to wear my Cloud Paints almost every day. Multi-use products are so awesome in the summer, so I also included a Bite Multistick in a neutral beige and the Olio in melon.


NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base | It Cosmetics Brow Power Super Skinny |Glossier Boy Brow

I always do my brows before I do any eye makeup. Again, it helps me see if I even want to wear any at all. Out of habit, I always put on a little eye base. NARS is the only one that really works for me.


MAC Customized Palette | Charlotte Tilbury Eyes to Mesmerize Marie Antoinette | NARS St Paul De Vence |Jillian Dempsey Lid Tint Peach |RMS Eye Polish Lucky | Armani Eye Tint Nude Smoke | ILIA Silken Shadow Stick Next to You |Surratt Relevée Lash Curler |Marc Jacobs Highliner Matte Gel Eye Crayon Eyeliner (Brown)ie |Kat Von D Tattoo Liner Mad Max Brown | Maybelline Lash Sensational

This was the hardest part to narrow down. But, it’s also the category that I try and obey expiration dates so I’m including a lot of cream-based products in here to use up. And, the NARS duo is something I’ve hardly used since I got. I’m excited to experiment and layer the two shadows. Noticeably missing: black eyeliner!


RMS Tinted “Un” Powder

I use this under my eyes and around my nose, depending on the day. It’s the best finishing powder and one of those always on products for me that will be in future beauty wardrobes.


Coconut Balm dot Com | RMS Lip Shine Honest | RMS Lip Shine Bloom |Too Faced Sweet Peach Creamy Oil |Glossier Gen G Leo | Glossier Lip Gloss |NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil Frivolous | NARS Lip Gloss Bimini

I’m getting back in the groove with gloss. The NARS in Bimini is from a few seasons ago and (surprise) it’s gotten no love from me. I also use the Glossier Lip Gloss on my eyelids – it’s not intended for that, but I like it and find it wears well.

And, there you have it: my summer beauty wardrobe! It’s going to be a great summer of beauty. Can’t wait to try something new with these combos and figure out if this whole narrowing down for an entire season helps me use what I love and keep me from needlessly buying more beauty products.

Summer 2017 Beauty Wishlist

Cleaning out my beauty closet was so satisfying (catch up with that here!) More like random boxes in cabinets, products stuffed in drawers, stacked in bins all for the appearance of having a place. But it was all just taking up space.

Before figuring out what my summer beauty wardrobe is all about, I want to consult with my ever expanding wishlist. In the beginning of the year, I attempted to curb unnecessary beauty spending by writing down what I want. I’ve heard others have a lot of success with this method – essentially, don’t buy without talking to yourself about needs/wants first – and I wanted to see if it could work with me. It did, until it didn’t. Like everything you want to get better at, you gotta put the work in. Ignoring the list and not being honest with yourself are a recipe for failure. I’m all about accountability: I’m bringing it online.

I’m putting some parameters around my process. First, no more Instagram shopping. Easier said than done? It’s a dangerous place! Seriously, I had a whole post dedicated to this and it is a very real thing. Sometimes those beauty buys end up being my favorite, though, so it just means I need to give myself a pause before adding to cart is all.

Here is what I can’t stop thinking about for summer. Beauty on the brain!

New Becca. Every summer has a palette. Last year, I was all about the Becca Jaclyn Hill Champagne Pop Face Palette. I’d probably still be using if it hadn’t broke on me. All of the powders fell out, basically. Super disappointing YET I’m totally eyeing up the Chrissy Teigen Glow Face Palette. I consider it my greatest proof of restraint that I haven’t gotten it yet. The Shimmering Skin Perfectors are no joke and there’s a new one in this palette called Beach Nectar. I think it might be better than Champagne Pop. I’m honestly surprised it’s still available because these things tend to go fast. (read: Please, just go away already and stop tempting me!)

Cream Everything. Especially this RMS Mod Collection Palette. Did you guys know RMS has palettes now? I have so many of her pots of color so seeing them grouped in one chic palette is calling out to me. It has Master Mixer and Living Luminizer, two Lip2Cheeks and even the Cocoa Lip and Skin Balm. It’s reminding me how much I love RMS.

Summer-proof lashes. It’s like waterproof but easier to remove. I love my Maybelline Lash Sensational but it is really hard to get off. I appreciate that it doesn’t budge but it’s not even waterproof and I have a three-step routine to get it all off. Traveling can be a real pain. One of my long-standing favs is from Kjaer Weis (see it in action here) – it’s organic and chic as hell. I have the outer packaging (it’s refillable!) so would just need to get a refill. Another mascara I’ve heard nothing but raves for is from Wander Beauty.  Has anyone tried? The reviews I’ve seen make it seem like a hidden gem – volumizing, curling, no flaking, long-lasting, lengthening. Seriously? That’s all the things.

Glow Makers. My name is Laurie and I can’t stop acquiring illuminators. The NARS summer collection with Charlotte Gainsborg has a particularly attractive gel cream that can take the place of makeup. Adding fuel to the fire is its limited edition status. And, then there is the Milk Makeup Mars Holographic Highlight. This one has a peachy golden hue that reflects with a slight hologram in certain lights. Every time I see someone wearing this, I’m always way impressed with the reflection. It’s not purple like other holographic highlights but more natural.

What is on your list for summer? Do you wear more, less? Cream, powder? Very curious to know if you switch it up. Also, I don’t want to hear anything about the Chrissy palette. Seriously!

top photo by Emily Prendergast

Statement Blush

Bright Pink Blush

This week has me all out of sorts. Could be the staying out late on Sunday for the Oscar’s, Leap Day, snow on March 1, Donald Trump or lack of endorphin release (physical activity has taken a backburner – eek!)

I’m feeling the winter blues, bigtime. I see it in my face, too. I’ve been a little dry and a lot sallow. I’ve had to bust out the mega-brightening makeup. a.k.a. highlighter is not optional. I’m strobing, hard.  I’ve also been using cream everything lately because WINTER and going a little heavier on blush.  I realize that I can be too subtle sometimes. I’ll see myself in a picture and think, hmm…more blush would have made this better. I know cameras eat blush but I think my morning commute does, too. By the time I get to work, I feel less fresh-faced. I’m no stranger to a statement cheek so have been taking cues from years’ past and dialing it up.

Right now, I’m 100% into a bright pink cheek. Stowaway’s Peony, RMS Sublime (technically a Lip Shine but so perfect on cheeks) and IT Cosmetics CC+ Vitality Brightening Crème Blush in Je Ne Sais Quoi. Despite how bright they look, they are all extremely wearable. The IT Cosmetics actually has collagen and silk in the formula – that’s some next level blushing.

Also, one of the most beautiful blushes (ever) is Chantecaille Cheek Gelee in Happy. This is a soft pink sheer blush. It’s more subtle radiance than it is statement maker but it’s completely beautiful and brightening. I saw that Reese Witherspoon’s makeup artist used this shade on her at the Oscar’s and layered another Chantecaille blush over it for more pop. So, now, I’m trying the layering bit out for more oomph. I absolutely loved Reese’s makeup at the Oscar’s. It was statement everything but her cheeks were on point.

The good news is that it’s Wednesday and I’m having a good cheek day. The week can only go up from here, yes?

The Instant Face Lift (+ other RMS Beauty-isms!)

RMS Beauty

A few weeks ago, Rose Marie Swift made her way through Toronto and hosted a get together at The Detox Market. She was super chic in all black – skinny pants, tunic and sneaks – and had her sprout-eating Yorkie she shares with Miranda Kerr in tow. Rose Marie – RMS Beauty – is an absolutely brilliant makeup artist and an all-around cool chick.  In the span of an hour, she taught me a dozen new things about her line, our skin and made me laugh nonstop. She also spilled the beans that she is working on lipstick — packaging TBD but she flashed a Ziploc baggie of testers in a more traditional stick or tube form – and powder eye shadow! Oh, and she’s also thinking about sunscreen, noting “that’ll be next year!”

Instant Face Lift. How are you applying blush? Rose Marie says the higher the better to give the face a lifted look. “Just look at Helen Mirren to see what I mean.”  She took her Lip Shine in Sublime – the brightest pink in her line – and dabbed it almost on the cheekbone and blended it up and back.

Forgot the intended use. It’s all multi-purpose. I love and use the entire RMS line with the exception of the Eye Polish. I love them in theory but my eyelids eat them for breakfast. However, I took RMS’ advice and use the chocolatey bronze Seduce to fill in my eyebrows! It is PERFECT. As she so obviously pointed out, eyebrows aren’t flat on our face so it is OK to fill them in with something with a little shimmer. I’m a match with Seduce but Lunar or Karma work just as well for lighter or darker brows.

RMS Tinted Un Powder

Powder Strategically. Don’t put it around the whole face. She likes to use a flat cotton puff to dab her Tinted Un Powder on select areas (like eyebrows and around nose) but don’t layer it over the cheeks or anywhere you’d use her cult-fav Living Luminizer.

But, wait, it doesn’t stay on my face… I know her coconut oil-rich products can be a turnoff to some – I’ve heard it from many friends after I recommend it to them. Someone asked her directly, why do I have problem with your makeup staying on my face. She made such a good point! “Waterproof sunscreen. There’s a synthetic layer – that’s why!” While RMS is definitely drinking from the fountain of youth, she also encouraged everyone to get some sun once in a while. “We are not going in the sun – it’s the feel good vitamin. I’m a firm believer that chemicals in the environment seep into our skin and we put on waterproof sunscreen, sweat and tap all of those chemicals in the skin. Yes, sun is bad, but let yourself get some.”

Also, hyaluronic acid? “It’s unpowderable! I can spot it like the plague.” RMS acknowledges that it is great for night but also likens it to glorified Vaseline.

She is her own quality control. “I do not let the labs go near my stuff. I buy everything. All my ingredients. My Shea, coconut (Thailand), my minerals. And my labs get my formulas.”

Be careful with oils. They have a shelf life! “Coconut is three years, jojoba two but some go “bad” very fast (like safflower).”

Teva Glam


Earlier this spring, I decided I wanted to go to Madison to celebrate my birthday. The city is incredibly special to me and I wanted to be in one of my favorite places with my favorite people. Mission accomplished! I consumed an excess of cheese curds and beer and made gaga eyes at the state Capitol every chance I got. We polka danced, paddleboarded and brunched.  It was glorious. I also debuted a pair of Tevas and felt like I was walking on pillows. Is there anything more Madison than wearing Tevas? No. The answer is a solid no. I’m not mad at the Teva resurgence one bit. It’s inspiring a low key Laurie and I dig the vibes. Pretty pick this, shall we?

Tevas: They’re affordable, lightweight and they look damn good with a pair of high-waisted denim shorts and a muscle tank. There’s something to be said for that Velcro, too.  // You know what also looks good with Tevas? This speckled Silk Crop Top from Chicago designer Argaman & Definance. They make silk scarves (and cute crops!) using dye made from tree bark and leaves. // Rollerball perfume is uber convenient for carrying in your purse. I’m obsessing over the Illume Grapefruit Oleander rollerball. Has just the right amount of patchouli. // There are a lot of parallels between Madison and Austin – some call them sister cities. So it makes sense that I would adore this line of haircare from Austin-based Verb. They’re about quality over frills and believe in easy living. YES. // Whipped shea butter and rosemary essential oil? My feet are calling for some Osmia therapy! // I’m in for Soapwalla 2.0…the only other natural deodorant that has been effective for me now comes in Citrus. // RMS launched a few neutral shades for summer and the rosy nude Lip Shine in Honest is perfect. I plan to stockpile. // A serum with a sheen….Gressa knows how to make your skin look the best it ever has without having you load up on makeup. More of this equates to less makeup. And more time to enjoy time in your Tevas!

Inspiration in Accidental Success

RMS Beauty

It was nearly five years ago. I was in New York for The Makeup Show—practically triple the size of the Chicago show that inhabits the Bridgeport Art Center every June. Inside the massive convention center was a tiny table manned by an even tinier Rose Marie Swift. Ya know, THEE RMS Beauty. Friend to Giselle. Preferred makeup artist of Victoria Secret models. Architect of the nouveau dewy J. Crew model glow. At the time, I didn’t know RMS from REM but appreciated how her kind and approachable smile lured me into conversation. I used the personal interaction to get a recommendation on skin care…by way of her makeup line. This was a time before I really understood the impact ingredients had on my skin.

I’ve always flagged this moment as one that kickstarted my passion for green beauty. Her “Un” Cover-Up and Living Luminizer were instant proof that eco-friendly did not mean ineffective. I’ve always had a serious respect for Rose Marie. Now, consider it full-blown admiration. I must have read this recent interview with Rose Marie in The Cut a dozen times. In the vein of inspiration week, let’s talk about it.

I’ll summarize with cliffnotes, but I encourage you to read in full, too…

  • Interested in curing acne? Rose Marie says load up on probiotics by the MEGA dose.
  • No one poops properly (yeah, I really heart her for giving legit advice about this topic in New York magazine)
  • She shares a dog with Miranda Kerr. And it eats sprouts.
  • When asked how she got her start in the makeup biz, she says, “I actually never wanted to be a makeup artist. I completely faked it. I still don’t want to be a makeup artist.”
  • And, if that level of honesty doesn’t shock you, consider how she responded when asked how she started RMS Beauty: “I didn’t want to create a line; I’m lazy. I started writing for the BeautyTruthsite, talking about all the chemicals in the cosmetics industry. And doing that, I actually got more work. It lifted me up to somebody who had something to say…J started looking at the pseudo-green lines that were out at the time, and was just like, This isn’t a green brand! And before I knew it I had a makeup line.”

Bless you, Rose Marie.

Between us, I always feel like such a dud when asked where do you see yourself in [insert # of years] question. I loathe that question. Sure, I have goals and vision. And in business – particularly for the entrepreneurial set – you need a plan. But, I don’t want to prescribe how my life, passion and career unfolds. And I find incredible inspiration in an accidental makeup artist turned green beauty mogul who to this DAY admits she’s “lazy” and didn’t necessarily pursue any of her success.

Looking Good in Dem Jeans



Jeans are the barometer for how we feel about our weight. Don’t you agree? I have skinny jeans – the attainable pair that acts as a benchmark. And there’s the skinny jeans that make me feel thin no matter my weight. Those are the best.  I really should just ditch the skinny skinnies but there’s something in my subconscious that keeps me hanging on with every closet purge. When they fit, I feel unstoppable and that’s a feeling that I’m not willing to donate to the Salvation Army.

Channeling that awesome feeling this week with some picks that go well with denim.

Madewell – First, about dem jeans. Those skinny no matter what jeans I wear are the High Risers. They are beyond slimming and never stretch out. Madewell says they do life altering things for the rearview and I ain’t mad at that claim. // Snakeskin Sneaks – These go great with denim – cutoff or full leg. // Lashes – My mom bought me the L’Oreal Butterfly mascara for my birthday and it’s knocked off the Falsies as my favorite drugstore mascara. The wand is angled and thicker on one side so lashes in your outer corner get crazy long and plumped up. // Denim Dress – Hello, fall uniform. // Lipstick QueenJean Queen – For 20 years, Poppy King was asked what’s the perfect shade to wear with jeans so she finally created one. It’s a universally flattering pink that lights up your face and offsets the blue in the fabric. // Bumble Thickening Dryspun Finish – This replicates a professional blowout with just a few spritzes and tousles of the hair. A good hair day is the perfect complement to jeans. // Michelle Starbuck Chain Bracelet – I am outfitted heavily with Michelle’s vintage brass, denim or otherwise. // RMS Beauty Eye PolishI typically keep the blues to my jeans, but I need to try this silvery blue cream shadow from RMS.

Pearly Picks


This weekend was all sorts of emotional. That Badgers game. The series finale of How I Met Your Mother. I was able to avoid all spoilers this week but knew there was outrage. I get it now, though I’m still totally conflicted on how I feel about it. This interview helps. I chose this week’s pretty picks in part because pearls make me happy and because I can’t stop thinking about this necklace. Or this ring. Those two pieces are exactly how I want to wear pearl jewelry right now…with just a little bit of edge.

Here’s my other pearly picks!

The BaubleBar pearl collar is out of stock (sadly!) but this Anthropologie version is just as good. // I love the Jouer Lip Enhancer formula and this pearly nude hue is so perfect. Makes for very kissable lips! // Crushed pearl acts as a skin conditioner in Tatcha’s Rice Enzyme Powder. Water activates the formula and turns it into a super rich and exfoliating cleanser. // The highlighter of ALL highlighters…revealed to be the secret to the J.Crew model glow. //  I went to a Clarins spring beauty event a few weeks ago and have been mixing this base in with my tinted moisturizer for a little glow since. // NARS does neutral eyeshadow so well and this opalescent pink is especially pretty and brightening.

Bronze for Blue Eyes


Ask me my favorite place to get my makeup done in the city, and I’ll tell you Arch Apothercary. The weekend of Valentine’s Day, I headed there with Christine for some girl time over blowouts and makeup. I was heading directly to dinner with my husband from there and Arch made me feel so pretty for date night. I’ve been wearing a lot of lip color lately so was looking for something a little more evening on the eyes.  I love the layered bronze eye that Betsy Branca (founder and owner of Arch!) gave me and have been replicating it on my own since. If you have blue eyes, you must try! Our peepers really pop with these colors.

It’s seriously the easiest.




1. Prime lids and layer on a cream bronze shadow (Betsy used RMS Seduce) from lash line to just above your natural crease. No need to be too perfect because you’re going to layer over it with powder eye shadow.

2. Take a fluffy shadow brush and blend a light bronze over the entire area you just applied the cream shadow.

3. Take a slightly darker color and blend it on the outer edge of the crease for more definition. Then take a small pointed-tip brush (I love this one) and sweep that darker brown across the lower lash line.

4. Apply mascara to upper and lower lashes.


And that’s it! Eyeliner optional. She tightlined my upper and lower lash line since I was going out afterward, but when I do this for day during the work week I only do mascara.  I loved Christine’s makeup, too. She gives a how-to on contouring over here  (featuring my fav Jenny Patinkin brush!) which you should definitely check out.

P.S. Arch is opening in Madison, Wisconsin this spring! Um…this year marks 10 (oh my gah) since I graduated a Badger. You college peeps sure are lucky, though.

Photos by Christine Petric

Note: Arch Apothecary treated me to complimentary services during this visit.

Beauty Date with The Garden Apt.

Last weekend, I got together with Lindsay for a beauty date. She was looking to restock some daily essentials, so we hit up Whole Foods and walked to Arch Apothecary from there (with a pit stop at Anthropologie — where Lindsay bought this tunic I so wish there had been another of!) After the polar vortex earlier in the week, it felt so good to walk outside…on purpose. Plus, beauty and shopping dates with girlfriends are my fav!

Lindsay-The-Garden-Apt-ChicagoI’m totally buying Lindsay’s earrings — they caught my eye all day!


The goods!

We must have strolled the health & beauty aisles of Whole Foods for an hour. I picked up this Rose Glycerin spray which you can use as a moisturizing body spray or face mist. The biggest bottle only sets you back about $5 — it’s fantastic. I encouraged Lindsay to try an Acure Organics day cream and she stocked up on Avalon Lavender Body Lotion and the Everyday Coconut Face Wash.


RMS Demure Lip2Cheek

Every time I go to Arch, I can’t help but treat myself to something. We both picked up the RMS Uncover Up (it’s her first time with RMS and I’m squee-ing over it!) and Demure Lip2Cheek, which is a soft pale pink. It’s sort of Barbie in hue but I think that’s what makes it so perfect on lips and cheeks. It looked incredible on Lindsay’s skin.

Now go say hi to Lindsay over at The Garden Apt. and hear how she’s liking her new beauty goods!

RMS Beauty “Un” Powder


I’d all but given up on setting powder. It seemed as if all of my foundations and base products were holding up just fine on their own. Why bother with an extra step? Honestly, it was all feeling very 2010 anyway. But then, the internet got to me. Everyone started raving about RMS Beauty “Un” Powder and so I added it to my list. You know the one, right? The list of beauty items to try/buy/pine for…it’s a looooong list that exists in my head and sometimes on paper. I was at Arch Apothecary a few weeks ago getting my makeup did and they carry RMS now, so we tried it out. My makeup never looked so flawless. It didn’t cover anything or take away any of the glow we worked so hard to create — it just gave me a polish that I didn’t even know I was missing. It’s so simple: 100% pure silica. That’s it! Now, that one step I wanted to cut is the one that matters most. It comes with a cute little powder puff, but it’s best when you press it on with a tiny fluffy brush. Think of it as a magic eraser…for your face.

This list is daBalm.com


Are you dreaming of a white Christmas? How about a balmy one? You know where I’m going with this. I’d say a tube of lip balm is a consummate gift but as a balm extremist, I take it to a whole new level. I had to create a dedicated gift guide on this topic alone to explore what’s out there beyond that tube of Chapstick. These are all daBalm.com. Get to it!

These S.W. Basics lip balms taste like dessert and are a favorite of mine. I think the flight of four is such a fab gift.

The best part of balms is how many ways you can use them. Take Revolution Organics up on their challenge of 22+ ways to get your balm on.

I actually treated myself to an early May Lindstrom holiday present (it’s all Cyber Monday’s fault). The Blue Cocoon Beauty Balm Concentrate is the stuff dreams are made of.

I consider introducing people to One Love Organics Skin Savior a public service. Mix this with your mineral makeup to make a cream, slather it on dry spots and you’ll soon realize that life is just better with Skin Savior.

The W3LL People Nudist Lip Shines are on my wish list! Every single color.

The RMS Beauty Skin & Lip Balm is a hidden treasure! You could certainly use on your lip, but I think this is great to apply on the face and cuticles for extra moisture.

The Gold Standard


Behold, tis the season for gift giving. But we’re all friends here, so it’s OK if I admit that I’m shopping for me, too, right? The holidays really test my self-control.  I’m kicking off gift guides today and each is filled with the most incredible prezzies. For yourself, for others or both — I’m not judging. Or, in this case, gilt-ing you.

Sasha told me about the Gold Box at A Night for Green Beauty back in September and I have been eagerly awaiting! It’s so pretty in its special box and it’s Ilia, so you know it’s going to wear beautifully.

This ‘lip tease’ mug is the cutest. I’d couple this with a box of tea and a nice handwritten note.

The Threshold jewelry boxes are such a great Target find. I actually got the smaller size for my nieces and I can’t wait to see them fill it with their most special things.

I love how this bib necklace has a delicate and feminine feel.

Butter London Stratford Honey Overcoat makes every polish look like it was dipped in gold glitter.

Gold leaf lip balm? Girl, you fancy.

This Jonathan Adler Metallic Zebra Dish is begging to be on top of my a dresser, holding tiny treasures.

Every girl deserves a little RMS Beauty in her life. The Solar Cream Eyeshadow is a beautiful golden beige hue.

P.S. Since it is Cyber Monday and all…worth noting that Net-a-Porter has 15% with code HOLIDAYBEAUTY (I already snagged an Ilia Gold Box for moi!) and Tatcha has a 20% Friends & Family sale through December 11. Go for the gold leaf!

The List: November 2013


November has its perks. The holidays are in sight and that means lots of sparkle and shine. Everywhere, really. The streets are now glowing with holiday lights and walking into J. Crew this time of year is like strolling through candy land. If winter decides to encroach on the last bits of fall, even that is welcome. You know…big picturesque snowflakes, infinity scarves and warm boots. Everything is just better in November. Here’s what I’m loving for the month ahead.

Dewy skin. Drier air has moved in and I’m feeling it on my skin. Time to break out the moisture-rich Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow foundation. I love the finish and the coverage but tend to avoid it in the summer months. It’s just right this time of year.

Bronzed complexion. Who says bronzer is only for summer? I think it’s fresh and modern to wear bronzer and hardly anything else on the skin. RMS Buriti Bronzer is a cream bronzer made with Brazilian Buriti Oil and can be used on eyes, cheeks and lips (see it in action on Bare Beauty – stunning!) Pur Minerals Mineral Glow Bronzer is subtle enough to dust all over and and for a peachy bronze, the creamy Kjaer Weis Desired Glow is where it’s at.

Incense. Diptyque’s holiday collection is sick, guys. They are the ultimate splurge but my gosh, I need no convincing. Nicky Kinniard of Space NK gifted me with a mini of the Indian Incense – frankincense, myrrh and rose, can you even? – and it’s transformed my living room into some exotic destination. It’s all very “we three kings” and puts me in the mood for the holidays.

Body serum. Speaking of exotic…Kahina’s Fez Body Serum. I’ve never been to Morocco, but I think I have a good idea of what it smells like. I tried a mini sample from a recent Spirit Beauty Lounge order and it was incredible. Stay with me – rose and orange blossoms layered over patchouli, vetiver, ylang ylang with hints of cumin and clove. I’ve never smelled anything like it before. I want to take a hot steamy bath every night and layer this on after. Adding to the allure is this New York Times culture piece on Fez, the city. Kahina may be singlehandedly responsible for boosting Moroccan tourism.

Neutral tote. Leopard print is the hardest working neutral. I’ve added this French Connection ‘Animal Mania’ Tote to my wishlist. It would fit my computer and just about everything else I lug around. What do you think?

Mini oils.  Can it be November 15, already, so this little trio can be mine? La Bella Figura is launching a value set for the holidays – a rollerball of the Daily Elements Defense, Barberry Fig Renewal Serum and the brand spanking new Travel Therapy Mood Booster with some mighty fine soothing botanicals (including rose essential oil – my fav!)