Workout Plan for the Next 4 Weeks

Since completing my first half marathon last Sunday, I have taken it easy the past week and truly thought about my fitness journey moving forward.  I also mentioned in the last post, Popping my Half Marathon Cherry, that I want to do more marathons.  Even though I hobbled over the finish line, I proved to myself somehow and finally, that I can do amazing things.  Things I truly didn’t feel were possible.

So in order to be better prepared for my next Half Marathon, which I plan on doing the Seattle Rock N Roll Half Marathon again next year, I devised up a workout regimen.  Every 4 weeks I will tweak it as necessary, but that way I am breaking it up and hopefully not feeling too overwhelmed.

Today, for instance, I went to the gym and hit the treadmill.  I warmed up for 5 minutes at 2.7mph, walked at 3.2mph for 30 minutes at a 1.0 incline, and cooled down for 5 minutes at 3.0mph.  Later tonight I am going to do Day 1 on the Lose Weight in 30 Days app.  It is a free app that has at home exercises requiring no equipment, just your own body weight, and takes less than 15 minutes.  Something I have been looking for in order to help me strengthen my muscles.

Week 1
GYM – MWF – Treadmill Warm Up 5 min @ 2.7 mph 0 incline
Workout 30 min @ 3.2 mph 1 incline
Cool Down 5 min @ 3.0 mph 0 incline
 GYM – Sat – Treadmill
Warm Up 5 min @ 2.7 mph 0 incline
Workout 40 min @ 3.2 mph 1 incline
Cool Down 5 min @ 3.0 mph 0 incline
Week 2
GYM – MWF – Treadmill Warm Up 5 min @ 2.7 mph 0 incline
Workout 30 min @ 3.2 mph 1 incline
Cool Down 5 min @ 3.0 mph 0 incline
GYM – Sat – Treadmill
Warm Up 5 min @ 2.7 mph 0 incline
Workout 45 min @ 3.2 mph 1 incline
Cool Down 5 min @ 3.0 mph 0 incline
Week 3
GYM – MWF – Treadmill Warm Up 5 min @ 2.7 mph 0 incline
Workout 30 min @ 3.4 mph 1 incline
Cool Down 5 min @ 3.0 mph 0 incline
GYM – Sat – Treadmill
Warm Up 5 min @ 2.7 mph 0 incline
Workout 40 min @ 3.4 mph 1 incline
Cool Down 5 min @ 3.0 mph 0 incline
Week 4
GYM – MWF – Treadmill Warm Up 5 min @ 2.7 mph 0 incline
Workout 30 min @ 3.2 mph 1 incline
Cool Down 5 min @ 3.4 mph 0 incline
GYM – Sat – Treadmill
Warm Up 5 min @ 2.7 mph 0 incline
Workout 45 min @ 3.4 mph 1 incline
Cool Down 5 min @ 3.0 mph 0 incline

I’m not going to add in info from the app, just because it does a few days in a row, rest, couple more days, then rest.  I didn’t want this post to be too long, so I’ll just leave it at the gym workout.

Another thing I’d like to talk about is I did weigh myself this morning, at the scale read 208.6. I am up 6 pounds. This was slightly discouraging at first, but I walked 13.1 miles so I was bound to gain quite a bit of muscle, then on top of that, I started my period.  So I’m also dealing with water retention, bloating, etc.  So I am not going to fret about it.

On a non-scale victory note, I can fit into a Men’s medium shirt!  When I went to the Expo for the Rock N Roll Half Marathon, I picked up a grey 13.1 shirt in medium, so I had something to strive towards without going crazy.  This morning, I decided to try it on and it fit perfectly!  I wore it to the gym and was so happy!  I should note that I could originally snuggly fit into a men’s X-Large shirt and I comfortably fit into a medium.

I think that’ll do it for me today.  I’m about to go make some dinner, vegan fajitas, then watch a movie with the girls, trying not to die from being too hot.  I hope you all have a wonderful evening and until next time.

Popping My Half Marathon Cherry: Rock N Roll Seattle 2018

Well, it has definitely been a hot minute since I posted anything.  11 days to be exact.  Honestly, mental health wasn’t the best, wasn’t motivated or inspired to do anything.  Thursday night however definitely boosted my spirits.  My best friend since high school flew up to help me make it through my very first Half Marathon.  That’s right ladies and gentlemen, a half marathon, 13.1 miles of grueling awesomeness.  Yes, contradictory, I get it.  BUT if you have done one, does that not sum it up well?

Last Friday was the Expo.  To start the day off right, we went to the Wayward Vegan Cafe in Seattle.  It’s been YEARS since I’ve been there.  Location changed, but the food was still just as delicious as before.  I ordered the Country Fried Seitan and oh my God, it was to DIE FOR!!  After we were both done stuffing our faces, we headed out in the wonderful Seattle traffic (sarcasm folks) and made it to the expo.  It was not as overwhelming as I anticipated, huge plus there, but there were so many glorious vendors, we got samples of everything!  My bestie showed me the ropes on how to work and go through an expo for maximum sample carnage.  Okay, a bit much, but oh well.  Cliff Bars, Bulletproof Coffee, temporary tattoos and FIELD ROAST!  I was beyond excited for a good amount of vegetarian and vegan options for samples, including Quorn, Field Roast, and Cliff Bars.  I also grabbed a sample of vegan gummy bears, but for the life of me, I can’t find them.  Sad face.

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We walked around for a bit, just sampling away, looking at items for purchase.  Unfortunately, I got there a little too late to pick up the 13.1 sticker for my car, but I did pick up a shit.  When you sign up, just in case you don’t know, you do get a shirt.  You pick it up after you have grabbed your packet and bib at the front.  However, I wanted another proudly showcasing the mileage.

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There was a fun little photo booth that my bestie and I took some photos in and Toyota was there offering a virtual ride in a car through a race.  Super cool.  We found the track we were going to be doing.  I will say, didn’t look as daunting on flat paper as it was in person.  Just going to leave it at that!  The rest of the evening we pretty much relaxed, watched some Netflix and tried, TRIED mind you, to go to be early.

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Now onto race day!  I set my alarm for 4:15am because on our parking pass, it said we needed to be parked by 6:00am.  So I showered, shaved, walked the girls, and got ready for the event.  My bestie KT taped my right knee for me, we both downed some Immodium and headed downtown.  Traffic was very light and we were parked right at 6:00am.

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We made sure to use the bathroom one last time and headed to our designated corral.  I was put in the last corral, 20, and my bestie was placed in the same one as me, thanks to the lovely people at the expo.

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There were so many people and it felt electric.  I realize that sounds a bit corny or cheesy, but honestly, that is the only way I could describe it.  Everyone was here to do something crazy, walk or run 13.1 miles.

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The race originally started around 6:30am.  The time our corral made it to the front it was about 7:10am and the blowhorn sounded, marking the beginning of our corral.  The first few miles were pretty easy, I was walking and jogging what I could.  By around mile 5, my left hip started hurting.  Go figure right, the one area I have never had a problem with before, started acting up.  My knee was doing great though, so yay KT tape!

By mile 9, my hip was extremely painful.  By 11 I was in an immense amount of pain.  It almost felt like someone was taking a pick to my bone every time I put my left foot down.  However, I kept going.  Kept on keeping on.  My feet hurt and I was sore all over, but I could tolerate that.  The hip was what was absolutely killing me.  You bet your ass however that I was not going to let that stop me.

By mile 12 I wanted to burn down Seattle and everyone in it.  I wanted rains of fire pouring from the heaven decimating everything in sight.  I was in pain, fucking miserable, wondering why the FUCK would someone sign up to do this stupid shit.  I wanted to scream and cry, but my stubborn ass refused to do that shit.  But I kept hobbling.  Oh yes, hobbling.  I could barely walk by mile 12.  At one point, I turned a corner, saw a band playing and thought, Halle-fucking-lujah the end!  But it wasn’t.  That’s when I cursed out loud, “Are you fucking kidding me?!?!”

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But, I kept going.  I finally saw the finish line and I smiled. I hobbled over that line, making it about 4 hours and 10 minutes for me to complete my first half marathon, and I picked up my very first medal.  For once in my life, I fucking completed something.

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It took over an hour to rest for a bit and hobble to my car.  Sitting for a bit, eating some hummus and a protein bar directly after, then having to take breaks between hobbles because my hip was in excruciating pain.  I picked up Taco Bell on the way back to my house and when we reached my house, I hobbled one step at a time up the stairs, then collapsed on my chair and ripped off my shoes and socks.  I was bleeding on my left foot, forgot to trim my toenails, and only had one blister!  Although, a couple of days later learned I had a blister under my toenail on my right big toe, as in directly under my toenail.

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So after all of that, being sore and in pain for almost 4 solid days after the marathon, would I do it again?

Abso-fucking-lutely.  I always laughed or wondered at the running memes of runners and marathons.  Saying something along the lines of, if you do one, you want to do them always.  Now, I can’t at the moment say yes to always, but I am already planning to do the Seattle Half Marathon and the Las Vegas Half Marathon next year.  I have learned so much from “training” for this half marathon, that I know a bit more of what I need to do to improve.  I have just about a year till the next Seattle Rock N Roll Half Marathon and my time goal is 3 hours and 30 minutes.  I proved to myself I am fully capable of anything.

I’m getting back on track with my eating, worked out a plan for running and strength training, and am ready to take on this next challenge.  I can’t thank my bestie enough, because she was with me, pushed me, and supported me.  I have hung my bib and medal on my vision board to further motivate and inspire me.  So here’s to the Seattle Rock N Roll Half Marathon 2019!

 

June 2018 Check-In

I am pretty sure I say this every month, but I truly feel this year has been flying by.  This post is a few days late, but here I am with it.  Time for my monthly check-in.  The past couple of months have been pretty rough for me mentally.  At times I feel like completely checking out of this whole fitness/weight loss journey.  I mentioned on my Instagram post of the saying, losing weight is hard, being overweight is hard, choose your hard.  Well, for the past couple of months I have felt like picking staying overweight.

I have been overweight practically my entire life.  In third grade, I weighed 110 pounds.  At one point I got down to 165 pounds and stayed around that weight for a couple of years, but felt no different as if I was 240 pounds.  The only time I was ever skinny or fit was when I was around five years old.  I don’t know the feeling of being fit or thin.  I just know about being fat.  Throughout the years that has taken such a toll on my mental health.

What has triggered a lot of this, well, what I feel has triggered a lot of this is the lack of drive I sustain for losing weight.  What I mean is, one side of my brain is producing images of things I will more easily be able to do when I am fit, things I feel I would be more confident in doing or trying, such as wearing a bikini, take scuba diving lessons, there are these images and scenarios that play in my head of all the things I would better be able to accomplish at a smaller, healthier size.  It truly gets me pumped up and excited.  Then the other half of my brain comes barreling through.  You’ll never be able to do that.  You are never going to get fit.  Even if you somehow manage to lose the weight, you will gain it all back, just like last time.  You are fat, worthless, and ugly.  Not a fun side to deal with.

On top of that, one of my closest friends has lost almost 50 pounds in 4 months.  Now before you jump down my throat, I am happy for her.  Truly I am.  But, unfortunately, that makes me feel like shit because it has taken me almost a year to lose 40 pounds.  When you are already struggling with mental health issues regarding this matter something like that definitely doesn’t help or boost my confidence.  Everyone is different, every body is different, and it is amazing that she’s been able to do that.  For me, it makes me feel like a failure because I can’t stick to healthy eating or anything for that matter.  I can’t stick to a schedule to work out, eat right, nothing.

Here is where my positive side comes through and what I am trying, trying to focus on.  Even with my binge eating, my mental roller coaster I have been on and stay on, through my horrible ups and downs, and my gross amount of inconsistencies, I have managed to lose 40 pounds.  No pills, no weight loss surgery, just me, somehow still moving forward through all of my mental chaos and self-sabotage, lost 40 pounds.  I can’t always see that through my mental misery, but I see that today and I try to see that on my bad days.

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Thursday, my best friend since high school is flying up here and we are doing the Seattle Rock ‘N Roll Half Marathon together on Sunday.  I may not be running it, but Goddammit, I am going to do my best and finish that fucker.  I am going to hang that number and medal on my vision board so I look at that every fucking day and remind myself I finished something.

So here’s to losing 40 pounds, here’s to my first half marathon this Sunday, and here’s to being under 200 pounds by July 1!  Goodnight everybody!

April & May 2018 Empties!

*This post contains affiliate links.  There is no cost to you if you use them, but clicking and purchasing through one of them earns me a very small commission. 

Here we are at the end of month five of 2018 and another empties post.  Honestly, I didn’t think I would publish another empties post so soon, but my products collected quickly.  If you want to check out my last empties post, I will have that linked for you here.  I have decided to go from home products, hair care, skin care, makeup items, then samples.  I love saving makeup stuff for last because that’s what gets me most excited.  So if you are curious what made it to my trash pile, just keep on reading.  Also, this is another long post so you might wanna grab a drink!

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For the months of April and May, I managed to use up three candles.  This is a pretty big deal for me because I am famous for buying candles but never using them up.  That pumpkin spice candle I have had for 2 years in my backstock.  Yes, 2 years.  Actually, it may be 3 but we will just stick with 2.  I fucking LOVE pumpkin spice.  Pumpkin ANYTHING is my jam.  Although, Pumpkin Spice Lattes are terrible, stick with a White Chocolate Pumpkin Americano, you are welcome.  This candle wasn’t overpowered with cinnamon (thank fucking Christ).  You have enough warmth to the pumpkin so it wasn’t overly sweet, but the strong fragrance would waft through the house wonderfully.  Think of a fresh slice of warmed pumpkin pie.  Every time I burnt this candle I would be transported to fall, with the crisp, cool air, the leaves changing from green to yellow, orange, and red, and me bundled up in my blankets watching Hocus Pocus.  Oh yeah, this candle is wonderful.  I still have two in my backstock.  It is the Mainstays Pumpkin Spice Candle ($4.86 US for 20oz) and it is seasonal, usually coming back in stock around late August, early September.

The other candle has quickly become a close second.  It is the Better Homes & Gardens Around the Campfire Candle ($5.96 US for 18oz).  Oh my gosh.  If you need a more affordable option for Bath & Body Works Marshmallow Fireside Candle, this is it!  It is warm, smokey, slightly sweet.  Good God!  Unfortunately, this scent is limited edition.  You can’t order it online, it is an in-store purchase only.  When I originally picked up this candle, I only grabbed two.  I went back a couple days later and picked up an additional four.  This takes me to the end of fall, beginning of winter type of scent.  I just adore it.  Literally, as I am typing this I’m inhaling the fragrance.  I need a perfume of this, honestly.  Like, yesterday.   I only have three left in my backstock and I’m not comfortable with that.  Anyway, let’s keep moving, shall we?

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Alright, I need to work on these.  I will explain why in just a second.  So first, yay, used up a Febreze Aerosol in Fresh Cut Pine ($2.97 originally, $18 US for a 3-Pack on Amazon), however, I still have 13 cans left.  Granted not of this scent but of the Pumpkin scent, but I digress 13.  Yes, you read that correctly 13 as in 1-3 cans of Febreze.  Why?  No fucking idea.  I love the scent of these things, they work wonderfully, but I forget to use them.  They are even sitting out to where I can see them and I still forget to use them.  This number is not necessary, I need to work on lowering these!

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This one though, this item right here, I am SUPER proud of.  This is the Elizabeth and James Nirvana Bourbon Dry Shampoo ($28 US for 4.4oz).  Nirvana Bourbon is one of my top three favorite fragrances of all time.  It is incredibly sexy and sensual to me, having a mixture of vanilla bourbon, Oakwood, and tuberose.  Why am I proud that this is an empty?  I don’t use dry shampoos.  Ever.  Before purchasing this item I used dry shampoo once or twice and didn’t get it.  Yet, I bought this, as well as the Nirvana Black Dry Shampoo ($28 US for 4.4oz).  I have just started using the Nirvana Black Dry Shampoo.  But are you ready for this?  I bought this dry shampoo August 23 of 2017.  This one dry shampoo took me around 9 months to use up.  Fucking finally.  However, let me say.  If I actually was a person who committed to using dry shampoos often, I would ABSOLUTELY repurchase this product.  It actually got my hair feeling clean and smelling amazing!

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Next up we have a moisturizer from Clinique called the Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel ($27 for 4.2oz).  Clinique as a brand I feel doesn’t get talked about enough.  If I wasn’t going towards being cruelty-free I would totally repurchase this product.  It sunk into my skin beautifully, leaving it hydrated without it feeling heavy or greasy.  All around this is a wonderful, basic moisturizer that I feel you also get a good bang for your buck because this size lasted me for ages!  I thought I was never going to use this moisturizer up!

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Next up are some makeup remover wipes.  These I picked up from Fred Meyer, usually on sale for 2/$4.  They work well at removing most of my makeup.  They do sting my eyes a bit and I do not have sensitive eyes.  So if you do, I either recommend not using them around your eye or don’t pick them up period.  They also have a pretty strong fragrance, so if you are not into that either, avoid.  I like that they are inexpensive and easy to find.  I still have a couple of packs in backstock.  After I move through those I am going to try the E.L.F. brand wipes, since those are fairly inexpensive and cruelty-free.  If you have any good recommendations for makeup remover wipes that are cruelty-free, please leave them in the comments!!  Thanks in advance!

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Now onto my favorite part.  MAKEUP EMPTIES!  Does anyone else get super excited when they use up a big makeup item?  I get super stoked!  Especially when one of those items is a foundation!  Ahhh!  I even tried scraping as much of the foundation out of the bottle as possible.  The Fiona Stiles Matte Finish Foundation Concentrate in 01 Porcelain ($30 US for 1oz) is hands down my favorite foundation of all time.  Originally carried at ULTA, all of a sudden everything was being discontinued from this line.  I about lost my shit.  It took over a year, almost two years I think until Fiona Stiles re-launched her beauty line on ShopReedClarke.com  Honest to God, I’m still worried because I don’t know if Fiona Stiles Beauty will be a permanent part of Reed Clarke, so when the foundation came in stock I purchased three backups.  I don’t think she reformulated the foundation because it appears and works the same, but the lightest shade is now 01 Alabaster and it is pretty similar to the original 01 Porcelain.  Anyway, moving on.

I also used up an Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray ($32 for 4oz).  This is a good setting spray, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t feel it is as amazing as everyone hypes it up to be.  I have been really loving the Kat Von D Lock-It Makeup Setting Mist ($26 for 4oz) and I feel it makes my makeup last longer and truly locks it into place.  So, even though it is good, I would repurchase the Kat Von D one over the Urban Decay one.

Another item that I was able to knock out was my Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Granite ($21 US).  I have used up several of these and have never been let down.  It has been my holy grail for years.  I’m still trying out the Kat Von D Signature Brow Precision Pencil in Graphite ($20 US) that I picked up during the Sephora VIB Sale, so I don’t know if I like that one more.  I do have a back up of the ABH Brow Wiz in the shade Ebony that I am working on right now.  After I use that one, I truly feel I will repurchase another Brow Wiz, it just never lets me down and I love it so much.  Also, quick question.  I have seen so many people talk about how their spoolies always break on their brow wiz and yet I have NEVER had that happen to me.  Have any of you guys had that happen?  It just makes me curious as to how viciously they are combing through their brows to get their spoolie to break, you know what I mean?

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Last but certainly not least are the samples!  Believe it or not, samples are hard for me to use up.  I always forget to reach for them because I tend to tuck them away.  I have been trying my best to keep up on them and use up the products.  Let’s talk about the Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask ($27 for 3.4oz).  This deluxe sample size was a perfect size to try out the product.  I got a multitude of uses from this 1oz sample, giving me a good idea of the product.  Overall, I felt it was a very good mask, it sunk into my skin and definitely felt like it detoxified my skin.  However, Origins is not cruelty-free and it does not work better than my Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay ($8.30 for 1lb) and it is much more expensive.

Next, we have the belif The True Cream Moisturizing Bomb ($38 for 1.68oz).  Again, nice sized sample.  I felt I was given enough product to fully test it out.  The consistency was on the thicker side, which I expected since it is a cream.  For my skin however it was too thick, felt heavy on my skin and didn’t sink in like I would have liked.  This product I feel would work best for someone with really dry skin.  I did enjoy the Aqua Bomb ($38 for 1.68oz), but sadly I would not purchase due to belif not being cruelty-free.

To round out the samples, I had a small offering of the Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream ($45 for 8.1oz).  This one I was genuinely prepared to hate.  When this first launched everyone and their fucking mother was raving about this product.  How it smelled so amazing, was so luxurious, how it was the best body cream ever, yadda yadda yadda.  Yeah right, it’s a fucking body lotion, how good could it actually be?  Well, the lotion is nothing to write home about.  It’s good, don’t get me wrong, but I wouldn’t say it is any better than The Body Shop Body Butters ($21 for 7oz).  What is amazing about this product is the fucking scent!  I never, in a million years, would have thought I would like something with pistachio and salted caramel notes.  Not because I don’t like them as food items, but with those keynotes, I would figure it would be something super sickly sweet.  Boy was I wrong!  It is sweet but in a sexy almost musky way.  It is hard for me to put my finger on, but if you could go in just to smell it, you will understand what I am saying.  The next time I go into Sephora, I am going to find the Brazilian Crush Body Fragrance Mist ($32 for 8.1oz) and see if it is dead on of the Bum Bum Cream because if it is, I would ABSOLUTELY purchase this fragrance!

Jesus this was a long ass post!  I had to take breaks writing this because it was taking me so long, haha.  So in the past two months, I have managed to use up $161.75 worth of product, putting me at a total of $342.45 worth of product used up in five months.  Not bad if I say so myself!  Well, I feel I have definitely taken up plenty of your time.  If you have actually read this entire post, damn.  And secondly type marshmallow in the comment section, haha.  Also, if you love collecting your trash as much as I do for these purposes, let me know what you used up and what you plan on repurchasing!  I truly feel empties are the best way to know how someone truly feels about a product, don’t you?  Thanks for stopping by and until next time!

NYX, Wet N Wild, & Bitter Lace Beauty Haul & Mini Reviews

*This post contains affiliate links.  There is no cost to you if you use them, but clicking and purchasing through one of them earns me a very small commission. 

As you could probably tell by now, I am a lover of makeup.  Just not the stereotypical, Instagram beat type of makeup.  My glam is not the “typical” glam.  When I mean “typical” glam, I mean the makeup plastered on many popular Instagram accounts as well as brand accounts.  Now, if that is your thing, power to you.  You do you.  I’m more into the different and obscure type of beauty.  If you read My Makeup Aesthetic Tag, you already know.

Well, I did a little bit of shopping in the past month and a half and that I would do a collective haul for you guys as well as mini reviews.  As you may or may not know, I am working on my collection to be fully cruelty-free.  So, moving forward, any makeup product I bring into my collection must be cruelty-free.  Enough with the blabber, let’s get onto the makeup!  Although, grab a drink or a snack for this one.  It may be a long read.

Bitter Lace Beauty
Bitter Lace Beauty is an Indie brand.  You may have heard of them when their Rainbow Highlighter went viral last year.  Highlighters are what they are known for and offer and I picked up 3 different highlighters.  Unfortunately, 2 were limited edition and the third is being discontinued.  Sad face.  I’ll still show them off anyway.  First, let’s talk about the package the products were shipped in.

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Everything was securely wrapped.  The box was pink and had beautiful floral detail on the inside.  There was even a cute little card with Holographic detailing and a mermaid sticker.  Super cute.

Bitter Lace Beauty Highlighters | LeahERaven.com

The first highlighter I picked up was SLAY, a limited edition Halloween Kill-uminator.  Oh am I a sucker for the play on words with this one.  They describe it as “A white gold flecked base with an intense metallic blood red splatter.”  Next is Blood Lust, a limited edition Valentine highlighter, which is the exact red from the SLAY Kill-uminator.  It is described as “A blue-based red with a slightly warm amber shift.”  Quick note, this one is scented and it smells amazing!  It’s a combination of sandalwood, amber musk, and vanilla.  Bitter Lace Beauty, if you happen to be reading this.  I need that fragrance.  Like, pronto!  Thank you in advance!  Lastly is the discontinued shade of Deadly Nightshade (it is still in stock ATM and for only $9 US).  The ONLY reason I picked up this highlighter was for the Nightmare Before Christmas reference.  That’s it.  They describe it as “a cooler toned gray beige that has hints of pink and green undertones that appear silver in the pan.”

All three are quite beautiful on the skin.  The texture is incredibly soft and buttery.  I will say SLAY is slightly, slightly more powdery to the point you might consider it being crumbly, but if you use it very lightly, there is no problem.  Now, don’t think just because I recommend pressing into them lightly you are not going to get off a killer pay off, because you are wrong.  These are incredibly high shine.  I mean, HIGH SHINE.  They are blinding.  I personally don’t care for SLAY or Blood Lust as actual highlighters but on my eyes and inner corner.  Damn.  You can’t miss it.  Blood Lust is almost exactly like Kat Von D’s Raw Power Metal Crush Eyeshadow (discontinued).  Blood Lust is a bit more blood red, while Raw Power leans more towards a rust red, but in swatches, you cannot tell much of a difference.  Also, Raw Power tends to have more of a gold reflect than Blood Lust.

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Overall, I thoroughly enjoy these products and have not been disappointed.  Again, I don’t use these as actual highlights, I enjoy them more for eyeshadow purposes.  If these are your cup of coffee, then I highly recommend!

NYX Professionals Makeup
There have been a few products by NYX Professionals Makeup that has caught my eye that I wanted to give a go.  Before picking up these few items, I have the Faux Blacks Eyeliner in Oxblood ($7.99 US, fucking LOVE this product), the Epic Ink Liner ($7.99 US), and a couple of the Lip Lingerie Liquid Lipsticks ($6.99 US).  I’ve used quite a few NYX products and overall been really happy with the brand.  What I have been super intrigued and excited to try the Vivid Brights Creme Color in Bad Blood ($9.99 US) and the Strictly Vinyl Lip Gloss in Femme Fatale ($7.99 US).  So, besides grabbing those two items I picked up the Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick in Alien ($6.99 US) and the Butter Gloss in Black Berry Pie ($4.99 US).  When I made my order they threw in a Worth The Hype Mascara ($7.99 US).

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The Strictly Vinyl Lip Gloss in Femme Fatale is immensely glossy and black.  I didn’t have to build this up much to get full-color payoff.  The effect is wonderful.  The downfall is this lipgloss is heavy on the lips and it does bleed.  Would definitely recommend a lip liner with this product.  The Butter Gloss in Black Berry Pie gives a very similar effect to the vinyl lip gloss.  It is not as thick as the vinyl lip gloss and it does need to be built up in order to reach full opacity.  Like the vinyl lip gloss, I would totally recommend a lip liner.  Also, you don’t need both.  I would say pick up the Butter Gloss, you get almost 3 times the product and it is $3 cheaper.

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The Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick in Alien is exactly as its name states.  It is a cream liquid lipstick.  It does mattify a touch, but it is not transfer-proof.  On my lips, it kind of comes across as more of a blue-based black.  It is very liquidy in consistency, but it is comfortable on the lips and not overly drying.  I enjoy it, but if you are looking for something transfer-proof, this would not be the product for you.  Lastly is the Vivid Brights Creme Colour in Bad Blood, the item I was most excited about.  Unfortunately, this is a bit disappointing for me.  I haven’t tried mixing some of my Inglot Duraline in with it yet to see if it improves the texture at all, but as is, the creme is extremely dry.  It is hard to pick up a decent amount of product with a brush or your finger and it is almost clumpy.  Also, with it being so dry it takes a bit to blend out.  It also takes quite a bit of building in order to get a good color payoff.  I am going to keep playing around with it to see if I can get it to work, but for right now, sadly I don’t recommend.  If you have tried this and got it to work, let me know how you did it in the comments section!  Maybe I’m just using it wrong.

Wet N Wild Beauty
Wet N Wild
has to be my favorite drugstore brand, hands down.  Especially nowadays, Wet N Wild has been stepping up their game.  Their highlighters work incredibly well, their Liquid Catsuits are one of my favorite liquid lipstick formulas, their price tags are amazeballs, they are just great.  My favorite nude lipstick is from Wet N Wild, I love Wet N Wild.

This time around I picked up a total of 3 new Liquid Catsuits ($4.99 US) (I know there is only two in the picture, I will explain why shortly), a MegaLast Lip Color in Black Out ($2.49 US), a MegaGlo Highlighting Powder in White Raven (Limited Edition $4.99 US), and a Pro Brush Line Tapered Highlighting Brush ($5.99 US).

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Now, let’s talk about the Liquid Catsuits.  I originally ordered 3 DIFFERENT shades of Liquid Catsuits.  So Noir Cool, the black, Sleepy Hollow, a medium blue based grey shade, and Widows Peek, from what the pictures show, a dark grey.  Nope.  It’s black.  I even opened it and swatched it.  Widows Peek is a black shade, not dark grey.  I mean, I’m not super mad, can never have enough black lipsticks in my opinion, but was definitely expecting a dark grey.  Le sigh.

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The formula for So Noir Cool and Sleepy Hollow are consistent with Nudie Patootie, a more moussey texture, but on the slightly thinner side.  Didn’t have to build these in order to get full opacity.  One dip in the tube was all it took.  Wear time, same as usual.  Pretty decent without eating too many greasy foods.  Layers decently, but not the best, can get a little crumbly.  The MegaLast Lip Color is a standard lipstick in my opinion.  It does not come out the blackest but does have decent staying power and I did not notice any bleeding.  It ends up being more of a matte finish on the lips and is slightly drying.  All three lip products I enjoy and would recommend.

Lastly is the Goth-o-graphic MegaGlo Highlighting Powder in White Raven.  I am going to be honest with you.  I only bought it because it was apart of the Goth-o-graphic collection and it had Raven in the title.  I’m not going to get much use out of this highlighter because it does have a purple shift to it and I am not a fan of purple.  However, the formula is very smooth and buttery and the pay off is quite brilliant.  If you like a purple shift to your highlights and you can still find this one, I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Holy shit this took a lot longer to type up than I was anticipating.  I did say this was going to be a long one.  If you are slightly curious why I purchased so many black lip products, in the future I am going to be doing a black lipstick showdown.  Which brands have the best black lipstick, liquid lipstick, gloss, etc.  So I am collecting!  Well, I hope you found this somewhat interesting or helpful if you did let me know in the comments down below.  Have you tried any of these products?  What are your thoughts on them?  Thanks for stopping by and until next time!

May 15, 2018

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Let’s start this post off positively, shall we?  I did do my DVD workout last night.  Yay!  There is going to be a lot of downhill motion from here, so be prepared.  Not terrible, but not what I have planned to say the least.  I did not go to the gym this morning.  Couldn’t be bothered to, if I am just being honest.  Trying to be a morning person truly does blow when you are a creature of the night.  Of course, I could go to the gym tonight, but I’m too exhausted and again, can’t truly be bothered to.

Being Tuesday, I headed to work.  Overall, good day.  I had a lot of sensitive kids (dogs, FYI) that takes me more time.  I am a dog groomer, just in case you are wondering.  I am really good at what I do, damn good actually.  I’m really proud of my handling skills though.  I work on a ton of very sensitive dogs that have been turned away by other groomers and even vets.  Dogs and I just understand each other, I just get them and 99% of the time, I can work on ANY kind of dog.  I have only had to send away a very small handful of dogs due to behavior issues in the 12 years I have been grooming.  That being said, it does take a toll on my physical and mental being.  It is physically and mentally exhausting.  On top of all that, we are down a groomer right now due to emergency surgery and the owner wanted to know if the other groomer and I can pick up the slack.

Here is going to be a bit of venting, if you don’t want to read this part, just skip to the next paragraph.  My job is difficult as is.  I am a hard worker, I have plenty of people that can testify to that.  I work to the best of my abilities and do additional work that is technically not apart of my job description, but we are apart of a team and need to work as one.  Because I don’t pump out 10 to 12 dogs a day, I’m constantly reminded of productivity.  It is immensely frustrating and aggravating.  Also, trying to explain to someone that has NO IDEA about my job and is then, therefore, dictating my job and what I need to be doing does not rub well with me.  It instantly creates tension and hostility.  I trust that everyone I work with knows there job, knows what they can handle, and takes it from there.  I do what I can with what I got and it is still not good enough.  Honestly, the amount of tongue biting I do on a DAILY basis is insane.  I’m amazed I have decked anyone yet.  I have definitely snapped at certain individuals that have mostly deserved it, however, I have kept it together fairly well considering my temper.  My dogs are not numbers.  They are living, breathing, feeling creatures who need time and patience and when someone is pushing down my throat “productivity,” and this more, more, more mentality, it definitely pisses a bitch off.

Anyway, besides that, it has been a fairly uneventful type of day.  My dogs were adorable at work today, got tons of kisses.  My own dogs were adorable when I got home.  I ate dinner and also snacked a shit ton.  Like, a shit ton, shit ton.  I ate an entire bag of the Harvest Snaps Pea Crisps* plus an additional serving, about half a cup of Mountain Dew, and an additional Larabar.  600 calories over my targeted daily goal.  But, I am trying to hold myself accountable here.  I’m just excited I didn’t order pizza.

Now before you think I am going to beat myself up over this, I’m not.  I already ate the food, nothing more I can do about that.  I am a work in progress, I know this.  Calories are just numbers and they don’t define who I am.  However, I can be disappointed.  Again due to mindless eating.  That’s where I am getting frustrated.  I do so well with my eating then BOOM!  I just start randomly snacking without paying attention to what I am doing.  This is going to be a constant struggle/battle.  I know.

On some other happy notes though, I watched Emily Noel’s latest video on new Milani products, Amber F’s latest video on her Pan That Palette Update, JKissa’s Random Color Challenge, Georgia Harris’ Makeup Declutter, and Amy Macedo’s Drugstore Glam.  Watching YouTube definitely helps me de-stress from my day.  I also forgot to mention I watched Taylor’s video yesterday.  Literally, I never miss an Emily or a Taylor video.  I just don’t.

Still keeping up with the Harry Potter game as well.  Just made it to Year 3, in the second chapter.  This game is addicting but also irritating.  Seriously.  If you play it, you get it.  Alas, I really want to finish the damn game, because I’m already fucking sucked in.

After I sign off, I am going to read 2 chapters in my book.  I mentioned yesterday that I am going to be reading Jen Sincero’s You Are a Badass* book again.  It has been a hot minute.  I was going to read some last night but ended up falling asleep.  I need to get in the habit of reading again.  It did so much for my mental health.  The books I enjoy reading are motivational “self-help” types of books and anything educational.  I love learning new things.  Any book recommendations, I’d love to hear about them!

A few other happy things.  I ordered a few pieces from Rogue & Wolf today.  Been a big fan of their jewelry.  They just dropped the SafeWord collection, so I picked up a couple of items.  Finally got an email confirmation from Wet N Wild that my package has been sent.  Ordered some things from them about 2 weeks ago, same time I ordered my NYX items but the NYX items are coming Thursday, so there’s that.  Lastly, one of my dearest and longest best friends is expecting.  I found out a little bit ago, but she just told me about the baby shower.  No dates have been picked out yet, but I have something to really look forward to in the fall, besides Halloween and pumpkins haha.  So that is something I am definitely saving for and wouldn’t miss it for the world.

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So, this ended up being a shit ton of rambling.  If you have stayed this long you are the true MVP here and damn.  I fucking applaud you.  How did your Tuesday turn out?  If you had a shitty day, sorry dude.  I fucking feel you on that shit.  Here’s a fucking ADORABLE picture of my dog, sleeping in the middle of the bed, with her head on my pillows.  You are welcome.  I hope tomorrow is better for you and until next time.

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