Friday, February 5, 2016

InstaMonth for January 2016

We are in February already! Wow! I always do my Instagram roundups in a monthly post and I can't start this month's without first thanking those of you that follow me on there. I reached 1,000 this past week and that's pretty darn awesome. If you want to connect with each other on Instagram, you can find me as "wendybanner".

Also, here's my obligatory knee update because I always seem to put it in these posts. I hit the seven month mark on January 27th. Seven of the longest months of my life. I'm walking a little more unassisted, but most of the time is still assisted. I did go out for date night last Sunday and walked into the restaurant holding on to my husband's arm. It was a HUGE deal for me! My waiter totally understood because he broke his back last summer. We had that special moment of understanding.

I got a cane to use for extra balance, because that's still lacking especially until I can fully straighten my leg. I picked a floral and pink cane, because hello- can you think of anything else better suited for me? Ha! The cashier said "Are you sure? Usually the retired grandmothers go for that one." Since when does pink and floral equal grandma style?  I mean, if that's the definition, I pretty much came out of the wound as a grandma. But why should I have to stick to basic black just because I'm younger? That cashier has no chill. #dontjudge

Let's see what January brought to my Instagram account!

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1. A little home decor haul from Chapters! I've been wanting a salt cellar for a while and I couldn't pass up these polar bear napkin rings.
2. See my favorite products of 2015 here.
3. See what I got for Christmas here.
4. My Demeter kits that I can't wait to talk about with you next week!
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5. ChopSaver makes playing my flute easier on my lips.
6. Staying cozy!
7. My newest planner. This one is for the blog.
8. Poo-Pourri. I'll be talking about this next week!
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  9. Already feeling the Valentine's Day vibes. Lipstick is Arbonne's Willow.
10. A gift swap from my friend. She threw in some goodies from her trip to Germany and Belgium. LOVE!
11. Swatches are coming!
12. Pretty in pink.
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13. Ham and swiss croissant from Starbucks. Full of yes.
14. All of these things smell so good. See my review on the Garnier #WholeBlends here.
15. MAC Snob vs. Revlon Pink Pout.
16. Date night!

Gosh, I love Instagram. Find my other social media sites linked on my sidebar and connect with me!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Valentine's Gift Guide for Her

Maybe you want to treat yourself or best friend to something special or maybe you need to send your significant other a hint as to what you think is a great Valentine's Day gift. Being a lover of hearts and pink and red, I'm all about this holiday. And if you're not in a relationship? Treat yourself! You deserve it!

Here are a few gift ideas!

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  • Too Faced Chocolate Bon Bons Palette - Such a great palette and screams "Valentine's Day"!
  • Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black Perfume - A musky scent sure to seduce on date nights.
  • Lingerie (push-up bra via Victoria's Secret) - Obviously always a good thing.
  • Tiffany Notes Alphabet Disc Charm - I have my husband's initial. Great if you love dainty jewelry!
  • Kate Spade Secret Admirer Confetti Print Stacy - This wallet gets me.
  • Jo Malone Red Roses Bath Oil - The most indulgent kind of a pamper night.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

January 2016 Favorites

Just a quick memo before delving into my January favorites! Have you noticed your GFC numbers going down? Don't worry, it's nothing you are doing. Google has changed their accounts and deleting all of the non-Gmail email addresses. So if you're following me and other blogs on GFC with any email other than Gmail, you'll need to sign up again or use a service like Bloglovin'. I wish Google had done a better job at letting people know and I really hope a lot of you didn't lose all of the blogs you were following before the switch.

To my January faves!

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  • Demeter Hawaiian Vanilla - Review is coming! Vanilla is my favorite scent and this layers incredibly well with other fragrances.
  • THEFACESHOP Trendy Nails in RD302 - You can see it on my nails here. The formula rocks!
  • Elizabeth and James Nirvana Nude Lipgloss - Part of their holiday set that came with a perfume rollerball. I got the Nirvana Black set and love it. This gloss was a nice surprise and I love it on top of Velvet Teddy.
  • MAC Velvet Teddy Lipstick - This has become my favorite nude lipstick!
  • Too Faced Chocolate Bon Bons Palette - Got this recently in a gift swap with my friend. I can't wait to share the swatches on here. I keep gushing about it on my Instagram! Endless looks in one palette.
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Friday, January 29, 2016

Is Revlon's Pink Pout a Dupe for MAC's Snob Lipstick?

I've been seeing a drugstore dupes list pop up on my Pinterest time and time again. I've seen Revlon's Pink Pout listed as a dupe for MAC's Snob a few times and thought I'd do a comparison post, seeing as I have both. I do love finding a good dupe. One of my most popular posts (11k+ views!) is where I swatched Wet 'n Wild's Brulee with MAC's Brule. Those eyeshadows are pretty darn close. Unfortunately, the pictures stopped responding. Never fear, as I updated that post with new ones!

Now let's see how Snob compares to Pink Pout!

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Don't mind the state of my Pink Pout, it's a summer favorite and it's been shown a lot of love. While in the tubes, they look similar. Both are cool-toned pinks with no shimmer. One difference right off the bat is that Snob is a satin finish and Pink Pout is a matte. You can see that difference pretty clearly in the swatches below.
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Snob is slightly cooler in tone. I think if you're attracted to Snob but it pulls a little too cool for you, then Pink Pout might be a suitable substitute. I don't find them to be dupes of each other, just a shade or two apart. Similar? Yes. Dupe? No. I adore both, but I reach for Pink Pout more often. It's easier for daily wear, in my opinion.
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^ MAC Snob on left in swatches, Revlon Pink Pout on right in swatches.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Arbonne Smoothed Over Lipstick in Willow

I am quickly becoming a fan of the Arbonne Smoothed Over Lipstick formula. They are very smooth, creamy, and moisturizing. And I love the fruity smell. I want to say strawberry, but I can't quite put my finger on it. I find myself taking the lids off just to smell them, though. I try not to do it in public, but I make no promises.

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Willow retails for $34 CA / $28 US. Like I said above, I love how creamy the formula is. It goes on like a dream. You do have to watch out for breakage with these, though. I've heard about the bullets breaking right off. I have not personally had that happen, but I'm extra careful with mine after hearing about it. Just don't wind it up too far and you should be alright.

Willow is a nude with mauve undertones. I've never met a nude or mauve I didn't like, so I love the color and find it flattering on my skintone. It goes on a bit sheer, but it is easily buildable. I see this as a shade suitable for everyday. Smoke up your eye makeup a little and it takes you straight from the office to a night out. If you're not into sporting red or pink lips on Valentine's Day, I think a nude like this one fits the bill!

You can also see my other Arbonne reviews on Aster, Iris, Berry, and the Lip Treatment.

**This was sent to me for reviewing purposes. There are no affilate links in this post. All pictures and thoughts are my own.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Home Decor: Vanity Area Inspiration

This year will mark two years that we've been in our new space. I can't believe it has already been that long! While I am happy with how far our place has come, there's still lots to do. After suffering my tibial plateau fracture last summer, I put most of my plans on hold when it came to home improvements and decorating. But that's ok, I'm not sure you ever get your home perfect so there's no real timeline!

I love saving inspiration pictures and getting ideas from them. I did a post on kitchens and bathrooms I love, as well. One of the spots that I really want to get organized and pretty is my vanity area. It's nowhere near what I want it to be, as a matter of fact the room it is in is still referred to as the "junk room". That tells you something! It ain't pretty, folks. But the pictures below are vanity table goals!

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via Cara Loren
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via Design Sponge
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via Interiors by Stacey Cohen
You can follow my home design Tumblr, Pinterest, or Houzz boards to see more of my inspiration pictures.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Let Gosling's ChopSaver Save Your Chops!

I've played flute and piccolo for almost 21 years now. That's an insane amount of my life that I have dedicated to this one specific thing. The very thing that gave me many years and memories of concert band and marching band, most of my closest friends, and the first thing to get such long-term love and commitment from me.

When ninth grade came, I had to choose between chorus and band because they were during the same class period. It was the hardest decision to make due to my love of everything music, but I chose band. I figured that I can sing anywhere and anytime, but band was my special escape. It got me away from all of my stressors and problems. It gave me a safe place to be myself and around like-minded people. It gave me once in a lifetime experiences like marching in Disney World parades and winning trophies at competitions. Music brings me out of my shell. It did then and it still does today.

If there's one thing I remember about band besides being super hot in those uniforms on the trips to Florida, it would be freezing at late football games and competitions. Both extremes (plus the constant practicing) did not do my lips any favors. It's too bad something like ChopSaver did not exist then, but we are lucky it exists now!

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ChopSaver is made by a trumpet player to help not only musicians, but also anyone dealing with lip issues. With natural ingredients like Arnica and Vitamin E, bruising, swelling, and dryness can be a thing of the past. SPF 15 is an added bonus. On a personal note, I'm allergic to citrus but I didn't have a huge reaction to this. Meaning I often break out into hives or get a nasty headache. I didn't get that with this balm, which I consider a huge success. The smell does bother me initially, but it goes away after a few moments. If citrus doesn't bother you, then you'll love ChopSaver because it smells like oranges.
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All in all, it really did make my lips feel smoother even after playing my flute numerous times. Even after being in the brutal winter temperatures. That's not an easy feat to conquer! Again, the SPF is an added bonus. Lips are often overlooked when protecting yourself from the sun! There is another formula available without the SPF, as well.
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ChopSaver can be purchased at CVS locations and online. You can even get a free sample and only pay shipping. There's a shipping calculator on the cart page and they accept various types of payment.

Where are my band nerds at? Represent!

**I received this product for reviewing purposes. All pictures and thoughts are my own. There are no affiliate links in this post.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Old Navy Boxing Day Haul

I have loved Old Navy since high school, maybe even before that. They are so fantastic for basics and at a price that suits pretty much everybody's budget. And honestly, the clothes last a long time if taken care of properly. Don't think affordability means low quality. That is not always the case!

They were having a massive Boxing Day (Week) sale and I got everything for under $100. Not too shabby! The photos aren't my best, because I was having a "bad knee" day and I was too lazy to wrangle everything back together and retake them. It happens! It's still not easy for me to stand and take pictures right now, but my strength is slowly coming back and it's easier than it was months ago. I've said it many times and I'll say it again- tibial plateau fractures suck.

I've linked to everything so that you can see clearer store pictures. Some of the prints that I got are out of stock online, but some stores may still have them. I also got the shift dress in black, but I forgot to take a picture of it by itself. Good one, Wendy. You had one job.

fbloggers, fashion blogger, old navy, haul, boxing day, clothes, shirts, yoga, dress, style, plaid, stripes, fleece

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Lounge/Workout Pants:
Yoga Leggings in Black Check
Slim Boot-cut Yoga Pants in Purple Pizazz
Cozy Joggers in Tan
Fleece Lounge Pants in Stars

I needed some new ones for all of my physio sessions. The yoga leggings are amazing and the cozy joggers are so warm and comfortable. Maybe I'm alone in this and it probably sounds weird, but I think one of the best feelings is putting on new yoga pants. They fit like a glove!
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Shirts:
Oversized Ribbed Scoop-neck Shirt in Black/White and Purple/Gray
Classic Plaid Flannel in Red Tartan
V-Neck Tunic Sweater in Black/Gray Stripe

Well, this picture shows my two current pattern addictions right now. I can't get enough of plaid and stripes. The oversized shirts are boxy and do not do my figure any justice, but they are so comfortable for around the house. And you can never go wrong with a flannel shirt or striped sweater. Every wardrobe needs them (in my opinion, of course)!

I really want to go on a hunt for some more of the yoga leggings, because they were so perfect during physio and didn't stretch out at all. Love! Have you bought anything from Old Navy recently?

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