Wednesday, November 30, 2011

BeKnown with Monster.com, Interview Tips & A GIVEAWAY!!! (CLOSED)


Hey everyone! Today I have a LOT of exciting stuff for you! I get to talk to you about Monster.com's new professional networking career tool, BeKnown, give you my tips for looking your best during a job interview, and launch an "Interview Survival Kit" giveaway for you!

Whew! Sounds like a lot, but it's gonna be awesome, so let's get started, shall we?!

BEKNOWN
First up: BeKnownMonster.com recently launched BeKnown, a professional networking app for Facebook. Since young professionals spend more time on Facebook than any other networking site, Monster wanted  to give young people the opportunity to network professionally within the world’s largest and most popular social network. BeKnown allows you to set up a professional profile directly on Facebook that is completely separate from your personal Facebook page (think along the lines of a network within a network). It also lets you conduct a job search of Monster's database of jobs without ever leaving BeKnown or Facebook. By tapping into the networks of their Facebook friends, young professionals can easily connect, send messages, and see who among their existing contacts is connected to a company or job opportunity they are interested in.

You can take a quick guided tour of the app and find out how it works. Once you join, your job history from your Facebook profile is automatically imported, so it's a good idea to have it as up to date as possible. Based on your job history and interaction with the app, you can even start earning fun badges!

Here's what my BeKnown page looks like. I just joined, so it's a little lacking.. but feel free to add me! :)
Click to enlarge.
Links to access the app are below:

Mobile apps (only accessible from your mobile phone)

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So you've joined BeKnown and landed an awesome job interview! ...Now what? Here are my tips to ensure that you're interview ready...

INTERVIEW PREP TIPS
CLOTHES
  • Your clothes should always fit appropriately, and be clean and wrinkle-free.
  • Make sure that your clothes play a supporting role.
  • Never confuse an interview with a social function. Don't dress for a party or date.
  • Dark neutral colors (navy, black, grey) and solids or very subtle prints are best.
  • Wear closed-toed shoes without platforms or very high heels.
  • Wear minimal, classic jewelry.
  • When in doubt, dress nicer than you think you need to and always try to project a classic image.. unless you're working in a creative or fashion forward industry and know originality would be appreciated.
    • For instance, what I wore to my interview for my current job (beauty industry) is very different from what I would have worn to an interview at a bank or a law firm.
HAIR
  • Hair should be neat and clean.
  • Long hair should be pulled back with a clip or on a styled ponytail or updo.
  • If you have bangs, be sure to pin them back. Nothing is more distracting than watching you constantly brush hair out of your face!
  • Use hair spray to tame fly-aways to achieve a perfectly polished image.
FRAGRANCE
  • Honestly? As much as I love fragrance, skip it. Yes, even your "signature scent." You run the chance of having an interviewer who either absolutely hates what you're wearing or is allergic to fragrances. Either way, it wouldn't be a favorable impression.
NAILS
  • While short nails are generally preferred, just make sure they are clean and well-manicured.
    • No hang nails, or polish on your cuticles and use lotion to make your hands soft and look hydrated!
  • Pick neutral, solid polish shades. Some of my favorites include:
OPI's Sweet Heart
MAKEUP
  • Go for a classic, naturally enhanced look. Like yourself, but "better."
  • Make sure your foundation, concealer, powder and blush are all fully and properly blended.
  • Choose blush over bronzer. It will look more natural.
  • Stick to neutral, mostly matte shades of brown, tan and cream for shadow colors. A little shimmer is okay, but too much fails to give off a professional image.
  • Mascara is a must, but avoid liquid liner (it looks too severe) and opt for a thin line of either pencil,  kohl liner, or shadow in navy, grey or brown instead of black.
  • Use lipstick instead of gloss. It looks more formal, age-appropriate and will last longer.
  • Tweeze any stray brow hairs and use gel to keep them looking neatly groomed.

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INTERVIEW SURVIVAL KIT GIVEAWAY
And now the stuff you've all been waiting for! To promote BeKnown and give you a great kick-start to nailing your next interview, TWO lucky winners will each receive an "Interview Survival Kit"!

The giveaway will end at 11:59 PS EST on December 21st, and winners will have 24 hours from my email to claim their prizes. If they have not claimed their prize within 24 hours, they will forfeit it and another winner will be chosen instead.

This giveaway is open to US Residents 18 year or older only, and contains the following goodies:


RULES

You must either follow @BeKnown on Twitter or...

Join the BeKnown App on Facebook and then search for my name and connect with me so that I can verify you've joined!


Or you can do both and get two entries!





31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 30: Inspired by a Tutorial


Hey everyone! King Boo and I are back for Day 30 of the Challenge, which is INSPIRED BY A TUTORIAL NAILS. First of all... tomorrow is the LAST day of the Challenge! :gasp: I um.. I legit don't think I'll know what to do with myself when it's over.. No more spending hours 3-4 times a week working on my nails? Going back to doing regular beauty posts? Say what?! 

Anyways.. onto the nails! As I told you yesterday, King Boo is awesome and I like hanging out with him and he won't be coming off of my nails any time soon.. so I started looking for a tutorial that I could both be inspired by and successfully incorporate him into. Thankfully, my hubby is a smart man and he asked, "Why don't you do one of those tape looks that you like so much?" Why don't I indeed?!

It's perfect. I actually did learn about them from Erika over at Chloe's Nails. Erika is the undisputed Queen of scotch tape manis, and she's also one of the first blogs I ever followed. Unfortunately, she has had a lot going on lately and hasn't really blogged in a long time.. but I hope she makes it back soon. We all miss her!

The base on King Boo is Sinful Colors Black on Black. He was made with acrylic paints. The other nails have a base of Sinful Colors Snow me White, then I used a coat of SV and let it dry before taping off the top part of my nails. The yellow is Color Club Almost Famous. I used my black LA Colors Art Deco Striper for the dividing color, and a dotting tool and Rimmel's Fever for the red dots. Another coat of SV smoothed everything out and completed the look!

So I'm not even gonna lie. These are pretty much my most favoritest nails EVER. :D

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Also.. today happens to be my Daddy's birthday.. So a super duper happy birthday to him! He's the bestest Daddy ever and I love him tons! ♥

Monday, November 28, 2011

31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 29: Inspired by the Supernatural


Hey everyone! Today is Day 28 of the Challenge, which means... INSPIRED BY THE SUPERNATURAL NAILS.

Clearly, King Boo was the obvious choice. He's ghostly. And adorable. He doesn't hold grudges, and the only two things that scare him are the Poltergust 3000 and Wario.


AND THERE HE IS! Isn't he cute?! I think he's my favorite nail art that I've done... ever. I legit can't even stand the thought of having to take him off to complete the challenge.

Base color is Pure Ice Electric to add some subtle sparkle, except for my ring finger which is Sinful Colors' Black on Black. King Boo is made from acrylic paints. A detail brush and dotting tool were my best friends for the precision he required. The picture I used for my inspiration didn't have his crown, but I had to add one because.. Where's King Boo without his crown?!

31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 28: Inspired by a Flag


Hey everyone! Today is a very special day of the challenge for me.. Day 28: INSPIRED BY A FLAG NAILS.

I had wanted to do something different. And while I felt like American flag nails would be the obvious choice (haha, just kidding)... I had a much better idea: Pride nails!

I know that equality is such a hot topic right now and it's something that I feel very strongly about. Many of my friends are gay or bisexual and I would love to see them have the same rights that Chris and I are able to enjoy. I'm not going to get on a soap box.. but I will share the meaning behind the different flags that I chose with you.

L-R: Bisexual Pride, Transgender Pride, Gay/Lesbian Pride, Asexual Pride.
(Yes, I know I inverted the blue and purple stripes on Bisexual Pride. I'm sorry! I have no excuse other than the fact that it was 2am... and I've been up for almost 24 hours. :\)


POLISHES USED:

(Base of Sinful Colors Snow Me White on all fingers)
Bisexual Pride -- Zoya Izzy, Zoya Tallulah, Pure Ice No Means No 
Transgender Pride -- Pure Ice Splash, Sinful Colors Purple Diamond, Rimmel Silver Bullet
Gay/Lesbian Pride -- Rimmel Fever, Rimmel Tequila Sunrise, Color Club Almost Famous, Pure Ice Wild Thing, Ulta Blue Streak, Ulta Celebutante
Asexual Pride -- Sinful Colors Black on Black, Pure Ice Kiss Me Here, Sinful Colors Snow Me White, Pure Ice No Means No

BISEXUAL PRIDE

The Bisexual Pride flag was designed by Michael Page and first unveiled in 1998. He explains that the "purpose of the flag is to to maximize bisexual pride and visibility." A simple pattern of a pink stripe and a blue one overlapping to form purple was chosen. The uppermost pink stripe, which covers two-fifths of the flag, represents same-sex attraction; the blue, which covers an equal portion at the base of the flag, symbolizes heterosexual attraction; and the purple stripe making up the central one fifth stands for attraction to both sexes.

TRANSGENDER PRIDE

The transgender pride flag was designed by Monica Helms in 1999. She describes the flag's symbolism by saying: "The stripes at the top and bottom are light blue, the traditional color for baby boys. The stripes next to them are pink, the traditional color for baby girls. The stripe in the middle is white, for those who are intersex, transitioning or consider themselves having a neutral or undefined gender. The pattern is such that no matter which way you fly it, it is always correct, signifying us finding correctness in our lives." 

GAY/LESBIAN PRIDE

The rainbow flag was designed in 1978 by Gilbert Baker for the San Francisco Gay & Lesbian Freedom Day Parade. Originally, there were eight colors to the flag which represented different themes and ideas.

The original colors of the flags were hot pink for sexuality, red for life, orange for healing, yellow for the sun, green for nature, turquoise for art, indigo for harmony, and violet for spirit. After the appearance of the rainbow flags in the parade, there was a huge public demand for them and they went into commercial production. Since hot pink, turquoise, and indigo material was costly and difficult to obtain, the flag was modified to the current version we know today. Hot pink and turquoise were eliminated, and indigo was changed to blue.

ASEXUALITY PRIDE

In August 2010, the asexual pride flag was voted on and then elected. Since then, it has been seen on tumblr and various LGBT areas in the 'real' world including Prides in multiple countries, and in everyday life as badges and bracelets etc. Even prior to formal election it could be seen alongside other Sexual Orientations flags in some spaces. The black stripe represents sexuality, the grey stripe grey is for asexuality (those falling somewhere on the spectrum between sexuality and asexuality, or questioning) and the demisexuals, the white stripe is for sexuality and the purple stripe is for community.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 27: Inspired by Artwork



Hey everyone! Today is Day 27 of the Challenge, which means INSPIRED BY ARTWORK NAILS. While I love Van Gogh's Starry Night, I wanted to go with another artist who gets less love: Henri Matisse.

Matisse is famous for using very bright, bold colors in his paintings. Later in his life, when his health began to fail him and he could no longer paint, he switched to making collages. He wrote: "The paper cutouts allow me to draw with color. For me, it is a simplification. Instead of drawing an outline and then filling in with color - with one modifying the other - I draw directly in color... It is not a starting point, it is a completion." And I love that. In dance, we're taught to use the efficiency of movement in our art, and that's exactly what Matisse did.

His last (and arguably most important) work was a collection of mixed-media collages. Matisse arranged brightly colored paper cutouts into striking compositions, and added written text in his own handwriting to create a book that has been referred to as "the visual counterpart of jazz music". He originally planned for his book to be called The Circus, but eventually changed his mind as he wrote the accompanying text. Many of the collages feature circus performers. Just 250 copies were printed in the first edition, but Jazz has been reprinted over and over, and it's still in print today!

I first fell in love with Matisse's work back in high school. I painted his Creole Dancer on a ceiling tile at school.. and then I also got to paint a huge 16' x 9' mural of Sorrow of the King in the art hall at school during my senior year. That was really cool.... I wonder if it's still there?

Creole Dancer
Sorrow of the King
 But those aren't the painting I decided to go with for my nails. This time, I decided to do a Matisse that I haven't done before... the first picture of this post: Icarus.

Icarus was a character from Greek mythology. He was the son of Daedalus, who was the most famous inventor of his era. According to legend, Daedalus invented wings of wax and bird feathers for himself and his son to escape from the island of Crete. Daedalus warned Icarus to be careful, but Icarus wouldn't listen. He loved flying so much, he got excited and flew too close to the sun. The sun's heat melted his wings, and he fell to his death in the sea below. 


I used Wet N Wild's Saved by the Blue for the base, and acrylic paints for the accent nail. I really love Saved by the Blue. it's such a bright, striking color! I thought about adding stars to my other nails as well, but ultimately decided against it because I wanted the focus to be on little Icarus.

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I hope you've enjoyed your mini art history lesson today! Dance and art are two things I'm pretty passionate about, so I was really excited for this prompt. :)

31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 26: Inspired by a Pattern

Source.
Hey everyone! Today is Day 26 of the challenge, which means INSPIRED BY A PATTERN NAILS. Originally, I had wanted to do nails inspired by a sewing pattern because my mom likes to sew.. but when push came to shove.. with Thanksgiving and Black Friday, I just didn't have as much time to spend on something like that as I would have wanted. So I decided to go with a tutorial I love instead.

Yes, it's none other than the amazing Kayla Shevonne's Patchwork Tutorial! I've loved this forever and been meaning to recreate it.. and this seemed like the perfect opportunity! It was SUPER quick and easy! 



Unfortunately, I recently broke 6 nails and had to cut them all off. Boooo! Since they're so short now, I thought adding the stitching detail would be too much..  so I left that off. Chris said they reminded him of stained glass, which works too.. I guess? Either way, I still like them.

I used Zoya Izzy (pink) and Tallulah (blue), and LA Colors Live (silver), then my newly thinned out LA Colors Art Deco black striper for the lines. I can't wait to do these again (with the stitching!) when my nails have grown out!

Friday, November 25, 2011

IT'S HOLIDAY GIVEAWAY TIME!!! (CLOSED)


Hi, everyone! Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and that your Black Friday has been enjoyable so far.. My work opened at midnight, so I got there an hour early to make sure I would get parking.. and I worked until 6am, which wasn't bad at all. Black Friday has a certain energy to it.. it's definitely crazy, but always a lot of fun!

Since Black Friday is the "official" start of the holiday season, I decided today would be the perfect day to deck out my blog for the holidays and kick off my HOLIDAY GIVEAWAY!!!

This time I have two prizes!

FIRST PRIZE 
(valued at over $100!!!)

and it all comes packed up in this adorable reusable tote bag:

SECOND PRIZE
(valued at $30!!!)

  • Bath & Body Works Nail File
  • Nail Brush
  • Pumice Stone
  • Ulta Nail Polish -- Love My Blackberry
  • Ulta Nail Polish -- Tutu Cute
  • "Lip Frosting" Lip Gloss
  • Toasted Vanilla Bath Fizz
  • Themed Nail Clippers
  • Themed Tweezers
  • Bath & Body Works PocketBac -- Twisted Peppermint
  • Bath & Body Works PocketBac Holder (Clear w/ Silver Glitter)
  • Ulta Nail Polish -- Pink Marble
  • Ulta Nail Polish -- HeirHead

-- OFFICIAL RULES --

The contest will be open from November 25th, 2011 (today) until 11:59 PM EST on Friday, December 9th. Winners will be chosen by random.org and I will contact them by 12:15 am EST on December 10th. They will have until 11:59 PM on Sunday, December 11th to claim their prize. If they have not responded by that time, they will forfeit their prize and a new winner will be chosen. However, I will make every available attempt that I have to contact them.

I understand that this is short turn around, but it's my goal to get these packages postmarked on the 12th so that you will get them in time for Christmas. :)

You must be 18 years of age or older or have a parent or guardian's permission to enter, as I will need your address if you win.

Unfortunately, due to me having so many other packages to ship for the holidays.. I regret that this giveaway will be open to US Residents only. I'm sorry to all of my international followers!

MANDATORY:
You *MUST* be a PUBLIC follower of this blog with Google Friend Connect. If you do not know how to follow a blog with GFC, please watch this short video. My GFC box is located in my upper right sidebar. --->
  • Unfortunately, Blogger has issues and sometimes the box does not load. If the area under "FOLLOWERS" is blank, please refresh the page until you see the blue button that says "Follow".

That's it! I wanted to keep this one very simple.. the point is to give back to you for all your support, not make you jump through 9000 hoops just to enter a giveaway. :)

OPTIONAL:
If you would like two additional entries, you may also follow me on Facebook and Twitter.


Good luck!

31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 25: Inspired by Fashion

Source.
Hey everyone! Today is Day 25 of the Challenge, which means INSPIRED BY FASHION NAILS. I chose to do corset nails because I've always found them to be fascinating. They're so horrible and damaging to the human body, but they were such a symbol of elegance and femininity for centuries. So much so, that they still continue to be somewhat en vogue today.

And now corsets have also become part of the body art and modification scene, with corset ribbons being popular body art for both tattoos and piercings.

Source.
So... when it came time to do my nails, I was inspired by this photo by Alycia M. on MakeupBee. They are simple, classic and elegant.. which is everything a corset should be.

Source.
And finally.. here's my take on the look:


I used OPI's Sweetheart as my base, Sinful Colors' Black on Black for the edging, and my LA Colors Art Deco Striper (that obviously desperately needs to be thinned out) for the ribbons. I'm kind of bummed that the ribbons didn't come out better. I tried to go back over them with a detail brush and polish to fix them, but it didn't really make a difference.. the damage had already been done.

Overall, they were pretty easy. I'd definitely try them again once I get some polish thinner!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 24: Inspired by a Book


Hey everyone! Happy Thanksgiving! Today is Day 24 of the challenge (ONE WEEK LEFT!!!) and that means INSPIRED BY A BOOK NAILS. Instead of going with a book I love, I decided to go with a choice that was much easier: the book I hate most of all.

That book, in case you haven't guessed, is The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway. It was required summer reading my freshman year in high school and I'm honestly surprised I still have the damn thing and never burned it. I hated it THAT much.

From the outside, it doesn't look that bad. I think it's like 90-something pages? I remember thinking 'Oh, cool. I'll get this done in a couple hours.' Um, yea.. no. It took me the entire summer to make it through that stupid book. It is sooooooooooo loooooooooonnnnnnnnnnggg and drawn out because the story goes day by agonizingly slow day... while the old man is stuck on a boat in the middle of the ocean. And it's so boring. Ugh.

So, in case you've never read it.. I'll sum it up for you in 20 words or less:
  • Old man (Santiago)
  • Young boy
  • Boat
  • Baseball (Joe DiMaggio)
  • Ocean
  • Floating
  • Fishing
  • Albatross (?)
  • Marlin
  • Epic struggle
  • Sharks
  • Skeleton
  • Lions
And that's all I remember (in 19 words!) without having to consult Wikipedia or Sparknotes. I do, however, vividly remember that it was an awful book. But enough complaining about it.. let's get to the good stuff.


I painted my nails black because that's how my heart felt after being exposed to that miserable book. It's a black hole that drains your morale, brain power, and time. I remember spending a great deal of class discussion time on the albatross in the book... which is why I put it on my accent nail, but... um... I can't find any reference to it online. Maybe I've gone crazy? It's entirely possible. Plus, freshman year of high school was (eek!) 11 years ago. So.. yea. I'm either crazy or old. Great combination, right? Haha!

Sinful Colors' Black on Black and Snow Me White were all I needed for this one. Super quick. I didn't use top coat because I wanted the bird to have a texture.

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What's your favorite (and least favorite) book?

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 23: Inspired by a Movie

Source.
Hello, everyone! Today is Day 23 of the challenge, which means INSPIRED BY A MOVIE NAILS

The movie that inspired me is Enchanted. It's one of my all-time favorite movies because I'm completely in love with everything Disney and I love that they completely poked fun at themselves throughout the whole movie. Plus, Giselle is just SO darling and Amy Adams is precious, perfect and amazing.

Singing and dancing aside, as much as I love Giselle's endearing, eternal optimism.. this is my favorite part of the whole movie. It's that pivotal, defining moment where she turns into a real, relatable character. She simultaneously experiences anger and love for the first time.. and it's such a brilliant piece of writing and acting. Watch..


Gah. I love it. Gets me every time. And here's some fun trivia: Have you ever wondered why Giselle never became an official Disney Princess? The Disney execs had planned on having her be one and even had Giselle dolls made back in 2007 with packaging that said she had Disney Princess status, but they ultimately decided against it when they realized that they would have to pay for life-long rights to Amy Adams' image. What a bummer.

There are any number of things that I could have picked from this movie to do for my nails, but I chose the dress that she makes from the curtains in the picture above. If I was a legit princess, I'd totally wear a dress like that every day! It's so pretty!

Here's my take on it:


I picked up the background color of the dress and did some flower detail. I know it doesn't technically have polka dots, but I had originally wanted to do pink lace tips like her dress.. they just didn't work out so well and I went with polka dots instead. Plus, it's "inspired by" and that's what I was inspired to do.

Sinful Colors' Savage is the background, ChG For Audrey made the turquoise flowers, Pure Ice Love was used for the polka dots and pink flowers, Pure Ice Wild Thing was used for the stems and leaves, Color Club Almost Famous made the yellow flowers and Color Club Pucci-Licious made the heather (middle finger) and purple centers to the yellow flowers.

And yes, I totally watched the movie while doing these nails! :D

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

31 DAY CHALLENGE -- Day 22: Inspired by a Song


Hey everyone! Sorry this post is so late.. I decided to wait and do today's mani after I got done with truck this morning and then I just... procrastinated, haha. Today is Day 22 of the challenge is INSPIRED BY A SONG NAILS. I'm going to start doing things differently and show you what inspired me first before I show you the nail art... I also feel like these "Inspired By" posts will be more chatty because I clearly like these things and want to share them with you. :)

It's no secret that I love Hanson. I've posted about them as a Friday Favorite in the past.. so when it came time to do my "Inspired by a Song" nails.. I knew they were the obvious choice. I decided to go with their newest album, which is called SHOUT IT OUT. Coincidentally, there's a song on the album by the same name.


I used the album cover as my inspiration, and then did their logo on my pinky. If you look closely, you can see that their logo actually contains all the letters in Hanson:


Here's a video of Hanson talking about the making of the Shout It Out album for Billboard.com:


And here's the video for their song Give a Little, which uses the designs featured on my nails:


I used Color Club Almost Famous (yellow), Rimmel Fever (red), Ulta Blue Streak and Sinful Colors Snow Me White.

Also.. look what I got at work today... I love it so much!

EOTD -- Gold/Bronze Smokey Eye


Hey everyone! I'm back today with a quick EOTD. I recently bought the Profusion 88 Color Pro Shadow Palette from Ulta and have been dying to try it out.. so today seemed like the perfect opportunity to do so! The gold shades in the center of the palette have been on my mind since I swatched them on the back of my hand and I knew that's what I had to use first.

The gold inspired me to do a fall-themed gold and bronze smokey eye.. and I thought it would look really nice against my blue eyes. Overall, I'm really impressed with the quality of the Profusion palette. It's comparable to the BH Cosmetics palettes. The shades are very pigmented, even without using a base (although I used one for this look). The shadows are soft, but have minimal fallout and they blend very nicely. I would definitely recommend picking one up if you have the chance. They're only $12.99 and are Buy 1, Get 1 50% off right now.

Interesting side note: Profusion is made my Markwins, who also manufactures Wet N Wild products.. so that helped ease my mind on the quality of the product. I'm usually not a big buyer of "off-brand" makeup, but I'm glad I made an exception in this case!


Side view.

PRODUCTS USED:
  • NYX Flesh-Tone Shadow Base
  • Profusion 88 Color Pro Shadow Palette (gold in center of palette on lid, inner corner of bottom lash line)
  • Wet N Wild Vanity Palette (shimmery bronze shadow in crease, highlight on brow bone & inner corner)
  • Wet N Wild Greed Palette (shimmery black shadow in outer corner)
  • ELF Black Liquid Liner
  • Palladio Waterproof Herbal Liner in Pure Black
  • Ulta Glitter Liners in Black (outer corner of bottom lash line) and Topaz (middle of bottom lash line)
  • Maybelline Great Lash Very Black Mascara

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I really enjoyed this look. It's perfect for fall and would look great on a night out. I'm especially in love with that Topaz Glitter Liner. It fades so nicely when combined with black. I'll have to incorporate that into more looks for sure!