This Thursday calls for some Thinking Out Loud

Today I’m linking up with my one of my favorite Link-Ups: Think Out Loud Thursday hosted by Amanda at Running With Spoons.

Please excuse enjoy the randomness of it all!

I’ve been drinking protein shakes for the last 10 days in the mornings after my run. The chocolaty goodness packs a full 25 grams of protein and actually keeps me full until lunch! I am super psyched to have just been given this new type of Protein + Coffee goodness by Drink CLICK. It tastes just like a latte but with the benefits of the protein. Can. Not. Go. Wrong. with that combo! Get yours here (at my affiliate link).

The Long Run: I’ve been struggling to run lately. It all started with taking two weeks off due to my Plantar Fasciitis. Right after that, my runner husband found out he has a stress fracture, which means he can’t run. And when he can’t run — look out! So I have this guilt when I go run that I’m just adding salt to his wounds… I will have to get over it because I registered for a half in May and I must get moving along on my training!

And on one final random note, let’s talk about hair for a minute. I know, random, right?! I received this Kenra Brightening mask from Influenster to test and review. I used it for several weeks before taking my “after” photo. The stuff actually works! Now, I still have an appointment next Friday for highlights, but I would definitely recommend this product. The deep purple mask helps remove the brassiness. Don’t beleive me, check out these pictures!

That’s all for now!

Until Next Time,
Meg

Think Out Loud Linkup

Just Another Mani Monday

I am a big fan of nail polish.  That being said, I am also a working mom, a sweaty runner (who must shower daily), and someone who does not own a dishwasher. You see where I’m going with this? Oh, and I’m also too busy to paint or touch up my nails Every. Single. Day.

When gel formulas came out, I thought it was the best thing next to sliced bread (**I’ve been trying to work that phrase in my blog for quite some time – hehehe).

I mean, what’s not to love about nail polish that sets hard as a rock and maintains a high gloss for 10 days? Oh, that’s right. The part that they don’t brag about is that the process of getting that high-gloss manicure that won’t chip for days takes about 45 minutes… and requires equipment (LED light). And one more thing worth mentioning — the process to remove the polish is almost as extreme. I mean who has time (or desire, for that matter) to walk around with remover-soaked cotton balls taped to their fingertips while the remover soaks the polish off? Not this girl.

I know I’m not the only one with these complaints because brands everywhere began to create gel-like formulas with simple base and top coats that produce a similar result for a fraction of the time and cost.

When I was asked to review Formula X System XCEL, I was stoked. If you’re familiar with Formula X, then you know that they have a TON of fun shades and effects. I received the color TGIF to sample, which is a salmon-y pink shade. It is perfect for the end of summer and will be great for spring.


The kit (retails for $32 at Sephora + you get to pick your shade). It comes with a cleanser, primer, color, and topcoat and takes only minutes to apply. The color is full coverage and I only needed 2 coats (though in a time pinch, one coat would suffice). It dries quickly and has that coveted gel-like shine.

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While my polish did not last the full 10 days without noticeable wear and diminished shine, I would say it lasted a good week and that is longer than most other polishes that I’ve tried.

The Delete All remover, which I was also lucky enough to sample, is uh-mazing. It has five finger holes in the soaked sponge and it seriously only took about 7 seconds per nail to remove every speck of polish.

My overall impression is that I will definitely be purchasing more shades from this brand (I am actually expecting one in the mail this Thursday along with the rest of my Sephora haul!)

What brands of gel polish have you tried? Do you think they are worth the extra money?

I received these products from Influenster in exchange for my honest review.  Links within this post are NOT affiliate links, but simply links to enable you to learn more about the product. All opinions are my own.

Until Next Time,
Meg

Friday Favorites 

Good morning friends! It has been a loooooonnnnnnggggg time! To get back in the groove, I thought I’d try something easy like a favorites post. The list includes many products that I’ve received lately complimentary, however all opinions are my own.

Happy Friday all!

Here are some products that I’m loving now — in no particular order.

Who knew that Cetaphil made moisturizer?! When I first went to a dermatologist at age 14, the only product that he recommended by name was Cetaphil face wash. While I’m not one to use only one product (I have to try everything) I always come back to  Cetaphil when I have issues, especially any sort of dryness. It is the most gentle product out there. As for the moisturizer, ditto. It is gentle and non-irritating to my acne-prone skin and it works really well to hydrate without the shine.  *disclaimer: I received this product from Influenster in exchange for an honest review.

I LOVE these Kushy Foot socks. I received an assortment in the mail awhile back and have managed to try out all the styles. The socks are made with a support fabric in the middle to provide arch support. I really like the dress socks and the athletic socks. I’m not wild about the yoga socks, but it could be one of two things: 1) The socks were for sizes 9-11 and I wear a 7.5 or 2) I’m not used to socks that separate my toes. The others, though fit pretty well and seemed to do the job of cushioning my run and my dress shoes.

  

Okay, with Superbowl Sunday coming up in T minus 2 days, I have to include a snack that, while not healthy, is super delicious and perfect for the big game. I received a bag of Oreida Tater Tots from Influenster and was challenged to create some recipes. One of the featured recipes was Totchos (get it? Nachos, but with tater tots?!) My husband and I crafted our one-dish Totcho recipe using black beans, jalapenos, colby-jack, hamburger, onions, and black olives. They were delightful! Later, we tried to make burritos using the same ingredients and they were equally as delicious!

PS: GO PANTHERS!

And finally, I love SNOW DAYS! We had two this week with well over a foot and a half of snow and 60 mph wind gusts. We made snow ice cream, snow angels, and lots of hot chocolate!

I hope you have a wonderful Friday. What are some of your favorite things? Who are you rooting for on Sunday?

Until Next Time,
Meg

Product Review – Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Mascara

I received a sample of this product complimentary from Influenster for testing and review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own.

Love the packaging on this @marcbeauty mascara that I received from @influenster! #VelvetNoir #contest

A photo posted by Megan (@pinkess1) on

Mascara is one of those products that once you start using it (which I crazily didn’t do until college!) you can never go back! My look just doesn’t feel complete until I have at least one coat of mascara on — even on those days where I’m aiming for an Au natural look.

That being said, I have tried about a bazillion (yes, I’m using a little creative freedom with a made up word to mean “a very large unspecified number” according to Merriam) types of mascara. As someone who subscribes to several different beauty boxes and is also a fan of beauty samples with purchase such as the Clinique Bonus, I always have a ton of sample sized mascaras of various brands laying around. One of my favorites is Benefit They’re Real that I received in my Birchbox many moons ago.

Anyway, on to my product review! I was one of the lucky handful of Influensters to receive the Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Major Volume Mascara in black before it hit the markets! First of all, I must talk about the packaging. It is truly exquisite. The geometric shaped tube, while it adds an air of sophistication, it also makes handling and application easier.

TheMarc Jacobs Velvet Noir next feature worth mentioning is the brush. It is not only very full bristled, but it also has a unique shape that allows you to reach the middle lashes and side lashes at the same time!

Finally, I’ll note that I really only need one coat of this mascara. It does a great job of coating my lashes and adding volume as well as length. My only complaint is that sometimes by the end of the day (depending on the eye cream that I used that morning) the mascara tends to bleed at my lower lash line. If I use a matte eye cream or one that isn’t super hydrating, this does not happen. Adding a bit of powder over the top of my eye cream seems to work as well, so maybe it’s my eye cream and not my mascara??!!

Overall, this mascara will be making my list of favorites for the next time that I need to purchase a full size tube (meaning: if I ever run out of my endless supply of samples!)

Do you have a favorite mascara? If so, I’d love to hear about what brand and why it tops your list!

Until Next Time,
Meg

Hooray for Thinking Out Loud Thursday

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Today I am linking up with Running With Spoons for Thinking Out Loud Thursday. Thank you Amanda for hosting this super fun link-up!

Friends! It has been a long time and I have much to tell you and, in sticking with the theme — it will be random!

You're HiredI have a job — yay me! As most of you know, due to a relocation this summer, I have been without a full time job. Currently, I have been a freelance writer for the website Fashion Week and that has been a lot of fun and different than anything I have done before. In addition to that, I had explored several possibilities and finally landed a really great opportunity in a field that I am truly passionate about – Economic/Community Development and Marketing/Communications. I am thrilled and I start Monday!

clockDaylight Savings Time – I’m sure you are all aware that Daylight Savings Time ends on Saturday/Sunday. For some of us, this is viewed as a life-saver and for others, it messes up their sleep patterns and they are grumpy for the next 30 days. I, for one, love to fall back, to have an extra hour of sleep, for the sun to be nearly up when I go for a run. I am especially excited this year because it will be just in time for me to start my new job and new routine!

If you recall, I set a goal for myself this year to run 1000 miles by the end of 2015. If you don’t recall, you can check out my goals here. Right now, I am at 750 miles and the goal is within reach, but still quite far away. I got behind this summer with the move, logging only 73 miles in May and June. I am paying for those months now and the outlook is bleak. With my job starting next week, I am a little worried. Stay tuned on whether or not I can get those last 250 miles in the next two months!

My final random thought for today is to shamelessly talk about a new product that I LOVE!

I received two Yves Saint Laurent lipsticks from Influenster a month ago and I LOVE LOVE LOVE them! They are from the Rouge Pur Couture collection. The colors that I received are No. 19 Fuchsia and No. 9 Rose Pink. See my LinkedIn pic at left for a visual on the Rose Pink. Another fun fact, I wore it to my job interview! The fuchsia is super fun and I’ve been wearing it everywhere! See below:

The packaging is also super cool. It’s in the YSL iconic gold tubes — beautiful!

 

So that’s it! Those are my random thoughts of the day. Thanks for stopping by and don’t forget to visit the other blogs in the link-up!

Until Next Time,
Meg

Boots No7 Review

BootsI recently had the opportunity to try Boots No.7 Protect and Perfect Advanced Serum. The sample size allowed me to use it twice per day for one full week. While I don’t think this was long enough for me to give you a really good idea about the results, I will tell you that the product goes on smooth and non-greasy, it’s not sticky and heavy, and it didn’t make my sensitive, acne-prone skin break out (which is a pretty big deal). Most anti-aging products are too heavy for mBoots No7y sensitive, breakout prone skin, so it’s always nice to try something aimed at reducing the signs of aging that doesn’t cause a flare up. So many products are geared towards either-or — either aging OR acne-prone. While this product does not make claims to help with acne, it certainly didn’t clog my pores or irritate my skin.

The results are supposed to be visible within 2 weeks and again, I didn’t have enough to try it for that long. There is, however, this great video of several women that sampled the product for two weeks and there truly are visible results. The catch with the video is that the women had to go mirror free for the duration of the two weeks! It’s pretty fun to watch!

Until Next Time,
Meg

I received this product complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are my own. While I have not been compensated for this post, the post may contain affiliate links to sites like Amazon.

 

#FrostyVoxBox From Influenster

As you have seen from some of my recent product review posts, I received a VoxBox from Influenster.  Now, if you’ve never heard of Influenster before, it is a lovely community of social influencers sharing information and recommendations about products. On the Influenster website their definition is below:

Influenster is a community of tastemakers, social media hotshots, and educated consumers who live to give opinions of products and experiences. In Influenster Nation, influence is currency.

Throughout my time as a member of Influenster Nation, I have received several VoxBoxes and have not once been disappointed. This box is themed #FrostyVoxBox and contained a mix of items ranging from makeup and beauty to food and drink items.

http://sparklyrunnergirl

I did a video review of the products too. You can see it here.

Until Next Time,
Meg

I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are my own.