Lust List + Giveaway: 12/20

It’s Friday! Ahhh that feels so good to say. IT’S FRIDAY!!! I feel like this has been the longest week, and I am so exhausted and ready for the weekend. If you guys could see the bomb that is currently my home….I would take a picture for you to laugh at, but honestly you wouldn’t find it funny. You’d probably just feel really bad for me. Yeah, it’s that bad. I have storage boxes from all our Christmas decor sitting in a stack by my front door because I’m trying to force myself into re-organizing my hall closet. I had cleaned and organized it over the summer (when I wasn’t thinking of Christmas at all) and managed to pack all Christmas related boxes in the very back of the closet. Everything had to be pulled out, and made a mess of, just to get Christmas decor out. Organize fail. I keep meaning to go buy a garage shelving unit from Lowes for in that closet so I can easily stack boxes and still be able to access all of them without it being a huge chore. Add it to my to-do list. Speaking of organizing and de-cluttering, I think that will be my New Years resolution. I despise clutter, and lately I feel like we’ve accumulated too much “stuff”, and we need a good purge and some fresh organizing to happen. Maybe I’ll do a “30 days organized” challenge in January and tackle a different space each day.Would you guys be interested in tackling this with me, in your own homes? A different task, or space each day, and then we’ll have happier and more enjoyable spaces to live in!  Add it to my to-do list. ;-)

I have been so busy posting about products, giveaways, and the holidays lately that I haven’t had a chance to sneak in a good chit-chat with you. What is going on in your lives lately? We’ve been doing a lot of potty training work over here, and moving from daytime potty training (which we’ve been doing for months now) to night time and nap time potty training. It’s been hit and miss. 3 days without any accidents, and then yesterday she pooped in her undies while sleeping…not my fave. She’s really been doing good though, so we’re sticking with it. The hardest part is having to limit liquids close to nap time, and not allowing her to take a water to bed with her. She’s notorious for chugging an entire sippy cup of water down when she gets in bed. I’m so glad that we tackled potty training in the summer when it was warm enough to run around the house without pants, because it’s too cold here to do that now. If you want to see a post dedicated to our potty training failures and successes, leave me a comment. Otherwise I’ll stop boring you with #2 talk.

We are going to visit my husbands grandparents next week, and spend some holiday time with them, and then my mom and her husband arrive on the 26th (my birthday) to have Christmas with us. Last year was so much fun because Camryn was finally old enough to understand the idea behind Christmas, and had too much fun opening gifts. This year she’s been asking me every single day if she can open presents yet. She’s fully aware of what’s going on, and she knows that inside all those boxes there are toys for her to play with, and the anticipation is killing her. I feel like I say “Not yet…X many more days…” at least twice a day. She’s going to be bummed when she realizes that 90% of those gifts aren’t even for her, and are going to the little girl we “adopted” at the Ronald McDonald House. The anticipation of bringing that family their gifts is killing ME. I feel like a real life Santa this year, it’s been so much fun! I’ll take pictures when we go and share them with you.

OK, enough of my blabbering….Here are the things I’ve been loving this week:

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1.|| This family is awesome, and their Christmas “card” is even cooler.

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2.|| Beyonce’s visual album is amazing. She always looks flawless.

3.|| I tried out a new food delivery service called Plated, and showed two meals and gave my review over on My Simple Kitchen. I used the code FBFIRSTPLATE to try 4 meals (“plates”) free.

4.|| Have you met Surya the orangutan and her hound dog BFF?

5.|| Jessica from Afternoon Style featured holiday recipes on her blog, including my peppermint milkshake. Told y’all they are YUM!

6.|| I mentioned that I recently visited Ikea – here’s an article about incorporating Ikea finds into your space in chic and sophisticated ways. Love me some Ikea.

7.|| “What does my kid say?” Mommy anthem.

8.|| What are your sentiments on the Phil Robertson interview with GQ that caused him to be “suspended indefinitely” from A&E’s Duck Dynasty?

9.|| Leigh Viner’s etsy shop is a HUGE source of inspiration to me, and her art literally makes me stop and stare in awe. This is one of the many pieces that I’m eyeing (no pun intended). I already own a few of her prints, but I’m dying to snag an original in the new year.

10.|| A celebration of a mom’s love – this will definitely make you teary eyed. Pass the Puffs!!!

Today’s giveaway will be on my instagram at some point today, so keep an eye open! :-)

XO – Samantha

Influenster: Jolly Vox Box

The nice people at Influenster sent me some complimentary goodies this week to test out and I thought I’d share my thoughts with all of you. You’re probably wondering what Influenster is, and why they’re sending me free stuff…Influenster creates a bridge between companies and bloggers (or youtubers, etc). If you’re a blogger, vlogger, or just have a large social network, then Influenster might be of interest to you.

influensterThis is my “Jolly Vox Box”, as they call it, which contained:

Rimmel London Show Off Lip Lacquer

NYC HD Color Trio Eyeshadow

Ducklings Mini (duck tape) Rolls

Skinny Cow Candy

Puffs Tissues

What an awesome surprise this was! All of the products are full-sized, which is great because sometimes it’s hard to really test a product off a sample. Things like skincare especially need full-size or generous sized samples.

I busted open the skinny cow chocolates first, of course, and they are so yummy! They have peanut butter filling and taste a lot like a reese’s peanut butter cup. These are the perfect late night snack when your sugar cravings kick in.

I’ve been wearing the NYC eyeshadows the last few days and I’m really impressed. I knew I would like the NYC eyeshadows because I’ve tried other palettes of theirs before. I am really loving the neutral colors in this palette, called Long Beach Sands, because they are slightly shimmery, and easy to wear day-to-day. They are a little bit chalky in comparison to a higher end palette like Naked’s, but have good color payoff and are a bargain.

I’ve also been wearing the Rimmel Lip Lacquer, and no surprise, I love this product. Rimmel is easily my favorite drug store brand, and I frequently order products online from them that aren’t available here in the US. The “Wake-me-up” foundation and concealer are two of my favorite products from them. I was actually lucky enough to try this lip lacquer prior to them sending it to me because I snagged one on my trip to Paris. You guys know I watch beauty videos on Youtube, and I had heard all my favorite girls raving about this product, so I had to get my hands on it ASAP. I had purchased “Big Bang” which is a gorgeous red, and I was just sent “Aurora” which is a beautiful pinky mauve. These lip lacquers aren’t sticky, they stay glossy for a really long time, and leave behind a beautiful stain so you don’t have to reapply constantly. I would compare them to the YSL glossy stains.

The Puff tissues are a no-brainer. I buy them constantly to keep in my purse, and they always come in handy, especially with a 2 year old. If you’ve never used a Puffs tissue, you’ve been living on another planet.

The Mini Duckling tape is so fun, and Camryn and I have been using it to craft this week. I got a paint splatter effect that is bright and colorful. These would be great alternatives to washi-tape for crafting, and I’ll be using mine to tape gift cards into Christmas cards this year. Speaking of Christmas….is it seriously less than a week away?! AHHHHH!! I’m in full-on panic mode now, and shopping and wrapping gifts like a mad woman.

Have you guys tried any of these products? Bloggers, are you Influenster members? What fun goodies have you received and enjoyed?

Have you entered all this weeks giveaways? Click on the “Giveaways” to the right of your screen to view all posts containing giveaways.

Come visit me over on My Simple Kitchen. I’m reviewing the food delivery company “Plated”, and cooking white bean chicken chili.

XO – Samantha

A Simply Beautiful Home

Your guys know I’m a sucker for beautiful interiors. It’s my thing. Nothing inspires me more than a well designed room, or a beautifully styled table. Even a bookshelf done perfectly makes me stop in my tracks. It’s an addiction people. I’m the girl that visits Home Goods 2x’s a week, and squeals in Target when I find black lamp shades with gold leafing inside, and has 10+ interior design coffee table books on my Christmas wish list. My dream day would be to lay around (kidless of course) while skimming through all my favorite design books and drinking coffee in peace. Ahhhh!

One of my pet peeves about most interior design photos that I come across on Pinterest, in magazines, or in books is that they’re nearly unattainable. Not because the decor can’t be bought, replicated, DIY’d, etc. but because the space is unlike the homes that many of us actually live in.

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What’s the matter? Don’t you have intricate marble flooring, a palatial winding staircase, and enough room in your hallways to have a row of orange trees? Ya, me neither. So when I came across Jessica & Scott’s East Coast Nest I immediately fell in love. Their unassuming, 2100 sq. ft home, is a wealth of beauty.

Jessica is an interior designer, and creator of Nest Studio (Her drawer pulls are literally my favorite on the market. The gold and lucite…DROOL!)

That’s a hand stenciled floor…HAND STENCILED!! I’m just so in awe of what she’s done with this house. I also really enjoy seeing items from places like Target, and Ikea; places we all shop.

If you want to check out more of Jessica’s home, visit her blog here.

Today’s giveaway is one of my very favorite coffee table books, and a source of constant design inspiration and enjoyment for me. I flip through it at least once a week. It’s perfect for anyone starting on their home from scratch, or even someone who’s just looking for a change but doesn’t know where to start. It looks pretty sitting on my coffee table too. :-)

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Good Luck! XO – Samantha

PS…I was sent a fun game called “How Do You Shop Style?” that I thought you guys might enjoy checking out. The quotes are hilarious, and no surprise, it figured out that I have a shopping addiction. Oops! Here’s the link if y’all want to play too. You can also win a designer handbag just by playing. http://bit.ly/psssjgame

Minted Gifts & A Festive New Year

Calling all last minute shoppers! Yes, you…you know who you are. You’ve been lounging in your long-johns sipping hot chocolate and watching your favorite Christmas movies all month, and now you’ve realized you have less than 10 days before Christmas and you still haven’t ordered holiday cards to send your family and friends. It’s not too late!! Luckily for you, Minted has your back. If you’re feeling like you’ve missed out on sending Christmas cards, why not send New Years cards to the people you love most instead? Minted has some beautiful options, and you can receive 15% off all holiday and new years cards using code FLURRY15.

Here are a few of my favorite New Years Cards:

Confetti New Years

Cheers Garland

I love this next card, especially for any of you that are needing a last minute card, and you don’t have a photo that you’d like to share. Share all your favorite memories and achievements of 2013 with this fun “Year in Review” card.

No Photo – Year In Review

If you’re struggling to find a gift for you friend, coworker, or even mom or sister, then Minted has you covered there too. How about a beautiful calendar with photos of you, a grandchild, pet, or a vacation. Minted also has my favorite stationary which can be personalized for that extra touch of luxury.

A Year of Art - Perfect for art or home decor lovers.

Watercolor Brush Grand - Your friends and family will love hanging this (and bragging to their friends about it)

Hello Friend Personalized Stationary - I’m smitten with this stationary, and will be adding it to my desk very, very soon.

Paris + Vintage Ribbon

Audrey Stationary

Sanibel Island Stripe

There are too many gorgeous designs, how’s a girl to choose?! They also have more masculine designs for the man in your life.

Circle Circle Dot

You still have time to place your orders and receive your goodies before Christmas, but hurry, hurry, hurry! Save 15% off when you buy 3 or more gifts using code GIFTS15. The hardest part about ordering from Minted is deciding which beautiful card, or gift to choose. I could spend hours curled up on the couch with my laptop browsing their site, and personalizing everything from ink colors, card shapes, types of paper, card backing, and even custom return labels. It’s easy finding something that everyone on your list will love.

UPDATE: 12/17 & 12/18: Free shipping upgrade to Fedex 2-day on gift orders $50+

If you haven’t already, be sure to enter all THREE giveaways:

Giveaway 6 - ends today, so get your entries in!

Giveaway 7

Giveaway 8

XO – Samantha

Peppermint Oreo Milkshake

Hello!

I hope you all had wonderful weekends. We spent ours at IKEA buying a few items for my husbands new work office (that place is like a grown-ups playground, and I loved every second of it), and then we finally put up our tree. It feels so good to knock that off my to-do list. Woohoo!

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While we were being oh-so-festive, I made the most delicious milkshakes that I’ve ever tasted. If you like oreos, and a little dash of peppermint, then you’re going to L-O-V-E these shakes. My daughter was chugging hers so fast we kept having to take it away and make her take breaks to avoid brain-freeze. It only requires 5 ingredients, and takes 5 minutes to make. Can’t go wrong with that, can you? I would also HIGHLY recommend adding some liquor to these.

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Ingredients (For 2 shakes):

3 Cups Vanilla Ice Cream

5-8 Oreo Cookies (whatever kind you prefer, I just used what I had on hand)

1 cup Milk

 1/2 Candy Cane (Or peppermint schnapps)

Whipped Cream

In a blender, add ice cream, milk, oreos, and crushed candy canes. Blend until smooth. Serve in cold glasses and top with whipped cream & crushed oreos. Enjoy!

I’m also taking over My Simple Kitchen all week so come say hi! I’m using my leftover oreos to make White Chocolate Oreo Popcorn, and showing you how it can make the perfect gift for friends & coworkers. 3 ingredients, and less than 10 minutes.

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Have you entered my current giveaways? If not, you still have time.

6th Day of Christmas Giveaway

7th Day of Christmas Giveaway

Today’s giveaway is all about the pout. I’m giving away a few of my favorite lip products, including Revlon, Burts Bees, Rimmel, Maybelline, and MORE!! Follow me on Instagram to see sneak peeks at all my favorite lippy products!

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Good Luck! XO – Samantha

*UPDATE: Janet Martin, you won Giveaway #5! Congratulations!*

Lust List: 12/12

Lust List Image1.|| I’m co-hosting a giveaway for a beautiful Bindya scarf with Lulu of Simply Lulu Style today, so come say hi and enter to win!

2.|| Urban Decay released their Naked3 palette, featuring rose hued neutrals. I own both the Naked1 & Naked2 palettes and love them. (Naked1 is my favorite of the two, if you’re curious) The palette sells for $52 and features 12 NEW shades that are exclusive to this palette. I am not a fan of the packaging, which is the same as the 2nd palette. I do love their brushes though, and use mine everyday for my concealer (not for applying their eyeshadows).

3.|| I ordered kitty cat shoes from Daily Look for myself to match the ones that I bought from Old Navy for Camryn. I also bought her the fox ones, just because I know they’ll make me laugh every time I see her wear them.

4.|| This interview with Susan Petersen of Freshly Picked is so inspiring.

5.|| I’m loving this indian inlay stencil by Cutting Edge Stencils and really want to get my hands on one. Wouldn’t this be awesome on a console table?

6.|| I ordered this darling sweatshirt from GreyThread on Etsy for my tiny lady. Go check out Nichole’s etsy shop, she has a ton of super cute apparel, like this other shirt I bought Camryn.

7.|| Popular mens brand, Bonobos, is launching AYR for women.

8.|| 7th Day of Christmas Giveaway!! Win a manicure kit containing the ever-so-popular Seche Vite topcoat, Seche Vite’s Iconic Red nail polish, Absolute! nail polish removing pads in spring fresh scent, and an Apricot Vanilla hand cream. Enter to win below. Don’t forget to go enter Day 5, and Day 6 before they end.

Have a great weekend!

XO – Samantha

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A Little Chit-Chat

Image Via (This is actually a beautiful art print. I kinda love it)

Good Morning Everyone. I’m getting this post to you a little later than usual because I spent my evening getting in some much needed R&R. I always strive to bring you quality posts over quantity, and last nights quality wouldn’t have been very good. Today’s post is a very chit-chat kind of post, so go grab yourself a cup of coffee and get cozy. (I’m drinking an iced latte from my nespresso machine, and eating mini powdered donuts….New Years Resolution: No more donuts!!)

If you’re looking for a delicious muffin recipe, check out this one from My Simple Kitchen. These look so yummy, and just a tad naughty. Perfect with coffee, obviously. What doesn’t go well with coffee? Ok, maybe toothbrushing.Yuck.

My husband is moving offices, and has asked me to help make the new space a little less cave-like for him. The office is in the center of the building, in “pods”, and doesn’t get much natural light. His current office has 2 full glass walls facing towards the window and gets tons of light, so this is going to be quite the downgrade in those terms. The room lacks windows, so I need to find a lot of colorful art to hang on the walls and give life to the space. I’ll take pictures of the before for you guys this weekend when I go visit. Even though this will be a huge challenge, theres nothing that makes me more giddy than a clean slate needing decorating and an open wallet.

Did you ladies watch the VS fashion show on Tuesday night? I missed it (quietly sobs) but I’ve been watching a bunch of the backstage videos. I usually enjoy these more than the actual show anyways; I love seeing them get their makeup done, and all the shenanigans that happen behind the scenes.

I bought my daughter the ever-so-famous Elf on a Shelf yesterday. After about 30 minutes of researching, I decided that this little guy is:

1. A Bully (and kind of a nark)

2. High Maintenance. All of you moms out there creating these amazing setups, like elf bubble baths with barbie, or “snow ball fights” in the kitchen with flour, you all deserve to be on the naughty list. You’ve raised the bar TOO HIGH!! We’ve had him for 24 hours and I literally woke up this morning to my daughter saying “Mr. Elf, where are you?” over her baby monitor….and guess who forgot to move him last night? Yep, this shitty mom. Fail. I quickly hung him from the banister on my way upstairs to get Camryn, and when she found him I said he must have been “riding down the banisters last night”. I’m almost positive that will bite me in the ass when she’s big enough to climb onto the banisters. “But Mom, Mr. Elf got to do it!”

3. How is this naughty elf, who stays up all night making messes for me to clean, teaching my daughter to be good? Ahhhh I’m creating a monster!!

He’s a “must have”, as told by moms, so we’re going to give him a try. Camryn is already smitten with him, so I see the appeal. I read a hilarious post by another (lazy) mom like myself who didn’t move the elf and told her kids that he didn’t move because they must have been naughty and needed to try harder. Parenting…you’re doing it right. :-)

Kristin from 6th Street Design School is selling some of her gorgeous living room decor, so if you’re looking for some new pillows or curtains go check these out!!

I have a new balm that I’ve been using on my dry hands that I don’t think I could live without. The winter months always make my cuticles dry, and my hands get rough from constantly washing them, and this extreme cream by Zoe Organics is exactly what they needed. I bought mine from milk + honey spa here in Austin, but it’s available online if you’re interested in snagging some. (Update: milk + honey spa will also ship any of their available products to you) This would be such a great gift for anyone in your life who suffers from dry skin, eczema, and especially anyone pregnant and trying to avoid stretch marks. It’s 100% organic, packed with vitamins, and it doesn’t leave you feeling greasy, which I always hated when I was pregnant and had to try and get dressed feeling sticky and gross.

Speaking of pregnant….

Nope, not me. I wish. :-( BUT my sweet sister-in-law is, and I just found out she’ll be having her baby shower in January back home in Washington. My husband and I both went to school in WA and moved to Austin about 8 years ago. It’s so fun getting to fly home and see friends, and all their babies, and let our kids play together. My sister doesn’t find out my niece/nephews gender until days before the party, but it will be even more exciting getting to see her and knowing who that the little person inside her belly is. I haven’t seen her since finding out the news, so I literally CANNOT WAIT!! Finally getting to be an Auntie is a close second to getting to be a Mom for me. I’m so curious to see what their baby will look like, because Camryn looked just like her Uncle as a baby.

The VONBON coupon for 15% off ends today, so go get your vonbon on using coupon code VONBONPEARLS.

Go Enter all my current giveaways. There are makeup brushes valued at $50+ as well as a beautiful blue ombre scarf up for grabs. I announced on Facebook yesterday that Amber Hibma won the Alice + Olivia for Starbucks mug (and special surprise), and Julie Giller won the Christmas Gift Kit. Congratulations ladies!

Keep scrolling down if you want to see yesterdays post with Emily of The Style Hunter, and see how we both styled Cobalt Blue.

I’ll be a guest over on Simply Lulu Style tomorrow, and co-hosting a giveaway with her, as well as hosting a 2nd giveaway here on Playdates + Pearls, so you definitely don’t want to miss those.

Wishing you all a great Thursday. Thanks for hanging out with me and having a chat. What’s new in all of your lives? Seriously, I love hearing from you guys, tell me what’s new in your lives.

Oh, and I’m NOT in NC like I had mentioned. There was a change in plans very last minute, so I am home, just in case you’ve been watching my IG account wondering why NC looked so familiar….yep, just my house.

XO – Samantha

Guest Post: Emily of The Style Hunter

We’re halfway through the week, loves! We will survive…at least that’s what I keep telling myself. It’s been one of those weeks for me. (You know, the ones that call for wine for breakfast…what? You don’t do that ever?)

I have Emily of The Style Hunter guest posting with me today, and we are showing you a few ways we’ve been styling Cobalt Blue into our wardrobes. First of all, I just have to tell you how much fun this adorable girl is; she’s pretty much the most fantastic person ever! I think Emily has great taste, so of course I follow her blog, but it’s her pictures that I love most. She’s always so happy, and looks carefree and like she’s having a blast! She never looks like she’s taking things too seriously….here are a few pictures to prove it. (Sorry Em, you’re just too cute to keep all to myself.)

Here’s a little about Emily, her darling blog, and how she styled cobalt blue:

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Hi! I’m Emily, author of TheStyleHunter. I’m the girl that loves all things fashion. I am utterly obsessed with texture, pattern, shine and a bit too much. A girl that will wear red lipstick to a football game or layer on baubles for a trip to the grocery store. I love a good bargain and believe that the happiness in life could come from a walk around your favorite store.
Pops of color are what I’m about. Having everything else be basically neutral, with one bold color as the focal point of your look. In this case, the cobalt blue pants are clearly the star of the show. I found them at the LOFT and fell hopelessly in love. A good pair of pants is like a good car. Side note, ironically my car is blue. Hmmm, I may quite possibly see a pattern emerging. You need something reliable, that won’t stretch or break down (i.e. rip or get a hole unexpectedly) and one that will be a showstopper. Clearly these pants do the trick. Add a dash of leopard, since leopard is indeed a neutral and you are set. I will add leopard to any and every outfit I can, it might be an addiction, but one I wear proudly. Another thing I like to do when creating an outfit is to add something unexpected. I like mixing colors or patterns that some wouldn’t necessarily think of. These (on sale at Target) Sam & Libby pumps for $11 do the trick. A little bit festive, but not as dominant as the pants. That is the key to mixing. When mixing unexpected items, have one still be the dominant so that they don’t compete, but compliment in a new way.
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You can shop my look here:

Pants // Tee // Scarf: similar // Leather jacket: (old) similar // Pumps // Sunnies: similar
xo, Emily
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Now that you’ve fallen in love with her too, you can follow her on bloglovin’ here. :-)

Neither Emily nor I knew what the other person was doing for this “challenge”, which honestly made it that much more fun to see the final pictures. I styled my outfit for cold, and colder weather. Austin can’t make up it’s mind and decide if it’s still fall or full-on winter yet. Here’s a glimpse of what I wore…

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Come visit me over at The Style Hunter to see the rest of my pictures, and to shop my outfits.

We’re also super excited to be giving away this gorgeous blue ombre scarf from Shoptiques!

Enter the giveaway below. Hope you all have a wonderful Wednesday…and if all else fails, pop open a bottle and pour yourself a glass. It’s gotta be 5 o’clock somewhere!!

XO – Samantha

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Gift Guide: For Him

Today is the last installment in my Gift Guide series, and I’ve saved the hardest for last. Shopping for the men in my life is always my least favorite. Men don’t ever ask for anything, and when they do actually need something, they buy it. Super helpful guys, super helpful. Hope this guide gives you a little inspiration.

Gift Guide: For Him

1.|| Reading Material

2.|| Shave OR Style

3.|| Beer of the month club

4.|| Bose Noise-Cancelling Headphones

5.|| Ugg Slippers

6.|| Cologne

7.|| Movie (My husband would enjoy a movie that he could watch with his favorite tiny lady)

Stay tuned tomorrow, I’ll be guest blogging with the fabulous Emily of The Style Hunter  to show you guys how we wear cobalt blue. We’ll also be giving away a pretty little clothing/accessory item, so don’t miss out.

I am flying to North Carolina today to spend time with my Mom, and visit my Grandpa who is currently fighting cancer, but I will still be posting for you like always. If you’d like to see pictures of my trip, follow my instagram feed.

There’s still time to enter these giveaways:

http://playdatesandpearls.com/how-to-wash-your-makeup-brushes/

http://playdatesandpearls.com/lust-list-12613-on-the-4th-day-of-giveaway/

XO – Samantha

How To: Wash Your Makeup Brushes

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We all wash our faces daily (at least I hope you do) and we spend so much time and money on our skin care regimens, but so often our makeup brushes get overlooked. Just like we cleanse the dirt and makeup from our skin, we need to regularly cleanse our brushes for the same reasons. Not only are these tools touching your delicate skin on a day-to-day basis, but they’re often times being dipped into your makeup.

These are the brushes I use most frequently, and tend to wash on a weekly basis. I also have a 2 year old who thoroughly enjoys playing in her makeup (aka chapsticks and clean makeup brushes) so I’m often having to wash more makeup brushes than I actually use in a week. Her little face is dirty, so makeup or not, her brushes get cleaned too.

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I am NOT a fan of cleaning my brushes. It’s a chore, just like doing dishes, and often times my brushes will still be damp the next morning, but it’s a necessary evil. If anyone has any tips or tricks to offer, leave me a comment!!

To cleanse my brushes I use Blender Cleanser, which can be purchased through Sephora. You could also use baby shampoo, or other brush cleansers (MAC sells some). I use warm water, a pea sized amount of cleanser in the palm of my hand, and then I swirl my brush in it and rinse. If you’re washing foundation brushes you’ll likely need to repeat this step until the water runs clear. Squeeze all the water from your brush and reshape them, and then lay flat to dry on a clean towel. Smaller brushes will typically be dry within a few hours, but larger brushes will take overnight. Clean a Beauty Blender in a similar fashion by applying a pea sized amount of cleanser to the soiled area of your blender, and lather and rinse until water runs clear. Set on towel to dry.

Here are a few of my favorite makeup brushes & cleanser (which are featured above):

RT-TRAVEL-ESSENTIALS-002Real Techniques Travel Essentials

I love the domed shadow brush for applying my under eye concealer, and the multi-task brush for my bronzer.

Blender Cleanser

Beauty Blender

Flawless foundation and concealer application.

These 3 amazing items are part of todays GIVEAWAY, valued at over $50! Enter below. Good Luck!

XO – Samantha

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