Section: Just for Fun

The Day in Beauty Vol. 18: Bath & Body Works Honolulu Sun Body Lotion, Deborah Lippmann Gel Lab Pro Polish in Splish Splash, and Birthday Vibes!

Published in: Deborah Lippmann, Just For Fun, Nails

honey lavender latte final

Happy weekend, my friend!

Hey, girl, haaaay! Happy Saturday. I hope you’re doing well. Hello from sunny Novato, Californ-eye-aye. I’m still in celebratory mode because…

birthday cake

Thursday was my birthday!

Thursday was my birthday, and it was a great one, not that I did anything too ambitious, but we did leave the cave (huzzah!) and brave the outside world for the afternoon with my Babylove (a.k.a. Connor Claire).

Connor actually took me out to lunch (her dad helped, of course). We went to the town of Petaluma a few miles north of us in Sonoma County to a place called Della Fattoria. It’s a really cute Napa-style place right on the downtown boulevard with long wooden tables, communal seating and Italian-inspired California cuisine, and they have this otherworldly fresh-baked bread and a glorious dessert case filled with things that look like homemade Hostess Cupcakes and Ho Hos…but we didn’t have dessert because there was a Baskin-Robbins pistachio almond ice cream cake waiting for me at home.

Anyway, though, at lunch, I had a honey lavender latte for the first time ever, and if you do anything in this life, please, please have a honey lavender latte… SO delicious. You get the sweetness from the honey and the floral notes from the lavender, and I know it might sound weird because, you know, lavender is used in a lot of bath products, but no. They’re really good!

And I also had a cup of broccoli cheddar soup and a spring panzanella salad with crisp, fresh peas; asparagus; various leafy greens; chicken and these HUGE croutons… I’m drooling just thinking about that salad now. If you’re ever in Petaluma, I highly recommend it.

Broccoli cheddar soup

Broccoli cheddar soup

Spring Panzanella Salad

Spring panzanella salad

El Hub's dish, a turkey bacon sandwich

El Hub’s turkey bacon sandwich

So yeah, nice birthday. Super mellow. After lunch we just did a little window shopping around downtown Petaluma, then headed back home for ice cream cake from Baskin Robbins (with Connor supervising…because she can’t quite sing happy birthday yet, LOL!).

And the birthday wasn’t the only milestone this week. Connor had one, too, because she’s starting to hold her head up when we do tummy time now, which is very exciting.

connor holding head up

Sweet babylove!

I can’t wait till she starts crawling, but at the same time I’m a little scared, because then she’ll be mobile and, like, I don’t even know how I’m even going to keep up with her.

As for new developments on the beauty front, I got this lotion last week…

bath body works honolulu sun

Bath & Body Works Honolulu Sun Body Lotion and Deborah Lippmann Gel Lab Pro in Splish Splash

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June Is Acne Awareness Month… How Aware Are You?

Published in: Just For Fun

acne, acne awareness,

Acutely aware of what seems to be a constellation forming on my chin…

This week, while browsing the web, I came across a post that said that June is Acne Awareness Month.

Did you guys know about this? Because I, your high oily-ness, did not.

The post is an interesting roundup from the writers of the site about their acne, and it gave me a fair bit of amusement and some feelings of solidarity, because as someone who writes often about skincare and beauty and is in constant awe of makeup and the skills that people use to apply it, I’m also in CONSTANT awareness of my acne.

(Did you just think of Mad Eye Moody yelling CONSTANT VIGILANCE? Because I did. #harrypotternerd4life.)

Getting back to Acne Awareness Month…I don’t know exactly how I feel about it. I feel like there are already “awareness” and “appreciation” months for everything nowadays. One could say that it would bring better awareness to taking care of your skin, but wait — September is already National Skin Care Awareness Month (and May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month).

I’ve waxed poetic about my acne before, but it’s been flaring up more than usual lately, especially around my chin. The moisturizers and oils that (ironically) served me well for a few months aren’t helping anymore, and I’m still looking for something to use this summer (Murad has some very helpful articles on their website in honor of Acne Awareness Month).

Acne-wise, the things I struggle with the most are whiteheads, papules, pustules, and the occasional cyst (so, SO attractive).

I would like to think that sometimes I’m less aware of my acne, for my own sake, but when it comes down to it, it’s usually constantly in my awareness. It’s always there because, well, it’s front and center. It’s the first thing I notice when I wake up in the morning and the last thing I address before I go to bed.

Did you know that June is Acne Awareness Month? And what do you think of the constant cycle of awareness/appreciation months?

Marcella Yakalis

Marcella Yakalis is a freelance writer living and working in Brooklyn, New York, with two cats, one snake, and one very patient boyfriend. She writes about family, relationships, and oppressive retail culture. She can also be found on Twitter and Instagram.

Finding a Father’s Day Card for My One-of-a-Kind Dad #sponsored

Published in: Just For Fun, Sponsored Post

Dancing with my dad

Dancing with my dad at my wedding

As a participant in the Hallmark at Walgreens Card for Dad campaign, I received compensation in exchange for writing this review. Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are my own. @walgreens #HallmarkAtWalgreens #CareWithACard #sponsored

Um…who’s that girl taking silly selfies in the middle of Walgreens?

Oh, hello chocolate!

Oh, hello chocolate!

Yeah, that would be me. Hey, when the urge strikes, you’ve gotta go with it. 🙂

I credit this particular “no shame” moment to my dad, who’s quite possibly the biggest goofball in the entire world.

My dad on a typical Tuesday

My dad on a typical Tuesday…

My dad is one of just a handful of people who can make me laugh so hard that my side aches, and I have tears streaming down my face! Sometimes he does it with his funny nicknames, like how he calls Tabs “Mister,” as in “Hey, Mister! How’s it going Mister? What are you doing Mister?” He nicknamed all of my stuffed animals (like Andolini the teddy bear…who sends me random texts all the time), and he’s a pro at making up nonsensical song lyrics (something I also do on a daily basis).

Dad goofing off during my wedding, LOL!

Dad goofing off during my wedding, LOL!

I think I also look a lot like my dad. Whenever I would meet a distant relative or family friend for the first time, they’d invariably say, “WOW! You look so much like your dad.”

Back in the day with my dad!

Back in the day with my dad!

Of course, I didn’t believe it at the time, but now when I look at old pictures of him from the ’70s around the time that he and my mom immigrated to America, yeah, I see the resemblance, and sometimes I also see it when I look at Connor Claire! — which is kind of magical and freaky at the same time.

My dad’s very outgoing too. He’ll talk to anyone. Seriously, anyone! He can walk up to a complete stranger and within 10 minutes get that person to tell him their life story (this happened A LOT on family vacations). I don’t know how he does it, but he always seems at ease in social situations.

I remember one of the company picnics when were all sitting and eating at a table. I got up to get a scoop of ice cream, and when I returned five minutes later, my dad had joined a random volleyball game. Even though he isn’t athletic and had no idea how to play at all, he was high-fiving his teammates like they’d all been playing together every Sunday for years.

My dad with some of his Navy buddies in the '70s

My dad with some of his Navy buddies in the ’70s

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Have a Peek Inside My Handbag!

Published in: Guest Post, Just For Fun

Dampaì Bernarda Handbag

My everyday essentials can easily fit into this tiny Dampaì Bernarda Handbag!

The beauty bits that accompany me on my daily journey could easily fit even into the smallest of my purses. I like to think that it’s because I’m so low-maintenance (HA! — I can’t even keep a straight face while saying that!), but more likely that’s because I have a bad back and the less weight I carry around, the better.

Besides my wallet, phone and keys, very few are the products that you can usually find in my purse. Let’s have a look!

Handbag Beauty Essentials

My handbag beauty essentials: KIKO Blotting Papers, BIODERMA Hydrabio Moisturizing Anti-UV Mist SPF 30, Merci Handy Hand Sanitizer, Real Techniques Retractable Kabuki Brush, Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in Cherry (mini-size), Urban Decay Beached Bronzer in Sun-Kissed

Let’s start with my most essential essential – that is, lip balm. My favorites are the Fresh Sugar Lip Treatments ($24 for the full size), because not only are they nicely moisturizing, but also add a pretty tint to my otherwise corpse-like lips.

If I’m wearing lipstick, I’ll usually pop it in my bag for any touch-ups, but lip balm is most definitely a permanent resident in there.

Coming in a close second on a scale of on-the-go essentialness are blotting papers (I use KIKO’s — $10). Being cursed with oily skin, I love how they turn me from ‘grease ball’ to ‘freshly made up’ in an instant — and no, regular tissue doesn’t work the same!

Unless it’s a special occasion, I don’t keep very much makeup in my handbag at all. Most of the time, I’m happy with just a bronzer, which I can use throughout the day to liven up my complexion. For the longest time, I used the Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder ($58 at Nordstrom) in shade 50 because of the pretty decent brush it contains, but now that I’ve almost finished it up, I’ve replaced it with the slim Urban Decay Beached Bronzer in Sun-Kissed ($28 at Sephora), paired with the Real Techniques Retractable Kabuki Brush ($9.99).

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Makeup and Beauty Blog Monday Poll, Vol. 426

Published in: Just For Fun

Just put one foot in front of the other...

Just put one foot in front of the other…

You might be wondering, “So what in tarnation is this Monday Poll thing anyway!?”

Well, it isn’t exactly a poll. It’s more of a constantly evolving (devolving?), somewhat random list of questions I’ve been putting out to readers every Monday morning for the past eight (!) years. (It’s like a kickstart for your brain.) I’ve always enjoyed reading your answers in the comments, and I hope you enjoy reading mine.

  1. What are three things on your bucket list?
    1) Start an all-girl rock band, 2) learn how to make jewelry (“She’s making jewelry now…”), and 3) do karaoke at least once in each of the 50 states.
  2. Is it ever OK to snoop through someone’s email?
    Ooh, I have mixed feelings about this… OK, on the one hand, I would never ever want somebody to go sifting through my private emails, but on the other hand, now that I’m a parent, I can see why some people snoop through their child’s emails, because I’m so freaked out — SO FREAKED OUT! — about how I’m going to handle, like, online technology when Connor gets older. Oh boy, that’s a different conversation entirely. Soooo, I guess my answer is “I don’t know.”

    I’m gonna leave it at that.

  3. It’s your wedding day! You have to pick one or the other: would you rather lose a front tooth right before the ceremony, or wear a Lady Gaga meat wedding dress?
    Well, both options are completely disgusting, thank you very much.

    Just thinking of that meat dress on my skin…

    BLUH. Makes me throw up in my mouth a little!

    But I would also hate to lose a front tooth… I like my teeth (thanks for the braces, Mom), so… Ugh! I guess I’d go with the wedding day meat dress, despite how utterly disgusting it is.

  4. Do you use color correctors on a daily basis?
    Hmm… How do I answer this? Well, I don’t use a product that’s traditionally billed as a color corrector, but I do use a peach-toned concealer in my under eye-area to cancel out the purple. So…yeah, I do.
  5. Ocean, river, lake or swimming pool?
    Hard choice because I love all bodies of water. I mean, if there’s a clean, swimmable body of water somewhere, I’m the first person to jump in.

    Normally, I’d go with the ocean (so I could go surfing), but swimming pools are also nice, especially right now, because I don’t want to put in too much work, LOL! I just want to float around with a couple of water noodles and chill out.


Your turn. 🙂 Just copy and paste the following questions into a comment with your answers. I look forward to reading ’em!

1. What are three things on your bucket list?
2. Is it ever OK to snoop through someone’s email?
3. Would you rather wear a lady gaga meat dress to your wedding or lose a front tooth on your wedding day?
4. Do you use color correctors on a daily basis?
5. Ocean, river, lake or swimming pool?

What do you do when it’s just Monday, and you ALREADY feel overwhelmed with all of the stuff you have to do that week?

You sit up straight, take a few deep breaths (Deep breathing helps… No, really, it does!), and put one foot in front of the other. Just take it step by step. That’s all you can do.

Aaaand, that’s what I’m telling myself right now because my to-do list is about a mile long, and I feel thoroughly daunted.

We can do this, though. I’ll stay calm if you do.

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


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