“Bargains & Splurges” – Beauty Edition

Hello Lovelies!

Fall is upon us, though living in Guam is an endless summer in flip flops! I do miss the rush of looking for the perfect sweater dress and boots! So, in lieu of doing a “Best Fall Fashion” post like I’ve done before, I present my favorite Beauty Bargains and Splurges!

I chose to review the basic three we usually use: Foundation, Lipstick, and Mascara.

You know the saying, “you get what you paid for?” I think that couldn’t be more true when it comes to beauty products. I’m sure you’ve tried a number of products over the years and it can take quite awhile to find what works. So, I’ll break down what has worked for me.

  1. BEST FOUNDATION: 

 Bargain – L’oreal True Match

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Hands down, True Match is one of the best drugstore brands out there. Priced at $8-10 a bottle, this gentle and lightweight foundation comes in several shades that lives up to its name, True Match. It never looks “cakey,” and has pretty good staying power throughout the day.

 Splurge- Younique Touch Mineral Foundation

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Initially, I bought this as a “going out/special occasion” makeup, but once I put it on, I am wearing it nearly every time I wear makeup! I have never felt anything so light and velvety before. It’s gentle on my skin, moisturizes, and doesn’t get greasy looking after a day in the Guam climate. Yes, it’s more pricey ($39), but since it doesn’t irritate or change color over the day, I am in love.

Runner Up: Clinique Chubby Stick Foundation 

2. LIPSTICK/GLOSSES

Bargain – NYX Butter Lipstick

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Priced at just $6 a tube, this lipstick is surprisingly lasting and has a nice shine, but not too shiny. I would say that it does feel “like butter” on my lips and I like that it doesn’t dry out my lips, like many lipsticks tend to do. Lots of colors to choose from!

Splurge: (tie) Clinique Chubby Stick & Pure Romance Obsession Lipgloss

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I’ve been a big fan of the Clinique line for quite awhile now, especially since I love the Chubby Stick Foundation, and I love the Chubby Stick for lips even more. The fact that it comes in a “crayon” keeps it from melting down like sometimes lipsticks can do in tubes. The color makes my lips moisturized and includes my favorite rose color – Bountiful Blush. Great for an everyday look or going out! (Retails $17).

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Pure Romance is a company which specializes in beauty, bath, and bedroom accessories (and I am a consultant!) and to be honest, I wasn’t that excited about the lip gloss at first. But when I got it as a free gift, my tune changed! I’m normally not a gloss girl, but Obsessed is NOT sticky, too shiny, and it being formulated from bees’ wax makes me lips super soft! I wear it all the time, and fits great in my purse! In four colors – Charm, Crush, Groove (my fav!) and Captive. (Retails $18-20) Grab your Obsessed here: https://www.pureromance.com/melanierobinson187802

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Wearing my fav color – Crush!

3. MASCARA.

Who doesn’t love mascara? Even if you’re not a big fan of wearing makeup, somehow just adding mascara adds enough to wake up your face.

Bargain – L’Oreal Butterfly Intenza

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Finally, I found a mascara that lengthens, thickens, and doesn’t give me a clumpy look! Plus it’s pretty easy to remove at night. Butterfly Intenza’s wand gets the baby lashes, and doesn’t dry out the lashes, either. Priced at $7, you can’t beat that!

Honestly, I don’t use any higher end mascaras! Are there any you like?

What are YOUR picks for best foundation/lipstick/mascara? Please comment:)

Until next time -love, laughter, and shoes!

xo, Melanie.

 

 

It’s The Divine Mz M’s Third Anniversary – Giveaway Time!

Hello lovelies!

Like my new layout? It’s time to change things up!

It’s hard to believe, but I started this blog THREE YEARS AGO today! With all the various beauty and fashion blogs out there, I didn’t really expect many readers to follow me. 130 posts later, I need to thank you for all your positive input, likes, and shares! You inspire me to keep writing about body positivity and self acceptance. I’m a believer in making the most out of life and loving ourselves as we are, today! Thank you for going on this journey with me.

You know what having an anniversary means, right?

It’s GIVEAWAY TIME! Woot!

I thought, what a better way to celebrate than giving away three of my favorite beauty basics for the third anniversary? So, one lucky reader will win:

  1. A Clinique Chubby Lip Balm

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I am obsessed with this lip balm! It’s the perfect hybrid of a lipstick and lip balm. Moisturizing, but not glossy. Looks so natural on the lips!

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Wearing Clinique Chubby Stick in Sheer Berry Pink.

2. And… Loreal’s Butterfly Intenza Mascara!

Butterfly mascara

Definitely one of my all time favorites. This gives me long, lush lashes without clumps, and removes easily at the end of the day.

This was just some lip stain! Washed out easily!

Makes my eyes pop!

3. To top it off…Rimmel’s HD Glam Eyes.

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Number 27 is my favorite. The palette has the perfect nude/blush shades for an everyday look, and I’ve used the darker brown on my brows. The colors don’t wear out after a few hours, and blend together beautifully!

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So let’s party! Scroll down to the bottom of the page and enter the “Rafflecopter” widget on the right. Be sure to share with your friends! 

This giveaway is open to U.S., Canada, and U.S. Territories only.

Good luck!

Love, laughter, and shoes-

xo, Melanie.

Shopping and Stuffing My Face!

Hello all!

I know, I know…I’ve been slacking on posts lately! However, the Hubby and I have been having a whirlwind visit with friends and family in Michigan. As they say, time FLIES when you’re having fun.  We’ve been stuffing ourselves silly with dinners out, so I am NOT getting on a scale for at least a month, ha!

Of course, no vacay is complete without shopping! I picked up some GREAT bargains for Guam. My everyday purse was dying a slow death, so when I saw this gorgeous Nine West fringe bag at Younkers for ONLY $20, I snatched it! I love between season sales!

Can you believe I got this for $20?!!! It was originally $90!

Can you believe I got this for $20?!!! It was originally $90!

Being a Michigan girl through and through, I HAD to get this University of Michigan “Lucky” tee to wear with my Primark sporty skirt! Check out my maize & blue socks!

GO BLUE!

GO BLUE!

I’m also wearing a new Clinique foundation. This is “Perfectly Real” makeup I got from Sephora. The coverage is light, but still covers those little ruddy areas.

Lucky CU

With winter gradually melting away, I was able to wear my SWAK Designs denim jacket out to dinner. This is the PERFECT between season jacket. It’s a cozy soft denim.

SWAK jacket

And I thought this cat bracelet looked purrrrfect with it!

Cat bracelet

Sadly, all good things must come to an end. Our visit ends Monday, and off to our new adventure in Guam we go! Stay tuned to see my new spring looks!

Love, laughter, and shoes-

xo Melanie.

I love a fireplace on a cool night!

I love a fireplace on a cool night!

These are a Few of My Favorite Things…Everyday Beauty Awards

Hi lovelies!

Do you have a “cannot live without” list of beauty products? I’m sure you do! Every year, InStyle and Allure magazines do a “Best of Beauty” Awards issue, and I thought it was high time I do my own list. These are my picks for “Everyday Beauty.”

Tell me what you think of my picks, and let me know some other products I should give a try!

BEST MASCARA: Revlon Photoready 3D Volume

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This is by far, the BEST mascara for thickening and lengthening. I swear it doubles the length of my lashes! I know Maybelline’s Great Lash is usually king on a lot of “Best Of” lists (and it is good), but this mascara really gives a dramatic look without clumps. Plus, it’s not hard to remove!

BEST CC CREAM: Clinique Moisture Surge CC Cream

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For an everyday look, this is a must have! It’s lightweight, looks very natural, hides any redness or blotchiness, and has a SPF 30 to protect the skin. My skin stays hydrated, but doesn’t get oily. With this product, I usually just wear mascara and some lip color, and I look great!

BEST BLUSH: Tie: Cover Girl Instant Cheekbones/ NARS blush in “Orgasm.”

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Both of these blushes rock! The Cover Girl Instant Cheekbones is a wonderful inexpensive blush that comes in several colors, plus the product goes on very evenly and has great staying power throughout the day. Many times I wear the “Peach Perfection” trio on my eyes!

NARS’ “Orgasm” is a true cult classic. The color looks great on any complexion, and I LOVE the shimmery effect. It’s more high end in price, but this is one product that is worth the investment. Whenever I wear it, I look “lit from within;” the celebrity-on-a-red-carpet look!

BEST LIP COLOR/LIPSTICK: Tie: Bonne Bell Lipcolor/Clinique Chubby Stick

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I just discovered Bonne Bell’s Lipcolor lipstick in a clearance basket! For an inexpensive lipstick, this is the best one I’ve found. When I put it on, it hydrates, doesn’t feel “waxy,” and has a subtle shine. I’m hoping Bonne Bell isn’t discontinuing this!

Before I fell in love with Bonne Bell’s Lipcolor, Clinique’s Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Color has been #1 with me. I really like how the color looks natural and feels like a lip balm. It’s surprisingly long lasting, but not drying. Lots of times, I throw it on with nothing else on the face and the color just wakes up my look!

There you have it! My favorite “Everyday Makeup” products. In future posts, I’ll profile favorite skincare, hair, and glamour makeup.

What’s your favorite everyday makeup? Let’s discuss!

Love, laughter, and shoes –

xx Melanie.

 

 

 

 

From Venice to Milan!

When I was a high school senior, I wrote my “Dream List.” Among the wishes of winning an Academy Award and being the next Madonna, I listed Venice, Rome, and Milan as places I wanted to see before I die. I’ve checked off two this past week and a half! Tomorrow. Milan- one of the fashion capitals of the world! So excited!

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My YouTube Channel!

I started a new YouTube channel which features beauty tips, fashion, travel life, and (soon to come) music! Please check it out! “Quick and Pretty Makeup for Day”
I’m learning production as I go along, so videos should keep looking sharper!

Please comment and let me know what you think!

What are your fav makeup products for day?

Left to right- Clinique High Impact Mascara, Blush/Powder brush, CC Moisture Surge cream, Quickliner for eyes, Eyeshadow blending brush.

Left to right- Clinique High Impact Mascara, Blush/Powder brush, CC Moisture Surge cream, Quickliner for eyes, Eyeshadow blending brush.

 

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I’m a Liebster Award Nominee!

How cool! The sweet Alley Tiffy of Classygirlschic nominated me for the Liebster Award, which is recognition from members from the blogging community! I’m on a mission to grow my audience, and I want to help other bloggers grow as well.

Liebster Award

Here are the rules:

You must link back to the person who nominated you.
You must answer the questions given to you.
You must pick 11 nominees to answer 11 questions you choose for them.
You cannot nominate the person who nominated you.
You must tell the nominees that they have been nominated by you.
So, here are the answers to what Ms. Tiffy asked me:)

1)What is your favorite makeup brand?

I think it’s safe to say I’m a big fan of Clinique. Their products work great on my sensitive skin.

2) Where do you like to shop the most often?
I’ve been doing a lot of online shopping since moving to Germany (mostly because the dollar is cheaper than euro), and I am very happy with everything I’ve bought from Forever21. Their Plus line is stylish, well made, and very affordable.
3) If you were to splurge on an item, what would you buy?
I’d die to buy some Jimmy Choo or Christian Louboutin shoes!
4) Where do you want to travel to? We NEED to see London before our time is done in Europe!
5)What is your style? I’d say at the moment it is “Comfy Chic with Diva Flair.”
6)Do you spend more time on your hair, deciding what you are going to wear or makeup?
Definitely the outfit. My hair is super easy to do, and I’ve got my makeup routine down to a science. But dressing is still tough for me to do in a hurry!
7) What is your favorite trend at the moment? The awesome fringed bags that are popping up everywhere on the spring runways!

8)What is your favorite animal? Cat:) We have two.

9)Do you play any sports? If so, what are they? I’m not able to do anything at the moment because of back surgery, but I enjoy volleyball the most.
10) What are your hobbies? BLOGGING, ha! Otherwise, dancing and karaoke.
11) What are your favorite songs? That’s hard for me. I love so many, but my current favorite is “Let it Go” from FROZEN.
Now it’s my turn to nominate!
OK lovelies – congrats! Here are your questions!
1. What beauty product can you NOT live without?
2. Who is your “style icon”?
3. Which beauty product is worth paying extra for?
4. Which fashion trend are you a fan of?
5. Is there a current fashion trend you’re NOT a fan of?
6. If you could be dressed by any designer, who would it be?
7. Which fashion publication do you look forward to reading?
8. Is there a TV show you are totally obsessed with? Which one?
9. Which celebrity has the best red carpet style?
10. What is your favorite place to visit?
11. How would you describe your fashion style?
There you go! Don’t forget to link me back with your answers! 
Chanel. Always a Classic!

Chanel. Always a Classic!

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DailyVenusDiva.com Rocks!

What made me literally SQUEAL with delight today? Seeing my newest article on DailyVenusDiva.com‘s website! I had my first article  (regarding my love affair with Clinique products) published with this wonderful online magazine last month, and thankfully Editor in Chief Stephanie Penn took another chance on me! I’m looking forward to doing a lot more with DailyVenusDiva. It’s not often enough that women of all sizes and color are celebrated for who they are, and this magazine is all about that appreciation. Curves definitely rule!

To read my article, “Finally – A Retailer Goes ‘Real’: Retailer Aerie Pledges To Stop Retouching Photos” click here!

I’m not quite ready to walk around in my heels, but I couldn’t resist pulling out one of my favorite pairs in anticipating of spring! The weather in the Ramstein area has been curiously mild for winter (perpetually stuck in the 40s) and not one flake of snow, but it does rain quite a bit and the days tend to be a bit starved for sunlight. Here’s hoping for more color soon!!!

#OOTD:

Leopard trim cotton cardigan, Saks Fifth Avenue. Bag, Chanel. Shoes, Charlotte Russe.

Leopard trim cotton cardigan, Saks Fifth Avenue.
Bag, Chanel.
Shoes, Charlotte Russe.

I LOVE the detail on the Forever21 Plus leggings!

I LOVE the detail on the Forever21 Plus leggings!

Debuting this new H&M baseball style T shirt!

Debuting this new H&M baseball style T shirt!

Dreaming of visiting Paris again soon!  "Eiffel" earrings, Claire's Accessories.

Dreaming of visiting Paris again soon!
“Eiffel” earrings, Claire’s Accessories.

Chanel sitting

Thanks to Diane (my stepmom!) for the beautiful Chanel bag! I am very blessed:)

What do YOU hope to pull out of your closet for spring?

Love, laughter, and shoes!

xoxo Melanie.

Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone

One of the new mantras I’ve created for myself this year is “Try Something New.” As I recover from my surgery, all I have is time on my hands so here are some New Things I Will Try (or Am Trying) This Year:

1. New colors to wear. This includes clothes and makeup. I love jewel tones (mostly blues, purples, silvers, golds, deep pinks), black and white, and grays. It’s time to switch things up, so I will include yellows, oranges, and greens. I grew up (like many of you) believing that we are “summers,” “winters,” etc., when it comes to colors we can wear. I think it’s really just a matter of finding the right shades. I took my first baby steps into orange by trying lip color!

Who knew? Clinique's "Oversized Orange" Chubby Stick actually looks good on me!

Who knew? Clinique’s “Oversized Orange” Chubby Stick actually looks good on me!

2. Work on my You Tube channel. I started this a week ago, and I uploaded two videos already! I plan on focusing on beauty, fashion, and my music. It’s always a little risky “putting yourself out there,” but I want to show that it’s not too late to pursue new interests after turning 40. I’m inspired by Michelle Phan’s channel, and hope I can eventually get my production value of my videos to match hers!

3. Embrace my arms. For as long as I can remember, I have not been a fan of my upper arms. Even when I was dancing regularly, I wished for the lithe ballerina arms. However, the women on my mother’s side have had “meatier” arms (maybe it’s a Swedish Viking trait?) and I have spent a lot of my life covering them up. Not this year. I am going to wear a lot more sleeveless dresses and not bring a shawl, jacket, sweater, etc. to hide under. My arms are strong. There is no shame in showing strength.

4. Taking artistic risks. Any performer learns over time that he or she is a “type,” and the best chance at getting cast is playing to that type (a leading lady, character actress, etc.). Singers learn that certain styles of music suit their voices and they tend to stay in that genre. I want to mix things up and show the various sides of me.

Working a "femme fatale" look, inspired by a Patrick Nagel painting.

Working a “femme fatale” look, inspired by a Patrick Nagel painting.

Patrick Nagel Black Bustier Canvas.

Patrick Nagel Black Bustier Canvas.

I don’t want to settle, ever. I hope to always be exploring, inquiring, experiencing all that life gives me!

How will YOU step out of your box this year?

The search begins for a REAL hydrating lipstick!

Right now in Germany it is unnaturally mild for January (around 40 every day), but the air is super dry and no matter how much Chap Stick I wear, my lips keep flaking. I then bought some tinted Blistex, which had a nice light berry taste and gave my lips a good coat of moisture, but alas…the Hubby told me today that when he kisses me when I wear it, it “feels goopy.” Not good.

So, I decided to try two new products. My first one is Clinique’s Chubby Stick, moisturizing lip color balm. The first color, “Bountiful Blush,” has a nice nude pink and looks natural. Then I really stepped out of my box with the “Oversized Orange.” Yes, you read that right…orange! I NEVER have bought anything orange before, only because I am pretty sure it would look horrid on me. However, this color is much more of a coral, and surprisingly looks good! Besides the colors, I like how the Chubby Stick applies like a crayon and feels moist. I haven’t worn one yet for several hours yet, so that review is yet to come.

The second product I bought is TooFaced’s La Crème Color Drenched Lip Cream in “Loganberry.” This product applies like a regular lipstick, and it feels like silk on my lips! Loganberry is a darker pink, which I like for nights out or when I’m feeling a little extra sassy. I will post a final verdict on the long lasting factor later as well.

Tomorrow I will also post pics of me wearing the products, plus some of my other beauty favs! Got a favorite lip treatment or lipstick to share? Comment and let me know!

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