L’oreal – Elvive Extraordinary Oil Treatment

L'oreal Elvive Oil

This luxurious lightweight oil formula instantly transforms dry hair strand by strand into nourished, silky and shiny.

This versatile oil can be used in many ways. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Before shampoo for nourishment
  • Before styling to control hair
  • To polish strands for no frizz and to tame flyaways
  • As a lightweight finish polish for silky softness and shine

Loreal Elvive Oil

How to Use:

Rub 2 drops between the palms of your hands. Apply evenly through the lengths and ends on dry or wet hair.

 

I like that you can use this on wet, damp, or dry hair. For the most part I’ve been using this on the ends of my hair. I don’t wash my hair every day so this helps tame frizz. I also like how soft and silky my hair feels after using this. A small amount goes a long way. It also leaves a nice healthy shine.

 

 

I received this product complimentary for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

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Laura Mercier’s NEW Velour Extreme Matte Lipsticks

I recently had the chance to try 2 shades of Laura Mercier’s new matte lipsticks thanks to Influenster.   I received ‘Queen” which is more of a berry shade & “Ruthless” which is a pinky nude.

Laura Mercier Velour Extreme

 

This collection can be found on Laura Mercier website or go grab your favorite shade(s) at Sephora. There are 24 vivid , full coverage shades that provide a matte finish.

The slim bullet shaped lipstick makes it easy to apply and glides over the lips easily. The best part is the color payoff in just one stroke. The color is rich, intense, bold, & highly pigmented.  Since its slim, its easy to define & fill lips. When you want to shape the lipstick , take off the bottom & you have a built in sharpener. Perfect to carry with you whenever & where ever you go!

Laura Mercier Velour Extreme Matte Lipstick Queen

(Shade – Queen)

When i first received these lipsticks, I knew “Queen” would be my shade so I applied right away and loved it. The next day I put it on before work so see how it would hold up.  I drank water all day, ate cheesy homemade mac n’ cheese, applesauce snack cup & it still looked great. The thing that did it in was at the 6.5/ 7 hour mark when I decided to treat myself to a frappuccino. I think from sucking and puckering up my lips the straw made it wear off. But that is pretty much a work day and it stayed put without having to retouch or reapply. Two thumbs up in my book!

LauraMercierLipstick

One thing about matte lipsticks, is how dry it can make your lips feel. With these velour extreme lipsticks, it was so creamy and hydrating ….my lips felt great all day. I also love how bold & rich the color is when applying ( in one stroke). When I first applied it when I received my package I accidently fell asleep lol When I woke up I forgot I applied the lipstick and it was still as bright and no smudging.

 

LauraMercierRuthless

Shade Ruthless. Didn’t take a photo on because it looked bad on me. I gave this one to a co-worker 🙂

 

Which shade do you want to try ?

 

  • I received this product complimentary for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.

 

Baked Biscuit Wreath Dip & Apple Pie

For Thanksgiving I wanted to make an appetizer and came across this yummy dip from Delish – You can find the recipe here >> http://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/recipes/a45181/baked-biscuit-wreath-dip-recipe/

 

It was  flavorful & cheesy. The biscuits were cooked perfectly and the dip was bubbly. I will definitely be making this again. I mean you can’t go wrong with bread & cheese!! Am I right?

Baked Biscuit Dip

  •  1 can refrigerated biscuits
  • Olive oil, for brushing biscuits
  • 1/2 c. plus 1 Tbsp. crumbled Parmesan
  • 2 c. shredded mozzarella
  • 1 c. ricotta
  • 3/4 c. frozen spinach, defrosted and chopped
  • 1/4 c. mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Halve biscuits and flatten each one out, then roll into a ball and place in an oven-proof skillet seam side down. Arrange in a ring around the skillet. Brush biscuits with olive oil and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon Parmesan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine mozzarella, ricotta, spinach, Parmesan, mayonnaise, garlic powder, and salt and mix until combined.
  3. Spoon dip into center of skillet and sprinkle with red pepper flakes.
  4. Bake until warmed through, bubbly, and golden, 25 to 30 minutes. Serve hot.

Apple Pie

Apple Pie

( I cheat a little by not making crust )

  • make your own crust/ or refrigerated/ frozen pie crust.
  • 1/3-1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon & nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 8 cups of thinly sliced apple. I like using granny smith. ( 6-8 apples)
  • 2 tablespoons of butter

 

  • Heat oven to 425
  • Mix sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, & salt in a bowl.
  • Stir in apples until coated
  • Dump the mixture into the pie crust
  • Distribute butter on top in small pieces
  • Use the extra pie crust to apply on top. You can do a design like me or just apply it on top and cut slits  ( cut off additional crust on edges) Whatever your heart desires.
  • Cover edges with aluminum foil. ( take off the last 10-15minutes)
  • Bake for 40-50 minutes.
Did you make any new dishes this year?

Rocksbox: Customized jewelry box

Looking to revamp your jewelry collection or maybe want to try a style of jewelry but don’t want to buy it? Well Rocksbox might be for you.  It’s pretty simple. When you sign up for an account you browse the site & click the star to add to your wishlist.  You want to make sure you add to your wishlist so you get pieces you want.

I received 2 boxes so far.

You can use my link here or use my code carrabff5 and get a free box!

Rocksbox1

  • KATE SPADE -Cactus Studs $48

  • PERRY STREET -Vega Statement Necklace $63

  • RUDIMENT- Lombard Ring $54

 

Rocksbox2.JPG

  • KENDRA SCOTT- Olivia Earrings in Brass and Aqua Apatite $70
  • AVA ROSE -Cheyenne Ring in Rose Gold with Rose Gold Druzy $58
  • SOPHIE HARPER -Delicate Crystal Layered Choker $46

My favorite from this box were the earrings. Like the turquoise color and shape. Loved the ring for some sparkle & glitz.

 

Just note this is a subscription service. You get 3 custom-picked jewelry pieces. You can keep the 1 or all 3 pieces. You also get a $21 credit to put towards your purchase and if you buy all 3 you get an additional $10 discount. They send a label already inside the box so you return what you don’t want. And they send another 3 pieces.

Chicken & Veggie stir-fry bowl

One of my go to meals is this chicken  & veggie “stir fry” . Its easy, simple, and all goes in one pan!

Chicken Stir fry

Ingredients:

  • Chicken Broth
  • Chicken (diced)
  • onion ( diced)
  • garlic ( minced)
  • mushrooms ( diced)
  • green beans or snap peas
  • carrots ( diced)
  • salt & pepper
  • quinoa or rice
  • soy sauce

 

Add some chicken broth to pan on medium-high. Once hot add carrots & onion. Stir.

Make rice / quinoa according to package. Im a fan of Success boil in a bag tri colored quinoa!

After a couple of minutes add chicken . Stir.  Turn down to medium

Add salt & pepper

Once chicken is pretty much done. Add garlic. Stir for a minute.

Add snap peas or green beans & mushrooms. Stir until tender.

Turn off burner.

Add some quinoa/rice. Add chicken & veggie mixture. Top with soy sauce.

Yum!

 

Ciate London Makeup Review

CiateLondon

I was excited to see an email that  was getting a box of goodies from Influenster.  I’ve never heard of Ciate London brand before so was happy to try something new .

I received 3 products to try a highlighter balm, eyeliner, & mascara.  You can find these products at Sephora. These products are cruelty-free, vegan, and free of gluten.

Wonderwand Intensely Volumizing Mascara $22

CiateLondonMascara

What it is:
An intensely volumizing, smudge-free, flake-free mascara that creates five times more volume in one application.

What it does:
Create the ultimate fearless lashes with 24 hour, all day wear with Ciaté London’s Wonderwand Intensely Volumising Mascara. This ultra-black, dramatic formula creates five times more volume in just one application. Its unique, lash-hugging, volume boosting brush makes lengthening, defining, and curling more quickly and easily than ever. The highly blendable, clump-free formula is specially designed to stay-put and maintain that freshly applied look all day. For effortless, and even enjoyable removal, try Ciaté London’s Makeup Melter Murumuru Makeup Remover Balm for lips, lids, and lashes—formulated with conditioning murumuru butter—to instantly, completely, and effortlessly remove all long-wearing makeup.

What I thought:

While I did like that added volume to my lashes, I didn’t notice anything else.  I didn’t notice lengthening or curling.  The brush made it easy to apply to my lashes,didn’t clump, & helped separate the lashes. I didn’t notice any flaking all day . I liked it but not a mascara I need in my makeup routine.

 

Dewy Stix – Luminous Highlighting Balm in Glow $26

CiateLondon_8401

What it is:
A highlighting balm that adds a gorgeous wet dewy glow to any skintone.

IMG_8328

What it does:
Instantly bring a lit-from-within-glow to your complexion with this low shimmer, dewy, wet-look illuminator. Formulated with murumuru butter and hyaluronic acid, this weightless, non-tacky balm provides natural, healthy-looking radiance on any skin. It’s the perfect finishing touch on bare skin or on top of makeup.

The balm’s unique formulation has been perfected to ensure maximum comfort and longevity. The convenient stick makes it easy to get a glow on the go with a brushless application. Apply directly on bare skin to impart a fresh, dewy finish, or if wearing on top of makeup, swipe fingers over the balm, and then place it on your skin using the pads of the fingers in a rolling motion. Try sweeping your favorite powder highlighter over the top to amplify your radiance.

Suggested Usage:
-The finishing touch to your make up regime. Use on bare skin or on top of makeup.
-Gently dab or swipe onto the high points of the face (cheek bones, brow bones, down the center of the nose, and the Cupid’s bow) to add instant radiance and naturally accentuate your features.
-Wear on collar bones, shoulders, décolletage and down the center of bare legs for head to toe glow.
-Gently pat over your favorite blush to create a dewy luminous finish.

What I thought:

I’ve been using dewy stix on my cheek bones as final touch for a healthy dewy glow. I use alone or add my favorite powder highlighter on top to amp up the radiance. The good thing about this highlighter balm is you can apply in many places ( collar bone, legs, chest etc) . I’ve never used a a highlighter balm and was worried it might be sticky or tacky but this wasn’t. It glided on nicely and gave a natural glow. Though, I do prefer dabbing the product on for better results . I realized sometimes it “pulled” my makeup under it when using it in stick form. It’s also formulated with hyaluronic acid & murumuru butter which feels nice on the skin. It leaves skin looking natural

Fierce Flicks Precision Tip Liquid Liner $19

CiateLondonEyeliner

 

What it is:
A precise, felt tip liquid eyeliner.

What it does:
Become a liner pro with Ciaté London’s Fierce Flicks Precision Tip Liquid Liner. Formulated for intense, super-black color pay off, the perfect dramatic wings or cat eye looks are no challenge for this easy to use precision tip.

What I thought:

It like that it has a felt tip which helps get a precise line and makes a wing super easy. Now only if it could make me do my eyes completely even … I’d be set! lol I’m about to just bedazzle a eye patch for all the times I fail at the other eye. The color pay off is great with an intense black. It stays in place all day.

 

 

Have you heard of Ciate London before? Have you used their products? Which is your favorite?

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

Meatless meals

I’ve posted these on my blog before but have made them all this week and love how

 

 

What you need:

  • 3 cans of black beans  drained & rinsed ( you can also use 2 cans for a smaller batch)
  • Oatmeal 1/2-3/4 cups
  • Mushrooms about 1 1/2 -2 cups
  • minced garlic
  • Red bell pepper ( I only used 1/4-1/2 of it) This gives it more flavor
  • 1 Egg
  • Cheese ( I used cheddar)
  • Avocado
  • Salsa
  • Spinach
  • Hamburger buns ( love onion buns)
  • Olive oil
  • Seasonings & spices I used salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder

Add 2 cans of black beans, mushrooms, oatmeal, garlic, seasonings, & egg in a blender , immersion blender, or food processor until mixed.   Add the whole can of black beans. If too mushy you can add some oatmeal.

You can either make these in a pan, grill pan or like I did oven.
Preheat oven to 350
Coat a cookie sheet with olive oil or cooking spray. Form patties and place on cookie sheet.
Put in oven for about 20-30 minutes. You want them to be firm.
If you want cheese, add cheese the last few minutes until melted.

I toasted my onion bun, placed spinach on top, placed black bean burger, top with avocado salsa mash.

I took half and avocado mash with fork until your desired consistency ( i like it a bit chunky) and added 1-2 tablespoons of salsa.

Tomato chickpea soup

 

So easy to make your own tomato soup!

What you need:

  • 6-7 overripe tomatoes
  • medium onion ( yellow or red) I usually use red
  • 2 cloves of garlic ( I have a jar that is already minced, I use about a tablespoon)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 springs of thyme ( or a sprinkle of dry thyme)
  • 10 black peppercorns ( or use reg pepper)
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 8 basil leaves ( or sprinkle with some dried)
  • 2 cups of vegetable or chicken broth

Preheat oven to 375.

In a large roasting pan or cookie sheet add tomatoes, onion, garlic, bay leaves, thyme, sugar, pepper, salt. & oil.

Cook for about 45 minutes.

Add chicken broth .  I recently bought an immersion blender which I love but you can also laddle some into a blender when cooled and blend in batches. Put in pot and add beans . Serve!

eggplant meatless balls

These are perfect for dipping and are so filling.

what you need
Eggplant
Parmesan cheese
Egg
Garlic
Italian parsley
Salt & pepper
Breadcrumbs (I used Panko)
Olive oil

 

Preheat oven to about 350

Cut eggplant into 1 inch pieces.  I sometimes just peel off some pieces off the eggplant

Toss eggplant in olive oil, salt & pepper and place onto cookie sheet.

Once roasted place in food processor or blender along with garlic, italian parsely, breadcrumbs, egg until blended.

Form into balls . Place on cookie sheet and bake until firm. 15-20 minutes.

Dip them in your favorite tomato sauce!

 

Broccoli Soup

Broccoli Soup

  • Broccoli
  • coconut oil or olive oil
  • 15 oz cannellini beans, drained
  • onion, diced
  • garlic, minced
  • Vegetable or chicken broth
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Parmesan Cheese

Steam broccoli

Put oil in pan.
Add onion until translucent.
Add garlic.
Add beans.
Add Add salt & pepper.
Add vegetable broth.

Use immersion blender or add batched to blender until pureed.

Add parmesan cheese. Mix

( the beans help make it creamy and thicker … and more filling. YUMMY!)