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EMPTIES | December 2016 & January 2017

December and January 2016 Empties and review

I've been holding onto my empties for over a year now so to justify my hoarding, I've decided to write about them. As I write this, it's Valentine's Day and what better way to end the night with some blogging about what I loved and what I didn't? 

PROJECT PAN | A to Z 2018 Intro

PROJECT PAN | A to Z 2018 Intro

If you've been following my Instagram, you'll know that I've started my first official Project Pan: A to Z Pan. I've been following panning accounts for so long and decided it's time I try my hand at this. My collection has gotten out of control and I think this will help me focus on using up items. This is just a fun format for those of us who get overwhelmed by our own massive collections *raises hand*. I've picked 26 items to coordinate with each letter of the alphabet. 

While this is meant to be a year-long project, I didn't post an update in January because I had started halfway into the month. So, this intro post is much more appropriate while I wait to post my first update at the end of February. Side note, while my blog is meant to feature only cruelty-free items, I wanted to include non-cruelty free items in this project just so I can focus on moving them out of my collection. I won't be repurchasing anything that is not cruelty-free and will clearly indicate those in the ensuing makeup bios.  

This is a long post so I would suggest you get comfortable, LOL. Let's jump into the items and my goals for the year!

HEART TO HEART | New Year Resolutions!

Y'all, this is going to be a crazy moment because I actually had this draft pretty much fully written and NEVER POSTED IT. So while this was my 2017 Resolutions, I've amended it slightly to be my 2018 resolutions. So I'll mark my 2018 revisions in a different color, LOL. 
HEART TO HEART | New Year Resolutions! makeup with a heart
The first week of the new year is almost over so I decided it was high time I share my resolutions. Some people believe in making them while others scoff at them. I'm not the best at consistency so I resolved to work on seven items that are manageable. So here they are, from lifestyle to beauty! 


1. Work out more.

    • I was getting consistent exercise last year but fell off the wagon with not having a gym nearby anymore. I realized that I don't need a dedicated space to get my workouts in (though it does help). So I'm going to be incorporating in different activities that have worked out for me in the past, like playing Just Dance or doing online workout videos. My favorite on YouTube is hasfit they develop routines for all skill levels and intensities. According to the Mayo Clinic, the recommended time is 30 minutes per day, so I'll start there.  Actually joined a gym in late August and was going two times a week until a muscle injury in early December sidelined me. 30 minutes on the elliptical as well as doing arm and leg workouts. Was proud to have lost weight but with the holiday dinners, I've gained it all back LOL. Have a cough currently so will be going back once I am back in tip top shape :)

2.  Drink more water.

    • It's a simple thing to do, really, but I think part of my skin problems have to do with how much water I drink in a day (or lack of). My skin is pretty much dry all over and lotion all over helps but I think it's not getting to the source of the problem. I use to buy large water containers but found them too heavy to carry around as I use public transportation and Uber to get around mostly. So a smaller container would help immensely. And any excuse to head to my nearest Target is a good one! I'm aiming for the recommended 64 fluid ounces but I will count any liquid as water intake for easy tabulating purposes. Didn't keep this one up whatsoever but will now remember to do so!

3.  Read a book a month.

    • When I was younger, I used to read a book a day. My teachers wouldn't believe me but in my school district, we had to take reading comprehension exams weekly on a book of our choice. I always got near perfect scores and so they eventually believed that I really did read all those books. At my peak, I was reading over 3 million words a semester! Once I started college, I stopped reading for pleasure and feel like that made reading less fun for me. So I definitely want to get back into that - maybe start a reading series here on the blog? A book a month seems like not enough but the point of my resolutions is to actually accomplish them, not give up halfway through. If you have any good recommendations for me, please comment below! I mainly like fiction, sci-fi, or dystopian novels but am open to more classic novels as well. Again, completely forgot about this one, but did finish two books recently: Radium Girls by Kate Moore and Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are by Seth Stephens-Davidowitz. Both are great reads. I could try to summarize the books for you but honestly, Google would do a much better job. I can however, tell you why I read it cover to cover. Radium Girls doesn't read like a traditional history book or interview. Rather, it's almost like storytelling, as if I was sitting on a porch with these girls while they told their story. Which is much richer than cut and dry, this happened, then this happened. Everybody Lies really changed my perception on statistics and revealed interesting facts about my fellow Americans. Definitely a funny author. 

4.  Save money for retirement. 

    • In my speech class, one of the students tried to persuade us why early saving for retirement is important. I know we all live in various parts of the world so situations differ, but with the current political climate where I live, it's precarious. Starting early allows your savings to compound over time. I've gotten a lot better at reducing my makeup spending but when I look back at how I used to make VIB Rouge, I mourn all the money that I could've saved for my future instead. But no point in crying over spilled milk and will weigh my future purchases against my future instead. We all have different priorities and disposable income and I need to be more proactive instead of floating along in life. Terrible at this one too lol. Made Platinum for ULTA and VIB for Sephora. Better than before but I really need to get this skill down before I reach my thirties...

5. Buy less. Use what I have.

  • If there's one thing on here that needs serious work, it's my enormous beauty collection. I've been an avid beauty enthusiast for over five six years now and have amassed a crap ton of stuff. I want to cut down my collection to just the things I love. I have a hard time letting go of things so I'm working on buying less instead. I've devised six basic rules (more to come as needed) to achieve my goals:
  1. 5 perfume samples = 1 deluxe sized sample
  2. 10 sample packets/sheet masks = 1 deluxe sized sample
  3. 4 deluxe sized samples = 1 full size
  4. 4 full size = 1 empty; one empty means I can buy one item.
  5. When considering makeup, one item can be either a travel size or a full size if it is in its own individual packaging, whether in a set or not. It gets a little tricky when it comes to palettes. For standardization purposes, I decided to use MAC products to determine the fill of standard items. For eyeshadow palettes, a standard eyeshadow is 1.4 g or 0.05 oz. For cheek palettes, a standard blush is 6 g or 0.21 oz. I don't buy foundation, lip or mixed palettes so the above designations should cover it.
  6. For skincare and hair care, whether it's a travel size or a full size, as long as it comes in its own separate packaging, I'm counting it as one item.
  7. I will keep a record on excel + Dropbox so I can keep track of items used up/money and access it from anywhere.
  • Inspired by the panning community on Instagram, I'm going to be focusing on two palettes per month so I can see progress on eyeshadows, which make the bulk of my collection. There is a self-made palette that I want to focus on this year and it will be supplemented with two different ones every month.
  • Instead of throwing empty packaging away, I'll be collecting them to be recycled. My new space doesn't have a lot room for what I used to do but since I have a lot of cardboard boxes from various online orders, I decided to collect my empties in there and once full, I'll be shipping it off to Terracycle. 
  • Still working on this one! Did really well towards the beginning of the year and spiraled off when the holidays came around. Will be cataloging my hauls because reviews take a bit longer for me to produce and will also be doing an new inventory later this week. 

6.  Blog at least twice a week. 3 is ideal.

    • When I first started this blog, I was posting twice a week. That schedule worked so well for me that I eventually increased it to three. But I've been on and off for so long that I think it's best to cut back down to two. I'm going to try to schedule posts in advance so that it'll still go up even when I don't have time to publish it myself. So fingers crossed that I'm better at blogging this year! Uh, completely bombed this one. But this post is a start?

7.  Be more consistent with my skincare.

    • From a young age, my mom has instructed me to wash my face and apply sunscreen every day. I'm extremely polar. There'll be times where I'm meticulously applying seven items night and day and then going without anything for weeks. To find a more moderate ground, I'm going to be laying them out where I can see them. My skincare drawer is overflowing but what good is it doing if the products just sit there? So this year, I'm resolving to treat my skin more consistently and hopefully knock out acne from my life! Again, really good at the beginning of the year but have been committing the cardinal sin lately--sleeping in my makeup! My skin is going crazy and the hormonal breakouts aren't helping. Will have to be more consistent with this one...I only have the one skin.

8. Make healthier choices.

    • While I'm lucky to be blessed with general good health, I've realized that my lifestyle isn't sustainable in the long run. Youth can compensate for many a bad choice but it can't run optimally forever. This resolution sort of ties in with numbers one, two, and seven, but I want to make a conscious effort to be kinder to myself and the world. This encompasses so much that I don't know how to put it into words. Basically, I want to eat healthier and more ethically (more veggies and fruits and less kbbq, buying in season produce), continue with my cruelty-free beauty purchases but also learn more about ethical clothing choices (no more fast fashion if I can help it), and things of that nature. If you have any tips about this one, I'd be happy to hear them!

So these are the seven eight promises I'm making to myself this year. I'm contemplating whether or not I should print them out and make some kind of a tracker to see how well I'm doing. I'm a massive fan of spreadsheets and lists so I'll be working on that this weekend. Let me know if you're interested in seeing it, hehe.

Not sure if it's still relevant, but I did have a second part to my Beauty Roundup of 2016. Would y'all still be interested in seeing it or should I start a new one for 2017? I'm sort of curious to see which ones are still my loves, keke. Also, be prepared for a deluge of empties and haul posts this upcoming month. I have a LOT of stuff I want to share, LOL. Maybe I should do a separate update post since it might be confusing to post this without letting y'all know where I've been this past year. Do y'all even care? It might be narcissistic of me to assume y'all care about my life but I usually appreciate it when bloggers who've been away for a while update a bit on what they've been up to since they've disappeared.

What resolutions have you made for the new year? 
Do you believe in resolutions?



XOXO,
Cindy ♥


BEAUTY ROUNDUP | Year in Beauty: 2016 Edition Part 1

beauty roundup: year in beauty 2016 edition makeup,it cosmetics cc cream spf 50+, mufe hd foundation in 120, bourjois healthy mix foundation in light beige, becca x jaclyn hill champagne face palette, tarte smooth operator amazonian clay loose setting powder, fresh sugar rose lip treatment, colourpop supershock eyeshadows in sailor, paradox and wattles, ciate london liquid lip velvet in pin up, nyx waterproof top coat, too faced better than sex mascara, lancome lip lover in framboise etoile, dior addict fluid sticks in vertigo reviews

Welcome to my first post of 2017! It's been another 366 days around the sun and many a beauty love has been discovered. In previous years, I chose four products in six categories to talk about. Strategic buying made this year's list harder to compile because I really do love so many things! Some things will come as no surprise but there are others that are just getting their spotlight now. I'll link to related blog posts so y'all can get more information if you're interested. I've split it into two parts and this one will be all my makeup loves. So without further ado, here is 2016's Year in Beauty!

BLOGMAS | Day 12: My Winter Skincare Routine for Combination Dehydrated Skin

I haven't written a dedicated skincare routine post in two years and while the steps haven't changed, the products sure have! My current routine is much more involved and focuses on hydration rather than maintenance. I still use my Paula's Choice products for acne treatment so I didn't include them here. These are all the basic steps that I think should be included in a skincare routine if you have normal to dry skin like me. 

I divided this post into my morning and night routine to make things easier to digest. I don't think the actual products matter but the function they serve is important. If you already have something you love serving that purpose, then keep using it! These are some of my recommendations if you wanted something new to try.
My Winter Skincare Routine for Combination Dehydrated Skin, josie maran pure argan milk, mizon ultra suboon cream, josie maran argan oil review, skinfood aloe sun mist and physicians formula 2 in 1 argan wear argan oil and coconut water primer review