5 Lifestyle Bloggers to Follow (Fashion, Makeup, & Skincare) – December 2016

Hello everyone! Happy Tuesday ❤

Before I started blogging, I spent countless of hours looking through pins on Pinterest and videos on YouTube. The work of artistic and creative influencers were displayed on these platforms, and they ultimately inspired projects of my own. After creating my lifestyle blog, Alive & Living, I discovered the diverse interests of the blogging community and appreciated how bloggers expressed themselves through their blogs.

5 Lifestyle Bloggers to Follow - December 2016.jpg

Starting this month, I am featuring a series on my blog showcasing some of the best sites I come across and follow. More specifically, I will be sharing five of my favorite lifestyle bloggers at the beginning of each month. The blogs featured in this favorites series are directed by individuals who have an incredible niche for fashion, makeup, and/or skincare.

The bloggers that stood out for their work in December of 2016:

  1. Ramona Crisstea
  2. Helpless Whilst Drying
  3. Will All My Affection
  4. Emily Clare Beauty
  5. All Things Lacquer

Sincerely, Ingrid Nicole

Psst… Would you like to be considered for next month’s list of top bloggers? Share your site below!

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New Year


Happy New Year, everyone! ❤

The year 2016 had very defining moments that allowed me to learn more about myself and the world I live in. My goals were to read more books from different genres, continue writing, and figure out my way in the kitchen. Among the chaos and tranquility in 2016, I managed to meet these goals and decide on a single resolution for the new year.

My resolution and motto for 2017 is “MAKE IT HAPPEN”.

I hope to be more productive this year and work towards improving this here blog. Procrastination is a habit we tend to mingle with, as it tends to root from self-doubt, but the motto “Make It Happen” is an empowering reminder of what to do in those situations. From here on out, Alive & Living posts will go live on Tuesdays each week. This year I am also including fashion related content and introducing my monthly picks of top bloggers. Stay tuned!

What are your 2017 New Year’s resolutions?

Sincerely, Ingrid Nicole

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IPSY Glam Bag – December 2016


Ipsy is an online beauty subscription where you sample five different products (e.g. mascara, eyeshadows, etc.) mailed in a collectible bag. There’s a lovely theme each month and products you receive are personalized according to your answers in a quiz, which is taken at the beginning of the subscription.

Hello everyone! Happy Tuesday ❤

For the month of December, Ipsy encourages you to go out and make the most of the night with the theme “Carpe P.M.” Smokey eye looks, bold liner, and glitter everywhere are all part of seizing the night, so this month’s chic glam bag includes products meant for the occasion. From jewel-toned eyeshadows to post-adventuring skincare, Ipsy has a wide selection of beauty necessities for (a night out!) this time of the year.glam-bag-december-2016

The products I received December 2016:

  1. Be Matte Blush (in Melon, Blackberry, and Guava) by City Color Cosmetics  I appreciate how this cheek palette is cruelty-free and has three different shades to choose from. Each blush swatched well and felt soft. Blackberry, the middle shade, is a bit out of my comfort zone; however, I’ll try mixing it with the other shade(s) and experiment.
  2. Aqua Gel Masque by Privai – This masque, which is cruelty-free and paraben-free, was formulated to reduce redness and quench dry skin. Since the weather has been colder here, I feel that this will come in handy. It can be used up to three times a week and plan to try it soon.
  3. Deluxe Maracuja Oil by Tarte Cosmetics – The oil is quite the multitasker… It can be used to nourish skin, tame hair, and as cuticle care. The bottle may seem small, but a little product may go a long way. I like the design of the bottle, especially since comes with a built-in dropper!
  4. Prismatic Shadow (in Jaded) by NYX Professional Makeup – I don’t think I have a shadow like this in my collection. This new addition is great since the eyeshadow’s formula is soft and has silver toned reflects. I worry that with oily eyelids it won’t hold up during a night out though (more info to come).
  5. Beauty Blending Sponge by MintPear – I was most excited for this beauty blending sponge because it is a product I have never received in a beauty subscription service; it was something different and unexpected. The creators claim the sponge won’t soak up product while creating a flawless complexion. I’ll have to put it to the test and compare it with other sponges on the market.


Sincerely, Ingrid Nicole
P.S. I post every week (well, I try too! lol).

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A Quick Guide to Black Friday Beauty Sales – 2016

Gray Thursday, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday are nearly upon us. They’re events many people look forward to each year and marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season here in the U.S. I decided to compile a list of sales related to all things beauty and hope it will help. Please note that this list consists of cruelty-free and/or vegan brands only. Also, updates will be made frequently and displayed at the bottom. Happy shopping!


Sephora‘s “BLACK FRIDAY Preview” is now active on their website and includes exclusive offers. (Join “Sephora FLASH” for free 2-Day Shipping; it’s only $10 USD and good for an entire year!) There are new additions on the site!

Ulta Beauty released their  “BLACK FRIDAY Beauty Busters” deals on its website as well, and their doors will open on (gray) Thursday at 6 PM.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Cosmetics & Beauty (11/25 @ 12 ET – 11/28)

  • 10% off – Glow Kits
  • 20% off – Brows Products, Stick Foundation, and Illuminators
  • 25% off – Darkside Liner and Pro Brushes (NEW product!)
  • 30% off – Metallic Luster Liner and Lip Gloss
  • 40% off – Contour Cream Kits and Contour Kits
  • 50% off – Waterproof Crème Color and Concealer

Bath & Body Works (11/24 @ 6 AM online)

  • Buy 3, Get 3 FREE! Anything!
  • 2016 V.I.P . Tote w/seven products (with any $30 purchase; code “TOTELOVE”

ColourPop (11/22 and 11/25)

  • 20% off all Liquid Lipsticks
  • free domestic shipping on $30+ orders
  • free international shipping on $50+ orders

Dose of Colors (11/25 – 11/28)

  • 20% off site wide (w/code “BLACKFRIDAY”)

Drunk Elephant (11/24 – 11/28)

  • 20% off all orders (w/code “STUFFED”)

Essence Cosmetics (11/24 – 11/28 on U.S. Site)

  • 11/24 – 30% off Neutral Collection
  • 11/25 – 50% off entire site!
  • 11/28 – free shipping

Jeffree Star Cosmetics (11/25 and 11/28)

  • Velour Liquid Lipsticks $15 each
  • 20% off Skin Frost
  • 45% off the Beauty Killer Palette
  • 45% off Lip Ammunition
  • Free U.S. Shipping!

Juvia’s Place (now to 11/25)

  • Eyeshadow Palettes on sale now!
  • Brush Set (NEW) launching on Black Friday!

L.A. Girl (11/25)

  • 40% off entire purchase with code “LAGBLACKFRIDAY40”

Milani Cosmetics (11/25 – 111/28)

  • Spend $50 to get 20% off (code “THANKS”)
  • All orders receive one free nail polish
  • Free shipping on orders $25+

Morphe Brushes (11/25)

  • 25% off morphs products (w/code “FRIDAY25”)
  • NEW Glided Limited Edition Collection launch
  • Free shipping on orders $100+

OFRA Cosmetics (11/25 – 11/28)

  • 50% off sitewide

Tarte (now!)

  • 20% off and free shipping on orders $25+ (w/code FRIYAY)

Tatcha (now to 11/30)

  • 20% off sitewide (w/code FF2016)
  • Free shipping

Too Faced (11/25)

  • NEW Chocolate Chip Palette for $26
  • Get 50% second item (when purchasing mascaras)
  • 2 for $30 any melted lip products

Urban Decay (11/25)

  • 20% off sitewide
  • Free shipping on orders $50+

Wet n Wild (11/25)

  • Peace, Love & Joy- Full Palette for $10 USD
  • Beauty Book for $15 USD
  • Free shipping on orders $35+

Last Updated: November 25 at 3:20 AM (PT)

Sincerely, Ingrid Nicole
P.S. I post every week (well, I try too! lol).

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IPSY Glam Bag – October 2016


Ipsy is an online beauty subscription where you sample five different products (e.g. mascara, eyeshadows, etc.) mailed in a collectible bag. There’s a lovely theme each month and the products you receive are personalized according to your answers in a quiz, which is taken at the beginning of the subscription.

Hello everyone! Happy Sunday ❤

October’s Ipsy glam bag is in collaboration with artist Ilse Valfré. The theme this month is “Black Magic” and it’s all about the magic of makeup. The collectible glam bag design includes wonderful illustrations of witches and spell books, which is fitting for the Halloween season. The same print is found on both sides of the bag and there’s a ghost charm for the zipper.

IPSY October Glam Bag.JPG

The products I received October 2016:

  1. Daily Lip Nourisher with Mango and Shea Butter by pūr~lisse  I always seem to misplace my chapsticks and lip balms, so receiving this product in my glam bag came in handy. The lip nourisher does have a faint of mango and glides on the lips smoothly. (I’ll be using it more in the future in order to have a more thorough review.)
  2. PURE One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil by TATCHA – This cleansing oil seems to be a sample size, but a little product goes a long way. Since Tatcha is a cruelty-free brand, I look forward to trying this cleansing oil and any future skincare products.
  3. CabanaBoy Blush by theBalm Cosmetics – This blush is pigmented and the color reminds me of cotton candy. It can be used as an eyeshadow and it’s very blendable.
  4. Natural Lipstick (in Smoke) by noyah – The natural lipstick is cute in size (smaller than my pinky!) and has great color payoff. It’s not a matte finish and stays creamy with a lavender/grey hue. Noyah strives to produce natural cosmetics and the full-size product of this lipstick comes in pretty bamboo packaging.
  5. Kokie Nail Polish (in Heavenly) by Kokie Cosmetics – I have yet to try this formula and see the longevity of the product. The color of the nail polish is between a lilac and lavender color. It’s a full-size product and I like the shade of purple.


Sincerely, Ingrid Nicole
P.S. I post every week (well, I try too! lol).

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Morphe 35O Eyeshadow Palette: First Impressions + Swatches

Hello everyone! Happy Friday ❤

Morphe is a cosmetics brand known for their quality makeup brushes and sought after eyeshadow palettes. After hearing raving reviews from (several) YouTube Beauty Gurus, I purchased one of Morphe‘s best-sellers to see what the hype was all about. The 35O – 35 Color Nature Glow Eyeshadow Palette was a difficult product to get ahold of. Although it’s an affordable palette and contains an array of colors, is this palette really worth the hassle and price?

Palette Details

The 35O palette contains 35 natural matte and shimmery eyeshadows. It retails for $22.99 USD (but there are discount codes online!) and it comes in black 9 x 6 1/2 inch case. The case itself is hard plastic and does not include a mirror or any other additional accessories. Also, the eyeshadows in this palette are not labelled on the front or back.


Note: The images below are arranged according to the order of eyeshadows in the palette.


First Impressions

Since the 35O – 35 Color Nature Glow Eyeshadow Palette contains a wide range of shadows to choose from, you can create several different looks with a single palette. The palette is compact and perfect for on the go and travel. The price of the product is one of its best attributes, however, there are some inconsistencies with the formulation. Some of the matte eyeshadows are patchy and others aren’t as blendable.

Have you tried or reviewed this product? Share your experiences below!

Sincerely, Ingrid Nicole




P.S. I post every week (well, I try too! lol).

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Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kit in CANDY K: Review + Color Dupe!

Hello everyone! Happy Friday ❤

Reality TV personality Kylie Jenner launched her own makeup line, known as Kylie Cosmetics, earlier this year. After successfully releasing the “Kylie Lip Kit,” which included a liquid lipstick and lip liner, Kylie Jenner introduced a collection of different beauty products. Her makeup line is cruelty-free and most of her lip kits are vegan.

Kylie Cosmetics is a fairly new brand, but there are countless of mixed reviews on the products. I’ve personally never invested much time on the TV personality before; however, I enjoy trying new products and got a hold of one of her liquid lipsticks. I wanted to form an opinion of my own on the product that started it all — THE Kylie Lip Kit.


Product Details*

This “Kylie Lip Kit” in CANDY K includes a matte liquid lipstick and lipliner. According to the brand’s website, the shade is described as “warm pinky nude” and retails for $29.00 USD. The matte liquid lipstick claims it will not dry out your lips, will be long wearing, and will glide on smoothly with its doe footer applicator. The lip liner is not retractable and must be sharpened.

*Each lip product can now be purchased individually and are sold as “Matte Singles”. The CANDY K Liquid Lipstick is $17.00 USD and the Lip Liner is $14.00 USD. If you purchase the singles inside of the Lip Kit, you will be paying two dollars more.

Swatches & Dupe

The top (heart-shaped) swatch shown below is the Matte Liquid Lipstick in CANDY K by Kylie Cosmetics. The second swatch is the matching Lip Liner in CANDY K, which has a more brownish undertone than the liquid lipstick.

Getting a hold of products by this particular brand can be difficult. I learned of a color dupe for the CANDY K Liquid Lipstick through Ipsy, a monthly beauty subscription service (check out my last post on it here!). They sent over the K, Bye Liquid Lipstick by Trust Fund Beauty, which I must point out has an interesting name. The last (heart-shaped) swatch below shows how K,Bye doesn’t dry down as matte compared to Candy K, but resembles the shade closely.

Candy K Swatches and Dupe.JPG

Final Thoughts

When I initially tried the CANDY K Lip Liner, it went on smoothly and was creamier than I expected. The liquid lipstick has a prominent artificial cupcake… vanilla… frosting… scent. I’m not one for heavy fragrances, but this one scent went away after some time and didn’t linger. Applying a thin layer of the lipstick ontop of the lip liner worked well for me and once the lipstick dried, it felt like I had nothing on.

Since it is a MATTE Liquid Lipstick, the formula was a little drying after a while. Luckily, it didn’t transfer and it somewhat lasted after I snacked. I found that the CANDY K shade has a more purple than pink undertone and would like a lighter shade for my complexion. The Lip Kit is practical and includes what you’ll need to complete any look. However, it is at a higher price point and within the range of some higher-end brands.

When it comes to lip products, I don’t always wear the same shade, formula, and finish. Also, depending on the season, my preferences change often. I was impressed by the Lip Liner and will be purchasing a lighter shade from Kylie Cosmetics in the future. As far as liquid lipsticks go, I’ll be looking into different brands and Kylie’s new releases.

Sincerely, Ingrid Nicole

P.S. I post every week (well, I try too! lol).

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