Saturday, June 14, 2014

What I Wish I had Known My Freshman Year of College

As I am entering my last semester of college, I have begun to look back on my college experience. There are a lot of things that I wasn't told in the handful of books I read about college life, freshman experiences, and what to expect when I moved away from home. I wish that I could go back in time and change a few things, but I am also very happy with how my college life turned out, I have surrounded myself with people I love and I am pursuing a career that fits me wonderfully. I know that it might be cheesy, but not only was I once a freshman in college, I was a Resident Advisor to mostly First Year students in my two years as an RA. So if you stuck around until now, here you go: some of the best advice I wish I had known as a freshman in college.

1) Self-fulfilling prophecies are the real deal. 
What I mean when I say that is if you enter college with a solid mindset, that is how your experience is going to be. I was a social butterfly to say the least when I was in grade school, but I had serious anxiety about moving away from my friends and I thought it would be extremely difficult for me to make friends. It was. I had my mind set that if I was going to make friends it would just happen, with no effort. I wish so badly I could go find my freshman self and drag her to welcoming activities or to the floor meetings I always seemed to skip. It took me years to realize that if I wanted to have friends to hang out with that weren't my boyfriend, I needed to get out of my room and make them!

2) Opening weekend activities in the Residence Halls (dorms) are stupid, but you should still go to them.
This goes back to what I was saying in my previous post, you will make friends if you go to these programs and participate. They might not be the friends that you have for the rest of your life or even the rest of college, but friends are friends, and you do not want to be eating in the dinning commons by yourself all year.

3) You do not need to be best friends with your roommate.
This particular piece of advice is one that I have given numerous times over the last two years. I did not go into any roommate-ship with the expectation of either being best friends or enemies with my roommate. The roommate world is not black and white. Sometimes you will become best friends with your roommate, but what it all boils down to is that you need to be considerate, open-minded, and able to communicate to anyone you are sharing space with.

4) Do your roommate agreement. 
Don't write something ridiculous. I heard while I was an RA these two students wrote something along the lines of "Make money. Get girls." And when real problems came up they did not have any documentation of expectations. Communicating your expectations to your roommate is very important. If you do not want them to have their significant other over every night of the week, you need to communicate that. If your expectation is that they need to maintain a somewhat clean side of the room, communicate that. I blew off my roommate agreements when I was a resident and I am thankful every day that there were not problems with me and my roommate.

5) Be nice to your RA. 
This one is personal, I have read other people's advice as saying "befriend your RA and they won't write you up as much." I cannot say if this is true or not *wink wink*, but I have had residents who just would say things like "I hate RA's so much!" or "I can't wait until I don't have to live with an RA." Trust me, there are times that your RA will not want to live with you either. But I have received a few notes from residents that tell me that they enjoy chatting with me or that I was their favorite part of moving to college, and those residents made the most unbearable nights worth it in the end. Your RA is fountain of knowledge about your school, they have taken a lot of the classes you need to take and they know about a lot of resources on campus. Go to them and ask them questions when you have them, they want to talk to you and get to know you!

6) Pursue a degree you are passionate about.
I spent two years going towards a degree in business. I did well in all of my classes, but I was just never passionate about business (accounting? business calculus?). I took a child development class for one of my general education requirements, and I haven't looked back since. I have loved going to classes, I have loved my teachers, and everything that I learn about is interesting to me. I have my heart set on being an elementary school teacher, and I will always tell my students that they should be whatever they want to be!

7) Ask for help. 
I know that I already touched on this a little bit on number five, but I am serious when I say this. Know your limits, If you don't understand material for a class you should take advantage of your professor's office hours. See what resources your school has for tutoring, my school has multiple programs that offer free tutoring for different subjects and majors. You are paying for these resources with your tuition, use them.

8) Finally, take a minute (or a few) between the classes and studying and work to enjoy yourself. People will say that college is the best years of your life. I don't know if that is the truth, but I still think everyone in college should try and make the most out of the experience and have a little fun--after you take care of your responsibilities!

You just need to make the most of your first year of college! I hope you have a wonderful experience and that college is everything you want it to be and more! 

Monday, March 10, 2014

No Makeup March: 5 Tips for Surviving a No-Buy!

I don't know if anyone agrees with me or not, but I definitely have been buying a lot of makeup lately. Every brand is coming out with their limited edition palettes and lipsticks, and they are so beautiful that I cannot pass them up. But because I am starting to budget my money better, I know that a month without excessive makeup purchases is necessary. Below are some tips that have helped me stay away from purchasing makeup since February 24!

1 -- Take note of everything that catches your eye when you are on your No-Buy
If you see that new Maybelline lipstick collection, take note of every shade that catches your eye. I know that this has helped me realize how much of a compulsive buyer I have become. How many nude lipsticks does one person need? A lot, but if you really think about the things you want, you will end up using them more. And at the end of the month I am going to reflect on my list and probably laugh at the hundreds of dollars I would have spent if I just bought everything that caught my eye. That will help me justify the haul I plan on doing at the beginning of April!

2 -- Re-organize your makeup collection
My makeup collection is nowhere ready to be shown on the internet, I plan on doing a makeup collection post as soon as I move into my apartment and have everything organized to perfection. But on that note, I re-organized to see what I have and what I do not use regularly. And there is something about looking at my collection and all of my products that is just so amazing. I cannot be the only person that feels that way, right? Makeup isn't just a hobby, it is an amazing part of my life! While re-organizing, I found some forgotten gems.

3 -- Pull out a few items you have been neglecting and use them every day
I chose to pull out one of my Hard Candy baked eyeshadows, my L'oreal Voluminous mascara, and my Physician's Formula BB Powder. I have neglected these (and many more) items in my collection as I just continued to purchase more and more products. I love my Hard Candy eyeshadows, but because I focus my money on high end palettes, they have been ignored.

4 -- Appreciate your monthly subscription box/bag
I was taken off of the Ipsy waiting list last month (before I decided on my March No-Buy), and now it is all I can do to just stand next to the mailbox until my Ipsy Bag gets here! So when it does, I will be sure to love everything in the bag as much as if I had hand-picked the items myself! Whether you are subscribed to Ipsy, Birchbox, Wantable, or the seemingly dozens of other subscription services out there, appreciate them during your no-buy!

5 -- Take a few days out of the month to go without makeup entirely
If you say the term "No Makeup March" I can guarantee you will get at least one person ask why you are still wearing makeup. So you need to explain what our community calls a "No-Buy" and how you still get to wear makeup. But on my low-key days I have just been washing my face and leaving the house to run errands or stay home and do chores. I do not feel like makeup is necessary, it is something I enjoy putting on every day and I look forward to getting ready in the morning. But I tried and make a full circle with my "No Makeup March" plan by not wearing makeup at all for a few days here and there.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Additional Bulletin Boards!

So, as promised, I am bringing you some extra bulletin boards! The Behind-the-Desk board in my building has become the Calendar Board! I think that this will be super cute to continue for the last three months of the school year. So here it is!

And also, my best friend and co-worker, Ashley thought up this brilliant idea for her bulletin board! It is for Women's History Month, but I think that you could do this bulletin board any month! Inspired by Wonder Woman she titled the board "Wonderful Women." She spotlighted the following influential women: Marie Curie, Susan B. Anthony, Dorothy Komenshek, and Estee Lauder. Our school was also doing a lot of events for Women's History Month and she included information on those as well.

Friday, March 7, 2014

March Bulletin Boards

I was inspired to do this bulletin board because I read one of the facts online. Laughter is able to improve sleep quality. If you are an RA I can safely bet that you have had one or two sleepless nights. I don't know what it is about our job, but sometimes you just toss and turn for hours while that duty phone rests by your head. I write this post as I hold a duty phone. But I digress... I found a bunch of health benefits of laughing, typed them up, and put them on light blue paper. For the border I just found memes that I felt related to college students and put them up as well. Residents have been laughing as they read the memes and I have had a couple discussions on health benefits of laughter!

This board was done mostly by my coworker. So I will not be taking the credit for the idea, but I did help in the execution. Overall I think that it is a bulletin board that is pleasing to the eye.

I have a special bulletin board that I have not taken pictures of yet, but when I do you can expect to see a post on it this weekend! It is not a creative bulletin board, but I am pretty darn proud! Also, my best friend Ashley created an awesome bulletin board for Women's History Month! Look out for that this weekend as well!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Maybelline Spring 2014 Collection

This post is going to be short and sweet, I am on a very strict No Makeup March (aka my "no buy") because I was going overboard on the makeup purchases. Everyone lives outside their means every once in a while but I needed to cut back. Of course this comes right as Maybelline launches their Spring 2014 collection. Can you say "Limited Edition?" I needed to get something before they were sold out! I picked up three of the limited edition Color Tattoos and one of the EyeStudio quads. I am just going to do some pictures and then I only have a few final remarks for right now.

I was bummed to find out that "Pure Nude" is a lot like "Barely Branded." If you have already purchased the permanent color "Barely Branded" you might not even bother to buy "Pure Nude." Would you like a side-by-side swatch? comment down below and I will put that picture up.

The second color "Beige-ing Beauty" is a peachy/golden nude color, not as pigmented as the usual Color Tattoos, but I definitely enjoy the color and will use it as a base in future looks.

The final color, "Nude Compliment" is a taupe color that I think will be a gorgeous base color with any taupe shade you put all over your lid.

There were four (I believe) new quads out with this collection, but I stayed away from the traditional nudes and chose this one because I liked the purples in it! Maybe I will use it to do a smokey eye and post a tutorial!

I know that there were lipsticks, glosses, blush sticks, highlighters, and other Color Tattoos and quads out in this line--I definitely recommend picking some up if it is in the budget!

Friday, February 28, 2014

February 2014 Favorites

#1 // Olay ProX Advanced Cleaning System

I use this to cleanse my face every night for sure and sometimes in the morning as well! It leaves my face super clean and smooth and I think it is also helping my skin stay clear. If you use this make sure that you only keep it on your face for one minute, it might over-cleanse your face if you leave it on longer than that!

#2 // L'Oreal Pore Vanisher

I am officially convinced that this product does what it says it will and will shrink your pores after continued use. I found a bunch of samples and have been using them for a couple weeks and I love what this product does to my skin to help put my makeup on smoothly and even out my skin texture.

#3 // Revlon Lip Butter in "Pink Truffle"

I think that this color is a my-lips-but-better color. It is a little bit darker than my natural lip color but it is a great nude!

#4 // Lancome Juicy Tube in "Touched by Light"

This lipgloss smells just like any important high school event for me. Juicy Tubes were the THING to have back in the day and I wore this color to Prom, Ball, Homecoming, Graduation, this list goes on and on. Last October I felt the need to repurchase when I was feeling nostalgic

#5 // Physician's Formula Eye Booster Liquid Eyeliner in "Ultra Black"

This eyeliner has been great! I have been searching for a liquid liner that wouldn't transfer down after a few hours of wear. The product also promises to make your lashes longer and fuller, I haven't noticed yet. The product doesn't promise to be waterproof which is what I really want, but I haven't had problems with it like I had with my Jordana Fabuliner and L'Oreal liquid eyeliner pen.

#6 // Almay Eyeliner in "Black"

This eyeliner has been the best that I have found in years. I cannot tell you how many eyeliners I have tried: waterproof, smudgeproof, regular...They all smudged on the side of my eye. This eyeliner does too, but I have had the longest success rate with it (three to four hours without smudges).

#7 // Too Faced Shadow Insurance

This stuff almost never creases on me! I still want to try the Nars eyeshadow primer, but as long as I have this and it works 99% of the time, I am happy! If you need a primer that doesn't make your eyeshadow crease I would recommend this.

#8 // Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette

This was an impulse purchase. It was the last palette at the store and I just needed it. You know how that goes, right? The shadows smell like chocolate, they are incredibly pigmented, and did I say almost no fallout? SO AWESOME.

#9 // Batiste Dry Shampoo

Why am I so late to jump onto this band wagon??? I didn't realize there was a difference in dry shampoos until now! This stuff is literally a magic potion for your hair. If you are trying to go a couple days between washing your hair, you need this stuff.

#10 // L'Oreal Boost It Blow Out Heatspray

I have never used a heat protectant hairspray, but I love this one. It's affordable, it creates volume, and it keeps my hair de-frizzed. If I use too much it can make my hair a little on the greasy side, but totally manageable.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Valentines Day Eyeshadow Tutorial Using Naked 3 Palette!

This post has been a long time coming. I have had a couple months to play with my Naked 3 palette and I can honestly say that I love it just as much as I thought I would. But from the moment I saw it two colors really stood out to me: Trick and Factory. The following look was the first look I created using my palette and I have used it on myself and my friends. I find it to be universally flattering and you can always use less or more depending on your taste.

1. I primed my eyelids with two products: Too Faced Shadow Insurance (Original) and my Limited Edition Maybelline Color Tattoo in "Nude Pink." I took both of these products from my lash line to brow bones.
2. Then I took the color "Limit" on a fluffy brush from Sonia Kashuk and blended that into my crease and a little above as my transition shade.
3. Using my finger I put "Trick" on the inner half of my lid (I have found this color to be difficult to apply with a brush, it is easier to use a wet brush but I like how it looks using my finger).
4. Using my MAC 139 Brush I put "Factory" on the outer half of my lid and blended it slighly up into my crease.
5. I took my MAC 124 brush and the color "Nooner" and buffed the edges of "Factory" and "Trick" out and added a little more to my outer-v.
6. Finally I highlighted my brow bone and inner corner with "Strange."
7. I used my Physician's Formula black liquid eyeliner pen and did a little wing.
8. Lined my waterline a with my Almay eyeliner in Black
9. Finished up with some "They're Real" mascara by Benefit!

Monday, February 3, 2014

January/February 2014 Bulletin Boards

Hello to my Bulletin Board Seeking RA Friends! Below is my personal hallway bulletin board along with the bulletin board I created with my floor buddy!

I was inspired to create this bulletin board by an ad campaign about sexual consent. I thought this bulletin board was relevant also because spring fever brings love to all residence halls. I found a slogan that I liked and then attached speech bubbles around the sides that were ways for residents to ask for consent or to understand when consent is not given. On the far end I included information about consent (ex: When you are under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol you cannot give consent). Attaching condoms made this bulletin board extremely popular. If you search on Pinterest about Sexual Consent you will find tons of ideas.

I saw this bulletin board idea originally with the Up! house (from the movie Up! by Pixar) and the house had balloons attached to it and residents could write about what lifts them up on the balloons. The balloon die-cuts we have are really small and I wanted residents to write a lot and have a lot of people be able to write. WARNING/UPDATE: There were a lot of inappropriate messages on this board over the month so be careful to monitor it.

Friday, January 31, 2014

January 2014 Favorites

My first "Favorites" list! I wanted to start this in 2013 but because I have not been the most consistent blogger (something I am working on!), I am starting in January. This "Favorites" list is in no particular order, so I have one coffee favorite thrown in with the beauty and makeup... Maybe next month I will do better to keep my lifestyle favorites at the end! Here goes nothing!

I started to use this in December because my skin was revolting against me. After a month of consistent use my skin completely flipped on me (in a good way). I plan on posting a more in depth review of the line soon, but until then just know that if you are struggling with acne you should check this out!

I don't know if this lotion actually relieves stress, but it has an amazing smell that is great for men and women! I think that just applying lotion is relaxing so that might be why I enjoy it so much!

Too Faced is know for their scandalous names--but this one is too much! I don't know about the title, but the product is amazing. Two or three coats of this stuff and you will not even recognize your lashes! It is absolutely wonderful.

Best. Coffee. Ever. That's really all I have to say.

This foundation is the perfect balance of coverage and not looking like cake-face. I wear the shade 2N1 Desert Beige and it is a pretty great match for me when I am in the winter months. 

This is not the right picture or a link to where you can purchase. But it is a link to Casey Holme's video about beauty blender dupes! I got mine at Marshall's!

These blushes are awesome! I love every one of them that I have (and I think I have all the colors), but I somehow waited until this January to buy them! they are super blendable and come in a large enough variety that any skin tone will have a blush complementing them.

These things are amazing! I own five from the line (lacquer and matte balms) and the Laquer Balm in "Ingenue" is my favorite nude lip of the moment.

#9 // Naked 3

Need I say anymore?

These were such a blast from the past for me when I found them earlier this month! I cannot wait to take all of my notes for the semester with these pens!