Lipstick Files: goldplaited

IMG_2884Happy Saturday, everyone! Who’s ready for Lipstick Files round two with a special lipstick collection from goldplaited? I must say, having a finishing salon within walking distance from my apartment is honestly a dream come true. Especially a salon that is passionate about the products and services they offer their customers.

goldplaited offers several lipstick formulas for their customers to pick from. For today’s post I chose Matte, Hydrapout, and their highly pigmented lipgloss to try on. All lipsticks are $17.50 and glosses are $19. 

goldplaited.jpg|Matte Shades: Gigi + Carmen|

All goldplaited matte lipsticks achieve long-lasting wear, hydration, and color-stay in one modern matte formulation. This formula is the perfect combination of a long lasting and pigmented color that doesn’t dry out your lips.


|Matte Shade: Marilyn + Gloss: Vivid Energy|

goldplaited lipglosses combine sheer color with high shine, all while treating lips with age-defying benefits. Their glosses also deliver antioxidant protection with Vitamins E and C. I chose a lipgloss from their ‘Vivid’ series which wears like a hybrid of a gloss & lip-stain with its intense color and long wearability. 

goldplaited3|HydraPout Shades: Flamingo + Melon|

REAL TALK: who wouldn’t want a lipstick that revives your color just by pushing your lips together? The HydraPout formula offers a rich, saturated creamy color and protective treatment in one. “Micro-bubbles” continually release conditioners to keep lips soft and color fresh for hours. 

goldplaitedIf you didn’t get the memo here, bright colors are completely wearable and preferred all spring and summer  year round. Summer is the perfect opportunity to wear that bright coral lipstick you’ve been wanting to try.

For those looking for a glam-sesh, goldplaited offers makeup applications with their fabulous team of makeup artists. Marguerite helped me pick out the perfect spring color that I can wear day or night!

Photography by: Stephanie


10 Beauty Products Worth the Splurge

10 Beauty Products Worth the Splurge

After weeks of annoying my friends about the products above, I decided it was time to share my love with all of you! Behold, 10 beauty products that are absolutely worth the splurge. Now before I really get into it, I’ll be the first to admit that I have my fair share of drugstore favorites too – nail polish, lipstick + mascara.

From Left to Right:

Clarins Double Serum – aside from winning various beauty awards, this serum is powered by 20 pure plant extracts and potent, high-tech molecules. Results? You will see firmer skin, smaller pores, and visibly even toned skin. Did I mention this serum combines two powerful formulas into one?

Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick – if you know me at all, you know that I swear by Bobbi Brown’s Skin Foundation Stick. It literally is the best of the best (am I allowed to say that?) Aside from flawless, silk-like coverage – this product is perfect regardless of where you’re putting on your makeup (no judgement here).

Oribe Beach Wave Spray – is one of those products that I almost don’t care if it’s actually doing something because it smells THAT GOOD. Lucky for me, it gives my curls the perfect dose of shine and texture.

NARS Yachiyo Brush – this is one of my favorite blush brushes that can be used for color application, blending, contouring and highlighting. The black goat hair of the brush is known for its softness and strength. A must have in your makeup bag.

NARS Creamy Radiant Concealer – we have all faced the struggle of finding the right concealer. NARS definitely hit the jackpot with this blendable, long-wear concealer that gives the perfect amount of luminosity and coverage to brighten up underneath the eye.

Clarisonic Mia – do I really even have to go into why this product is worth the splurge? Just think of it this way: in order for your serums, creams, etc. to actually get into your skin to work – they need to fight through all the dirt and oil to do so. The Clarisonic gets into your skin (without being abrasive) and cleans 6x better than your hands.

butterLondon Nail Foundation – do we still have the “I don’t need a base coat” attitude? butterLondon base coat hides and smooths tiny ridges and imperfections in the nail. It literally is like a foundation make-up for the nail. Added bonus: it actually keeps my nails from chipping. Who knew base coat was actually supposed to work?

Bobbi Brown Lip Balm SPF 15 – a lip balm that does exactly what it’s supposed to: moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. The SPF 15 is an added bonus for sun protection.

Fresh Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask – a hydrating treatment that immediately reveals softer, firmer, healthier-looking skin. What I love most is the instant cooling effect to refresh your skin no matter the condition.

Tom Ford Lipstick – the holy grail of lipsticks and the home of my favorite nude lipstick ever Pink Dusk. If you can get past the beautiful packaging, this luxurious lipstick has great pigment and an incredibly smooth application. 

Do you have any beauty favorites that are worth the splurge? 

Happy Spring?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from living in Chicago (okay…..Chicago suburbs) for the past 20+ years, it’s that you never know what the weather is going to be like. We have 80 degree days in March and sometimes 50 degree days in June. Yesterday, however, was a perfect spring – borderline “summer” day. The people of Chicago came out of their almost 5-month winter long hibernation to enjoy Summer Shandy on patios everywhere.

So with the first 70 degree day of the year, I had to ditch black for a day and wear my first white dress of the summer accompanied by my new YSL lipstick.

IMG_2458 What’s the weather like tomorrow you ask? Snow and temperatures in the low 40’s. IMG_2464 IMG_2476 IMG_2493

|Dress: Forever 21 |Shoes: Steve Madden Wedges (see similar)|Clutch: Michael Kors (old, see similiar)|
|Bracelets: Alex and Ani + Deepa Gurnani |Lipstick: YSL ‘Fushchia Tourbillon’|

Photographed by: Stephanie

Wednesday’s Wish List

As I was deciding which items would make my wish list for today’s post, I realized everything I chose screamed spring/summer (all bronze everything). I mean can you blame me? Chicago has had one of the longest winters to date…so with the temperatures looking up-ish for the rest of the week – it’s only fair to dedicate this post to the months ahead!

In the meantime, you can find me also wishing I was here. What’s on your wish list this month?

Here’s to a beautiful spring + summer! 

Bottlefork Bar + Kitchen

I know I’ve said this before…..but Rockit Ranch you’ve done it again. The much anticipated Kevin Hickey + Billy Dec collaboration, Bottlefork, was nothing short of perfection from the second I walked in. The cozy space features bar seating, Chef Hickey’s table, and wooden shelves filled with a packed wine list, craft beer, and cocktails for every mood and occasion.

During my experience at Bottlefork, I had the pleasure of not only getting the scoop on Chef Kevin Hickey’s favorite dishes off the menu, but the inspiration that went into each item we ordered. Did I mention I was seated at the best table in the house? I had front row access into all of the prep work that went into every dish that came out of their kitchen that night.

Now for the most important part…….what was ordered off the menu.

photo 3 (2)photo 4 (5)

photo 5 (2)|The pimento cheese drizzled “Tots”  was the perfect way to kick off dinner|
photo 1 (5)|Fermin Black Hoof, a special ham from Spain accompanied by some damn good bread|

photo 1 (4)|Tamarind BBQ + Yogurt + Mint Smoked Lamb Ribs |

photo 2 (5)|Wood Grilled Ground Bacon Burger with a special sauce to accompany|
photo 2 (4)

A special shout out to Matthew for some pre-dinner cocktail recommendations, Alexandra our awesome waitress, and Chef Kevin Hickey for his hospitality.

This post would not be complete without the full low-down on our dessert. Their delicious mix of pretzel, caramel, chocolate fudge, and stout beer inside a shake was absolute perfection.

photo 3 (3)
Have you checked out Bottlefork yet? What were your favorites off the menu?

(18) What’s in HER bag?

For this installment of “What’s in HER bag,” I’m featuring one pretty amazing chick, Natalie Jalouga. In addition to making women feel and look beautiful at Bloomingdale’s Michigan Avenue, Natalie (CEO of Fashion for a Cure), created a non profit event to raise funds for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in memory of her mother. In 2013, Natalie campaigned for LLS’s Woman of the Year amongst a select group of candidates in the Chicagoland area.

885664_4625886722412_1129927324_oBelow, Natalie dishes on her three key beauty items and the secret product that has changed her life (seriously though).


Inside her bag: 

SITNB: What’s your favorite beauty product of all time?
Natalie: That’s tough. I’d have to say NARS Casino Bronzer. I’ve tried so many different bronzers but always find myself going back to this one. It’s the perfect shade for me!

SITNB: If you had to pick three key beauty items what would they be?
Natalie: Eyeliner (My favorite is Bobbi Brown Black Ink Gel Eyeliner. It has an amazing finish and never smudges), Concealer (right now, I’m using MAC Pro Long Wear Concealer. I love that it comes in a pump bottle – it’s the little things in life), Lipgloss (I’m a little bit of a junkie when it comes to lipgloss…my perfect “everyday” shade is Naked Plum by Bobbi Brown.

SITNB: Who is your beauty inspiration?
Natalie: Angelina Jolie and Blake Lively. I love their clean, fresh looks. Their makeup is always so effortless and I envy that.

SITNB: What was your biggest beauty no-no?
Natalie: Oh gosh. Well, in high school I was obsessed with being tan. I would pile on bronzer but never think to even it out and match my neck. There are so many pictures I have when my face is 5 shades darker than my body. I was rocking Jersey Shore before it was “Jersey Shore”.

SITNB: Guys want to know…how much do you really spend on makeup?
Natalie: Honestly, I don’t spend nearly as much as some people do. I really just replenish my favorites every couple months. Skincare is what breaks the bank!

SITNB: When did you first start wearing makeup?
Natalie: 6th grade – I remember taking my mom’s blue eyeliner, sneaking it in my backpack and putting it on when I got to school. I’m sure she knew I had her makeup! I grew up with 3 older sisters so I was always learning from them.

SITNB: What has been your biggest beauty splurge?
Natalie: Fragrance is always my biggest beauty splurge. Right now, I’m using Manifesto by YSL and love it.

SITNB: Do you have a product that changed your life?
Natalie: Clarisonic. If you don’t have one – buy one. It is amazing and my skin has never been the same. You can continue with your favorite cleanser and still use the Clarisonic. Highly recommend it!

Be sure to keep up with Natalie and her adventures through Chicago here.