You Vote!

This post I’m doing something a bit different – I’d like my readers to vote on which “In the Know” picture I should use this year for my fashion posts! The picture with the most votes wins!

 

1. This sophisticated lady likes fashion, but won’t wear crazy trends. She prefers a more classic look, but she does throw a few modern pieces in her clothes just to add some pizzazz. 

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2. This fashionista girl is all about fun and sparkle! She doesn’t worry about colors that don’t match, but has a gift of putting together some of the most tasteful outfits. She doesn’t follow trends – she sets them!

Amara-pink

 

Which will it be this year? You leave a comment with your vote – 1 or 2!

♥Amara

(For ease of judging, please limit your vote to one per person.)

 

Hollywood From Home #5

This is my fifth and final “Hollywood from Home” post. This is not the end of my makeup tutorials, however, but only the end of HfH posts.

This is a popular look that’s “in” right now, and it’s fun!

 

1. Put on your foundation and concealer first. Then curl your eyelashes and apply mascara on the top and bottom lashes.

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2. Outline your lips in a color a few shades darker than your natural lip color. This will give you a good base and a perfect outline. I used a lip tint for this.

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3. Now line your lips with either lipstick or a lip liner and fill them in with that as well. I went for a bright, barbie doll kind of pink (I’m ready for summer!).

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4. Choose a lip gloss – one in the color of your lip color is good, but you can definitely go with clear.

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Put on some blush, and you’re done!

 

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Since this is my last “Hollywood from Home” post, I decided to double it up, and show you a bonus thing.

 

1. Line your eyes with a black eyeliner on only the top lid. If you wish, you can add some false lashes. I chose not to this time.

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2. Since this is a bolder look, choose a darker color.

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3. Now put on your lip gloss.

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Add some blush, but otherwise, you’re done!

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Now that I’ve finished all my “Hollywood from Home” posts, which one was your favorite? You can find the rest of them hereherehere, and here.

♥Amara

Clean Your Brushes!

If you read any beauty expert, they’ll tell you that one of the most important things for beauty is keeping your makeup brushes and tools clean. From all my reading, I’ve heard of everything from cleaning your brushes every. single. day. to every few months. While cleaning them every day would be quite sanitary, most people (including me) just don’t have the time for that. And then only cleaning them every few months isn’t sanitary at all! Just think of all the makeup product and bacteria that can be building up on them.

It seems like once a week should work for most people. My brushes don’t get really dirty in that amount of time, and they shouldn’t, unless you’re using too much concealer and liquid foundation. Then, you should be washing them every 2-3 days. The spread of bacteria can cause skin to start breaking out, and it can make skin also look older because you can’t blend the makeup on properly and it might end up looking caked, even if you don’t use much to start with.

Here’s my favorite way to clean my brushes – it’s so easy and this mix does most of the work for you! You’ll only need your weakest shampoo (you don’t want to strip the color from your brushes), water, a jar, and 5 minutes to set up!

1. Rinse your brushes for a few seconds in warm running water.

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2. Squeeze a small amount of shampoo into your jar, then fill it about 1/3 full of warm water. Put you brushes in (make sure if you have wood handles that they don’t get in the water!) and then leave it overnight.

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See? That was so easy! And it really works, too. Now just wait…

Okay, now it’s the next day.

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I hate to admit this, but I let my brushes go for a few weeks without cleaning them (what was I just talking about earlier?) and this is what the water looked like once I’d let them soak. Just think – now all that is off your brushes and you have nice, clean tools!

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3. Now remove your brushes from the jar and rinse them for a while in running water. (Again, it should be warm, not hot.)

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4. Once your brushes are totally rinsed, dry them off by squeezing them gently in a towel. 

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Here’s a trick if, like mine, your brushes gathered up water in that metal part between the bristles and the handle, and you can’t get it out. You don’t want that to stay in there and ruin your handles.

5. Dump, rinse, and dry out your jar, then stuff a washcloth in the bottom.

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6. Put your brushes in, brush side up. This will allow your brushes to let the water run down the handle and get caught in the washcloth. 

If you didn’t have the problem I mentioned earlier, then just stand up your brushes in the jar without the washcloth, and leave them for at least 24 hours to dry.

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Hey, that wasn’t so bad, was it?  🙂

♥Amara

P.S. Spring is coming upon us soon – are any of you interested in some fashion posts? 😀

Weaved Dutch Braids

Recently, my mom showed me a picture of this really cute hairstyle, and asked if I knew how to do it. I looked at it for a moment, figured it out, and thought I’d do a tutorial here for you!

This works best if you have medium-to-long hair, or you can use extensions. The original picture I had looks a little different because her hair is a lot longer than mine; everyone’s hair is different, but you’ll get the idea of how to do it with this tutorial. Also, depending on how big of pieces you add into the braid, you may have more or less “x’s”, but that’s okay. Have fun!

 

As always, please leave me a comment or like this post!

♥Amara

Hollywood From Home #4

I’m so glad to be able to FINALLY get another “Hollywood from Home” post after taking a short break from them! This is one of my favorite makeup looks so let’s get started!

 

1. As usual, start with your foundation and concealer. Brush on some shimmery gold eyeshadow across your entire lid. Blend it so it’s even.

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2. Now take some brown eyeshadow and put it on the corners of your eyes.

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3.Blend it up and out, but don’t go past the brow bone.

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4. Depending on how dark you want the brown to be, you may want to add more. I kept mine pretty soft. Just be sure to blend so you don’t have any harsh edges.

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5. If you want, now you’d fill in your eyebrows. Otherwise, skip this step.

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6. Curl your eyelashes and apply mascara. I’m using L.A. Colors Bold Lash Mascara in Soft Black. If you wish to add false eyelashes, my suggestion would be to just put some on the corners of your eyes. I decided not to this time.

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7. Now use a lipstick that is fairly close to your natural shade of lips, just 1 to 2 shades darker and more pink.

Top Tip: if you have trouble with dry lips, especially during the winter months, exfoliate them before you put on your lipstick. My favorite scrub is a sugar scrub you can find here.

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8. Make sure you blot off your lips so you don’t leave a ring of lipstick on anything!

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9. Put on some blush, and you’re done!

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I’ve seen this makeup look popping up a lot of different places – and the great thing about it is it’s perfect for both day and night!

 

♥Amara

Avoid Damaging Your Hair

Once in a while, I like to do a “hair care” post. This will cover a few things that would damage your hair and how to avoid it.

 

1. Heat Over-Use

You’ve probably heard of heat damage on hair; split ends and weak strands to name a few problems. I’ll be the first to say – I love using a curling iron or blow dryer on my hair. I’m not going to say NEVER use heat EVER, but only use it SOMETIMES. Here’s why.

As you apply direct heat to your hair (especially a curling iron or straightener), you’re actually burning it into a different shape.

Don’t let your hair smoke. That’s the worst! If you do that, you have great potential to burn the hair completely, and it will fall off. By doing that, you’re actually burning off the sulfur bonds that make your hair strong. Once those are gone, it’s only a matter of time before you burn through the entire hair, and then it falls off. If you don’t let your hair smoke, you won’t be as likely to burn the sulfur bonds off, and your hair also shouldn’t have that “burnt” smell.

Solution: Use heating tools only on occasion. I use my blow dryer about once a week, and a curling iron 1-3 times a month. After you’ve used a heated tool, be sure to condition your hair the next time you wash it.

 

2. Ponytails

Ponytails? Yes, ponytails. Beside making your head ache if you have thick hair, they actually break it. Especially if you do a ponytail in the same spot on your head every time. This one doesn’t make as many drastic problems like heat, but they certainly aren’t helping your hair along to healthiness. Here’s how it works: let’s say you put your hair into a ponytail in the middle of your head. Day one – it’s fine. The next day you do it, a few hairs break off. Each day you put it in the same spot more and more hair breaks, and you never allow it to have time to grow back.

Solution: Don’t wear ponytails often, and definitely don’t wear them in the same place every time.

 

3. Product Use

There are SO many products out there to buy to “make your hair grow faster,” make it “shiny and soft,” “heathy and strong,” and a whole host of other things. What’s good for your hair and what’s hurting it?

Here’s a rule of thumb that I (usually) follow: if you can make it, don’t buy it; if it isn’t shampoo or conditioner, you probably don’t need it; and if it’s laden with chemicals, use organic products instead.

There are, of  course, a few exceptions to this rule, such as hairspray. I like a good hairspray. But be careful in choosing and using it. My go-to brand is Pantene Non-Aerosol Hairspray. With the “non-aerosol” kind, you’re not breathing it as much as if you had an aerosol one. Also, if you color your hair, you’re a lot more susceptible to hair damage, especially if you go and dye it every few weeks to cover the roots. Here is where you can save time and money by buying another product to keep the color longer.

One more thing. Perming. I personally don’t see why you really need to do it at all. While some perms look lovely for a while, they, like dye, grow out. And with all the tools we have now, you can often recreate the look you want at home without all the chemicals. Perms also have a great potential to burn the hair off because of the heavy chemicals. So my advice is skip the perms all together.

Solution: It all boils down to this – don’t feel constrained if you want to dye your hair or use products, just keep in mind what it’s doing to your hair. Always be sure to deep condition your hair to add moisture back into it – your hair will thank you.

Be sure to eat heathy, excercise, and take care of your hair! 😀

♥Amara

Hollywood From Home #3

Wow, I didn’t realize I was so busy until I’ve been trying to post 2 posts a week!

I was wondering if this new idea for a post would generate any interest. Instead of doing a makeup tutorial this week (they take a lot of time!) how about nail polish? I’ll give it a post, and, if it doesn’t have enough interest, then I’ll skip it next time and just focus on makeup.

This is a nail color you’ve probably seen before if you’ve seen any celebrity or watched the Inauguration of our new president. Quite a few newscasters have sported this too, as well as the First Lady Mrs. Trump on Friday. It’s a simple yet striking look, and I hope you liked it as much as I did!

Before you start any manicure, make sure you cut and file your nails to your desired length. Choose a color that is very pale pink. If you don’t have it in a bottle you can mix polish colors just like paint (like I’m doing here). Be sure you use an old paint palette or paper plate – something you don’t mind having polish stick on.

1. First, I’m using Sally Hanson’s nail polish in Hard-ly There.

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2. Add a few drops of medium pink. I used KleanColor in Pastel Orange. (It’s actually pink in color, but obviously not in name).

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3. Mix.

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4. Now I added a few drops of this copper-bronze colored polish by Essie in Penny Talk.

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5. Mix.

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6. I added more of the first color to lighten it up.

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7. Now add two drops of white.

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8. At this point, it’s up to you how dark or light you want it to be. I added a few more drops of pink to finish it off.

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9. Now put it on your nails! 

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10. Add another coat, and let it dry. I did about 3-4 coats of polish in all. Don’t worry if you slop it around the edges (like me). It easily comes of with a bit of remover on a cotton swab or just by wear.

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Finish off the whole thing with a top coat, and you’re done!

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This manicure just completes the outfit, even without bright or bold colors!

What are your thoughts? Should I continue doing nail polish as well as makeup or not?

♥Amara