My 2015 Favorites

I am sorry for being so absent over the past few months. I took some time off to re-evaluate some things and figure out where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do (with school, this blog, life, etc). Now that I finally think I have it all summed up, I am going to do a little summary of all of the things I loved in the year 2015. I hope everyone had a fabulous New Year’s Eve and is ready for an even more fantastic 2016!

Beauty

Make Up

Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless foundation

I did it! I found my holy grail foundation (for now). The Maybelline Fit Me foundation has fantastic coverage and the fact that it is matte and poreless helps me with my oily skin.

Becca Highlighter in Opal

My cheekbones have never looked better. I got a set from Ulta that included a mini powder and liquid highlighter (unfortunately, the set is no longer on their website). The liquid is much better for “everyday wear”, whereas the powder has a bit more sparkle and is good for a more dramatic highlight

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion

I struggle with oily eyelids, which makes applying eye shadow a pain sometimes. I really like this primer and I feel like it does a great job of keeping my eye shadow in place all day.

Real Techniques Make Up Brushes

This year, I broke away from my ELF brushes onto something bigger and better: Real Techniques. It’s safe to say I love them. I only have three plus the blender sponge but I am definitely ready to invest in more. The price range isn’t too crazy (less than $10 a brush) but it is still more expensive than other brushes you can get. However, you pay for the quality. My favorite? The expert face brush which I use to apply my foundation.

All Images are from Ulta.com

My makeup favorites of the year

Bath/Body

Clinique Happy Perfume

There are a few varieties of this scent. I had to original for a while and then bought a set on Ulta (which is unfortunately also no longer available) that had 5 different variations. I recommend going to a store that sells them and finding your perfect variation.

Kate Spade Live Colorfully Perfume

I got a sample of this with an Ulta purchase a while back, then got a second sample recently. I am still waiting until I run out of some of my other perfumes to buy the full size of this but I will definitely because I ADORE this scent. I am a big fan of perfumes with a hint of musk and floral backgrounds and this fills all of my needs and more. Go try it out and I promise you will love it.

Lush Herbalism face and body wash

I have bad acne and I have been struggling to find a face wash that deals with that while not giving me a bad reaction like so many anti-acne cleansers do. This is hands down it. I am already on my second jar of the stuff. It doesn’t have the greatest smell (it is very earthy) but it does a great job of making my skin feel really clean and when I use it regularly, I see a significant reduction in acne and redness in my skin. It is a bit pricier (between 20-35 USD a container) and it does have an expiration date (because the ingredients are all natural), but if you plan on using it multiple times a day and/or on your body as well, I definitely recommend it. Another option is to do what I do and share it with a friend/family member. My mom currently uses it as well on occasions. My biggest tip: go get it at a Lush location. The price online is for a pretty full container and a lot of times at Lush stores you can find half filled containers for less money.

Entertainment

Music

25 by Adele

If a new Adele album comes out, you must buy it. I really do like her new album. Favorite song on it is actually not Hello, but the second song on the soundtrack “Send My Love (to Your New Lover)”. It is very catchy, upbeat, and different from her usual sound.

Hamilton Cast Album

This. Album. Gives. Me. Life. I am seriously obsessed with this album. The history nerd in me loves the concept and the theatre nerd in me loves the idea of a hip hop based musical. Lin Manuel Miranda also does something amazing by putting 95% of the show on the album. Anyone who has looked into it knows tickets to Hamilton are extremely expensive, but through the album you have the ability to experience the show almost in its entirety.

TV/Movies

Galavant

This little series was from the beginning of the year, but I am looking forward to it coming back on January 3rd, so I am going to talk about it some more. The music is by Alan Menken. It’s a musical comedy. It is funny. You really can’t get much better than that.

Doctor Who

Okay, so this is more like a lifetime favorite, but I will still talk about it because the most recent season just finished up and the Christmas special just happened. Definitely a good season with an interesting concept of using two part connected episodes for almost the entire season. The Christmas special, as well as the season in general, tied up a lot of loose ends reaching back as far as the tenth doctor. It was extremely satisfying.

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

This isn’t a new movie, but I did watch it this past year so I am going to count it. This movie is fantastic and if you have yet to see it, I recommend going and watching it. It really makes you realize the value of life and of enjoying life.

Theatre

I see a lot of shows every year (one of the perks of living so close to NYC), so I thought I would reflect on some of my favorites

Beautiful: the Carole King Musical

If you like Carole King’s music, you will love this show. The story is amazing, especially considering I didn’t know a lot about Carole King prior to seeing the show. Also, the energy of the audience is fantastic. And luckily, it is on Broadway and on tour so if you live in the United States, be sure to keep an eye out for this show coming near you. You won’t regret seeing it.

If/Then

If this show is coming on tour near you, then I recommend you see it. It really was a show that made you reflect on life and choices. Plus the music is amazing and the show is hysterical. It is no longer on Broadway unfortunately for any fellow New Yorkers, but tour is slowly progressing across the United States.

Hunchback of Notre Dame

This one is a bit of a cheat because it was not in NY, but at the Papermill Playhouse in NJ. The show was a beautiful telling of the novel version of the Disney movie, which meant it was a bit darker than the movie. However, I ADORE this show and recommend that you buy the cast album if you can. Keep an eye out, because I have a feeling this show will be back eventually.

Spring Awakening

I have already raved about this show in my blog from the tech rehearsal that I was able to go see, but after seeing the completed show (twice) I will reiterate my statement: GO SEE THIS SHOW IF YOU CAN. You have less than 30 days. It is life changing and inspiring and amazing and I highly recommend it. Can’t get to NYC in the next month? Luckily, there are plans for it to go on tour in 2017.

Misc Favorites

Bravelets

My mom gifted me an awesome piece of jewelry called a Bravelet this year. It is basically a bracelet from an awesome group that donates part of the proceeds to the charity of your choice. My Bravelet has green in it for Mental Health Awareness and part of the proceeds went to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). Interested? Want a Bravelet of your own? Go check them out here. You won’t regret it!

PINK Water Bottle

The girls that I babysit gave me the most amazing present ever this year for Christmas. I got a new water bottle from Victoria’s Secret. It has a straw and it holds 24 fl oz of water and it is coral and I love it. (Picture below is not mine)

Screen Shot 2016-01-02 at 12.11.10 PM

Tab for a Cause

Tab for a Cause is a website/app that allows you to help raise money for charity while doing what, let’s face it, you do every day: Opening new tabs on your web browser. It’s safe and takes little to no effort on your part. Interested? Check that out here. What is extra fun about this is you “level up” and earn hearts that you can donate to one of 8 awesome charities.

Adult Coloring Books

Yes. I am one of those people who has an adult coloring book. Okay, I have three. I am an easily stressed out person who finds coloring/doodling highly relaxing. Also, there is a Harry Potter one. Does my nerd heart need anything else? Maybe a Doctor Who one… but other than that, no. In addition, I also splurged on a set of Prismacolor colored pencils (They sell all of these things on Amazon if you are looking).

Wishing everyone a happy and healthy new year! See ya soon!

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