Book and Beauty: “The Mystery of Mercy Close” and Zoya Tinsley


So when I first started writing this blog I also planned to keep a blog on the books I read. Unfortunately I was in a horrendous reading funk where none of the books I tried to read kept my interest. Needless to say nothing has happened on the other blog. As a librarian reader’s advisory, finding the right book for the right person, is very important to me. So I’ve been trying to think of a way to combine my two loves and I think I got it. I can show the polish I have on my nails and talk about a book that I’m currently reading or have liked. So welcome to Book and Beauty!


The book is The Mystery of Mercy Close by Marian Keyes. This is the fifth book in the Walsh Sister series but don’t let that put you off because you do not need to read the other books in the series to enjoy this book. Click here for more information about the book.

Plot: Helen Walsh is an out of work private detective, who has to move back in with her parents after losing her home to foreclosure. On the worst day of her life an ex comes to her with a job offer, find the missing member of the reunited boy band Laddz (think New Kids on the Block), Wayne. Helen is on a deadline to find what happened Wayne before the reunion concerts.

Why I’m liking it: What seems like a light fluffy read is really a much deeper look into the life of a person suffering from clinical depression. Helen is driven to find Wayne as it keeps her mind busy so she can’t think about the consuming darkness trying to overtake her.

Helen is also a great main character. Funny and sarcastic, she has a shovel list of things that she would like to hit with shovels. I can definitely relate.

Read if you like: The tone of the book reminded me of the Spellman Files series by Lisa Lutz and Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple. So if you like those books I highly recommend this one.


Now on to the beauty. I am wearing Tinsley from Zoya. See I do own other polishes beside Julep. 😉 This polish is a base of pink coral with gold and pink micro glitter. So not a holo polish but it looks like it. I’m obsessed with the polish! I love the peaches, coral, and oranges in this polish. And since it is not a holographic foil polish it doesn’t show how horribly uneven my nails are, which is part of the reason I haven’t done a nail of the day look in a while.

On my nails is two coats of polish.



So that is my first Book and Beauty. Let me know if you liked it and would like to see more.


First Impressions: Ipsy bag June 2013


Time for another Ipsy bag. First off I just have to get this out of the way. Ever since they switched shipping partners I’ve been getting my bag later and later. Anyone else having this problem? Okay, now that is off my chest l can move on with the review. As you can see from the picture above the theme this month is On the Wild Side. Except for one thing, nothing in the bag is wild. Would have been nice to get some bright bold pieces in the bag. The items in the bag are leaving me kinda meh, but that could be because I didn’t get the variations I wanted. So let’s get into the box. If you are interested in your own bag and want to help me out click here.

Here all all the goodies for this month. Normally I’m not an animal print kind of person but I think this bag is really cute. It would be perfect if it was bigger. As you can see in the picture below it barely fits all this month’s items in the bag.


Here is another picture of the bag.


The first item in the bag is probably the worst item I have gotten from Ipsy and that is the J. Cat Beauty Sparkling Cream Palette in Suzie. This is just chunky glitter suspended in a vaseline type gel. My eyes are way too sensitive to try this as an eyeshadow and I would be afraid of the damage that could happen if I got the glitter in my eyes. I read that some people had success putting this in their hair, but that is not me. Also I don’t go anywhere that having body glitter on would ever be appropriate. So big fail for me. This was in everyone’s bag so there was no way I could have avoided this, which makes getting this a little better. The last picture in the trio kinda shows how the glitter is just mixed into the clear gel.


The next item is the Starlooks lip pencil in Tickle Me Pink. I’m not a lip pencil wearer but I liked this enough I might actually use it. It goes on smoothly and blends out to a pretty pinky mauve lip color. Since it is a lip pencil it stayed for a long time and it wasn’t too drying. The only downside is that it is a wooden pencil that needs to be sharped. The day I wore it I blended the line out and just put a lip gloss over it. Turned out great.


The next item is the NYX blush in Spice. This is a nice, highly pigmented, mauve blush. I tapped twice on the blush and it was a little too much color on my cheeks. It is a nice color on me and I will use this. The only disappointment I have is that I wanted the other variations that were in some of the bags, the cream blush or the mosaic blush. I don’t have blushes like that so it would have been nice to try something new. I guess I can’t complain since I got a blush that looks good on me. I like the compact size of the case and I think this is going to go in my travel makeup bag.


The next item is the Cailyn Line Fix gel liner in purple. This is really nice dark purple liner. It goes on smoothly, almost as smooth as my Tarte gel liners, and it didn’t move until I washed it off. As much as I like it, I already have a purple gel liner from Tarte so I was really hoping I would have gotten the Iron colored one. Oh well. It is neat that the cap has a built in brush but it makes for very clunky packaging and hard to store. Also the packaging itself feels cheap. I guess that doesn’t matter if the product inside is good. The brush is only okay for me. I like really thin lines of liner and the thinnest it can go is too thick for my liking.


Another picture to show the brush.


The last item in the bag is another J. Cat Beauty item. This one is the eyelashes in UN13, made with 100% human hair. Is 100% human hair something desired in false lashes? This is the only product I haven’t tried yet. I think I have pretty decent lashes also I completely suck at putting fake lashes on. This is also another case of having no where to go that I would need to have vavavoom lashes. I do like how it comes with its own lash glue.


Here is a picture of me using some of the products. Well, all of the products except for the glitter and the lashes. In the picture I used the liner, the blush and the lip liner plus my Urban Decay Feminine palette. I liked how this turned out, pretty and springy. On my lips is just the lip liner blended out.


A close up of my eye look. From the Feminine palette I used swf in the inner lid, aquarius in the middle lid, and ecstacy on the outer lid and used stray dog in the crease to blend the colors.


Here is a picture of the palette I used. *NOTE: This did not come in my Ipsy bag but was purchased by myself at a separate time.*


So out of the five, I will definitely use 2 of the items, the eye liner and the blush, so I guess I can’t complain too much. If you got this bag this month did you like what you got? And most importantly how are you going to use the glitter palette?

POPSUGAR Must Have Box June 2013


Time for another POPSUGAR Must Have box and I like this box much better than last month. As awesome as last month was I didn’t think I would be able to say that this could be better, but it is. There is a bunch of interesting things in this box and an item I was planning on getting myself. So let’s get started. As always if you are interested in getting your own subscription and want to help me out, click here.

Here are all the goodies for this month.


The first item in the box is the Addicted to Sweat 4 workout dvd. This workout is developed by Madonna’s personal trainer and involves a chair. (insert shrug here) Not sure the deal the chair is, is it suppose to give people a false sense of comfort that this workout might be easy? I haven’t used this dvd yet and don’t know if I will as I’m not addicted to sweat. 😉 Also this looks like a really intense workout. My speed is more walking in the neighborhood, Pilates, or swimming, not scary intense cardio workouts.


The next item is the Popcorn, Indiana Fit Popcorn in Extra Virgin Olive Oil. I have had this brand brand before and like it so I was excited to try their new Fit line. While this is not as good as the full fat varieties this was tasty. It doesn’t have a olive oil flavor to me but rather tastes like a lightly seasoned salt and pepper chip. This comes in 3 other flavors, onion dijion, sea salt, and parmesan & herb. I would definitely get this again and I’m interested in trying the parmesan flavor.


The next item is the Project 7 Quench the Thirsty wintergreen mints. For every purchase Project 7 supples clean drinking water for communities around the world. Pretty awesome! While I like what the company does I think these mints are just okay. These taste like the cheapy mints companies put in cute containers because they want you to buy the cute container and they they need to make it useful so you don’t mind spending your money. These aren’t horrible and I will eat the mints but I wouldn’t go out and buy more.


The next item is Revenge Wears Prada by Laura Weisberger. This is the sequel to Devil Wears Prada. To find out more about the book click here. I had this on hold at my library and I was like 40th in line. So now I don’t have to wait to read it. I liked the movie and the first book so hopefully this one will be good too.


The next item in the box is Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Repair Moisturizer. This is suppose to reduce fine lines and signs of aging. I haven’t seen proof of that yet but I do like this moisturizer. For one, this smells amazing! Just like lemon drop candy. It also absorbs quickly and doesn’t feel heavy, which is nice for summertime in the deep south. It also has a neat pump dispenser so you never have to stick your hand in the bottle and containment the rest of the product. I’m glad there is a company out there that realize that people don’t like dipping their hands into a jar of product. The only downside to this is that it is $60+. So hopefully I won’t be completely in love with this when I finish the bottle.


The next item is also from Juice Beauty and it is two samples of their Repair CC Cream in the shades Natural Glow and Warm Glow. In the picture below of the swatches, Natural Glow is the lighter swatch near my wrist and Warm Glow is the darker swatch near my fingers. As you can see Natural Glow is a perfect match for me. It wears nicely but I need more coverage than this provides. This doesn’t smell like sunscreen! but instead has a earthy lemon scent. I heard people hating this scent but I liked it.


The last thing in the box is the Gorjana & Griffin Zuma Scarf. I love the navy and white strips with a trim of neon peach. This combo screams summer to me. This is huge enough to wear as a shawl, use as a sarong, or as a scarf it was intended. I’m not a scarf person so I will probably use it as a shawl. In fact this is going in my suitcase for my work trip next week. It is light weight so it won’t be a problem carrying it my my bag.


Here is the scarf in action. So as you can tell I’m horrible at taking self pictures in the mirror and I obviously don’t know how to tie a scarf but I wanted to show you what it would look like on.


So that is my box. I think this is the first box from them that everything will get used! Keep up the awesome boxes POPSUGAR!

First Impressions: Birchbox June 2013


So first thing, Birchbox got a new look. Gone is the cute pink birch square and in its place is the design below and the picture above. I like the old logo design better but they are using this one since they feel it is more globally appealing as they now have offices in New York, London, Paris, and Madrid. The box itself also got a makeover. The box is a little more sturdy and now has a super cute chevron design on the inside.


This month’s theme is Wanderlust which is perfect since I am actually going on a work trip next week. It will be my first time in Chicago and I’m super excited! Anyway back to the box. My Birchboxes have been pretty awesome lately and this is no exception. If you are interested in your own box and want to help me out click here.

Here is all my goodies. See the cute chevron pattern I was talking about?


The first thing in the box is the Birchbox + Color Club polish in Reign in Spain. Birchbox worked with Color Club to make a four polish collection to represent their four locations. As I’m sure you can tell by the name I got the color that represents their Madrid office. This is a bright neon peach. This color is awesome for summer. It took three coats to cover the nail wheel so I might have to use polish thinner before using it in my nails. In case you are wondering the other colors in the set were a neon mint green (the one I really wanted), a purple,and white polish.

Full size: $8 for set of four mini polishes


The next item is the DevaCurl 3-Step System. I have used DevaCurl before, not sure if I used this one, no poo, or if I used the low poo. When I used it before I thought it was okay but I didn’t like it enough to buy again. The gel was also decent, but again while it worked it didn’t impress me enough to buy again. I haven’t used these packets yet because I’m going to take them with me on my work trip. These will fit much better in my 1oz baggy for the airport then little plastic bottles. I’m a little nervous about taking untried products on a trip but I’ll be brave. If my hair ends up looking horrible I guess I can take comfort in the fact that I will probably never see any of the people at this conference again and librarians tend look eccentric anyway.

Full size: $19 for each


The next item is the Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner in black. This is a felt tip liquid liner and it applies wonderfully. I love liquid liners, especially if it is the felt tip variety. This also came off easily when I washed my makeup off, which leads me to believe that this isn’t waterproof. Saying that it didn’t move and it looked the same before I washed it off for the night as it did that morning when I applied it. I thought this was great and Birchbox’s website shows that it comes it several other colors so I might buy another liner in navy.

I used liner in my Glamour Doll Eyes post so click here to check it out.

Full size: $15


The next item is the suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser. This is a two-in-one cleanser and sugar exfoliator that lathers, which is pretty cool. This also smells wonderful, nice and lemony. This worked really well, my face felt nice and squeaky clean. My sensitive skin is not a fan of exfoliation so I can’t use this too often. Also I would only use this in the shower as I prefer to use a facial soap that I can use on my eyes when taking off makeup, my favorite product for that is Philosophy’s Purity Made Simple. Overall I really liked this product and definitely will use up my sample not sure about a full size purchase.

The nail polish I’m wearing in the picture is Zoya Gemma, in case you were wondering.

Full size: $32.95


The last item in the box was a Lifestyle Extra of Tweezerman Matchbox Itty Bitty Nail Files. While I think the packaging and the files themselves are really cute I just not a nail filer person. I just can’t get the hang of filing my nails. Also the the file grit seems kind of sparse for this to be an effective filer. I think I’m going to give these away even though they are tiny and cute.

Full size: $5 (which I think is what this is)


Birchbox also included in the box five postcards to celebrate their new offices. These are really cute. I have seen on the Makeuptalk Forum that people were going to frame them, which I think I might do too.


So that’s my box for the month. Another great month! Can’t wait until next month. I’ve read that the box will be themed around the USA network show “Suits”. I have never seen the show before so I have no idea what kinda of products would be going in the box. All I know about the show is that it is set in a lawyer firm and there is a guy pretending to be a lawyer because he never went to law school.

Until next time!

Glamour Doll Eyes OTM June 2013


I heard about a new monthly subscription from Glamour Doll Eyes, an indie mineral makeup company, that has subscription for special limited edition eyeshadows. The shadows go on sale on the 8th but you have to be quick because the subscriptions sell out fast. For more information click here. I love mineral eyeshadows and indie mineral companies always have fun and interesting shadows.

Here is what I got. The eye shadow is called Flicker Pop, which is a pretty blue with sliver and red sparkles. This was created as an eyeshadow for 4th of July and they were smart enough to give it to us in June so we’ll have it to wear for the holiday. I am also excited about eating the Pop Rocks. Haven’t had this candy since I was a kid.


Here is a swatch of the color.


Here is pictures of the shadow. I was trying get a good picture of the red and sliver sparkle and unfortunately this was as good as I could get.


Here is an eye look using the shadow. I used Flicker Pop on the lid. I then took my Urban Decay Naked 2 palette and used Pistol in the outer part of the lid and a little in the crease and used Foxy to blend everything out. I finished the look with Eyeko Skinny Mini liquid eyeliner in black and Revlon Grow Luscious Plumping mascara. I had a little trouble applying Flicker Pop as it went on kinda patchy. This is probably a shadow that needs to be patted on and not blended out. So I’ll have to play with it a little more. But the staying power is great. This picture was taken after I got home from work. Not bad after 9 hours of wear.


So that is the color of the month. I was only able to get an one month subscription so hopefully next month I’ll be able get a longer one. Though they sell out so fast some months I’ll be happy with another one month.

Fortune Cookie Soap Summer box


Wow, I didn’t realize how it has been since I last posted something. Sorry!
New hours at work and too many family obligations are to blame.

So I got in the mail the other day a Fortune Cookie Soap box. This is a quarterly subscription that gives you a sneak preview of their upcoming products and scents. This is $20 per box. If you are interested their website is This isn’t a referral code so feel free to click away. 🙂 If you have never used or heard of Fortune Cookie Soap company it reminds me of Lush with handmade bath and body products.

So let’s get into the box.

Here is all the goodies.


The first product is “Aquaholic” sea salt hair spray. This is a spray to give you beach hair. This is not a product for me or my hair. My curls definitely wouldn’t like anything as dry as salt in my hair. This smells like a piña colada, which smells really good.


The next product is the “Do You Salsa or Mango” OCD hand sanitizer. I like Fortune Cookie Soap’s hand sanitizer. They smell good and for a sanitizer it leaves my hands feeling kinda moisturized. This one smells like mango. Not my favorite scent but I can put up with it.


The next product is “Body Shot” Don’t Be Jelly! This is soap in jello form. I haven’t used it yet but I have used jello soap before and I’m not a fan of it. It is hard to use and more trouble than it is worth. You have to smoosh into a loofah to be able to use it. When I take a shower I don’t want to go through a lot of effect to make a soap work. The scent is raspberry lemonade, which smells good.


The next product is “Where the Sun Don’t Shine” solid sunscreen stick with SPF 15. This is a sunscreen in a lip balm tube. I think this is such a great idea. This is easy to throw into my purse for when I need SPF touch up. I’m not too crazy about the scent, coconut banana but I all I smell is banana.


The next product is “I Scream, You Scream” sugar scrub. This was really nice. This is a moisturizing sugar scrub. I use it just on my feet and they look better and I didn’t really need on extra moisturizer. I also liked that the sugar didn’t dissolve right away but stayed to actually make an effective scrub. The only thing I didn’t like was the smell, strawberry chocolate but I only smell chocolate. I’m not a fan of chocolate and I definitely don’t want to smell like it.


The next product is “What? It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere!” whipped cream. I really like their whipped cream. They are really moisturizing and absorbs quickly. The problem with this is I hate how this smells. It is supposed to be fruit cocktail scented but it actually smells like a Strawberry Shortcake doll. Yep, this smells like plastic strawberry. This gave me a headache as the scent was really overwhelming. Not a fan but my skin was nicely moisturized.


The next product is “Mother Pucker” shower streamer. You put this in your shower and it scents it. Kinda like a bath bomb but for a shower. This smells really good, nice and lemony, but you can barely smell it. Once I put on my shampoo all I could smell was my shampoo, not the shower streamer.


The last product is “One in a Melon” Fortune Cookie soap. This was the most heavily scented, when I opened my box this is what I smelled over everything. I was so excited to try this. It looks so cute and I love watermelon scented things. This was such a big disappointment. It didn’t foam, I know it doesn’t need to foam to work, but I felt like I was just rubbing on plastic. Also the scent which I was excited about doesn’t smell the same on my hand. On my hands it smells like a cross between melon and onions. Yeah, not good. And the black specks are kiwi seeds and are kinda scratchy. Sigh. I had such high hopes.


So that’s my box. This is such a fun box that it is a shame that I’ll have to wait 3 months until my next one. These are all new scents that are available on their website now. If a scent sounds interesting they have it in several different products. I think I might see if they have the “Mother Pucker” in the scrub.

If anyone is wondering the nail polish I have on in these pictures is Jackie from Julep.

First Impressions: beautybox 5 May 2013



Sorry it took so long to review this box. While it is one of the latest boxes I get I put it away with my other boxes and forgot about it. So let’s see what is in the box.

As also if you are interested in the box and want to help me out, click here.

So the first item in the box is the Ferro Cosmetics mineral eyeshadow in Rustique. This is a mustardy gold/bronze eyeshadow. I like mineral eyeshadow, in fact I have probably have over 200 of them, but this is so messy. Seriously, mineral makeup companies, your stuff needs shifters! I think this color is gorgeous, but honestly there isn’t a gold shadow that I don’t love or at least really like. Side story. I was talking about makeup with my coworkers and I said my go to eyeshadow color is gold. They both said, “yeah, we’ve noticed.” So there you go, gold lover right here. Ok, back on track to the product. This swatches really weird. I look like I have a weird golden bruise on my hand. It works slightly better on the eyelid but it still has weird bald spots, don’t know if that is part of the duo chrome or what. Note: there is a coupon code for this company shown in the product card picture.

Full price: $17, .14oz


The next item is the Jean Pierre tanning towelettes. These are two tanning wipes, which can be used one after the other to deepen the tan. I’m not not interested in tanning, real or fake, so I’ll be giving these away.

Full price: $8.99 for 10 towelettes


The next item is the Model Co black eyeliner. This swatches really smoothly and feels really creamy. Also love how really black this is. I think it is so smart to put the sharpener in the lid. I went and washed my hand almost as soon as I swatched this and it was pretty tough to remove. It applied okay on my eyelid. I can use a liquid liner with no problem but because I’m special I am horrible using a pencil liner. The other downside, for me, is that this needs to be sharpen. Not a fan of wooden makeup pencils. After a day of wear I’m not impressed with this. The liner traveled. I have smudges under my eye and in my crease. I don’t have oily lids so this is not a problem I have with liners.

Full price: $18


Here’s a pic of my eyes with Rustique on the lid and the black liner.


The next item is the Coolway Transform Styling Spray. This is to help reduce blow drying time and allows you to use a cooler styling tool. I don’t use any type of styling tools for my hair. I wash it, put my products in, and go. So I have no need for something like this. My mom blow dries her hair so I think I will give this to her. Note: there is a coupon code for this company shown in the product card picture.

Full price: $24.95 for 6.7oz


The last item is La Fresh deodorant wipes. TMI time, I used these and don’t feel they do a great job of keeping my dry. It does have a nice light scent. These are perfect for travel or throwing in your purse or gym bag.

Full size: $19.90 for 48 packets.


So that’s May’s box. I’m bored with this subscription, I think it has the same brands or similar products for the past three months. I got a year subscription so hopefully it will pick up.