September 29, 2014

beauty scoop | mullein and sparrow tinted lip & cheek balm

As we ease into autumn, I’m finding myself reaching for the lighter shades in the purple drawer of my lip color wardrobe.

(Yes, I organize my lippies by color.)

A new multipurpose plum in my collection is Mullein & Sparrow’s Tinted Lip & Cheek Balm, which delivers a sheer wash of violet goodness while hydrating your lips with organic sunflower oil and shea butter.

mullein & sparrow tinted lip and cheek balm

{Mullein & Sparrow sent me a sample of its Tinted Lip and Cheek Balm. It costs $22 for a 1-ounce tin.}

mullein & sparrow tinted lip and cheek balm

Packaged in a gorgeous, vintage apothecary-style tin, Mullein & Sparrow’s Tinted Lip & Cheek Balm offers a natural flush of color that hints of purple.

I’m wearing it only on the lips in these photos, but it’s lovely on the cheeks as well, giving the skin a dewy, balmy glow and natural pinch of color.

(And in case you’re wondering, my happy yellow cat-eye sunnies are from my friends at ICU Eyewear — you know I love a good cat eye!)

mullein & sparrow tinted lip and cheek balm

Mullein & Sparrow’s gorgeous 1-ounce tin is packed full of this non-sticky, ultra-smooth balm, but its appearance in the tin is deceptive.

As you can tell, again, the color payoff isn’t this intense at all.

Instead, it’s a soft wash of “my lips but better and a bit plummer” that’s perfect for non-fussy makeup types (like me) who just don’t have time to paint on intense lips every day.

mullein & sparrow tinted lip and cheek balm

Here’s what’s inside Mullein & Sparrow’s Tinted Lip & Cheek Balm:

Helianthus annuus (sunflower) oil*, Olea europaea (extra virgin olive) oil*, Vitellaria paradoxa (shea) butter*, Cera alba (beeswax)*, Theobroma cacao (cocoa) butter*, Batschia canescens (alkanet root)*, Copernicia prunifera (Carnauba wax)*, essential oils of: Pogostemon cablin (patchouli)*, Citrus sinensis (orange)* (*Organic)

The light plum color originates from organic alkanet root, a plant that can deliver shades of pink, purple or blue. Alkanet root is common in lots of natural cosmetics, yet I haven’t seen this particular shade achieved in many of the natural lippies I’ve used.

As a fan of lippies in general, but especially of balms and glosses, I would repurchase Mullein & Sparrow’s Tinted Lip & Cheek Balm. The price is reasonable ($22) for the size you get (1 ounce), and the fact that it’s super multipurpose (lips, cheeks, moisture all around) makes it a nice buy.

I’m also a bit of a sucker for pretty packaging, and I just swoon over the aesthetic of the entire Mullein & Sparrow collection anyway.

There’s also something about this being in a tin that draws me in; a lot of sheer wash lippies that are in tubes mess with my mind — I somehow expect them to be deeper and more intense because they’re in bullet / tube form.

If it’s in a pot or tin, it just feels more like a lip balm or lip tint, and the idea that the color just isn’t supposed to be too intense fits better with my mind.

How’s that for some random consumer research, beauty brands?

Don’t forget! You can save 15% off of any Mullein & Sparrow purchase through September 30. Use code “KIMLOC” at checkout!

What do you look for in tinted lip and cheek balms? Have you tried anything from Mullein & Sparrow? Tell me in the comments section!

 

September 24, 2014

scenes from my weekend | a solo trip to santa fe, new mexico

As a textbook Sagittarius, I’m always looking for an excuse to leave town for a little escape.

I’ve been intrigued by Santa Fe for quite a while, so when an inexpensive flight and hotel became available, I booked as soon as I could.

Flight and hotel room for one, please.

While I’m not new to travel, I’ve always had a “real” reason to go somewhere.

A conference. A meeting. A freelance writing assignment. Something that involved a task and an instant community of people has always driven my “solo” travel plans.

For this trip to Santa Fe, though, it was my own curiosity and need to challenge myself to do something I’d never done before: Go away for a weekend to a place I’d never been.

Where I knew nobody.

Where I had zero set plans.

Where I could do this thing called whatever the f*ck I want.

When you set out on a solo adventure like that, you come back feeling empowered and with a new sense of self —  and, perhaps, you come back with a few new friends in your life.

And a tremendous desire to do it again as soon as possible.

pathway to the pueblo casitas at las palomas in santa fe new mexico

I stayed in the most adorable casita at Las Palomas, which is not your average, cookie-cutter hotel.

You have a real key, a cute little walkway (above) and a feeling of privacy when you stay here.

casita at los palomas santa fe

My room was equipped with a fireplace, full kitchen, cute living area (above) and the most comfortable king size bed.

It’s within walking distance of the Plaza (I was car-free all weekend!) yet is in a very quiet area where you can get uninterrupted rest.

I would definitely stay there again.

new mexican dancers at the plaza in santa fe

After getting settled at the hotel, I wandered over to the Plaza to find New Mexican dancers on the theater stage entertaining a huge crowd.

What a welcome!

sangria at taberna santa fe new mexico

I attempted to get a table for one at Cafe Pasqual’s, but it was booked until late and I was getting hangry.

The nice hostess advised me to try for tapas at La Boca or its sister restaurant, Taberna, instead.

The scene at La Boca was a bit too intimate and fancy (based on my peering into the door from outside), so I found my way to Taberna, which had outdoor seating and a lively scene.

Upon arrival, I asked the person at the host stand — who happened to be the musician for the night, not the actual host — to be seated outside.

He of course said, “No, you must sit at the bar and listen to the great musician who will be playing tonight!”

He then lead me to the bar so I could order a blood orange sangria (above), ask me where I was from and proceed to sing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” to me.

[Insert "You're not in Kansas anymore" joke here.]

jesus bas and kimberlyloc at evangelos in santa fe

I ended up closing down the restaurant with the musician, Jesus, and his girlfriend Sonia.

Being the friendly New Mexicans-by-way-of-Spain couple they were, they insisted on taking me out to the bars of Santa Fe (above).

Our first stop was Evangelo’s, which was famously featured in the movie “Crazy Heart.”

Jesus, Sonia and I sipped on tequila before making our way to the dance floor to boogie for a bit before leaving to go across the street to a crowded dive bar called Matador, where the music was loud and the locals were friendly.

We didn’t quite close that bar down, as I was getting weary from travel, so we called it a night and I made my home so I could get some rest before my first full day in Santa Fe.

the pantry santa fe new mexico breakfast burrito

I don’t know about you, but I’m not a morning person, and even on vacation (especially on vacation alone!), I don’t intend on waking up at the crack of dawn to explore.

Instead, I keep to my regular sleep schedule and get going around 9:30. My first stop was Holy Spirit Espresso, an adorable little hole-in-the-wall coffee shop (seriously, you can fit three bodies in there — that’s it!), for a coffee.

At around 10:30, I met up with my friend C.J.’s mother (and sweet niece), who lives in Albuquerque but was in Santa Fe for the day, for brunch.

So that may sound like cheating with the whole “I have zero set plans and know nobody” thing I mentioned earlier, but 1) I told C.J. the day before that I was going to his home state and he arranged the brunch and 2) I’d never met his mother before, so it was still a cool experience because I made a new friend!

She took me to The Pantry, and this is where I had my first New Mexican “Christmas” (red and green) chile experience (above) with a delicious breakfast burrito smothered with chile and cheese with carne adovada.

Oh my gosh.

native american vendors program at the palace of the governors santa fe

After brunch, I got back to the Plaza and got lost in the beautiful handmade Native American jewelry at the Palace of the Governors (above).

Local artisans showcased their turquoise, copper and raw gemstone jewels, encouraging you to touch, try on and marvel at their beauty.

And so I did.

native american turquoise ring santa fe

After walking the aisle of artisans twice, I kept coming back to this statement ring (above).

I have never seen such an intricate piece of turquoise, cut with rich hints of cocoa and gold amidst layers of sea blues and greens.

Wow.

I spoke with the maker for a bit and he offered me a discount on the piece, to which I held him to as I walked away to think about it.

In the end, I decided I needed to get it, but would come back for it on Sunday. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find him and the ring now haunts my dreams.

Sigh.

loretto chapel santa fe

After walking away from the jewels, I wandered over to the stunning Loretto Chapel (above) to see the famed “Miraculous Staircase“(below).

miraculous staircase loretto chapel santa fe

After spending some time in awe of the chapel, I made my way next door to the Inn & Spa at Loretto to meet up with KYPRIS founder Chase Polan, who just happened to be in Santa Fe presenting to spas.

We realized we were both in Santa Fe via Instagram and decided that if we could swing it, we would meet to chat.

Again, no set plans. Just chance encounters that came to life via social media!

Our great little green beauty chat by the pool lead to us getting a few treatments at the Spa at Loretto (a facial for me; a wrap for Chase) and visiting a bit more before parting ways.

After wandering a bit more, I settled in for dinner (for one) at The Shed, where I had my second helping of Christmas chile-covered enchiladas and a couple strong margaritas.

Toward the end of my meal, as the staff was tidying up, a nice waiter named Carlos stopped by to say hello.

“You are so beautiful. Why are you sitting by yourself?” he asked.

I smiled at him and just said, “a girl’s gotta eat.”

“Well I’m sorry I didn’t get to wait on you.”

Ah, New Mexican men.

After settling up with my waitress (sorry, Carlos), I found my new friends Jesus and Sonia around the corner at The Anasazi, where Jesus was playing another gig and teasing other tourists who happily gave him tips.

After the show, we walked over to The Palace, but the couple was beat from the long day and headed home early.

I, though, stayed for the band that was playing before turning in for the night myself.

georgia o'keefe art museum santa fe new mexico

Sunday was museum day. I started off at the Georgia O’Keefe museum and was taken by her story of leaving New York City for New Mexico.

The works on display featured the gorgeous New Mexico landscape (above) as well as photographs of O’Keefe taken by Ansel Adams.

After visiting the O’Keefe museum, I strolled through the New Mexico Museum of Art, where I found this quirky exhibit by Judy Chicago.

(Some people see hearts everywhere; I see cats everywhere.)

santa fe railyard district

I then walked over the Railyard District (above), home of the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market and various little shops.

After picking up a few postcards and a new handmade-in-Santa Fe cosmetics bag, I found the resident psychic and sat down to have my chart read.

All I have to say about that is Saturn return, y’all. It’s real.

ten thousand waves santa fe new mexico

After my reading, I hoofed it back to the Plaza to catch a cab up to Ten Thousand Waves, where I spent five hours in absolute bliss.

Private hot tub in the mountains.

Back to back massages by the best therapist in the resort.

Serenity and comfort in my own skin.

I’ll share my detailed experience at the spa in a separate post, but to end an amazing solo trip to Santa Fe at a spa nestled in the mountains — well, you can only imagine how happy I was.

If you’ve stayed with me to the end of this post, first, thank you! It’s been amazing to recount my mini-vacation, and I hope to inspire you to take time out for yourself soon.

And if you can be so bold, to take a solo adventure at least once in your life. It will transform you.

You can see more pictures from my trip on Facebook!

If you’ve vacationed alone before, I’d love to hear about your experiences! Tell me what you learned about yourself and how it affected you in the comments section below!

 

September 19, 2014

free stuff friday | moazen jewelry & accessories

Those of you who know me well (or have seen this feature) know I have a thing for jewelry and accessories.

While I love clothes as much as anyone, a big part of my personal style revolves around incorporating unique jewelry and accessories that have a story to them.

That’s why I’ve been obsessed with MoaZen Jewelry since this summer (remember the earrings from yesterday’s post?) and am excited to share this giveaway with you today!

moazen jewelry and accessories

MoaZen Jewelry & Accessories is a socially responsible brand rooted in community.

Twin sister founders Faith and Hope created the line to educate and inspire — while tickling your taste for beauty — through culture and community.

They aim to encourage people to discover the beauty that exists in cultures outside of their own by designing pieces inspired by certain countries or regions of the world.

“Our brand is a physical manifestation of our most intimate values and passions,” the sisters say. “The accessories we design are not only for the fashion-forward personality; but for the intellectual, change-maker, optimist and leader who recognizes the value of all the world’s cultures.”

Between knowing this about a line and seeing the interesting, one-of-a-kind pieces the sisters create, I get inspired not only to think about what I can bring to the universe, but also to support those are bringing beauty and good to all of us.

Speaking of bringing good to all of us, Faith and Hope bring this giveaway of a handcrafted leather, brass, silk cord, tiger eye, calcite and wood piece (valued at $39) to you today!

It’s your first peek at designs in the forthcoming “Uptown Chic” collection which launches next month.

Ready to enter for a chance to win it? Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Find something you absolutely love and need now from Moazen Jewelry & Accessories?

Use code “KIMLOC” to save 15% off sitewide until 9/26/14!

Giveaway begins Friday, September 19, 2014, at 12:00 a.m. Central Time, and closes on Friday, September 26, 2014, at 12:00 a.m. Central Time.

Sweepstakes Terms and Conditions

1. No purchase necessary. A purchase does not improve your chance of winning. Void where prohibited.

2. Entrant must be 18 years old as of sweepstakes start date and a legal resident of Canada, the 50 United States and the District of Columbia as of start date.

3. Sweepstakes begins Friday, September 19, 2014, at 12:00 a.m. Central Time, and closes on Friday, September 26, 2014, at 12:00 a.m. Central Time.

4. Each entrant selected as a potential winner must comply with all terms and conditions set forth in these Official Rules, and winning is contingent upon fulfilling all such requirements. Winners will be selected by random drawing. If a potential winner cannot be contacted within fourteen (14) days after the first attempt to contact such potential winner, an alternate entrant will be selected in his or her place from all entries received.

5. Sponsor(s) is/are not responsible for lost or mutilated prizes and none will be replaced. Prize is nontransferable and must be accepted as awarded. No cash or other substitution may be made, except by Sponsor(s) in the event that the prize cannot be awarded for any reason, in which case, Sponsor(s) will award a prize of equal or greater value. All taxes, fees and surcharges on prizes are the sole responsibility of winner.

September 18, 2014

makeup of the day | welcome autumn

So maybe I’m jumping the gun by five days, but it’s actually feeling like fall in my neck of the woods, and I’ve been embracing it wholeheartedly.

From putting away my summer clothes and shoes and donning new boots and layers, I’ve just been missing two finishing touches to my autumn look: Updated makeup and accessories.

Until now.

kjaer weis new fall 2014 makeup colors

Kjaer Weis releases its new fall colors today, and I’ve had the privilege of playing with these new colors for the past few weeks.

Meet “Green Depth,” a gorgeous green eye shadow decorated with hints of gold.

Give a big hug to “Embrace,” a soft pink cream blush that kisses your cheeks with a light, believable flush of color.

Kiss “Lover’s Choice” smack on the lips and get a rush of ruby red to your lips if you dare, or apply it very lightly and blend for a berry-stained pout.

kjaer weis fall 2014 makeup colors

kjaer weis fall 2014 makeup colors

In addition to pretty new fall colors, I’ve also incorporated earthy new earrings into my fall wardrobe.

These earrings from Moazen Jewelry & Accessories capture everything I love about fall — texture, mixed media and an overall natural grit that looks just stunning juxtaposed with a bit of glam makeup.

There’s a few other earrings in the collection that beg to be dangling from my ears this season (hello, cool leaf earrings).

If you’ve been around the blog a bit, you know I’m a huge accessories junkie, so updating this part of my wardrobe is key to feeling fresh as the seasons change. The right accessories can completely change a look!

{And if you’ve been around a blog a lot, you know that I like to do fun stuff on Fridays — watch this space tomorrow for an opportunity to update your own accessories collection!)

kjaer weis fall 2014 makeup colors

Get the “Welcome Autumn” look:

La Bella Donna Complete Brow Kit in Brunette

I bought the last La Bella Donna Complete Brow Kit in Brunette that The Detox Market had in stock the day I visited the shop in Los Angeles last month. I’ve been searching for a clean replacement to my beloved Anastasia Brow Kit, and this one from La Bella Donna is close. The brunette powder is a bit darker than I’m used to, so I have to use even lighter, softer strokes, but overall, it’s a nice replacement.

*Kjaer Weis Foundation in Paper Thin & Just Sheer

I detailed my experience with Kjaer Weis’ foundation in this full review, but I will reiterate that I think “Just Sheer” is a bit of a better match for me even though it’s still not perfect. The undertones are right, though!

*Kjaer Weis Eye Shadow in Green Depth

To be honest, I’m kind of a boring brown eye shadow girl, but when I do wear color, it tends to be violet and green to bring out the bits of gold in my brown eyes. This eye shadow helps bring out those flecks even more because it itself has the gold flecks! I think “Green Depth” would make for an amazing smoky eye, too — I’ll try that soon and show you!

*Nvey Eco Eye Shadow in Shroom

I used this color to blend a bit in the hollow and up to the crease of my brow to give my lids a little more dimension. Nvey Eco eye shadows have this soft, velvety finish that I adore.

*Cate McNabb Cosmetics Gel Eye Liner in Black

Though I’m quite married to my liquid liner pens, a good pot of gel liner delivers a sexy, sleek line that stays put. Cate McNabb’s Gel Eyeliner gives me that inky length I like in my cat eyes. Meow.

*Studio 78 Paris Double Effect Mascara

Marissa over at BeauTeaBar sent me this mascara a while back, and it’s on my repurchase list. It’s not a wet, heavy mascara, which is ideal for my short, straight lashes, and it holds a curl well. And, as evidenced by the last picture in this post, it lengthens like whoa!

*Kjaer Weis Lip Tint in Lover’s Choice

I’m a sucker for red lips, but I love red lip tints even more when they are buildable. Most of the reds in my collection are extreme red; there’s no in-between. With Kjaer Weis’ Lip Tint in Lover’s Choice, you can layer it on to be as va-va-voom as you like, and the deep, brick red pairs well with popular fall palette colors.

*Kjaer Weis Cream Blush in Embrace

Though I only own two Kjaer Weis cream blushes, “Embrace” is my favorite of the two right now. This baby soft, bluish-pink is just so elegant, and I love that it works on my skin tone (imagine that!). I’m sure it would look quite stunning on a pale, cool-undertone gal, too. I feel like this is the light flush of color I get naturally, and now I can enhance that just a bit without overwhelming my face.

*Kjaer Weis Highlighter in Radiance

I’ve rounded up a few highlighters before Kjaer Weis’ “Radiance” entered my life. This luminizer is so different than the other ones I’ve tried because it looks a bit more silvery without being too cool and has almost a cream-to-powder finish to it. It doesn’t slip around, yet gives you that dewy look! You may be able to see where I’ve applied it to the inner corners of my eyes and Cupid’s bow. It just gives my face that glow!

*Indicates gifted sample

What makeup and accessories are you incorporating into your fall wardrobe? Have you started switching out your closet just yet? Have you tried any of the natural cosmetics I’ve mentioned above? Tell me your thoughts in the comments section!

 

September 17, 2014

beauty scoop | may lindstrom skin the jasmine garden botanical mist

Remember that super-personal post about facial soap that I shared a few weeks ago?

Today’s review of May Lindstrom Skin’s The Jasmine Garden Botanical Mist is going to be somewhat in line with that one.

If you don’t care for the details, here’s the short and sweet of it: this is (and has already been, several times) a repurchase.

But who doesn’t love a good story?

may lindstrom skin the jasmine garden botanical mist

{I purchased a bottle of The Jasmine Garden from May Lindstrom herself at A Night for Green Beauty in Los Angeles. It costs $60 for a 100 ml Miron glass spray bottle.}

In fall/winter 2013, May gifted me with a sample of The Jasmine Garden as she was still perfecting the formula (it just officially launched in August!).

I fell in love with the scent (obviously, Ms. Jasmine-Lover right here) and the light touches of vanilla and cocoa that tickled my senses.

The skin-healing effects of witch hazel and silver didn’t hurt, either (more on that later, though).

As I got through my sample, May ran an exclusive promotion for her clients — a free sample of The Jasmine Garden with a purchase of The Honey Mud or The Blue Cocoon.

Sold. (For the record, I restocked The Honey Mud.)

Of course, I ran through that bottle like a crazy woman, misting my face morning, noon and night.

More. More. More. I needed more!

Enter February 2014.

I’m going through some crazy life changes (including moving apartments in the dead of a snowy Kansas winter), and May announces her Limited Edition “I Am Love” set which includes — you guessed it — The Jasmine Garden.

Sold.

Again.

One of only 35 people who were able to buy this luxe, limited edition set.

And I bought it mainly because I needed to have another bottle of The Jasmine Garden.

So, to back up again, back when I was first sampling my freebie from May, lots of stuff changed in my life.

I won’t get into details, but believe me, it sucked and my skin always goes into panic mode when things aren’t fine and dandy with my health or my heart.

But my skin never did the complete explosion that it usually does during times of high stress, and I credit the amazing combination of my beloved black clay soap coupled with this soothing yet powerful mist for keeping my skin serene when everything else in life was falling apart.

Here’s what’s inside The Jasmine Garden:

pure water (aqua), *hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel), argentum metallicum (silver), jasmine grandiforium absolue, caprylic/capric triglyceride, jasminium officinale (jasmine) extract, *rosa damascena (rose) oil, *cananga odorata (ylang ylang oil), *vanilla planifolia (vanilla) CO2 total essential oil, theobroma cacao (cocoa) oil *Certified Organic

The skincare star ingredients in this mist are witch hazel, silver and caprylic/capric triglyceride, all known for their anti-inflammatory and skin-healing effects.

As I always note in products that contain silver, it’s just one of those things that you have to make the call on for yourself.

No strong feelings about it here, but something I do take note of when I look at a product’s overall formulation; with The Jasmine Garden, silver is higher up on the list (ingredient No. 3), which could be part of why my skin reacted well — silver is known for its antibacterial properties.

But, I also know that my skin just loves witch hazel.

Applied neat, witch hazel is way too drying for me.

But in a gorgeous blend, especially with soothing ingredients like caprylic/capric triglyceride (these are caprylic and capric fatty acids from coconut oil) and a host of soothing plant extracts and oils, witch hazel becomes a delectable treat for my skin.

I reach for The Jasmine Garden the week before and during my nicest time of the month to help prevent breakouts and calm my anxiety.

(It’s pretty much a daily use item for me, anyway, though I do have to rotate in and out toners that I’m testing for the blog.)

I will say, though, that these Miron glass misting jars (seems to be the same ones Yuli, Laurel and a few other brands use) aren’t exactly my favorite.

The mist that comes out is acceptable — not too targeted — but it’s not as fine and wide of a spray as the misting bottles that Acure and even sample sizes of Fig + Yarrow uses.

But that’s more of an issue to take up with the glass developer.

I digress.

For active blemishes, I don’t have much to say about The Jasmine Garden — I rarely had major breakouts while using this mist! Consistency will definitely be key when experiencing rough skin weeks.

All in all, this has obviously been a repurchase for me several times, and I won’t be without The Jasmine Garden as long as May continues to make it.

I’ll go ahead and move it into staple status right now.

Now, off to mist my face.

Have you tried The Jasmine Garden? What do you look for in a toning mist? Do you have strong thoughts on silver? Tell me in the comments section!



    Theme by Blogmilk   Coded by Brandi Bernoskie