Monday, April 30, 2012

April Favorites, Empties, and a Change of Course

I didn't do a Monthly Favorites post last month, since I didn't feel like I really had anything of interest to share, and I'd only used up one product. April fared slightly better in both regards!

You probably know by now that I'm a bit OCD (if not, see my polish and perfume spreadsheets), and I've been loving perfume lately. Most recently, it was polish (obviously), and before that, makeup in general. For a few years, it was cross stitching that I spent my time and energy doing, and I know I will go back to that eventually, but for the time being, I'm enjoying reading about all the wonderful perfumes there are!
My perfume collection, such as it is. Lots of sample vials! I'm going to need a new system soon.

The weather's been variable this month, with several really gorgeous, sunny, warm days, and I've chosen my fragrance accordingly. For colder, drizzly days I find myself reaching for warm orientals; Féminité du Bois from Serge Lutens is delightful (and shares a lot in common with Bond No. 9 Lexington Avenue!), as are Fréderic Malle Musc Ravageur and SL Ambre Sultan. Guerlain Samsara is a lovely jasmine-sandalwood that I find gorgeous on cloudy, temperate days. By Kilian Beyond Love is my new love; it's a simply gorgeous, sensual, delicious tuberose. I've never smelled the actual flower, but all the reviews say this captures it perfectly––it's got silky soft white petals, crisp greens, sweet nectar, all underlaid with what is apparently a rubbery scent, which adds depth and sex appeal. Seriously, seriously gorgeous, and now I want to try other tuberose perfumes (Piguet Fracas, SL Tubéreuse Criminelle, and FM Carnal Flower are all on my list). I've found myself drawn more to "dirty" florals lately rather than the cleanness of Chanel Chance eau tendre, Dior Diorissimo, or Guerlain Après l'Ondée, but I imagine once the weather gets really hot I'll find myself wanting crisper, cooler scents. Though who knows, I may end up being one of those people who embraces the heat's tendency to embiggen scents and wear big orientals in July. And I mustn't forget dear Guerlain Mitsouko; my sample is almost gone, so I've been hoarding it to share with L, but I've got the extrait de parfum in my cart for when I order from Surrender to Chance and anticipate buying a full bottle eventually. Still have so much sniffing to do!

I also saw a post from Cris at Let Them Have Polish about making your own nail polish jewelry, so I've spent several hours planning out what supplies to buy and coming up with fun layering combinations. This is what I do instead of reading for fun––I do so much reading for school, it's nice to have something completely different and mindless on the side. I've been practicing galaxy nails on my nail wheels in the hopes that I can do a galaxy nail ring, along with a variety of fun layerings! There may be a giveaway in the future, hint hint...
All lined up in a row...
I've also (re)reorganized my polish stash (above), which took me way too long and is hopefully going to prevent me from buying any more polish for a good long time so that I don't have to move it around again!

Armani Rouge d'Armani 600 (left), Guerlain Rouge Automatique Chamade (right)
I've also been loving my bright lipsticks. When it's sunny and wonderful outside, I feel like celebrating with cute clothes and fun makeup! When wearing warmer-themed outfits, I've been reaching for Guerlain Rouge Automatique in Chamade (review to come), and for cooler looks Armani 600 is my bestie. And I probably don't need to mention Revlon Sugar Plum, do I? I've also found myself liking the Physicians Formula lip gloss (color me shocked!), since it lasts a long time and leaves my lips feeling very moisturized. I've got to do some spring cleaning of my makeup collection, especially lippies, since I feel like there are so many that I just never wear, so you can probably expect to see a post about that sometime in the near future!

I've finished off a few products the past couple months. I used up another bottle of shampoo, conditioner, and hair mousse (Suave Captivating Curls for all 3; if you have curly hair, check it out! Less than $10 for the whole lot), but those hardly count. I also finished off (or rather, decided it smelled funky so deemed it donezo) my mini MOR Lychee Flower body butter. Still want to buy a full size, but probably will never decide it's worth the splurge. I also finished off two of the 6 oz Philosophy shower gels I got back in...November? I'd been rotating through them and a couple of other shower gels, and finally decided it was time to try and finish at least some of them off for good. Peace on Earth was the first to go, because I liked it the best so I used it the most, and then Cinnamon Buns. There's only an ounce or two left in Holiday Lights Aglow, but it smells so autumnal/Christmasy that I find it hard to use it when it's so clearly not holiday season, so it may have to be set aside until next fall! I also almost finished a tube of Sugar Plum, but it's so close to being gone and is all smeared on the inside of the tube (which happened ages ago; I don't know why, but the stick in that one really wasn't in there very securely) and after using it when I was sick I decided it's probably time to call it good.

And now, the "change of course": I've lost some of my passion for beauty products. Part of it is that I have a collection I'm really pleased with, full of products I like and use and without obvious gaps, so I just don't feel the need to search out new products. Part of it is that I am a grad student, on a grad student's salary, and it's becoming less worth it to me to spend such a big chunk of my disposable income on beauty products. Part of it is that I do go through phases, and as I mentioned above, right now, I'm digging perfume, but mostly for my own benefit; I don't think I really have anything new or worthwhile to add to the wealth of perfume knowledge available online, so I feel less compelled to write about it for the blog (and while I will still keep up Fragrance Fridays, I think they'll become less formal again, though hopefully also more thoughtful). And part of it is just that I'm running out of space, both physical and mental. I feel like I have so much stuff, and while I really do love much of it, it's still a lot. I'm not about to become a minimalist or anything (as if), but I do hope to really streamline what I have so it best suits my needs. I plan to go through and "cull the herd", as it were, which will result in either a blog sale or, more likely, foisting the things I no longer want off on my friends.

But blogging is a release for me. I get to jabber on about makeup, and sometimes people even jabber back! I love having this refuge, and I love getting to know people who share some of the same passions. So BJB won't be going away, don't worry! It'll probably just be scaled back. There won't be as many product reviews, but I'll try to still come up with interesting content, including posts keeping track of everything I buy (because it'll be good for me, too, to see what exactly my money's being spent on!) and everything I use up, including samples, as well as those products I throw out or give away. I always love reading other bloggers' posts on such things, and I hope you'll enjoy mine as well.

Thoughts? Comments? Questions? What have you been loving this month? And what have you used up/thrown out/gotten bored with? 
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