Thursday, March 31, 2016

My Thoughts on Eyelash Fibers and Primers

It's raining here in Punta Cana, so instead of being in the pool with a Pina Colada I am here, tap tap tapping away at my laptop. For the past week I have been trying a new eyelash combination and thought I would share my thoughts with you. 

I've had eyelash extensions on and off (mostly on) for about a year now, but my very last one has fallen off on this trip, so I have been trying these two lash products on my bare lashes (as one should).  

The products in question? The new L'oreal Voluminous Superstar Mascara and the Milani Length in Seconds Lash Extension Fibers.

Let's chat about the mascara first. First of all, I'm a big fan of almost all of L'oreal's mascaras and especially their original voluminous formula. This new one features two ends, one which is a white primer and the other, your usual black mascara. Mascara primers have always stumped me, because I don't actually feel that they do much. Maybe it's my lashes in particular, but even when layered on, following by copious amounts of black mascara to cover the white, I still don't feel that it looks much different than the same amount of mascara would have done. This is usually how it goes down:

*Lolly Lolly, here I am applying for white primer! My lashes are going to be super luscious and thick and impressive! So impressive that everyone on the streets will stop me and ask, "What mascara are you using! It's so lovely and magical!"*

*Ok, here goes the mascara! I love this mascara on it's own I guess but with the primer it is going to be transformed and everyone will ask me if I have extensions and I will be like, "No, it's just a drugstore mascara! And they will be so impressed!" Oh wait... why is it kinda gray? Why isn't it covering the white, like at all? Maybe I'll try to wiggle it differently on the other eye?*

*Um ok... that didn't work either. Even this second coat is kinda gray? Did I apply it wrong? Maybe my lashes are too light to begin with so combined with the white primer they turn like ultra white and they are just like... not right? For the primer?*

*Third coat. Oh. Ok. I mean I guess it's black now, and super thick. But kinda crunchy and also wouldn't three coats on it's own still have achieved this same effect? I feel very unsure about this whole experience.*

So... yeah, lash primers are weird for me and something I am never sure is worth it. 

My thoughts overall on this mascara? I like the mascara side, but I'm not sure it's QUITE as good as just the original voluminous mascara, and I'm overall unsure about primers. While this is an OK mascara and there is nothing wrong with it, it's not one I would repurchase again only because it's not more than ok. 

Moving on to the lash fibers. These are not the first lash fibers I have tried, but I was curious about this one in particular because you buy this tube separately and not alongside any particular mascara, which means you can use any mascara you want. Most fibers I have seen are packaged along with a mascara you are meant to use with it, and I am picky about my mascaras. 

These fibers are meant to be applied to your wet lash tips after the application of a coat of mascara, and then covered with another coat of mascara. 

Here's the thing though... lash fibers literally make your lashes look like furry tarantula's legs. They DO make your lashes look bigger but they do so by kinda clinging onto your lashes like little baby furs (which essentially, they are) and if you look closely they look furry. I feel that this is a very odd look and it throws me off when I try to use products like this. That being said, I continue to use them because I would rather have furry lashes than no lashes at all which is essentially what I look like when I am wearing just a base of mascara and that's it. 

Overall... I'm unsure about the fibers. I don't hate them, and they definitely do work, I'm just not sure of the end result. For now, I will keep using them, but I will do so knowing that furry spider legs are the result (and that's ok).

What do you guys think about primers and fibers? Have you found a secret combination that just works?

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Hello I'm Alive

The weirdest thing happened just now. I'm sitting here, in my hotel room, on a family vacation in Punta Cana, and I got this overwhelming urge to write a blog post. 

Hello my name is Elle Fowler and it has been 10 months since my last post. And I stole the above picture from Blair's Instagram.

I just wanted to chat really, about makeup and life. In the last 10 months I have healed from a broken back, gotten engaged, bought and moved into my first house, started a new company, planned a summer wedding, and gotten a second cat (lol). It's been busy, and wonderful, but what it has not been is productive on the makeup front, and that means both for videos and blogs. 

I think I have been a bit overwhelmed with my "outside of YouTube" life. You guys know that makeup and YouTube stuff was always a hobby first and a job second, and I really struggle with it when I don't feel particularly inspired. Recently I've been a bit bored with it, to be honest. I feel that everyone creates the same videos over and over, and I find that when I am bored with other people's videos it makes me bored with my own. Couple being bored with videos with the fact that my life outside of YouTube has been busy and you get what you have right now... a stagnant "in-between" phase. 

I went to the drugstore the other day and just stood in the makeup aisle in a silent fervent haze and I realized... man, I still LOVE makeup. It gives me butterflies to look at all the new products and then take them home and play with them. I love researching them and swatching the colors and textures, always convinced that I will find something better than the last, always convinced something new will be a future holy grail of mine. "What if this is the foundation I wear on my wedding day and I don't even know it yet?!" Skincare is the same, and body products too; all of it makes me genuinely happy. The promise of a new result, the rush of giddiness trying it for the first time, it's the best. 

I'll tell you this - when I spend time and happiness creating a video full of stuff I love (like a favorites video) and then every single comment talks about the video being sponsored (when it's not) it really just kinda kicks that happy bubble of a feeling. It pokes the bubble. The bubble is poked, it bursts, and then I'm sitting there like... ok hmm wait where is that happy bubble? Hello... bubble. Come back. 

It makes me want to buy products and play with them and keep the happy bubble to myself. 

I'm not even complaining really, I think it's the community as a whole. The YouTube beauty community is not what it once was in terms of feeling like a community. Right now it feels like a bunch of skeptics watching a bunch of girls try to convince people to buy something they are being paid to sell. It's just turned into something weird, all around. 

But then there's me. I've been around the beauty community since the beginning, since before most people who watch it today were watching, and I'm still here loving on the same things I loved on then. I'm 8 years older, and in a much different place in my life, and I still get the exact same feeling when I walk into a makeup aisle. 

So where does that leave me? 

I'm not even really sure. I'm not saying bye to YouTube, my channel is my baby... but I'm in a weird place right now. Maybe I'll start blogging? There are certain blogs that still give me that feeling of community that a YouTube channel doesn't anymore. I would love to create that here. 

I guess I would just love to hear your thoughts on all of it, whatever they are. Feel free to leave comments :)


A Massage at the Hard Rock: A Review

You know that one thing that you find it impossible to pass up spending money on? It might be an expensive coffee shop, or a rare bookstore, or a regular mani down your street, but whatever it is, I feel that all of us have one "splurge" that we know we could go without but we do it anyway, every time. 

For me, it's massages when I'm on vacation. 

I know, I know. But listen, there are a ton of health benefits to regular massages in addition to it making you feel loose as a goose (but I wouldn't recommend getting drunk afterwards). Sometimes I'll get a pedicure, or a facial, but honestly, 99% of the time I will opt for a massage. 

I love massages. 

Massages have many health benefits such as reduced muscle tension, improved circulation, stimulation of the lymphatic system, reduced stress, increased joint mobility and flexibility, heightened mental alertness, improved skin tone, and reduced anxiety and depression. They can also help with back pain (check), chronic pain (check), and insomnia (check check check) so... yeah. I love them. 

All that science stuff aside, I love the way they make me feel, so here I am, at the Hard Rock Punta Cana, and I have decided to start a new series called "Spa Treatments and What I Thought" (a working title). Here we go.

Spa: Rock Spa at the Hard Rock Hotel in Punta Cana

Treatment Name: Relaxing Massage

Official Description: Restore your vital energy with this full body massage. Let the tension and stress disappear on contact. This massage provides a wonderful sense of well-being, as it improves circulation, relaxes muscles, and stimulates the lymphatic system.

Thoughts: This was basically a Swedish massage with a little bit of Lomi-Lomi thrown in. Normally I'm a bit more "adventurous" with my massages, and will select one that looks unique to that particular spa, but my mom booked these as a mother/daughter thing, and regardless of its plainness it was wonderful. The spa itself is huge, definitely one of the largest ones I have ever visited, and was underground (don't you know all the best spas are?) so it was very dark and cave-like. And massive, did I mention that? I actually got lost trying to find the entrance, and then lost again trying to find the locker area, and then I just kinda stood there like a bump on a log waiting for someone to tell me where to go... I think finally someone took pity on me and led me about a mile underground, past many a pool, past many a waterfall, to my room. Oh, and you aren't allowed to have anything with you, even your phone, but being the rebel I am I snuck mine in my pocket and then was too nervous to use it so I just sat there hoping it wouldn't vibrate. Lol.

Would I recommend?: Yes, the spa is gorgeous and the treatment was totally relaxing. 

Would I go again?: Yes, we have a bunch of free room credit that was a sign up bonus for booking within a certain window for a certain number of nights (I'm not even really sure all I know is we have free room credit), so I plan on visiting the spa a few more times before the end of this trip. I'll keep you posted :) 

Also, this resort is huge (like 2 miles long?) and I think Jurassic park is literally right across the road. Like it's right there. Even the electric fence to keep the raptors in (out?)... take a look: 


I'm curious... what's your "one thing"?

A Book Babble

In the last 2 weeks I have read 3 books. Although I would consider myself a reader, in the past year I have been slacking on the book front, mostly because I couldn't find time for it. I used to read before bed every night in my "before-Alex" life, but now I want to spend that time with him, so reading has been pushed to the side, becoming something I would only do while traveling. Alex also enjoys reading, but he does this in the mornings before I even wake up, so he continued to get his reading fix.

Then, about 2 weeks ago, I had a day where I was feeling quite sick (blame Aunt Flo) and I told the sticker sorority (we have a group chat called "Alpha Glamma Planna") (lol) that I needed a personal day, and shut myself up in my room. I pulled out my iPad as I wanted to be able to purchase an instant book (although, to be honest, I quite hate the digital book thing and much prefer actual hardcopy books) and selected "The Siren" by Kiera Cass, and Oh. My. Goodness.

My love of reading came whishing back like a train off the tracks ready to wipe everything out. 

Since then I have been making little bits of time daily to read, whether it be in the morning over my cup (or 3) of coffee, or for a few minutes right before bed, and I feel a lot of feels about it. 

First of all, I feel happier. 

Second of all, I feel sadder, mostly because my whole life revolves around trying to figure out when I can next read. I miss the days of being able to read for days and days on end in the summers of my youth. (lol)

Anyway, I thought I would babble on about the book I mentioned above.

The Siren by Kiera Cass: The world has seen vampires, witches, and werewolves come into teen fiction, followed by Fae (Fairies) and pretty much every other type of mythical folk, but this was the first book I have seen in the "Teen Fiction" genre that is about Sirens. Sirens are known in folklore as the beautiful women who would lure sailors to their doom using their magical voices. Their ships would crash into deadly rocks or the sailors would jump to their death willingly, trying to get closer to the beautiful music. This book is about the Sirens, and the life and slavery they are bound to. 

The book follows a girl named Kahlen who has been a siren for 80 years by the time this book starts. In this world, sirens aren't born, they are made. If the Ocean decides she wants another Siren, then during the next "sinking" she looks to see if there is a suitable girl on the ship. If there is, she offers them their life in exchange for 100 years of Sirenhood (slavery), after which they return to being mortal and can live in the human world. 

Of course there is a love story and a bunch of teenage angst and overall it's a lovely read. 

It's GOOD. I recommend it, and this book had a pull that pulled me right back into the world of constant reading and was quickly followed by 2 more books. 

Have you read any books lately that you loved? 

Monday, March 28, 2016

The Mysterious Case of the Abercrombie Changer

Let me take you back in time, back many a year ago, where this story begins.

The first time I discovered Abercrombie and Fitch I was in middle school, back to school shopping, when we walked by a store that smelled like a teenage boy. We walked in and my mom ended up buying me my very first A&F shirt (a burnt orange, very unattractive, graphic tee that I had to have). Abercrombie was my very first fashion crush, the first store that I would literally make me weak in the knees. I would go in there every time we went to the mall, even though it was way too expensive for me, and I dreamed of working there. (Dream big, 12 yr old Elle.)

When I was 15 I walked into an Abercrombie on this very type of day, a "I wanna just stare at all the clothes" day, a bored summer day, and met the boy that became my very first love. He got me my first "real job" there, and we spent a few summers working there together. I worked there all through high school and college.

You could say it has a very special place in my heart.

But, as the years went on Abercrombie became... stagnant. I outgrew the fashions, and their fashions outgrew fashion (seriously, what even happened to that store?!) until I all but forgot about it. Until last week...

My mom needed a denim jacket, and asked me to see if they had any, and oh my goodness, what happened to this store? Did they get bought out? *Googles "Did Abercrombie get bought out?"* *OMG THEY DID.* Well, not exactly, but basically they were going bankrupt so they changed the whole store, and I like it

I promptly placed an order and I am so pleased with everything. Here's what I got:

They even have leggings with stirrups, which I have looked for everywhere. They even sell black now. When I worked there they adamantly never sold black ever ever ever. 

1. Drapey Knot Front Tee: I bought this top in 3 colors, white, grey, and the navy stripes, and I'm so glad I did. This is so flattering, and gives a little something to an otherwise plain tee. 

2. Low Rise 4 Inch Denim Shorts: I bought these to suit my needs of wanting short shorts that weren't too short. I'm not 15 anymore, I don't want my butt hanging out of my jeans (I mean... I want it to almost hang out, but not quite. It's a fine line.) and these shorts are perfect. I approve. 

3. Dark Brown Leather Flip Flops: I wanted a classic pair of flip flops to wear to the beach this summer, and to Target, and around the house, and, well, I live in flops like these. So into the cart they went. I love them, they are very comfy with a bit of a cushion to it. 

4. Crochet Bralette: This was a bit of a WTF purchase to be honest. I'm not sure why I thought my 32DDD's would fit nicely into a bralette by a brand known for flat chested models, but actually, it's not too bad. I might wear this under something, or not, I'm not sure. 

5. Lace Trim Printed Short: I feel that these is an item that people will either love and see the fashion to it, or hate and think I shopped in an old ladies sewing bag. I happen to be the former, and I love them. I wore them on the plane to Punta Cana and they were the perfect traveling shorts. 

Overall, I'm super impressed and Abercrombie is coming back onto my radar, and not just for nostalgic reasons. 

Talk soon
xx Elle

Ins and Outs

I'm in a mid-life crisis right now. I have too many outlets (3 Youtube channels, 2 blogs, 2 shops, 2 instagrams, 3 FB's, 3 Twitters, like hello, I'm over it.) So even though this blog should theoretically go on IHeartYouCoffee it's going on here because I am trying to streamline my life. Maybe I should condense everything into one place. I don't know, I don't even know. Here we go. 


1) Whole Foods Chocolate Covered Almonds. OMG you guys. I have become obsessed. I have one girl who works at the Sticker Shop who has quite the sweet tooth, and she would bring a baggie of these to work every now and then and snack on these. She also happens to be the girl who shares a desk in the same room as me (the other girls work in the next room over) so I would watch her eat these daily. Now, I like chocolate covered almonds as much as the next person, but I don't seek them out. They aren't super special. 


One day, she left for lunch, and came back with a baggie for her, and a baggie for me. Now, she gets me a baggie every few days when she gets one for herself. I. am. addicted.

I tried to offer them to Alex but he said they "made his cheeks itch." That's fine, more for me. 

2) The baby cat. Don't get me wrong, Pee-cone is like, the love of my life, but Baby Cat has just stolen our hearts. Alex is obsessed with the baby cat. He asked me the other day, "Do you think we can bring the cats and ALSO their cat tree (lol) to the hotel for our wedding? I just don't think it would be the same without them..."

Also baby cat is no longer a baby but rather a tyrannical teenager but his name will unfortunately forever be baby cat. We keep trying to make other names stick but they just won't. The closest we have come is "Baby Bat" which is what we are currently calling him so... there's that.

The Baby Cat and Pee-Cone, watching the rain fall. 

3) The TV show "Girls". My friend Andrea recommended this to me and I started it only to binge a whole season in one sitting. I started up season 2 and Alex walked in, started watching with me, and got hooked. We binged all of season 2 in a week and are now watching season 3. It is honestly the weirdest show ever and I'm not sure I would recommend it to anyone, yet I love it and we watch it like "lol". Also it's NSFW or airplanes, which I learned the hard way (sorry guy in seat 3B). 


1) Movies with subtitles. Call me vapid but I don't want to read subtitles. I would rather play Panda Pop on my phone as I casually listen to whatever mindless babble is on the TV, I don't want to have to READ the movie. Alex loves subtitles and gets minority offended when I don't want to watch something because of the subtitles. Like EX-SKEWS-ME.

2) Coffee that sucks. Seriously though, Alex described this mornings hotel coffee like "a vanilla wafer stuck in an old mans shoe" and it was so disgustingly spot on that I laughed and coffee came out my nose. I'm a coffee snob with very low standards (hello, I love my Keurig) and this stuff wouldn't even pass if I was on the moon. 

3) The one eyelash that won't fall off. I have eyelash extensions (I've been getting them on and off for a year) but I haven't had a touch up in 2 weeks and so they are all gone except one who is adamently holding on for dear life. It's the lone solider, carrying on doing his job with dignity and respect. 

And that's about it for now. Over and out, Captain Crunch. 

My New Weave

I recently got some new hair extensions, and I'm not sure how I feel about them. 

This isn't my first time at the weave rodeo; I have had individual extensions before, but this was my first time trying tape in extensions. 

My problem with the individual extensions was 2-fold. 1) It took about 8 hours to put in and take out, which nobody has time for that, and 2) They tangled like a b*tch at the roots. Like they straight matted up. Blame my curly hair, (seriously, read that post if you haven't) but they were pretty much impossible to deal with after about 2 weeks of washing them. As much as I loved the look, the individual bonds were not for me.  

After having several hairdressers and stylists at shoots recommend tape extensions to me, I decided to give it a whirl. 

Above is a before and after picture of my new 1-inch tape "hot head" extensions, which look beautiful. Looks-wise, I'm completely happy. But.

Yes there is a But. A Butt with a capital B minus a T. 

These things feel like little strips of tape stuck in my hair. Which they are. They are literally tape strips. Imagine washing your hair with a bunch of other hair taped into your hair all over. What part of me thought these wouldn't feel like that? After washing them for the first time I texted Blair and was all "wtf is in my hair?" And she was basically like, "sucks to be you, i got the good hair." Which, I mean #truth. 

On top of that, they are really hard to wash and also dry. They are just so freaking weird. I have little weird tapes all over my head and I don't like it.

Also, I'm not sure I got the best quality hair. Has anyone tried the hot heads before? The hair itself gets really frizzy and tangled on day 2 or 3 of washing it and I don't remember my individuals being like that. 

But I love the way they look, so I'm at a standstill. Will I get them again? Likely yes, because... well I dunno. I like long hair I guess. 

On a side note, I was checking into my hotel late last night, and my hair had been through hell what with traveling 14 hours straight without brushing it and the Dominican Republic humidity (and trust me, when you have THAT MUCH HAIR it has to be brushed all the time) and the front desk guy goes... "I like your hair". And then my dad goes, "yeah it looks like a beaver just crawled out of there after building a nest". I basically looked like a less attractive Bellatrix Lestrange. 

So there's that. 
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