Has blogging become uncool? Have I officially fallen back into the uncool crowd who blogs like I was an awkward member of back in 2007? Do people even read blogs anymore?
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. I personally love blogging and what it’s done for my life. It’s given me a voice, my own uncontrolled outlet to express myself, and it’s brought me a lot of new friends. Yet it just feels like the blogging days are over and most people are constantly coming back from “blogging breaks” and vanishing just as quickly as they returned.
So what is it about blogging these days that makes it not-so glamorous anymore? Everyone and their sister is hopping on YouTube, but I still find that my blog gets the most organic love and attention. I do love myself a good YouTube video, but there’s just something about rambling on, fingers to the keyboard, about the things that give us passion.
Maybe it died down because people weren’t getting the rise to fame like they expected. I don’t find blogging easy. Even after almost a decade of doing it on one platform or another, finding topics and motivation is hard. Yet I wouldn’t want to just stop and abandon something I put so much time and energy into. Blogging isn’t something you’re going to get rich doing. You aren’t going to gather tons of loyal brands to constantly send things to you. You aren’t going to get mountains of free things and money.
Bloggers seem to be dying off and with that the readers who tuned in. Hopefully I’m just being dramatic and that’s really not the case, but it just feels different these days. Less people sharing posts, engaging with content, and cursing the blogosphere for convincing them to buy yet another foundation. Although I fear that the lack of readership may be a fact and something that’s here to stay, I don’t want to quit. I started blogging because I loved it as a creative art form and I’ll probably continue doing it until it becomes like teaching cursive in schools. I just can’t give up on it.
Are you out there people? Are there people who still read blogs? You tell me.
Chocolate mousse might have to be my favorite indulgent dessert ever since I learned how to make it myself during a Sur la Table baking class. It was the perfect choice for the first recipe in my new Bake with Me series, even though you don’t actually do any baking.
Makes about 4-6 servings
2 cups heavy cream
4 egg yolks
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 tsp salt
8 ounces baking chocolate (I like to use a combination of semi-sweet and sweet)
Heat ¾ cup cream in a saucepan until it simmers. Whisk together yolks, sugar, and a pinch of salt in a bowl until combined well, then add hot cream in a slow stream, whisking until combined. Transfer mixture back to saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture becomes thick and can coat the back of a spatula. Pour custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl and stir in vanilla.
Melt chocolate in a microwave safe container in short increments until melted, stirring frequently. Whisk custard into chocolate until smooth, then cool.
Beat remaining 1¼ cups cream in a bowl with an electric mixer or stand mixer until it holds stiff peaks. Whisk one third of cream into chocolate custard to lighten, then fold in remaining cream gently but thoroughly until color is consistent.
Spoon mousse into ramekins or other containers and chill. Let stand at room temperature about 20 minutes before serving. Mousse can be frozen and keeps in the fridge for up to five days.
After this recipe I definitely feel like I can make just about anything. All it takes is a little patience, a few reads of the recipe, and willing taste-testers!
The blogging world is definitely abuzz with the minimalist trend lately. Gone are the days of hording makeup and enter ones filled with less things and more purpose. I’m definitely so on bored with decluttering and have shared my two cents on Marie Kondo’s book to boot. Yet a capsule wardrobe of only a few shirts and things each season just isn’t doable no matter how hard I try. So if you want to get on board with less is more but can’t hack a 37 piece wardrobe, here’s how to streamline your closet.
Go Marie Kondo and empty everything out of your closet. Literally everything. Throw it into a large pile and decide what stays and what goes. You can be as strict as Kondo demands, or your own version. Just as long as you’re being honest about what should say and what should go.
Pretend you are making a capsule wardrobe, but don’t limit yourself on pieces. Seriously consider what you wear most often and fill in wardrobe gaps where you see them.
Organize your closet based on categories so you can really see what types of clothes you have more of than others. I personally have at least 10 different colored cardigans. For some that would seem nuts, but I love wearing them over tank tops or blouses. This method could also help you realize you have way too many tshirts and you need to get rid of some more.
Keep clothes that reflect your lifestyle and get rid of those that don’t. If you have dozens of formal dresses but never go to anything formal, they’re no longer needed in your closet. I have a lot of office casual clothes that I recently parted with now that I work at home. Sure I might find the need for them one day, but if that time ever comes around I’ll just buy new ones as my current ones will be worn out and moth ridden by then.
Try the hanger trick and flip all your hangers around backwards. When you wear something, put it back the hanger with the hanger turned back the normal way. After three months see which clothing items you haven’t worn and say goodbye to them. You can’t argue with a clear visual representation of what you do and don’t wear.
These are a few quick ways to streamline your closet if you just can’t muster the courage to try a capsule wardrobe. You’ll feel so much better with a cleaner closet, feel a part of the minimalist trend, but still keep your sanity.
Eye shadow palettes are my Achilles heel of makeup products. Regardless of how many I have, there’s always a reason to get just one more. With more eye shadows than my eye lids will ever use, I’ve learned a thing or two about palettes and which one is good for what.
Before we dive in it’s safe to say that all these palettes are top notch. Although they vary a little here and there, they’re all buttery, pigmented, and the cream of the crop of eye shadows. No risks here.
For everyday use
If you’re looking for just a solid, all-around perfect palette to accomplish everything you could possibly need, theBalm’s NUDE ‘tude or the LORAC Pro Palette are the ticket. Their shade range varies enough you’ll be able to pull off multiple looks without ever leaving the palette.
The LORAC Pro Palette and any of the Urban Decay Naked palettes are exactly what you’ll need to create any type of look for a special event. The LORAC palette has a lot of non-neutral shades to mix things up and add a pop of color. The Urban Decay palettes have the longest staying power of any shadow I’ve tried so they’re not going to disappear during the night.
For specific tones and shade families
Look no further than the Urban Decay Naked palette family. The first palette has your warm tones, the second your cool tones, the third is all about rose-gold, and the smokey palette does what it says on the packaging. I would say you’ll never need another palette again if you pick up whichever shade family works best for you, but we all know once you get one it’s an obsessive addiction to collect them all.
Nothing beats the Naked Basic palettes if you’re just getting into makeup and aren’t really sure what’s what. They have just enough shades to create a standard look without being too overwhelming. Plus they’re more affordable since they’re smaller so you won’t be spending an arm and a leg on something you aren’t sure will work for you.
Nothing beats a good ol’ eye shadow palette, but if you’re in penny saving mode it’s best to get one that meets your needs rather than going heart-eyed emoji and buying them all up in one frantic motion!
I popped a little teaser in last week’s March Favorites video about this post coming on the horizon. and now it’s officially arrived. I’ve known about IT Cosmetics since the brand first came out, but I never went farther than a few swatches in the store until recently. Now I’ve fallen head first into the brand and am resurfacing to share my thoughts on their most popular products.
The Your Skin But Better CC+ Color Correcting Full Coverage Cream was the first product I tried and totally made me do a full stop. Dang is this product fabulous. It’s a light to medium coverage foundation that packs a serious 50+ SPF. No sun is getting to my cheeks with this stuff. It’s super easy to apply and looks great blended in with a brush, fingers, or beauty blender. It covers up redness and any discoloration without looking too obvious or cakey. It lasts practically all day and has the most lovely satin, glowy finish. Plus it’s a squeeze tube with a pump. Two of my favorite things.
IT Cosmetics’ Bye Bye Under Eye is the product I’ve heard about most over the blogosphere and I can get the hype, but have some mixed feelings about it. I love how thick and great at covering under eye circles it is, but it never feels to really sink into the skin. If I happen to brush my under eyes I come away with a bit of product on my fingers. Yet I love the coverage and how it brightens up my eyes. So maybe I need to get more serious with my blending and adapt a setting powder routine…
The Brow Power Universal Brow Pencil made an appearance in my March Favorites as a product that’s giving the Anastasia Brow Wiz a run for its money. I really like the soft brown taupe shade and larger nub for application. The spoolie is nice and big and I love how natural my lashes look after use. The only downside is the fact that it’s more expensive than the Anastasia offering.
One product I haven’t really gotten behind yet is the Bye Bye Pores Finishing Powder. I rarely use finishing powders to begin with so I’ve struggled working it into my daily routine. When I have used it though I really enjoyed its light texture and ease of application. It didn’t settle into my pores or wrinkles, but I couldn’t tell if it was really doing anything. I don’t like applying makeup just for the sake of applying it. I’m just not necessarily sold on its effectiveness, or any finishing powder for that matter.
IT Cosmetics’ Super Hero mascara on the other hand I can totally get behind. The packaging alone is adorable and uniquely shaped. It’s great at separating the lashes to create a nice, natural looking end result that holds a curl. It doesn’t clump and adds a decent amount of volume to boot.
Overall IT Cosmetics really has it going on. Underestimating brands is kind of my thing and this one is no different. The packaging is on point, there’s quality in every product, and the results are exactly what I’m looking for. My biggest concern is the price. It rivals a lot of the bigger name brands and just has me a bit standoffish to fall in love completely. Everything feels five dollars more than I’m comfortable spending. A bummer, but definitely not a deal breaker if the quality is there.