What I've Been Reading

I haven’t updated my reading list in a few months and I have finished quite a few. Since my list is so long, I’m going to keep these short and sweet.

Not My Daughter by Barbara Delinsky 
This was a straight lifetime movie. Not my type of read. It is our book club book for November. 
This I Believe: Life Lessons ⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆
I really enjoyed this book. People wrote in 600 words or less their beliefs and what they have learned. Very heartwarming. 
Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage by Elizabeth Gilbert ⋆⋆⋆
If you went gaga over Eat, Pray, Love this is nothing like that. It was more of a history lesson on marriage and how Liz comes to terms with getting married. 
My Horizontal Life: A Collection of One Night Stands by Chelsea Handler ⋆⋆⋆
So, this was pretty funny but I almost questioned how much of it was true.  I enjoyed it but I’m glad I listened to it instead of reading it. 
Listening is an Act of Love: A Celebration of American Life from the StoryCorps Project and Ties that Bind: Stories of Love and Gratitude from the First Ten Years of StoryCorps ⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆
If you enjoy StoryCorps on NPR, you will love these books. They warmed my heart and I had to stop myself from going into full blown ugly cry. 
Doctored: The Disillusionment of an American Physician by Sandeep Jauhar ⋆⋆
This book thoroughly annoyed me. I work in healthcare and I agreed 100% with what he had to say about the healthcare system and have seen it myself. What was annoying was how much he complains about not having money when he chooses to live in an apartment in NYC, send his child to private school and his wife is a SAHM (she’s a MD, too). I mean, I don’t want to work either but I gots bills to pay.
Beyond Belief: My Secret Life Inside Scientology and My Harrowing Escape by Jenna Miscavige Hill ⋆⋆⋆⋆
Before reading this book, I knew literally nothing about Scientology. Boy, were my eyes opened. I had no idea the atrocities that occur. It was shocking. 
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen ⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆
I loved this book (and the movie). It was our October book club book and I could not put it down. 
The Good Soldiers and Thank You for Your Service by David Finkel ⋆⋆⋆
I recently began working with the military and have no prior experience with this population. I’m really glad I read these books because it provided me some insight into what service members face during deployments and when returning home. I highly recommend reading these if you are at all interested in working with the military. 
How to Catch a Frog: And Other Stories of Family, Love, Dysfunction, Survival, and DIY by Heather Ross ⋆⋆⋆⋆
I related to this book much more than I would have liked to. If you had a weird childhood, I think you will enjoy this book thoroughly. 
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? By Mindy Kaling ⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆
I loved this book. If you are a 20-something, add it to your reading list right now.
Miracles Now by Gabrielle Bernstein ⋆⋆⋆
I love Gabby B books but this was probably my least favorite of hers. Her tips are straightforward but it’s a little all over the place for me.
xo, arielle


#BusyGirlNails: Sponging

Welcome to the fall round of #BusyGirlNails! We are kicking off this week, so you still have time to join us. Here is the info post with all of the details.

This week is sponging. I had to ask my co-hosts what it was because I had no idea. Once they filled me in, I realized I had done sponging before but with a lot of struggle. This time was no different. 

Every tutorial I see says to paint the polish onto a makeup sponge and apply. But my question is how are you all getting the colors so dark and vibrant?! This attempt was three layers and it's still not opaque. Any tips would really help a girl out!

sponged nails

Hope to see some of you hop in on #BusyGirlNails!

xo, arielle


Clean Up Your Makeup - High End Edition

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A few weeks ago, I brought you a list of drugstore makeup products that were less toxic to your health. This time, I'm bringing you clean high end products. I have listed specific products that rate as a 0-2 by EWG (low hazard). Unfortunately for our pocketbooks, it's much easier to find clean high end brands.

These products can be found at Sephora, Ulta, makeup counters or through the brand's website.

clean high end makeup

bareMinerals Prime Time, $24, EWG rating 1

Jane Iredale Liquid Minerals Foundation, $50, EWG rating 2
Korres Wild Rose Mineral Foundation, $28, EWG rating 1
Juice Beauty Stem Cellular CC Cream, $39, EWG rating 1

Tarte Maracuja Creaseless Concealer, $24, EWG rating 2
Jane Iredale Disappear Concealer with Green Tea Extract, $30, EWG rating 1

Tarte Smooth Operator Micronized Clay Finishing Powder, $34, EWG rating 1
bareMinerals Mineral Veil, $21, EWG rating 2

bareMinerals blush, $19, EWG rating 1
CARGO ColorStick, $28, EWG rating 1

bareMinerals READY Bronzer, $24, EWG rating 1
theBalm Bahama Mama Matte Bronzer, $19, EWG rating 1

theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer, $24, EWG rating 1
Lorac TANtalizer Highlighter & Matte Bronzer, $32, EWG rating 2

bareMinerals Prime Time Eyelid Primer, $18, EWG rating 1
Jane Iredale Lid Primer, $18.50, EWG rating 1
Korres Quercetin & Oak Anti-aging Eye Primer, $21, EWG rating 1

theBam Meet Matt(e), $34.50, EWG rating 2
theBalm Nude'Tude, $36, EWG rating 2

Tarte skinny smoulderEyes Amazonian Clay waterproof liner, $19.50, EWG rating 1
Jane Iredale Eye Pencil, $13, EWG rating 1
Jane Iredale Liquid Eye Liner, $21, EWG rating 1

bareMinerals Flawless Definition Waterproof Mascara, $18, EWG rating 2
Jane Iredale Longest Lash Thickening & Lengthening Mascara, $33, EWG rating 1

Jane Iredale PureBrow Gel, $17, EWG rating 1
Laura Geller Beauty Brow Marker, $24, EWG rating 1

Jane Iredale Chocoholicks Lip Gloss Palette, $35, EWG rating 1
Jane Iredale Lip Fixation, $30, EWG rating 1

When it comes to high end brands Jane Iredale is where you're going to find the most clean products, followed by Tarte and bareMinerals. Be sure to still look into ratings of specific products within the brand.

xo, arielle

Affiliate links are in this post. If you click on an affiliate link and/or make a purchase I receive monetary compensation. For my full disclosure, click here.


My Au Naturale Lip

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One of my goals this year has been to keep less products in my collection and use them to the last drop. It's not an easy feat for a makeup hoarder. In doing so, I only picked up two lip products: a gloss and a lipstick, both by Burt's Bees.

Burt's Bees Lip Shimmer in Fig was my go to product in high school. Since I knew how great the product was, I knew I waned to go back to Burt's Bees lippies in my switch to natural products. Since my Fig days, Burt's Bees has launched a plethora of lip products including glosses, crayons and tinted balms. I also recently learned that Burt's Bees is celebrating their 30th anniversary this year!

Since I last purchased Burt's Bees, I noticed they are now more widely available. I see their products at major drugstores and box stores, including Walmart. I'm really happy that mainstream stores are beginning to embrace natural brands, like Burt's Bees. In my transition to natural products, my biggest roadblock has been the accessibility. 

When I shopped for my lip products, I picked up Burt's Bees Lip Shine in Blush and Lip Shimmer in Watermelon. I chose them for their contrasting shades and because I felt they would be wearable all year long. Luckily, they have absolutely served their purpose and I have been using the heck out of them!

Burt's Bees lip

Burt's Bees lip

One day, I decided to combine the two together and was pleasantly surprised by how they were the perfect au naturale lip for me. Any of the recent videos or photos of me have been using this lip combo.

Burt's Bees has also become cleaner since I last bought their products. Their lip products are now 100% natural (as opposed to the 97% they used to tout). On EWG the Lip Shimmer is rated as a 2 (low hazard) and the Lip Shine is a 4 (moderate hazard). Since we consume several pounds of lip products in our lifetime, I would rather they be clean, natural products than chemical filled.

What are your go to lip products to achieve a natural lip shade?

xo, arielle

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Burt's Bees and I received monetary compensation for writing this post. All opinions are my own. Affiliate links are present in this post. If you click a link I may receive monetary compensation. For my full disclosure, click here.
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