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    Perfect NYE Curls using the Curling Wand

    how to use a curling wand

    curling wand set
    I’ve gotten a lot of comments on Instagram relating to my hair, and I figured that with NYE this week, it might be the perfect opportunity to show you how to get perfect curls using a curling wand. I’ve teamed up with Lionesse Beauty Bar and am demonstrating on my hair using their curling wand set that comes with 4 different wand widths. For my signature everyday waves, I like to use the largest size wand width. For tighter spirals, I go down on the width.

    (Note: Scrolling down you’re about to see me with no makeup and me with hair that’s out of control. So basically, things are about to get real here.)

    kerastase for long hair

    Before I use any heat tools on my hair (especially since it’s color-treated), I use several products that help protect my hair and produce a smooth manageable finish. (My hair is naturally wavy and loves to go frizzy on me, so I also find that these help with that as well.) I’ve used Biosilk Silk Therapy on my hair since high school – it’s a favorite of mine and leaves my hair feeling nourished and super silky. I’ve also started using Kerastase products that are targeted for long hair. The Kerastase Spray Fluidissime is for thermal anti-frizz protection and the Kerastase Cristalliste Cristal Sculpt is a sculpting serum for a glossy shine and light hold.

    I blow dry my hair straight with a paddle brush and leave it slightly damp. Here’s the secret to the volume in my hair. I separate the hair above my ears and roll it into a loose, poofy bun on the top of my head. The damp roots will dry while it’s up instead of while it’s lying flat giving it more volume at the roots! I leave this loose bun while I curl the bottom layers of hair.

    how to use a curling wand

    perfect curling wand curls

    I start on the bottom layers of hair first allowing the roots to dry with volume. Curling AWAY from my face on both sides, I’ll curl small sections of hair moving around my head. Once I am finished with the bottom hair, I take down a small portion of hair from the bun and re-bun the rest. I do this until my entire head is finished. (By that time, the top layers of hair will be bouncy instead of flat!) Once my entire head is completely curled, I run a comb gently through to smooth everything out and then spray with hairspray.

    But HOW do I not touch the wand? My right hand holds the wand and my left hand wraps the hair around it while never letting go of the end of the hair section as you see in the photos. This will take some time to get used to, but once you get the hang of it, it gets very quick. If you can’t seem to not burn yourself, they do have curling wand gloves also!

    big waves with a curling wand

    The Lionesse curling wands heat up very quickly and at very high temperatures. This means it will take you less time to curl your entire head. I can literally wrap my hair around the barrel and count to 5 and that section of hair will be perfectly curled – and that’s on the LOW heat setting. The other plus of this wand compared to other versions, the curls last for days. DAYS.

    Right now, all Lionesse hair tools are 50% off! Visit for more details on how to get your special promo code!

    So, there’s my secret to fabulous curls that you can create yourself for New Year’s Eve! If you have any questions at all about the process or the Lionesse wands, please email me at!

    Beauty, Holiday Blog Posts

    Holiday Beauty Gift Guide

    holiday beauty gift ideas

    For today’s holiday gift guide, I’ve rounded up 20 of the best beauty product gift ideas!

    bareMinerals marvelousMoxie gloss / Stila Stay All Day gloss 

    bareMinerals bareSkin / bareMinerals READY eye enhancer / Essie polish

    top photo by Lacey Rabalais

    20 beauty gift ideas

    (hover & click the items above to be brought directly to its product page or shop the links below!)

    Anastasia Brow Wiz (the best!) / Beauty Blender / Clinique nail enamel 

    Charlotte Tilbury Bronze and Glow / Facial Sauna / Laura Mercier Cream Cheek 

    Living Proof hair mask / No Tug dual eyeshadow brush / Caudalie Cleansing Water

    bareMinerals bareSkin / PMD Personal Microderm System / Carol’s Daughter split end sealer

    MAC brow gel / Ole Henriksen eye creme / Mac transparent finishing powder

    Skinceuticals Phloretin CF (miracle worker) / bareMinersals Prime Time

    Oribe wave & shine spray / MAC Fast Response eye creme

    Airbrush Finish bamboo brush / Deborah Lipmann nail polish set

    There are so many beauty products to experiment and try out which makes them all the better for potential gift ideas for all your favorite ladies. These are some of my favorite products out there and ones that I REALLY want to try. I mean a personal microderm system and split end sealer – those are two things I would love to get my hands on. A few of them I actually use religiously and wouldn’t mind at all getting more of in my stocking. I SWEAR by the Anastasia Brow Wiz and Skin Ceuticals CF – two different dermatologists have told me that this product is the real deal, and I have noticed a difference in my skin. Other products on my list are little luxuries like the Oribe wave spray and finishing powder. And of course my favorite lip glosses in the first photo that I can’t live without!

    What beauty products will you be gifting this holiday season?

    Current Sales:

    Anthropologie – free shipping on orders of $150+ with code FS150

    Ann Taylor – 60% off all sale styles + 40% off party mixers

    Loft – 50% off select new styles + extra 50% off sale styles

    Banana Republic – 40% off your purchase w/ code BRSMILE

    J.Crew – 25% off your purchase w/ code SHOPNOW

    J.Crew Factory – 50% off everything + extra 20% off clearance + free shipping

    Baublebar – 25% off  select personalized styles
    ASOS – 25% off ASOS label
    Gap – $45 off your purchase of $100+ with code SPREE

    Forever21 – up to 50% off winter styles
    Express – 30% off all outerwear
    C.Wonder – 30% off everything

    Beauty, Home

    All Natural Pampering w/ Menkoi

    All products c/o Menkoi

    It’s always nice to take a break every once in a while to treat yourself. And it’s an added bonus when your pampering products are made with all-natural ingredients (+ locally made!). I’m getting to indulge in a little bit of natural pampering myself with this trio of Menkoi products. Menkoi is a brand that wishes to provide people with products that are free from harsh chemicals, parabens and artificial coloring. The listing of ingredients is full visible on the bottle, so you always know what you’re getting in the product. See their ingredients page HERE.

    One of the primary products I was interested in trying was the Healing Elixir. Last year at this time, my hair was a light brown with a touch of red, and since then, I’ve gone back to blonde. However, my blonde hair comes with not so healthy ends. I can literally see and feel the difference in my ends since I’ve switched back to my lighter shade, so I’m looking for products to “heal” my hair. I’m hoping that the Menkoi Healing Elixir will get me off the the right start in repairing my dry ends. The key benefits to the elixir – aragan oil, baobab oil, aloe vera, safflower oil, avocado oil, and wheat germ oil. The use of oil in hair products is gaining as much popularity as it is in skin products. In hair products, it boasts more absorption, the prevention of protein loss, stimulation of new hair growth and more moisturized hair.

    The other two items I’m trying out are the Body Milk and the Fragrance Mist. I know I’ll be using a lot of the body milk this fall/winter. My skin literally drinks up any moisturizer during these months especially after showers or baths. This one is filled with a combination of ingredients that is proven to keep skin moisturized for up to 24 hours. The fragrance mist is unique in that it’s a product uniquely made to fragrance your hair. It’s a crisp scent of clean pear and green tea to keep your locks refreshed all day. Plus, it comes in a size that’s perfect for throwing in your purse while you’re on-the-go.

    Like I said, I love trying out new products to see what works for me, and the fact that these are all-natural give me extra incentive to work them into my daily routine. Is anyone else working more natural products into their haircare regimen?

    Check out Menkoi’s website for more information HERE.

    Beauty, Home

    Skincare Gold with Orogold

    “I’ll try anything once, twice if I like it…”

    That Mae West quote pretty much sums up my feelings about beauty products. Tell me it will give me better skin, and I’ll at least give it a try, so I jumped at the chance to give the Orogold 24k Nano collection a shot. Now, I’ve only been using it for a week, so I can’t speak on long-term benefits, but I can tell you what I’m thinking so far.

    First of all, the product packaging (here comes the design nerd) is just gorgeous. It’s a super-plus that the black and gold bottles look so pretty on my countertop. Each little bottle came packaged in it’s own fabric lined box. (I felt kind of sad throwing those away.)

    Each one of the products contains flecks of actual gold which I think is pretty cool or at least looks really cool. There is an interesting ingredients page on their website that summarizes Orogold‘s emphasis on using gold in their products. “Gold has a multitude of reputed benefits including slowing the depletion of collagen and elastin in the skin, reducing the appearance of damaged skin.” Gold isn’t the only luxury ingredient that is used, however; mother of pearl, diamond and cavier are also found in these indulgent products.

    I’ve integrated this set of four products seen in the photos into my daily routine. My favorite one so far is the Ultra Silk Serum because it literally makes my face feel like silk before I go to sleep. This product like the other three works to restore skin’s moisture, and I’ve actually noticed that my skin is definitely more hydrated since beginning their use. I chose this collection specifically for the moisture element. Here in the South, we have quite a bit of moisture in the hair – humidity – which is great for the skin but often results in the overproduction of facial oils. For this reason, I already use skincare products that target the bad oil left on my face from said humidity and makeup. But, I also want to replace those bad oils with healthy moisture while I sleep which is why I am trying out the Orogold 24k Nano collection. Dry skin is more prone to wrinkling than moisturized, nourished skin! 

    Like I said, I will have to update you on the long-term benefits of using these products, but so far so good! If you are interested or have any questions for me about my experience with Orogold, please email me at

    All product in this post was c/o Orogold, but all opinions remain my own.


    Stay Matte and Protected w/ Colorescience

    As you are probably well aware, football season is almost upon us. And with football season comes tailgating in the sweltering southern sun and the almost certain melting face, makeup effect. It’s sort of ridiculous to continuously whip out a compact at a tailgate, so I’ve found something quicker and more protective. (Plus, caking on even more makeup on top of your shiny face is going to do a number on your pores!)

    This is where Colorescience’s Sunforgettable Mineral Sunscreen comes in. The mineral powder that comes packed with SPF will protect you from being out in the sun all day and comes in a discrete and easy-to-use brush. Available in SPF 30 or 50 and in 6 different shades, a few sweeps across your face is all you need to knock out both sun damage and sweaty makeup. Not to mention, as your makeup sweats off – IF you’ve applied normal sunscreen, it’s also sweating off too. Reapplying some form of sun protection will be a must.

    This powder sunscreen is easy to apply and reapply throughout the day to keep your skin protected and shine-free. Sunforgettable SPF highly refined mineral sunscreen provides safe, non-irritating, UVA and UVB sun protection. Sunforgettable also has these benefits:

    • Easy to apply and re-apply loose mineral formula
    • 80 minute water-resistant
    • Safe for all ages
    • Does not rub off on clothing
    • Odor free, clear on the skin
    • Will not irritate the eyes when perspiring
    • Refillable

    (This brush is also small enough to carry in your purse and into the stadium!)

    * Also worth mentioning: Colorescience is now running a Buy 3, Get 1 Free + Free Shipping offer on Sunforgettable on their website. Stock up for yourself or your family!

    Special thanks to Colorescience for sponsoring today’s post and for helping me stay matte and shine-free on gameday!