Sunday, June 17, 2018

Highlights from the Beauty Spotlight Team

Do you have a shiny t-zone in the summer? 15 Minute Beauty hates mid-day shine on her nose and has tried just about every product out there to keep her skin looking matte. Here are her favorite products to mattify her skin. 

  Laugh, Love, Contour takes us on a trip to California this summer with the new KBShimmer Wanderlust Collection. The 8 piece collection will transport your nails to the lush West coast shore, even if the rest of you is stuck a little closer to home! 

 Are your feet ready for sandals weather? Never Say Die Beauty has fallen for Farmhouse Fresh Instant Pedicure Sampler for soft, smooth feet in minutes! 

Beauty Info Zone loves meeting new brands and loves to host giveaways. Put those together and you'll be able to learn and hopefully win a Body Be Silk Lip Fix Kit. It's scrumptious and efficient. Read and enter. 

If you have a penchant for luxury face oils, then Lola's Secret Beauty Blog highly recommends Herbivore Orchid Facial Oil and Herbivore Phoenix Facial Oil. The former is a delectable youth preserving oil for normal skin, while the latter is an ultra-luxe regenerating oil for mature and sensitive skins. Both are absolutely amazing! #Herbivore 

Prime Beauty loves the new OleHenriksen Cold Plunge Pore Mask even if it makes her look like a Smurfette! 

Shipra from Taneja's Bride just isn't a rule follower. She has exquisite taste and no one is going to tell her the rules. That's why you need to read her Kris Eyeshadow Palette x Kylie Cosmetics review with your wallet nearby. 

There are many ways to save money on your beauty products these days. Head over to Makeup Obsessed Mom to make sure you're getting the most bang for your buck. 

Thinking of booting your Vitamin-C game? Pammy Blogs Beauty tries out JASON's Antioxidant skincare. Find out what she thinks! 

Have you heard Covergirl released the Peach Punch Collection? Polarbelle has it as well as comparisons to the TooFaced Sweet Peach palette for your consideration. 

How much do you rely on concealer? If you are Justina from Justina's Gems then it's a lot. See the comparison she did on two favorites from Tarte to see if one of them will become your favorite too.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

So Long, The Jedi Wife! Hello, Laugh, Love, Contour: Thoughts On Changing My Blog Name

Good evening, dear readers! I hope this post finds you well! I've been solo parenting this week while my husband has been out of town for work. It's been going relatively well, although after a few really rough afternoons, I am now in survival mode. At least everyone is being fed and bathed and teeth are brushed! I have always had a lot of respect for single parents out there, but it all comes crashing back as a tidal wave every time I am in this situation. Thankfully my husband gets home tomorrow afternoon, and I intend to run away for a few hours as soon as possible to enjoy total silence. Now let's get into today's blog post!

As I'm sure you've noticed already, there have been some big changes here on the blog over the last few days! For those of you that has guessed it, way back at the end of December I had hinted that something big was coming and you were right! Musings of the Wife of a Jedi has been rebranded to Laugh, Love, Contour. With the rebrand came a new look. There was no drama associated with this decision, and while I could easily explain it away as a "because I wanted to", I wanted to give you, my beloved readers, some insight into what made me make the change and where I would like to see my blog go from here.
When I first started blogging over six years ago, I had no idea the direction my blog would take. While I anticipated there to be some beauty and nail polish related posts, I never expected these subjects to essentially "become" my blog. I though my blog would be more along the lines of personal journaling, and while I have no objections to doing so, as it turns out, it isn't really me. I took on my blog name when I was recently married to my own Luke Sky Walker, as it seemed fitting at the time. I am still happily married to my husband, but I have come to the realization over the past year that I wasn't giving myself enough credit as a person. Yes, I am still very much "the Jedi Wife", but in the end, I am so much more than that. I am a mom, a writer, a thinker, a socially awkward quasi-extroverted introvert, and quite frankly, a sassy strong-willed woman who needs her mouth washed out with soap from all the F bombs that I drop on the daily. Musings of the Wife of a Jedi, also known as The Jedi Wife, was a cute idea, but it felt like it only captured a small piece of me and left out all the other substance. 

After much contemplation, I decided it was time to change my blog name into something that suited not only who I am, but also what my blog is truly about: all things beauty.
Coming up with a blog name that encompasses all the things you want AND is available is much harder than it was when I first created my blog! With all the negativity in the news, I knew I wanted to keep my blog a place to go to get away from it all. Yes, some of my reviews of products are negative, but overall, I wanted (and still want) YOU to feel comfortable and uplifted here. After mulling through a lot of blog ideas for almost a year, I finally came up with Laugh, Love, Contour. 

Naturally, I needed a fresh, new look to go with my blog rebrand. As much as I loved my colourful orange background, it was time that I moved on to something that was more mature but still kept my light-hearted quality. I really love the new look, and I hope you do as well!
Even though the blog has rebranded and has a new look, the same great content you have come to expect from me is still going to be here. Laugh, Love, Contour will still be rich in beauty products; wallet be damned! My writing will always be genuine as I write about my personal experiences with products I test, regardless of whether they were sent to me for review or if I purchased them myself. You can expect to see even more on products I have purchased, although ultimately press sample obligations will always eclipse what I buy myself. This is a large reason why I've introduced my periodic "That's a Wrap" posts showcasing many of the products I have purchased and have finished up. I will still be taking the occasional trip to cover events; you can expect to see content featuring my experience and brands at the upcoming Cosmoprof North America soon! While I still have the occasional bump in my blogging path, such as my constant wave of illness after illness the first several months of the year, or just other things in life needing to be a priority from time to time, in the end I want to see more content here at Laugh, Love, Contour. 

If you've managed to read this far and follow along on this lengthy post, you are a rockstar! Even if you didn't, I'll still give you the title. After all, you are a big reason why I am here and why I enjoy doing what I do. What I previously imagined to be a short term hobby has turned into something more throughout the years, and I look forward to seeing the direction we take together. If there is anything more you would like to see, please let me know and I'll see what I can do!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful evening!

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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Take a Trip to California This Summer with KBShimmer's Wanderlust Collection

Press Sample

With this school year coming to an end and the first official day of summer only a week and a half away, many of us have summer on our minds. Summer vacation falls off the tongue readily when we talk about our plans over the next few months, and there are so many destinations to choose from! Naturally, you need your nails to be on point regardless of whether or not you are going far or opting to stay close to home! After a trip to the Ventura, California, Christy, the owner of KBShimmer, was inspired by the laid-back vibe of the West coast shore. The result is a stunning 8 piece collection aptly named the Wanderlust Collection.

This collection boasts beautiful blues, greens, pinks and purples that will take your nails on an adventure to California. Let's get a closer look at each shade!

Meet Me At The Barre
Three coats plus Clearly on Top top coat

When gathering with friends, the local bar is often the first place that is suggested, but with so many trying for a more active lifestyle, meeting at the barre for a workout might happen too! This pale pink shade has hints of coral, for a flattering pastel that will amp up the look of your summer tan.

The can never go wrong with a simple creme, or at least that seems to be my current mantra! Meet Me At The Barre is a fresh, work appropriate shade for when you want a break from intense hues on your nails. I cannot give an accurate assessment on the formula on this as the cap was a little loose when I pulled it out of its box, making the formula a little thicker than I normally see from the brand.

Don't Fear The Reefer
Two coats plus Clearly on Top top coat

It is a sweet smell that many recognize from their college days. Now baked into brownies, made into candy, and available in several states, this once outlawed plant is now sold across California and inspired this minty aqua green shade. Loaded with linear holographic pigment, this is one far out polish that will not leave your manicure half-baked.

While the name may make you think green, this polish definitely has a bit of blue to it! Staring at the bottle, I kept trying to decide if it was a mint or an aqua, and somehow KBShimmer managed to make it both. Against my olive skintone, it pulls more towards the blue, and it is so pretty! The formula was superb and ultra creamy and easy to apply.

Succ It Up
Two coats plus Clearly on Top top coat

As a lover of succulents, it was amazing to see them growing outside! The many types of succulents with their luscious shades of green, pink, purple and blue inspired this shimmery purple polish. Holo micro flakes give this hue some sparkle, while a blue green shimmer completes this hip polish.

Both my husband and I are a lover of succulents, and we have amassed quite a collection! While it may be easy to think of "green" when it comes to these plants, they come in a rather substantial range of colours depending on the particular species. This is such a fabulous representation of succulents, and the formula is flawless!

Rise and Grind
Two coats plus Clearly on Top top coat

Did you know that California has 4 of the top 15 coffee consuming cities in the US? No wonder it was easy to find people with a cup of Joe in their hands or in lines, waiting for baristas to finish grinding beans fresh for the perfect cup.  Rise and Grind is a nod to those coffee lovers who enjoy a splash of milk, tall lattes or iced coffees. A lightened brown, this linear holographic polish is the perfect deep neutral. So grab a cup and enjoy this coffee inspired shade!

Confirmed coffee drinking Californian here, although in my defense, it really only started after having my kids. I normally don't think of browns when it comes to summer, beyond the dried grass anyway, but Rise and Grind just works. It isn't too dark and is sure to dazzle against your reusable plastic tumbler filled with ice coffee this summer. We are in California after all!

Now and Zen
Two coats plus Clearly on Top top coat

Walking down the coast, with the waves crashing, the gulls flying, and dogs running is the ideal way to center yourself for the day. This ocean inspired polish starts with a calming blue base. A color shifting shimmer takes this polish from blue, to aqua to lavender depending on the angle and lighting, while loads of micro holo flakes add a unique touch to the peaceful hue.

I can definitely see the beach when I see this shade, and you know I'll be wearing it when I head that direction this summer! I especially love the flash of lavender when I shift my nails around! This applied nicely for me as well and I have no issues to report.

Wander-ful World
Two coats plus Clearly on Top top coat

Wandering the world, be it by car, plane, or cruise ship, can be so exciting. Wander-ful World was inspired by the vibrant fashions and showy pink flowers of California. This electric shade of magenta pink is full of linear holographic pigment for a flashy manicure perfect for your next trip, be it to the grocery store or across the country.

One of the colours I gravitate towards during the summer tends to be brighter magenta hues like this, so I am happy to see Wander-ful World join the KBShimmer lineup! The colour is vibrant and the formula is top notch. What else could you possibly want from a nail polish? Other than your favorite celebrity crush applying said polish to your perfectly filed toes, of course..... We all can dream, right?

Hakuna Moscato
Three coats on its own plus Clearly on Top top coat
One coat over Meet Me At The Barre plus Clearly on Top top coat

California is known for amazing wine, and Moscato with its sweet, slightly bubbly flair was the perfect inspiration for this shimmery polish. Blushing rose gold micro flakes surround a scattering of micro holographic glitter, for an effervescent shade that will leave you thirsty for more. This polish builds up in 2-3 coats, or layer over your favorite shade to add a golden hue to your nails.

Now we're talking! Of course I may be slightly biased as I reside in Sonoma County, one of California's most well-known regions for wineries, although my region actually only produces about 6% of the wines from California. I tend to drink cocktails, but I do enjoy a little wine every now and then, including a Moscato. This is a lovely interpretation! I have it swatch on its own to opacity on my pinky and ring fingers and over Meet Me At The Barre on my middle and index fingers. I'm not really sure which look I prefer more, so feel free to chime in below in the comments about how you prefer it! I think it looks lovely on its own and as a topper; I'm looking forward to playing with this beauty over other shades! The formula was easy to work with, and I had no issues with it being too thick or thin or clumping of glitters.

Cactus If You Can
Two coats plus Clearly on Top top coat

The plant life in California is breathtaking, especially to someone that lives in the Midwest. This soft green shade is inspired by one of the best water conserving plants, the cactus. A soft pink shimmer and micro holo sparks, soften up this prickly polish, for a manicure that is perfect in 2-3 coats.

With so many beautiful shades in this collection, I'm ending off with what may be my personal favorite from the collection. I absolutely loved the saguaro cacti when I lived in Tucson about four and a half years ago, and I get so excited when I see the occasional prickly pear cactus around me now. This colour combination is one I really like, I am beyond thrilled to see KBShimmer introduce Cactus If You Can to the Wanderlust Collection! The formula is really smooth and creamy to boot!

The Wanderlust Collection will be launching on the KBShimmer website at 12 noon this Friday, June 15th, and bottles will retail for $10 each.

I hope you enjoy this collection as much as I do! Christy certainly knows how to create a collection that takes my breath away!

What are your top picks from the Wanderlust Collection? I'd love to hear from you!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

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Monday, June 11, 2018

Psych-Inspired Nail Polish: I've Heard It Both Ways by LynB Designs

Press Sample

Greetings, dear readers, and happy Monday! I hope you had a wonderful weekend and the new week is off to a fabulous start! As you can probably tell, it has been a busy one around here! Rest assured, you are in the correct place; The Jedi Wife has been rebranded to Laugh, Love, Contour! There was supposed to be a whole new look as well, but things unfortunately fell through at the last minute. I have a new look in store for you as well to go along with the name change so be on the lookout for that. I had debated on holding off on posting until everything was done, but I've got beautiful things to share and can't hold off any longer. With that said, let's jump on in!

Are you a fan of the television show Psych? If so, do I have something special for you! LynB Designs has created a custom thermal nail polish for the Facebook group Polish My Fandom and it is available for purchase now! Let's check it out!

Blue-toned green to blue thermal with a ton of blue to green to gold shifting iridescent flakies and iridescent shifting glitters.
Hello, gorgeous! This polish is so pretty to look at, and I just love the thermal colour change! While the inspiration is from Psych, this is something that I can envision mermaids wearing on their nails; you know I'm going to be sporting this beauty while at the beach this summer!
I've Heard It Both Ways is a little sheer and will have to be built up to opacity, but this sheerness really allows the iridescent flakies and glitters to sparkle perfectly. I found the formula to be a little uneven with the first two coats, but the third coat evened out my nails nicely. This third coat also was necessary to reach opacity although those with longer nails may find they need an extra coat. I recommend not painting with very thin coats as this can cause the flakies to dig into the polish and shift it around if you aren't careful. I have added a layer of top coat for these photos.
Thermal polishes are sadly a little wasted on me when I have short nails as I really throw out some heat and I usually only ever see the warm state. If my nails are lengthy with overhang beyond my fingertips, I can enjoy the gradient effect. Thankfully my nubbins had grown out enough that you can see some of the gradient effect in the previous photos. To get a better look at the cold state, the following set of photos feature this polish after dipping my hands in cold water. My nails never keep the full cold state for long so you will see a little of the blue warm state closer to my cuticles, but at least you can see the gorgeous blue-tones green colour more. Check it out!
I adore this shade, and it will make spending time in the cold Pacific Ocean here in Northern California much more enjoyable!

I've Heard It Both Ways is available for purchase from LynB Designs now! Please note that you MUST be a member of the Polish My Fandom Facebook group in order to purchase this polish. Once you are a member of the group, you can find the discount code which marks this polish down to $10. It is available for purchase as a pre-order through June 14th- that's this Thursday- so be sure to join and get your orders in as soon as possible! It is only available for this limited time, and you do not want to miss out!

Are you already a member of the Polish My Fandom Facebook group? Have you preordered I've Heard It Both Ways already? What fandoms are you looking forward to seeing as inspiration in the future? I'd love to hear from you!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

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Friday, June 8, 2018

Highlights from the Beauty Spotlight Team

In anticipation of summer, Lola's Secret Beauty Blog is sharing the best and most covet-worthy sunscreens for the face from TATCHA, Kerstin Florian, Goldfaden MD, KORRES and MyChelle

Have you ever heard of a Game of Thrones Facial? Remember Shirleen and greyscale? Yeah, it's kinda like that. Prime Beauty takes you through her experience step-by-step. You've GOT to see the pictures and the afterglow! 

Wedding season is in full swing, and there are so many final details to get sorted out! Jen from The Jedi Wife has your manicure covered with her look into the Zoya Nail Polish Bridal Bliss Collection. Colour comparisons and notes on formula will help you choose your perfect shade to accompany your sparkling new ring! 

Why did Marcia from Beauty Info Zone have to call the Facial Mask Hotline? We'll give you a hint that it's about a FarmHouse Fresh Mask that you'll really love. 

If natural cruelty beauty products are your preference then you'll want to see what Stacie from Makeup Obsessed Mom has been using from Good Earth Beauty

If you're serious about anti-aging skincare you're likely using a retinoid, but not all retinols are created equal, and they are not one size fits all. 15 Minute Beauty talked to a dermatologist and a celeb esthetician and they're spilling the beans on over the counter retinoids and when they're the best choice for you. 

Polarbelle is honored to be featured on Voyage Phoenix Magazine as an Influencer to know. Learn a little more about your girl here. 

Looking for a new skincare line to suit your skin type? Never Say Die Beauty has been using a set of products from cruelty-free skincare expert, Zenmed, with great results. Enter to win a set of skincare products customized for you! 

The new MAKE UP FOR EVER Artist Color Liners can be used on eyes, lips, and brows! Check out Christa from Realizing Beauty's review and swatches of all 39 matte and blendable shades. 

Beauty Judy bas the KBShimmer Wanderlust Collection searched and reviewed on her blog this week! 

Justina's Gems has some skincare secrets for glowy, dewy skin this summer. Check out her six tips and share yours with her too! 

Ready to reveal some Summer sexy skin? Pammy Blogs Beauty gets her skin in shape for Summer with Sol de Janeiro's NEW Brazilian Bod Buff.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Get Ready for Wedding Season with Zoya Bridal Bliss

Press Samples

Greetings, dear readers, and happy Monday! I hope your weekend was wonderful and your week has been off to a great start! Now that June is here, wedding season is in full swing. Zoya opted to repromote several of their nail polish shades and introduced fans to a new shade with their Bridal Bliss Collection. Several of the shades are quite similar, especially in their respective bottles, so I wanted to swatch and compare several of these for you. Ready to jump in and pick out your perfect shade for a wedding? Let's jump in, starting with the newest shade!

Three coats plus top coat

A full coverage, diamond holographic soft nude

I love a good nude polish, and Brighton did not disappoint! If you want your nails to dazzle on your big day, this a gorgeous option! The formula is fantastic!

Avril and Rue are very similar to each other, so if you're like me and want a polish "just a touch more _", you'll appreciate the subtle differences between these two. Rue is a tad darker and with a kiss of a nude while Avril is a little more bright and peachier.

Two coats plus top coat

A soft neutral pink with light brown undertones in a milky creme base.The perfect universally-flattering nude.

Even though Avril is described as having a light brown undertone, I actually saw more of that aspect with Rue, at least against my skintone. It is a touch on the sheer side, and while I was able to reach opacity with two coats, those with longer nails or who paint with thinner coats will likely need to use a third.

Two coats plus top coat

A full-coverage, boudoir blush cream.

Nice and creamy, Rue has quickly become a favorite nude shade! The formula was on point so I will definitely be grabbing for this one a lot!

These three shades looked pretty similar in their respective bottles, and they are all on the sheerer side.

Three coats plus top coat

A light beige with a sheer creme finish.

Loretta is the sheerest of the group, and it is the perfect polish when you want to go for naked but better or for a french manicure. I was able to build it up with three coats although you can still see some visible nail line here. This isn't a shade that I personally am fond of due to the sheerness, but that is strictly personal preference and shouldn't sway any other opinions!

Three coats plus top coat

A ballet slipper pink in a sheer, milky creme finish.

While sheer, Bela is a little more pigmented and coverage can be built up to opacity. It is a little more pink than Loretta and quite lovely. The formula was fantastic as well!

Three coats plus top coat

A soft, girly pale baby pink with lots of fine gold shimmer.

Erika is the least sheer of the trio and can be build up to opacity with three coats. Alternately, it is a gorgeous shade that can be layered over a base shade if you prefer. The shimmer in this polish really dazzles!

While these three shades are definitely different, I hope this shows the colour differences for you.

Two coats plus top coat

A full-coverage, French, Nude vanilla cream.

I had been eyeing this particular Zoya polish for a little while now, so I was pretty intrigued to see it as part of the Bridal Bliss re-promotion. It is a little more of a warm nude than I have seen at weddings, but I'm sure it is the perfect shade for some brides out there! Add a great formula to boot!

Two coats plus top coat

A full-coverage, soft and delicate pale baby blue with a glossy creme finish.

Blu is probably the lightest shade of blue you can get before you end up with white. It is the slightest bit darker than photographed here, but my camera goes a little bonkers with until pale hues. If you are looking for your "something blue" but don't want an intense and obvious blue, Blu may be the shade you are looking for. I found the formula to be a little thick and uneven to apply, but with a little patience and a good top coat, the final result is still quite pretty.

Snow White
Three coats plus top coat

A pure white creme that's as clean and bright as freshly-fallen snow.

My camera definitely freaked out a little with Snow White and gave a slight vanilla hue. Snow White is actually a stark white and often my go-to base shade for nail art. The formula is a little uneven and streaky at first, but it does level with a little bit of patience. If you opt for a french manicure, this is the perfect white for your tips!

Two coats plus top coat

A light lavender cream.

This type of pastel screams spring to me, and while it isn't something I've seen a bride wear, it is very close to the colour of the bridesmaid dress I wore in my brother's wedding. The first coat was a little patchy but a second coat evened it out nicely.

Three coats plus top coat

A sheer, opalescent white with flecks of fuchsia, green and gold.

Leia is certainly a Zoya favorite shade- since its release at part of the Petals Collection for Spring 2016, it was re-promoted with the Kisses Collection and again here for Bridal Bliss. It is sheer, so while you can build it up to an extent, as shown here, those that want to avoid visible nail line would likely prefer to use this as a topper. I love this polish!

Two coats plus top coat

A refined pearl in a soft almond.

I love this colour, but I was not a fan of the streaky finish. The application was a little patchy and uneven that partially leveled out, but it was the top coat that ended up giving it a more level look.

The Bridal Bliss Collection features several beautiful options whether you're the bride, an attendant, or planning to attend a wedding. What shades are your favorites?

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful evening!

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