Reading Challenge Update – February

February has not been a highly productive month, book-wise especially. I only finished three of them, and I am reading an awful lot of others, and I kinda get confused about plots and characters and… well, I should read one book at a time.

  1. The Turn of the Shrew – H. James
    I can assure you that I read it, but I still cannot understand the ending. What happened? Did anything happen at all? Is it all a mental vision of a problematic young lady? Are spirits really with us?
    It is surely a good book, well written, but as far as plot is concerned, I still have some doubts.

  2. The Aftermath – R. Brook
    In Italian libraries it is not unusual to find books wrapped up, like presents. You have to pick them up only because of what critics said, which is reported on the wrapping, and on your instinct. I chose this one, a history of love and war. Well, there was a just-finished-but-still-in-our-minds war and there was love. A lot. And in many strange ways, not always explained. It was well-written, but there are some holes and the conclusion leaves you with a bittersweet taste.

  3. Yes Please – A. Poehler
    I loved it! It made me laugh and I felt so emotionally taken that I want to re-read it as soon as possible, because it’s way too wonderful!

I’m a little behind schedule, I guess, but I’m enjoying some good books for the moment. The big ol’ boring 19th centuty books will come soon. Because I like them.

The colour of the month: Red February

What happened to me during the last week? Not much. I simply didn’t have time to sit down and write. It feels so wrong to have so much to do that you have to postpone what you love. Anyway, here I am, now, sitting in front of the computer.

It is time for a “Colour of the Month” post. And it’s going to be, uhm, pretty.

The colour of this month has surely been red. Red lipstick went on my lips everyday, red accents have filled my closet, and the little red heart-shaped necklace was one of my favourites.

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It is a pretty obvious colour for February, isn’t it? Well, not for me. If you had seen me just a couple of years ago I would have been totally scared by the idea of wearing red lipstick! And I had a kind of repulsion towards hearts, I mean, before falling in love…

What was your colour?

Older Colours: January

January Favourites

Is it too late to talk about last month’s favourite products? I hope not, because I’m going to right now.

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I had to fight against cool weather and snow, so everyday I applied and loved Herborist’s Revitalizing and Firming Day Cream. Its texture is perfect to hydrate my face without leaving it excessively oily. Simple perfection in a bottle.

On my eyes I went for nudes with Urban Decay’s Naked Basics palette and Deborah’s Extra Pearly Stick Eyeshadow Waterproof in 04 – Pretty Rose. There’s no need to explain why the Naked Basics palette is among my favourites, but a special mention goes to the Stick Eyeshadow and its colour: a light rose-y brown, extremely shining, able to create an entire look on its own. When I wear it I feel like my eyes are already perfect, they simply need mascara.

Lastly, when I want to feel vampy and, let’s admit it, prettier I go for Kiko Long Lasting Colour Lip Marker in 106 – Apple Red. It’s a dark, plum-y red and it applies easily on the lips. There it stay for at least three hours before starting to vanish. Plus, I’m in love with the colour!

Which products were your favourites during January? Tell me!

Monday Breakfast #9

I wanted this post to be written in the most realistic way. This is why I’m writing it at 6:30 am on a cloudy and cold February morning. The semester starts in two hours and this is actually when I do have breakfast most of the time. Pretty bad, isn’t it?

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Anyway, let’s start this semester filled with the energy of waking up at 6, after two months of oversleeping!

January Most Played

It’s time to look back at the past month and collect the products that I used the most. This is the first monthly most played, and I hope I’ll be part of the Team Most Played (here Chiara explains everything!).

So, let’s start with the foundation. These products aren’t necessarily my favourites, they just happen to be the ones I reached for the most during the past month. Maybelline’s Dream Fresh BB Cream is currently the product for the base that I hate the most, it leaves my skin extremely oily, and it didn’t happen during summer! Probably my skin is changing, I don’t know, but I want to finish this product as soon as I can and never re-purchase it. One flaw is that it can’t cover my dark circles. I don’t have problematic ones, they appear when I’m tired after studying, and during the exam session it happens often. To avoid being asked whether I’m a panda, I used Kiko Full Coverage Concealer (in the colour 02), which is simply perfect. It stays in place and covers everything, from blemishes to dark circles. You have to try it, even because it blends perfectly! Last, but not the least, is my eye primer, Kiko Eye Base Primer, a matte light primer that evens out the lid and makes your eyes immediately better looking. Sometimes I wear it and a line of eye liner and I’m ready!JANmostplayed1

On my cheeks you could have easily spotted tons of highlighter, but not a single hint of blush. That’s right. This month I wore a lot of Illamasqua’s Gleam in Supernatural because of the natural light it gives to my skin. Its being rosy-gold enhances warm skin tones and I’m really happy to have purchased it. Being on the go most of the month, on my lips I wore usually something both nutrient and good-looking, like L’Oreal Glam Glow in Miss Cherry, a lovely full red, not too orange-y and not too blue, it’s just the perfect balance (I’m wearing it in this post!). It’s a lip balm, so even with the cold and the snow surrounding me, my lips felt immediately better.JANmostplayed3

Eyes-wise I kept my profile low. Neutral colours and long lashes were the key, so Urban Decay’s Naked Basics Palette (the original one) and NYC Big Bold Mascara were my loyal allies. My problematic eyebrows were tamed by Catrice Eye Brow Stylist in Don’t Let Me Brow’n, a light ashy brown, a little too light for my eyebrows, but the darker colour was too dark for me. It’ll do.JANmostplayed5

Lastly, skin care and lips care. Have I already mentioned the snow and the cold? Yeah? Okay, I’ll talk about them again. My skin being oily, I don’t suffer a lot from dry spots, but in winter it is important to keep it hydrated and Herborist’s Revitalizing and Firmind Day Cream helped a lot. I own a travel size, and I’m afraid it will end before spring. I’ll have to go to Sephora (as if it was bad!). Lips again! This time, a lip butter from Labello (Milk and Honey) I desperately want to finish, because I can’t stand it. I thought it would be hydrating, but it’s simply a superficial one. My lips get dry after a couple of minutes after applying it, so I’m trying to use it at home, while I’m not going out, so as to finish it as quickly as possible. The next one will have a greener formula.  JANmostplayed4 What about your most played? Do we share anything?

Elsa Transformation

Carnival is approaching with its colours and its joy. Here in Italy we tend to fancy dress in this part of the year rather than Halloween. Or, to be honest, we dress up with fancy clothes both during Carnival and Halloween, but we keep the spooky stuff for Halloween and the funny one for February. I used to wear incredible costumes when I was little, and this year I wanted to do something special, something magical…

My most recent obsession isn’t Frozen, but Elsa is still fascinating me. I mean, she has incredible powers, she’s almost a water bender. Wait, headcanon accepted! Anyway, I decided to make my own version of Elsa, but I did both versions, when she’s a scared princess, bound to be queen and totally insecure about what she’s going to face, and the powerful ice queen, fierce and cold, and fashionable.elsa3

From one version to the other I did just some minor adjustments, like the eye and the lips make up, but the base is basically the same. During Let It Go she hasn’t the time to magically re-apply her foundation, let’s be honest! She simply changed some particulars, and we all know it.elsa1

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Face
L’Oreal Nude Magique Eau de Teint 120
Kiko Colour Correction Concealer Wheel
Illamasqua Under-Eye Concealer 120
Warm pink blush from Fräulein 3°8 Blush Palette
Essence All About Matt! Fixing loose powder
Catrice Eye Brow Stylist 040 Don’t Let Me Brow’n

Eyes
Kiko Eye Base Primer
Urban Decay Naked Basics original
Avon Smooth Minerals black kajal
Essence Kajal Pencil White
NYC Big Bold Mascara
Essence Pigment 04 Broadway Starlet

Lips
L’Oreal Glam Shine 900 Miss Cherry

Let It Go pause for appreciation and make up adjustment.

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Face
Illamasqua Gleam in Supernatural

Eyes
Pupa Vamp! Cream Eyeshadow in Burgundy
Catrice Absolute Eye Colour 710 Lilac Del Rey
False Lashes (with no brand, I can’t remember it)
Essence Frame4Fame Lash Glue

Lips
More Glam Shine 900!

The first version is more natural and really close to a no-make up make up, because it’s almost impossible to detect any trace of any product, except for the eyes. The only trace of sparkle is a bit of Essence’s pigment over the black eye-shadow to give a royal-ish touch.

The ice queen version is really bolder. I applied the cream eye-shadow directly on what I previously had on and then blended on it an enormous quantity of purple eye-shadow. I then re-applied the black eye-shadow as eye-liner and Illamasqua’s Gleam on the apple of my cheeks. Oh, I obviously added a lot of colour on my lips!

What do you think about this version?
I’d like to thank my friend Monica for the white wig, it was reaaaally helpful!

Monday Breakfast #8

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Good morning, everyone! It’s the last week of “vacation” for me, since next week the second semester begins. It’s time to collect energy and inspiration for the next months to come.

I’m currently re-watching Avatar – the Last Airbender and I’m totally falling in love with some character. Is it normal that I always like the bad guy?

Anyaway, have a nice, relaxing week!

Kiko Long Lasting Stick Eyeshadow

Have you ever experienced the feeling of falling in love with a make up product for a couple of months, using it daily, and then you forget about it for, say, one year and a half? Me? Uhm, I guess I have. And as soon as I decluttered a bit my make up possession I felt the passion for that product came back with the strength of a thousand suns.

Skip the poetry, get to the point! I recently discovered my two Kiko Long Lasting Stick Eyeshadow in the wrong place, that is in the swimming-pool bag. I put them there one Saturday that I had to work last year and they have been in there for all this time, since I removed all the stuff inside of the bag and released them.

I own them in two colours: 04 Golden Chocolate and 11 Teal. They are available in stores and online for 6.90€.
Golden Chocolate is a warm, medium brown with tons of golden reflection; these aren’t actually glitter, because they would make my eyes hella red as soon as I tried to remove my make up. It’s simply amazing how this colour can enhance my eye colour. When I have little time to do my make up in the morning, when I have to rush to get to the train station in time, I apply it as liner and I immediately feel like my eyes do have a shape.
Teal is blue-y green or a green-y blue, it’s the perfect balance between these two colours. It is harder to blend than Golden Chocolate, and it’s even harder to remove. At least, it’s really long-lasting!

These eyeshadows surely have some cons, but the pros simply outnumber them.
It is true that they are hard to blend, but I never use them as eyeshadows on the whole lid, I usually use them as eyeliner when I’m in a rush at morning, because these two colours aren’t exactly what I’d like to have all over my eyes.
They aren’t easy to remove, but it is simply a sign of how long they last! I apply them in the morning (usually Golden Chocolate) and when I come back after 6pm they are still there, they didn’t move of an inch!
If you want to blend them, you have to it quickly! After twenty, thirty seconds they settle on your lid and you won’t be able to blend them even if you tried with all of your strength. So, be quick and to one eye at a time!

The range of colours is enormous, more than thirty available in stores and online.
The quality is really worth the price. I highly recommend them!

Handmade Valentine. A Love Map.

This post is going to be in Italian. Perhaps there’ll be an English translation ASAP!

San Valentino si avvicina. Esatto, mancano solo 10 giorni. Sì, lo so che vi sta salendo l’ansia del “cosa gli regalo?”. Non temete. 33 blogger, armate di passione per il fai-da-te si sono date da fare per proporvi idee regalo o pensieri da regalare alla vostra dolce metà. Si va da creazioni semplicissime (come quella che state per vedere) a vere e proprie opere d’arte. Qui trovate il link al post di presentazione del gruppo The Creative Factory. Spero che troviate ispirazione nelle nostre idee!

Il mio progetto è una Love Map. Su Pinterest ne trovate a migliaia, alcune sono incredibili, e la mia idea originale prevedeva la creazione di un quadernino per gli appunti di viaggio, completo di mappe dei luoghi dove sono già stata con il mio ragazzo, o luoghi importanti per noi. Ho poi optato per questa soluzione per creare qualcosa di visivamente più carino (e tenere l’idea del quaderno per quando i luoghi visitati saranno di più!)

Come fare questa Love Map?

Step 1: Stampate le mappe, comprate una cornice (la mia la ho trovata al Brico, se non sbaglio costa sui 3€), procuratevi un cartoncino, un foglio nero o del colore che preferite tagliato a misura della cornice, forbici e colla.map3

Step 2: Sulle mappe stampate disegnate le lettere L O V E e a piacere dei cuoricini, a vostro piacere. Potete anche decidere di optare per altre scritte, come i vostri nomi, una data importante, quello che voi preferite.map2

Step 3: Incollate le mappe sul cartoncino e ritagliate le lettere.

Step 4: Incollate le lettere rinforzate sul foglio nero. Mi raccomando, fate bene pressione in modo che le lettere non si stacchino!map4

Step 5: Inserite il foglio nero con le lettere incollate nella cornice, richiudetela et voilà!, ecco a voi una cornice con le mappe dei vostri luoghi importanti.

Step 6: Preparate una lettera o una guida per aiutare il vostro lui a decifrare le mappe. Probabilmente le capirà a colpo d’occhio, ma conoscendo il mio pollo ho preparato la soluzione in una busta.map1

Se vi dovesse interessare, io ho scelto come luoghi: la provincia dove viviamo, e dove ci siamo conosciuti; Treviso, il primo posto dove siamo andati “in vacanza” insieme; Firenze, la nostra prima vera vacanza insieme, e il mondo, il posto che vorrei girare con lui.

Vi piace questa idea? La replicherete?

   Mentre ci pensate, andate a dare un’occhiata alle mie compagne di avventura di oggi! Anche queste 5 blogger fanno parte del gruppo The Creative Factory.
Laura di La Foresta Incantata Design
Linda Rose di Linda Rose Creations
Vincenza di  My Country Room
Lisa di Mum Cake Frelis
Sabrina di  Carta e Cuci

Handmade Valentine

Monday Breakfast #7

I might sound obvious, and I probably am, but how fast did January pass? I mean, wasn’t it yesterday when I was playing Risiko with my friends and trying to exterminate all the purple panzers? Ok, it was a month ago. As well as all the sparkle and joy of the Holiday’s Spirit.

We are in February, Valentine’s Day and Mardi Gras are coming, and winter has definitively come. There was even snow a couple of days ago! The semester is starting in a couple of weeks, and I really want it to be not as chaotic as the last one!
What are your plans for Febraury?