Tips for How to Start off the New Year Right for 2016

Here are my tips of things you should do to make this year great! These tips will help you with your New Year's resolution or any of your goals in general. They will also just help you have a happier year in general! 

Tip 1: Resolutions
Everyone always makes unrealistic resolutions for the new year. After about a week or two, those resolutions end up forgotten and in the garbage. In order to successfully carry out your resolution for 2016, you need to make sure it has certain characteristics. It must be specific, measurable, attainable and of course, realistic. If your resolution isn't any of those things, than you may as well not even make one. They need to be specific, because if that will ensure that you know exactly what your goal is, so you can work at getting closer to it. You also need to be able to measure your goal, because that's how you will know if you have reached it or not. Of course, your goal or resolution must be realistic and attainable, because it needs to be something that you can actually accomplish. It must be within your grasp, because if it isn't, you won't work towards achieving it.

Tip 2: Inspirational Board

This is a collage I made a few years ago, with some of my favorite celebrities, makeup and fashion items on it. Making a collage of things that inspire or motivate you can help you to reach your goal or resolution for the new year. You can cut out pictures and words from magazines or from the Internet of things that will convince you to achieve your goal. Make sure to put this board up where you will look at it often, like on your wall or on your desk.

Tip 3: Happiness Jar

Write things that made you happy or memorable things that happened on little slips of paper every day in 2016, and put them all in a jar. Fold up the slip of paper and write the date on the side of paper showing. You should have 365 slips of paper by next year, and you can read them all to remember all the happy things that the previous year brought. You can also read the slips of paper whenever you are feeling sad or need a jolt of joy.

Tip 4: Write in a Journal

Writing in a journal every day is a great creative outlet, and lets you rewind through your day at night. Writing all your thoughts at night before you go to bed can also help you have a better night sleep. It's also fun to look back on your entries in the following year, to see what you were doing or thinking about on that very day the year before. 

Tip 5: Organize Your Room
Organizing your room will give you a fresh start to the new year. This will make you jump into the new year already feeling organized and on top of everything! You can also make a cozy corner in your room, where you can light candles, decorate with pillows and blankets, and put your favorite books or magazines. 

Thanks for reading! I hope you have a great 2016!

Disclaimer: All thoughts and opinions are mine! I take credit for all the photos except for the one of the fireworks, which was from Google images. 

Travel Journal: London Day 2

December 24, 2015

Today, not many things were open in London since it was Christmas Eve. It was also raining a little bit, but luckily we packed rain jackets and umbrellas!

Today I wore high-waisted black jeans from H&M, maroon ankle boots from Forever 21 and a grey sweater from American Eagle. When we were walking around outside, I also wore my purple fleece North Face jacket under my navy blue rain jacket from Target.

 We walked to Pret a Manger for breakfast, and then we got day passes for the Tube, or the underground train station.

 First, we took the tube to Hyde Park, which is where Winter Wonderland is located. Winter Wonderland is a theme park that has many rides and carnival games. It was raining and windy when we got there, and not many people were there.

We walked around Hyde Park a little, but since the weather was nasty we walked around quickly and left.

We walked from Hyde Park to Harrods, which is a huge, high end department store. We picked up some stocking stuffers in Harrods to give to each other on Christmas. Harrods was extremely crowded! Usually the building is lit up, but it wasn't lit up during the time we were there. It had a food hall, escalators with extravagant decorations, such as the Egyptian ones, and many couture brands. We ate lunch at a restaurant close to Harrods.

We took the Tube from Harrods, to the Charles Dickens Museum. The museum was inside of Charles Dickens' house from 1837 to 1839. Since it was Christmas Eve, they had special activities going on in the house. They had volunteers who dressed up as characters from A Christmas Carol, and they performed scenes and songs from the book.

In the museum, there were also crafts that we could participate in. One of them was marbling with dye. I mixed these dyes together in water, and I laid the paper on it. Then when I took the paper off, the pattern transferred to the paper. Also, my parents strung letters on a piece of string to make a saying. They chose "God Bless Us", which is a famous quote from A Christmas Carol. We hung the saying up in our hotel room later.

Next, we rode the Tube to the London Eye. We got there earlier than the time our tickets were for, so we watched the 4D movie, which was provided complimentary to our Eye tickets. 

These are pictures of the view from the London Eye. We had tickets for 5:30, so it was dark outside. Most of the building were lit up by now, so it was a spectacular sight! The ride lasted for about 30 minutes. After we finished going around, we took a cab back to the hotel. The cabs in London have seats in the back that face each other. I sat in the seat where it seems like you are driving backwards. At the hotel, we ate some appetizers at the bar, and then we ate dinner at the hotel restaurant called Bistro 51. I had the chicken tikka masala, which was very yummy. After dinner, we filled everyone's stocking stuffers and went to bed. 

Thanks for reading!

Disclaimer: All photos, thoughts and opinions are my own!

3 Outfit, Makeup & Hair Looks for Your New Year's Eve Party

Here are some different types of looks for if you're going to a festive New Year's Eve party. I have put together 3 different looks that can be dressed up or dressed down depending on the type of party or activity you are going to. 

Look 1: Dinner or Casual Party

Items (from left to right): Sequin tank top ($15); motorcycle jacket ($76); Kate Spade crossbody ($98); high waisted jeans ($30) earrings ($65); red lipstick ($5.99); Daisy perfume ($83); gold eyeliner ($20); bracelets ($28); Bobbi Brown eyeshadow palette ($49); ankle boots ($56); gold nail polish ($10); Rimmel mascara ($6).

This look is more casual than the other ones, so it's perfect for a dinner with friends or a casual party. You can remake this look with items you already own- all you need is jeans and a sparkly top! Then you can dress it up with a jacket and accessories. Straightened hair, or a nice side braid would go together very nicely with this outfit. Also, you can wear gold eyeliner and nail polish, to look more festive. Then finish your look off with red lipstick, sparkly eyeshadow and a spritz of a nice perfume.

Look 2: Casual or Fancy Party

Items (from left to right): Red tank top ($9.99); black jacket ($14); sequin clutch ($59); gold sequin skirt ($59); red earrings ($40); gold nail polish ($20); bracelets ($4.12); MAC red lipstick ($23); fake eyelashes ($7.40); black heels ($52); NARS eyeshadow palette ($48); Too Faced mascara ($12).

This look is a bit more fancier than the last look. You can remake this outfit with any sequin skirt and a pretty tank top. For hair, you should do a half-up, half-down hairstyle with hair pieces framing your face, or loose beachy waves (refer to my hair curling tutorial in a previous post). You can dress this outfit up with a sparkly clutch and accessories. Make sure your clutch is big enough to hold all of your essentials, such as your phone, money and some makeup. For makeup, I would use fake eyelashes and this Too Faced mascara to create voluminous lashes. For eyeshadow, I would use dark colors similar to the ones in the palette shown above. Then put on your lipstick and your perfume.This perfume is very girly and nice smelling.

Look 3: Formal Party or Event

Items (from left to right): Dress ($29); blue earrings ($16); sequin clutch ($52); bracelets ($10); Chanel lipstick ($36); Daisy perfume ($88); black heels ($50); nail polish ($16); NARS navy eyeliner ($25); mascara ($30); smoky eyeshadow palette ($7.99).

This look is the fanciest of all, and is perfect for a big fancy event, such as a cocktail party or any formal party. All you need is a sparkly dress and some heels. For hair, you should do bouncy waves or a bun with pieces of hair on the side of your face sticking out to frame your face. I wouldn't recommend wearing a necklace, because it would look strange because of the way this particular dress is cut. I would do a smoky eye and use dark blue eyeliner for your eyes. Then put on a nude lipstick, so as not to distract from your eyes or overpower your face. Finally, spritz on a simple, clean smelling fragrance. You can also get perfumes in small travel sizes or in roller ball packaging, so you can slip it into your purse to touch up later in the evening. 

Thanks for reading!

Disclaimer: All thoughts and opinions are mine. Photos were made by me in Polyvore. 

Travel Journal: London Day 1

December 22-23, 2015

My family and I traveled to London for our huge Christmas present this year. We are staying for one week! Our flight was at 6:30 but got delayed to 7:30. This is what we did on the first day we were in London!

This is my airplane outfit, and I took the picture when I got to the hotel. I wanted my outfit to be comfy and cozy since the flight was 6 and a half hours. We tried to sleep on the plane so when we got to London in the morning we could do some sightseeing. My sweater is from Abercrombie & Fitch, my jeans are from Joe's Jeans and my ankle boots are from Forever 21. It was pretty chilly today, and I didn't bring my jacket with me when we were walking around London, so I bought a blue scarf with the British flag on it.

Here's a picture of the currency in London, which is pounds. This is a 10 pound note, and it has a picture of Charles Darwin on it.

The hotel we stayed at was called St. James Court, which is a Taj Hotel on Buckingham Gate, close to Buckingham Palace. Our rooms weren't ready when we got to the hotel, so we walked around Westminster Abbey. We didn't actually go inside Westminster Abbey on this day, because we didn't have enough time, but we did go later on in the week. 

Instead, we went inside St. Margaret's church, which stands between the House of Parliament and Westminster Abbey. The church is dedicated to Margaret of Antioch.

This is a picture of the Eye, Big Ben and the Palace of Westminster. The Palace of Westminster is connected to the right of Big Ben.

We had tickets to tour the House of Parliament, which is made up of the House of Lords and the House of Commons. The House of Parliament is located in the Palace of Westminster. There are meetings held and laws made here, and the Queen visits this building once a year. Many important things happened in this building, such as Sir Thomas More's trial in 1535. The tour was very interesting, however we weren't allowed to take pictures inside most of the rooms. We ate lunch in the cafe that was in the Parliament building, and then we went back to the hotel and rested for a little bit.

After our rest, we walked around the streets later and there were beautiful lights hung up all over. This was a picture of the lights around the high end shopping district. There were so many stores and so many people out and about! 

There was a street performer in front of the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square. He was on a very tall unicycle telling jokes.

These pictures were taken of Trafalgar Square, which is the largest square in London. It is located in central London, and is thought of as the heart of the city. It is very dark outside in these pictures, but it was actually only 5:00 p.m. It gets dark very early in London, but there is plenty of nightlife late at night.

These pictures were taken on our walk back to the hotel. The top picture is of Big Ben and the Palace of Westminster. There are double-decker red buses that serve as a form of public transportation all across London. The bottom picture is of Buckingham Palace. Queen Elizabeth II lives in this palace. For dinner we ate at a little pub called Fuller's, and then we went back to the hotel to get some needed sleep.

For dinner, we ate at Fuller's Ale & Pie House, which is a chain pub that sells good hearty pub food. I ordered a hotpot with steak. There were a lot of people at the bar drinking and celebrating for the holidays. 

Thanks for reading! Leave comments and subscribe to my emails to be notified when I post :)

Disclaimer: All photos, thoughts and opinions are my own

What to Bring In Your Carry-On Bag

I just flew to London a few days ago and these were some of my essentials that I brought in my carry-on bag.

Tote bag- I like to bring tote bags for my carry-on bag that will fit under the plane seat in front of me so that I can reach into it without having to keep getting up and opening the overhead compartments. I nice durable tote bag is good for holding all of your essentials. You can find cute, inexpensive tote bags almost anywhere.

Gum- I always like to keep gum in my carry-on bag because chewing on gum while changing altitudes will help your jaws and ears so that they don't hurt or pop. Also, if you have an overnight flight, it is good to have gum to freshen up your breath I'm the morning. 

Headphones- I personally prefer headphones over ear buds, mainly because ear buds are uncomfortable to me and never fit right. Headphones are perfect because they just fit over your ear. Nice headphones will fit over your ears and will fit nice and comfy. Headphones are definitely a necessity if you are flying, because you can listen to music or watch a movie while you are in the air. 

Magazines- I also like to catch up on my magazines when I'm flying. Some of my favorite magazines are Seventeen, Teen Vogue, InStyle, and People. 

Travel tumbler- You can bring an empty travel tumbler to the airport and fill it up with water or coffee once you cross the security check point. Make sure not to bring any liquids in it through security!

Books- Reading is a great way to pass the time while you are flying. There are so many great books out there. My favorite types of books are historical fiction, teen / young adult fiction and books about dystopian societies. 

Phone- You can't forget about your phone of course! I have an iPhone 6. Make sure to make some great playlists that you can listen to on the plane.

Laptop- Bring a laptop or a tablet if you need to catch up on school work or any other type of work. You can also download games or books on a tablet.

Sweatshirt- I always like to bring a sweatshirt or jacket in my carry-on, because planes are usually cold.

Neck pillow- If you want to catch up on some sleep, I suggest bringing a neck pillow, that way you'll be able to lean your head on something and sleep. You can always find neck pillows in the airport book stores.

Makeup bag- It is a good idea to bring your makeup bag, so that when the plane lands, you can go to the bathroom and touch up if you are going to do any activities right after you leave the airport. Forever 21 has makeup bags with really cute sayings for very cheap.

Wallet- Obviously you need to bring your wallet of you need to buy anything.

Sleep mask- Bring a sleep mask if you want to sleep on the flight. You can usually find these in airport book stores, as well. 

Agenda- You can plan out the rest of your week and look at what your schedule is like for the week. I use this exact agenda to plan out all my school activities and work, as well as other activities. It keeps me very organized.

Mobile charger- Bring a mobile charger for your electronics so you can charge on the go.

 Notebook- You can write down any thoughts or ideas you have in a notebook.

Brush and hair ties- You can go to the bathroom and brush your hair or put it up in a ponytail at the airport.

Thanks so much for reading and please leave any comments below! Also subscribe to my email list to be notified when I post :) 

Disclaimer: All thoughts and opinions are my own. I made this photo using the Polyvore app. 

Suitcase Must Haves for Traveling over the Holidays

These are a few essentials if you are traveling over the holidays. These things will come in handy if you are going to a holiday party, or if you just want to look nice, without having to pack too many things. 

I really like this floral blue suitcase, but there are cute inexpensive suitcases that you can find in a lot of stores. Make sure to look at the weather for the place you are traveling to, and adjust your outfits. Adding a scarf and a sweater to an outfit can make your outfit look more put together and also help keep you warm. Also, watches or statement necklaces can add glam to your outfit and won't take much room in your suitcase. Black and gold watches are perfect for the winter time and they match almost anything! A sparkly clutch can add to your look if your outfit is boring. 

Thanks so much for reading and please leave any comments below. Also subscribe to my emails so you can be notified when I post :) 

Disclaimer: This picture was made by me in Polyvore. All thoughts and opinions are my own!

Tips on How To Organize Your Suitcase and Make Traveling Easier

I am actually flying to London tomorrow over Winter break, which is really exciting! My family and I will be in London for about a week, and we will be visiting a lot of tourist attractions, as well as just relaxing. Here are my tips for organizing your suitcase and make traveling easier.

Tip 1: Pick the right suitcase

I'm bringing a suitcase similar to the one shown in the top picture for my trip to London. I'm going to check my  suitcase on the plane, which means it will be stored on the bottom of the plane where they keep bigger luggage. A suitcase similar to the one on the bottom picture would be good if you're only going somewhere for a few days, and it would be able to fit on the plane in the overhead compartments. If you are going to bring a suitcase with you on the plane, I strongly recommend to bring one with 4 double wheels (or 8 wheels), because that means the suitcase will roll side to side, as well as forwards and backwards. Then, if you need to walk through narrow spaces, such as an airplane aisle, you can turn your suitcase (handle is perpendicular to your body) so that the thinner side can move easily through, without getting caught on a chair.

Tip 2: Put a luggage tag on your suitcase

Put a luggage tag on your suitcase with your name, phone number, and address so that if you ever lose your suitcase, people can easily contact you. Also, luggage tags help you identify your bag at baggage claim, if you have a similar bag as someone else. If your suitcase is plain, put a piece of ribbon or something else that sticks out from other people's suitcases so you can find your bag at baggage claim. 

Tip 3: Make a packing list

If you write down everything you are going to pack, then you can easily check to see if you forgot to pack something. It will keep you more organized, and can help you limit the amount of items you bring, so you don't pack too much.

Tip 4: Roll your clothing

Rolling your clothing allows you to have more space in your suitcase for other things that you can't compress, such as shoes and cosmetics.

Tip 5: Organize your clothes

Make different areas for your clothes. Have an area for pajamas and underwear, casual clothes, and dressy clothes. This will help you keep your suitcase organized, so you know where to look when picking out your outfit on your trip. 

Tip 6: Separate Toiletries and Cosmetics

Put your toiletries and cosmetics in different bags, so if one of your toiletries leaks, it won't get all over your makeup.

Tip 7: Eliminate Makeup from Cracking or Leaking

Put a cotton pad in your powder compact, which will stop the powder from cracking. To eliminate leaking from liquids, take off the cap, put a piece of plastic wrap over the opening, and then screw the cap back on.

Tip 8: Use Pockets

Store things that you use frequently in the outside pockets of your suitcase, so they are easily accessible if you need to get something quickly.

Tip 9: Bring ziploc bags

If you are bringing your suitcase with you on the plane, then bring extra ziploc bags, just in case all your toiletries don't fit in one or if you forget to put your toiletries inside of one. These will come in handy at the security gate!

Thanks so much for reading! Leave comments and subscribe to my email list to get notified when I post :)

 Disclaimer: This blog takes no credit for the pictures used. 

Product Review: e.l.f. Cosmetics Blush & Bronzer Duo and Tone Correcting Powder

Recently, I picked up the blush & bronzer duo from Target, because it was on clearance. I have heard many good things about this product, so I was really excited to see it on clearance! I've had the tone correcting powder for about a year now, so I thought I would share my opinions on both of theses e.l.f. products.

Details: "Create a healthy and natural glow all year long with the Contouring Blush and Bronzing Powder. The blush highlights the cheeks to add a flush of color, while the bronzer accents and contours cheekbones for beautiful definition. This convenient compact has just what you need to achieve a gorgeous glow anytime, anywhere." -e.l.f. website

How to Use: "Brush on the bronze to the hollow of the cheeks for definition and dust around the face line to create a healthy glow. Use the blush on the apple of the cheeks to create a subtle healthy glow." -e.l.f. website

I bought this blush & bronzer duo for $2.55 at Target. This product normally retails for $3.00. The packaging of this product is most similar to the packaging of NARS cosmetics. I like the matte black design, however it gets dirty very easily and shows oil and fingerprints on it. The bronzer and blush are extremely pigmented, which can be a very good or bad thing. When you dip your brush into the blush or bronzer, a lot of product comes off. When you apply the product to your face, you should use a light hand or else you can get harsh lines and will have to blend it out a lot. The bronzer does a good job of contouring and the blush and bronzer can both be blended easily. Also, this duo includes a mirror which is perfect for on the go. I would definitely recommend this product to anyone who is looking for an inexpensive blush and bronzer and has tanner skin. The "antigua" shade may be too dark for people with paler skin.

Details: "Create a balanced and radiant complexion that is beautiful and healthy. The lightweight formula evens out skin tone and absorbs excess oil, and sheer formula brightens, mattes and neutralizes the skin. The colors are meant to be blended together as the blue neutralizes orange, the green neutralizes red, the pink neutralizes grey and the yellow brightens and neutralizes red." -e.l.f. website

How to Use: "Blend the powder over the entire face to brighten and even out the skin tone as well as neutralize any redness." -e.l.f. website

I bought this product a year ago for $3.00 at Target. When I first started using this product, I would use the colors individually instead of together. I tried using the green powder as a concealer, which didn't work at all. The powder didn't neutralize anything on my face when I used them individually, but then I learned that I was supposed to mix the colors. Now, I really enjoy this products, because it brightens up my face and sets my foundation. I use my Laura Mercier translucent powder when I want my face to look more matte and less oily and shiny throughout the day. I also like how this tone correcting powder doesn't make my face look cakey over my foundation. I should have bought the warmer version of this palette instead, because my face has warmer undertones instead of cooler ones. I still find that this product works well on my face and I would recommend this to anyone who has cooler undertones and needs a good inexpensive powder to brighten and set their makeup with. 

Thank you so much for reading and please leave any comments below! Also, subscribe to my email list to be notified when I post :)

Disclaimer: All thoughts, opinions and pictures are mine



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