Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Ailyxxxfashion is back...for good!

Hello there, long time no speak (: After much consideration, thought, and reflection, I have decided to start making videos again, I hope this video gives an overview as to why I made the decision to stop making videos, but I also hope you are able to understand it because I know I am very very rusty in my video making and as you can tell I was very nervous >.< I hope to see you in future videos <3 p="">
xoxo
Aily


Monday, July 30, 2012

Rules and Regulations



Everyone Participating:
1. Must be 18 years old or older, or have your parents permission.
2. International entries accepted since this is a worldwide giveaway/contest.
3. BOTH the giveaway AND the contest end on August 14 at 11:59PM U.S. eastern time.
4. Only YouTube entries will be accepted for both comment and video entries. This means you CANNOT enter via twitter, Facebook, vimeo, or any other social networking sites.

Comment Participation: 
1. Must be 18 years old or older, or have your parents permission.
2. You can comment one or more times per day, as long as each comment is different. In the comment, you can state why you want to win the pens, what you would use the pens for, or anything pertaining to the pens...you can make it funny if you want (;
3. DO NOT write enter me.
4. Only YouTube comments will be accepted. You CANNOT enter via any other website besides YouTube...it gets too complicated >.<
5. You can live anywhere on planet Earth.

Video Participation:
1. Must be a new video. You will post your video as a video response to THIS VIDEO(: You CANNOT post a video that you used for a different giveaway or uploaded in the past. You can make your video about anything school related, here are some ideas:
-Desk Organization
-Agenda Organization
-How you study for tests
-Backpack  Organization
-Lunchbox Organization
-How you organize your computer files/folders
-Binder organization
-Your favorite iPad/iPhone applications for school
-The possibilities are endless, it is totally up to you(:
2. Only ONE video entry per person.
3. Remember to state that your entry is "for Aily's contest"
4. The video will be 10 minutes or less, it's okay if you are a few minutes over, say 11 or 12 minutes, since not everyone knows how to edit a video.
5. You can enter your video to win the prizes for someone else, such as your dad, son, daughter, cousin, aunt, friend, or any other family or acquaintance(:
6. Only video responses to this video will be accepted. You CANNOT enter via any other website besides YouTube...it gets too complicated >.<
7. Have fun and be creative. You do not have to show your face if you are not comfortable with it. But you MUST make a video on anything that is school related, it is totally up to you(:


May the odds be ever in your favor ^_^

Disclaimer: This giveaway is not sponsored by anything or anyone. I was not given any supplies by companies. I do not get paid by Youtube, Google, or anyone else to make videos. The prizes were purchased with my own money.

Friday, June 15, 2012

How I Save Money On Makeup

Let's state the obvious: High quality makeup can be VERY expensive. It gets worse when you are allergic to practically every makeup brand out there, such as myself. From drugstore to high end, there are only a few brands that I can actually use. Also, it's not so much the brand but the ingredients in a given product. For example, I can use Too Faced eyeliner, but their mascaras and eyeshadows irritate my eyes and make them very itchy.

I don't have the extra income to constantly try new brands and take the risk of being allergic to it, so when I find a product that I can use, I stick to it. But what if that product is expensive? If I could use a $5 mascara rather than a $20 mascara, I'd do so in a heartbeat. But I'm not as lucky as many people who have no reactions to mascaras, so managing my money is very very important to me. Also, I'm not a makeup fanatic, so I don't have 4 foundations, 8 blushes, 100 eyeshadows; I own a normal amount of makeup.

Another thing you must always remember is: "A high price does NOT equal high quality." I recently purchased my first M.A.C. lipstick and I do not like it...at all! I find the packaging to be quite cheap, my Avon lipsticks come in beautiful high quality packaging for a lot less money. I also did not like M.A.C.'s formula, it's very drying and does not last long on my lips unless I apply a lip balm and gloss over it, then the color looks GORGEOUS. But I think I'll stick with my Avon lipsticks that go on smoothly without having to apply a lip balm AND a lip gloss to have it look nice. I have not found a brand, whether drugstore or high end, that can beat Avon lipsticks <3 (; So there you go, I just recommended a brand hehe ^_^

Here are the makeup brands I can use:

For eyes:
Urban Decay
Physician's Formula (only their mascara)
Too Faced (only their eyeliner and eyeshadow primer)
Eyeko (found them through Birchbox)

For face [Makeup]:
Urban Decay
Physicians Formula
M.A.C.
Laura Mercier
Laura Geller
Make Up For Ever
Dr. Jart
Colorscience

For lips:
Avon (My absolute favorite lipstick brand out there)
M.A.C. (which I don't like very much)
Urban Decay
Sephora (lip glosses; I don't like their lipsticks)
Tarte

How I save money on makeup:


1. I try to purchase all my products online | Whenever I purchase from Sephora.com, I am guaranteed 3 free samples with my order. Free samples give me the opportunity to try a new brand and see whether I am allergic to it or not. Also, whether you purchase in-store or online, try to become a member of stores like ULTA or Sephora where you accumulate points and then exchange them for a deluxe sized sample [usually 100 points] or a kit [usually 500 points]. The reason I prefer Sephora.com over the store itself is because my Sephora store never has free samples to give me, and as you can see I love samples (; ULTA usually never gives me the promised samples I ask for online, so I avoid them unless there's a sale with something I need.

2. I like to purchase during the holidays and sales | During Christmas time, I have noticed that company's will come out with value kits that will easily save you hundreds. I remember getting my mom a Smashbox value kit with tons of Smashbox products for only $36, and it had a value of $146. It included a full size face primer, blush, bronzer, lip stick, eye shadows, eye shadow primer, and more I can't remember. But that alone saved $110.....$110!!! That's insane! My recommendation is to save your money during the year and during holidays or sales purchase the best value kit you can find, or a brand you have been wanting to try. Also, palettes will save you more money than buying the eyeshadows individually. The individual eyeshadows I own have been gifts or from sample boxes, which is my third way of saving money on makeup.

3. I am subscribed to 3 $10 sample box subscriptions | Yes $30 a month may break the bank for some people when it comes to makeup and beauty, but I can afford it so I choose to spend it. Keep in mind that I do not purchase clothes, leisure products, or any other makeup during any given month (unless it needs replacing). Those $30 is all I spend on myself. But in doing so, on average, I receive 12-18 deluxe size to full size products. One time I received a $29.50 blush in my $10 box, last month I received a $22 eyeliner, and this month I received a $15 eye stick. If I were to go and pay full price for those mere 3 products I would spend $29.50 + $22 + $15 = $66.50! That's A LOT of money if you're on a budget or just trying to save for the future like I am. The ones I'm subscribed to are Birchbox, LookBag, and now MyGlam.

My favorite of the 3 is Birchbox because I can accumulate points and then get $X off a future purchase. My favorite FREE way of getting points is by giving feedback to the products I received in a month. I get 10 points for every product I give feedback to and when I get to 100 points I get $10 off. Right now I'm at 181 points, which I've gotten by leaving feedback and purchasing a product or two. My goal is to get to 400 points by not purchasing anything. There's a moisturizer that I loved but it's $44! By getting to 400 points, only by leaving feedback and not spending money, I will get that moisturizer for $4!! That's awesome (; You can also get points for buying a product through them, for every $1 you spend you get 1 point.

Also, I had actually unsubscribed from MyGlam after being subscribed for 3 months when the company first began because it was not sending good sized samples. But now that has changed and in the past 2 months I have liked what others have received, so I resubscribed and should be receiving my next bag in July.

Also, I share my samples with my mom, who is allergic to a lot of products (I get it from her hehe).

4. I bid on eBay | This one requires patience and searching. I once got a $64 Urban Decay palette for $15 on eBay, that's an INSANE STEAL :D On eBay, I also purchase my Urban Decay Naked 2 palette for $30 rather than the usual $50, and yes, it's authentic and not a fake. But like I said, this requires patiences and constant searching.

5. I try before I buy | I never ever ever ever purchase anything unless I have tried it (except that M.A.C. lipstick >.<). This is why I like stores that allow me to try the product before I purchase it. This is very difficult to find in drugstores, which is why friends come in handy (; My best friend purchase 2 of the Revlon lip butters, which I was skeptical to buy because I didn't know if my lip/chin area would get itchy because of it. She let me try one and what do you know, no reaction ^_^ So once I'm finished with my tinted Nivea lip balms, I might just try it (;


If you can use any makeup brand without any allergic reactions, here are some ways I've seen and helped others save money on cosmetics:

6. Coupons | In the newspaper, I always see coupons for brands like Revlon, Cover Girl, Maybelline, Sonia Kashuk, Almay, Physician's Formula and Loreal. You can also find coupons online, print them, and use them at the store.


7. Dollar Tree | I always see brands like E.L.F., L.A. Colors, Almay, Jordana, and N.Y.C at Dollar Tree. I can't use these brands but I've heard good things about them and you can find these for a dollar which is cheaper than what CVS or Walgreens might be selling them for.

8. Make a wish list or ask for a gift card | If you're a makeup enthusiast, make a wish list of products you would love to receive from family or close friends. This can be for Christmas or your birthday. Or even better, ask for a gift card so you can spend the money on whatever you like. I prefer to give visa gift cards rather than Sephora, Target, or ULTA gift cards, so that they can spend their money at a high end store or a drugstore, and try products they've been wanting(:


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Divergent and Insurgent Book Reviews


            Insurgent starts off right where Divergent ended, so if you haven’t read Divergent I recommend reading it and then coming back to this blog if you’re still interested because I have to give parts of Divergent away in order to give reasons for my thoughts and opinions on Insurgent (: In case you haven’t read Divergent I’m going to give you what I remember about the book without giving any spoilers. I read it over a year ago, so my mind is a bit fuzzy on details but here we go:


           *Spoiler free* Divergent takes place in dystopian Chicago where society and its people are divided into 5 factions: Candor, Abnegation, Amity, Erudite, and Dauntless. Every year all 16 year olds have to choose 1 faction out of the 5 to live in for the rest of their lives. After these teenagers choose their faction, they have to go through an initiation which determines who will stay in the faction they chose and who will become factionless. The factionless are basically the “homeless” who don’t belong to any faction. The main character is Beatrice Prior, and you will learn more about her and what faction she chooses when you read the book (if you haven’t already). But Beatrice has a secret she can’t tell anyone and that she has to hide because in her society people get kill for “that.” What I loved most about Divergent was how action packed it was. Every time I turned a page, something new was happening. What I believed was true wasn’t true and there were twists and turns all over the place. Towards the end of the book, a lot is revealed and all I’m going to say is: not everyone is who you thought they were. There’s betrayal, sacrifice, friendship, love, and most importantly I felt like I was part of the book, almost like I was living it in my head. I definitely recommend this book and I give 5 out of 5 stars.


            Now to Insurgent, also by Veronica Roth. This part of the blog post will contain spoilers about Divergent but not about Insurgent. 

*Divergent spoiler begins* 
         Insurgent starts off where Divergent left off: Tris’ parents were killed by those under the simulation when Abnegation was attacked. Also, Tris is trying to cope with the fact that she killed her friend Will. In this book we learn why Abnegation was attacked in the first place and what that particular faction wanted. Just like in Divergent, people are murdered or gravely injured. 
*Divergent spoiler ends* 

        In Insurgent, we learn more about each faction, and some of the factions “dirty little secrets,” as well as what they are trying to hide from the society. A lot of secrets are revealed, and we get to learn more about Tris and why she is the way that she is, and why she goes around doing pretty reckless and outright insane things sometimes. What I loved most about it was how those who I thought were loyal turned out to be traitors, and those I despised I actually felt love for. After page 300, things really start to intensify and that was when I really couldn’t put the book down. Although a lot of what happens during the first half of the book had me on edge, I still felt that it was missing something that was not drawing me in as much as I was drawn into in Divergent (I think it was the lack of action). But after having read the entire book and going through every scene in my head, I realized that without the emotional and heart-felt first half of the book, I would not have felt the way that I did after I finished the entire book. Insurgent has a little bit of everything, there's some funny moments, there's drama, curiosity, excitement, and so many more emotions tied to the reading experience. 
           Overall, I loved the book and have high expectations for the third one; it gets 5 out of 5 starts in my book(:

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

June 2012 Birchbox: Jet Set

"This month's box is devoted to products that will indulge your inner jet setter, from hardy formulas that can last throughout a long-haul flight to imported finds that we've picked up on our global adventures." - Birchbox

Birchbox monthly subscription: $10

This was what I first saw when I opened June's BirchBox. They always have a cute introduction to the months box...which I never read hehe (; For this month, I love the little detail of making the introduction card look like a postcard!


After removing the card and tissue paper, my samples were revealed!


At first glance, I went crazy when I saw another full-size eye product! Last month they sent a $22 Stila liquid liner, it was amazing until I had an allergic reaction to it, and ended up giving the liner to one of my best friends. But without further ado, here is everything out of it's packaging(:


This month I got 6 products in my box, they were:
~Comodynes | Self-Tanning Intensive
~Eyeko | Fat Eye Stick
~Likewise | Facial Moisturizer + Sun Protectant SPF 50 Normal To Oily
~theBalm cosmetics | Stainiac in Beauty Queen
~tili bags | Lifestyle Extra
~John Varvatos | Birchbox Man Extra

Here's what Birchbox said about the Comodynes Self-Tanning Intensive Towelettes in this months card: "Who needs the sun when you can get a safe, build able, and natural-looking tan with these bestselling European towelettes?"
Price: $14.99 for a pack of 8
Initial Reaction: I'm not going to lie, I got freaked out when I saw the self-tanning towelettes because I'm terrified of artificial tans. For starters, I'm not a tanning person (I don't even like the beach hahaha!), so I wasn't very excited when I saw it. But then I watched a video by Birchbox on YouTube, and in the video they showed how it applies and how to apply it. That changed my perspective about them a little...but I'm a bit scared of them (; 
Overall Opinion: I still haven't tried them, but when I do I will update this section


Here's what Birchbox said about the Eyeko Fat Eye Stick in the color Old Gold in this months card: "A Birchbox exclusive, this UK brand's too-cool shadow stick combines creamy color and long-lasting wear."


Full size price: $15
Initial Reaction: One word: EXCITEMENT! I got so happy when I saw this in my box! I have never tried an eye makeup stick before. I know that various brands make this type of product, but I was always afraid to buy it and end up with irritated itchy eyes. So I took the product out of the box and swatched it on my hand, like girls do on YouTube, and it applies so softly; it has a pretty creamy consistency. 
Overall Opinion: I love it! I would definitely pay $15 for this product in the future when mine runs out. It applies very smoothly and does not tug on my eyelids. I do not have to apply a lot of product to get the color I want on my eyelids since I get an opaque finish with a single, soft, no pressured application on the lids. This is a plus for me because it means that I am not wasting a lot of product on one application, which will increase the longevity of the eye stick, making it worth $15. In a nutshell, it will last longer since I don't have to reapply [or build on] the product. Also, it looks beautiful on its own, but I love to place YDK or Suspect by Urban Decay on top to prevent any creasing (I have very oily eyelids). Additionally, it brings a good amount of product: 4g [or] 0.14oz; that is enough to last me a pretty long time! Most importantly, I do not have an allergic reaction to it, so I can add this product to my list of eye makeup products I can use :D 


Here's what Birchbox said about the Likewise Facial Moisturizer + Sun Protectant SPF 50 Normal to Oily in this months card: "Get sun savvy with this zinc-infused cream. It acts like a hydrating toner to mattify skin while deflecting UV rays."
Full size price: $44
Initial Reaction: "Oh my goodness another sticky, oily, overpriced SPF moisturizer." When I saw this moisturizer had an SPF of 50 I was about to have a heart attack. I have never in my life met a moisturizer with SPF, whether it's 5, 10, 20, or 30, that will not make my face more oily than what it already is, which is why I do not use a moisturizer with SPF on a day-to-day basis...I don't use a moisturizer at all because that's always what I get: an oil reserve on my face. So imagine my disappointment when I saw it was a moisturizer with SPF 50; I was very happy that the sample size wasn't very large! But as always, I was open to try it, that's why I'm subscribed to Birchbox: to try products I would probably never ever pick up on my own, such as this one!
Overall Opinion: I was proved wrong. This moisturizer is unlike anything any beauty subscription has ever sent me. After applying this product it's almost as if it sucks the oil out of my face! How? I have no idea! :D I'm still amazed at how it protects my face from the sun yet does not make it greasy or heavy feeling. Also, since there's less oil on my face, I feel that my BB cream lasts longer then it used to, especially on my forehead and nose areas. Would I pay $44 for this? Yes, after budgeting properly of course. Why? A little goes a long way, and the product does exactly what it claims to do. This is a quality that is very difficult for me to find in a moisturizer, and to think that I have finally found a moisturizer that will protect my skin with an SPF of 50, while not making my face shiny, makes me the happiest girl in the world! Also, I don't wear makeup on my face everyday, so having a moisturizer that works as a mattifier is a timesaver! Imagine waking up in the morning with an oily face, washing it, applying a moisturizer, some mascara, and you're out the door ^_^ I don't know about you but that's my kind of routine (;

Here's what Birchbox said about the theBalm cosmetics Stainiac in Beauty Queen in this months card: "We're crazy about this two-in-one lip and cheek stain: the sheer gel formula delivers a subtle, long-wearing flush."
Full size price: $17
Initial Reaction: I had heard of the brand theBalm in the past, and tried their nail polish in a MyGlam, which I must say I did not like the color they sent me! Since I liked the application and overall nail polish by this brand, I had high hopes for the stain. Now I must say that I have never tried a stain in my life! The closest I've ever gotten to a stain is a lip surge by Tarte, which came in a previous Birchbox. When it came to a cheek and lip stain, I have never ever tried one!
Overall Opinion: I really like it! I've worn it twice since I received it and it actually lasts on my cheeks, but not so much on my lips. Since it's red and it reminds me of blood, I feel like a vampire when I apply it to my lips hahaha! It gives a very nice stain to the lips but not very long lasting for me. I cannot say I'd purchase the full size of this product just because it doesn't wow me so much. I can't compare it to other stains since I haven't tried others, but I found this to be an okay cheek and lip stain. It's not a product that I can honestly say "I cannot go a day without this product," such as the mascara I use on a daily basis (it's the only mascara I don't have an allergic reaction to, so you can imagine how much I love it!).  I do love the product for cheeks, but not for lips.


Here's what Birchbox said about the Tili bags in this months card: "Breeze through airport security with these too-cute plastic bags. They're perfectly sized for storing all your travel essentials (and beauty samples)."
Price: Pack of 9-12, $8.49 - $9.49
Initial Reaction: "Oh my goodness it's animal print!" This is like a ziploc bag with an adorable twist! 
Overall Opinion: If I had the extra money to purchase these, I would! I can imagine myself taking grapes or dry snacks to work or when running errands, but I cannot imagine spending $8.49 on 9 of them hahaha! I've been using mine in my shower caddy. Inside of it I keep my everyday lip scrub, lip balm, hand cream, foot cream, and cuticle cream. It seals very well. It didn't come out in the picture but it actually seals like a Hefty baggie. It has a little white "zipper" that opens and closes it. I think these would make a very cute back to school gift!

Here's what Birchbox said about the John Varvatos Star USA Birchbox Man Extra Cologne in this months card: "In honor of Father's Day, we've included this dapper cologne, a blend of ginger, juniper berries, and vetiver. Pass it on to a lucky guy friend or family member."


Full size price: $55 - $70
Initial Reaction: "I'm not a man." Let me just say I gave the cologne sample to my boyfriend so I don't have a picture taken by me...I stole the picture of the full size from the Google (; But if you scroll to the top, you can see the packaging from my initial unboxing(: So moving on, I love the smell of this cologne and my boyfriend did as well...someone might be getting it in their birthday bag hehe(;
Overall Opinion: It's a delicious and fairly affordable cologne for a male of any age. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Ideas for Videos and Blog Posts

Hey there love. Long time no see!

Since I have been so busy with schoolwork, life, work, family, socializing, and housework, making videos has [unfortunately] gotten pushed to the back burner. For those who don't know, I'm taking two 8-week summer courses online, and the amount of work that has to get done is massive; to that add the things I previously mentioned and you get jam packed days with hardly any time to get everything done. I have 4 more weeks left of these 2 online courses before I begin my official summer break from school.

So about video making. I have TONS of video ideas and inspirations for my main channel; here are some of my ideas (if you have any, please leave them in a comment or tweet me and I will add them):

School related:
-Study Tips: How I Study
-Avoiding Procrastination [Part 2]
-How to Stay Motivated
-Planning in a Small Agenda
-How I Outline from a Textbook

Organization related:
-Makeup Organization
-Jewelry Organization (mainly consists of all my mom's stuff, but I'm considering this "Jewelry Organization" as a blog post with pictures rather than a video)
-Dresser Drawer Organization
-Cleaning and Maintaining Your Bedroom Organized (This will be both a video AND blog post ^_^)

Finance related:
-How I Save Money on Skincare/Makeup
-Creating a Budget
-Prioritizing your Budget (I might make this a blog post)

Just For Fun:
-Scentsy review (which I've been using for 6 months so it's a very honest review (; )
-Hello Kitty Live Wallpaper Review for Android (Which I've been using for about 5 months now)
-Various Tags

For my blog I'm thinking of expanding my horizons and going outside my comfort zone. If you don't already know, I am allergic to practically every single makeup and skincare brand out there. But from time to time, I find products that are amazing quality and there's no allergic reactions. I discover these through monthly subscriptions like Birchbox and Lookbag, and Sephora, ULTA, or Urban Decay online purchases which always give me samples for free to try out. I never buy anything unless I have tried it and I know I will not have a hive-like allergic reaction. So I would LOVE to share a review of those [few] products that I discover. The reason I want to make blogs about beauty related things rather than videos is because I do not feel comfortable making "beauty" related videos...it's just not my thing, I prefer organization, budgeting, and school related videos (; They've been requested A LOT on videos, but I will not do them as videos, I will do them as blog posts ^_^ Here are the blog post ideas I have (again, feel free to add more):

Health related:
-My favorite juice recipes
-My favorite homemade foods/recipes

Beauty related:
-BirchBox: Reviews of the products I get each month, and whether or not they worked for me
-Lookbag: Reviews of the products I get each month, and whether or not they worked for me
-My Haircare Routine (highly requested on my channel and I don't know why hahaha!)
-Products I've repurchased (There's A LOT)
-Favorite nail polishes
-Reviews of products I've sampled through online purchases (Sephora, Ulta, etc)

Organization related:
-Tip of the day [or] Tip of the week: I will include links and pictures of fun and affordable ways to organize everyday spaces like the kitchen, bathroom, etc
-Links that will correlate to organization videos
-Anything you request (;

Book related:
-I'm thinking of making my book reviews as blog posts rather than videos, and have my book channel to show you books I'm planning on reading, as well as books I've read in the past and have loved [or hated]. I find that I express myself a lot better on writing then I do orally, and book lovers will definitely benefit from that.

Life related:
-Relationship Advice: I get asked about relationships a lot and I think blog posts will be of more help then videos.
-Prioritizing schoolwork while managing a home: I do live in my parents house but I do everything in the house, this means cooking, cleaning, organizing, maintenance, laundry, party preparations (really rare, about twice a year), anything handy that has to get fixed, and week-to-week groceries. So I think it's be amazing to help those of you who have to manage a home (which isn't easy) while also going to school, working, having a social life, and finding family time which is so very important...at least to me (;

The reason there is more on my blog ideas than on video ideas is because of this: My life is changing, for the best of course, but it's changing and I do not have the time I used to have to make videos. I am NOT going to stop making video...EVER! But it is easier for me to type everything I want to tell you than it is to film it, edit it, then upload it and reply to everyone. And yes I have to reply to everyone, not because it's mandatory but because as a video maker, I have given myself the responsibility to reply to everyone who asks a question or needs help. If you have taken the time to watch and comment my video, I will give back that same time with a response and more videos. I find it's the right thing to do(:

I'm not very good in front of the camera, and since I'm such a perfectionist and want to give the perfect video that will help you, I'll easily spend one to one and a half hours refilming until I know that the video has everything it needs to assist you. At this time I just don't have that hour or so to spend on a video, I'd rather spend that hour cooking a healthy meal for my family, on schoolwork, or with my boyfriend, etc. So I want to start making 1 video a week, I don't know when this will start, but I want to set the goal of uploading 1 video every week(:

I think that's it ^_^ Any other question you have feel free to ask, I love you all and miss you so much! <3

xoxo

Monday, April 9, 2012

My April Birchbox 2012

My Birchbox came in today and I cannot be more excited! I went on YouTube and saw that a lot of the people who got the same items as me were not happy at all...but I'm SUPER ecstatic! I know this isn't my regular type of blog post but I wanted to share all the products and my thoughts about each one (:


This month I got 5 products in my box, they were:
~J.R. Watkins | Hand and Cuticle Salve
~willa | Gentle Cleansing Lavender Facial Towelettes
~Belvin by Zoya | TRUE Spring Collection
~Wonderstruck by Taylor Swift
~dropps | Laundry Detergent


*This sample size brings 0.25 oz (7g) | The full size is 2.1 oz (59g) and is $7.99

I think I am most excited about the J.R. Watkins hand and cuticle salve more than anything in this box! I've used several products by this brand in the past and I have loved each one of them. I do not have allergic reactions to this brand which is a definite plus since I am allergic to practically anything. When I opened and tried the hand and cuticle salve for the first time I was surprised at how creamy and luxurious it felt. It left my cuticles feeling very very soft and moisturized! 

Here's what Birchbox said about the J.R. Watkins in this months card: "Slather on this creamy balm pre-manicure. It's full of natural moisturizers to keep your hands and cuticles super soft."




*This sample size brings 10 towelettes | The full size brings 30 towelettes and is $7.00

Just this morning I was telling myself that I needed to get facial towelettes for those days that I don't feel like removing my eye makeup. It's not as if I even wear a lot of eye makeup but I like to remove the eyeliner before going to sleep. So I couldn't believe it when I opened my box and found these towelettes inside!! :D Very excited to try these out! I will probably update this post saying how my skin reacted to it(:


Update April 11: Three words: I love these! They are gentle on my skin yet they remove ALL of my eye makeup. I cannot say whether or not they remove foundation/concealer/powder effectively because I do not that wear that. But for my eyes they are great, they did not irritate them as most moist towelettes I have tried do, such as Neutrogena, MAC, Clean & Clear, E.L.F., and Up & Up (by Target)...these are a few that I've tried and my eyes get very red, itchy, and swell up; they will then stay irritated and sensitive for about 2 days, I have to be VERY careful with what I purchase. So you can see why I'm so happen with these towelettes :D
The scent of the willa towelettes is lavender and smell amazing.
Here's what Birchbox said about the willa towelettes in this months card: "There's no need to cozy up to your sink - wipe away the day's debris with these aloe and lavender-infused wipes."




*This sample size brings 0.25 oz | The full size is 0.5 fl oz (15 ml) and is $8.00

When Zoya came out with their TRUE spring collection I loved all the colors so much I ended up purchasing the entire collection (6 colors in total). But for some reason Belvin is my favorite. Out of all the colors in the collection, that is the one I've worn the most. So imagine how excited I was when I saw they sent me my favorite color!! :D Yes I now have two polishes of the same color, but I know I'm going to use it a lot. What I will probably do is use this months baby Belvin more than my full size so I can run out of the baby first (;
Here's what Birchbox said about the Zoya TRUE Spring Collection in this months card:  "Lighten up for spring with this fresh shade. The non-toxic formula goes on opaque and lasts 50% longer than traditional polishes."








*This sample size brings 0.04 fl oz (1.2 ml) | The full sizes are: 1.7 oz for $49.50; 3.4 oz for $59.50

I had heard about Wonderstruck by Taylor Swift but never had the chance to smell it and see if I liked it. Now this month, thanks to Birchbox, I was able to and I must say I'm in love! This scent is so springlike, beautiful, and soft. It's definitely something I can wear every day and it is not ridiculously expensive at $49.50-$59.50, I tend to have expensive taste when it comes to scents so this is cheap for me (; I will definitely purchase this eventually!
Update: I purchase the full size perfume in May 2012.
Here's what Birchbox said about Wonderstruck by Taylor Swift in this months card: "The pop-country songstress' scent is as catchy as her lyrics. We think it's worthy of a standing gig on our vanity."







*This sample size brings 2 packets | The full size brings 20 packets and is $6.00

And finally Dropps Laundry Detergent, which I can actually say I'm excited to use. Like I said before, I tend to have allergic reactions to practically anything and that includes detergents as well as fabric softeners. My skin is very delicate so I'm always on the search for new samples to try out. This particular pack brings two packets that you just throw into your washer and walk away, I like it already (;
Here's what Birchbox said about the droops laundry detergent in this months card: "Lighten your laundry day load with these single-use, eco-friendly detergent packs. We love their convenience factor and adorable design."




And that is all (: Thank you for reading and have a beautiful day <3


FTC: I am not affiliated with Birchbox. I purchased this with my own $10.

My yummiest meal yet :D

"We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons."  ~Alfred E. Newman

This is by far the best Easter I have had ^_^ I spent the entire day in the kitchen (about 4 hours) and chit chatting with my family. I wanted to have a "summer" themed easter dinner, you know the burgers, corn on cob, and fries. But I didn't want to buy everything made and highly processed so I'll tell you a little bit about all the food I made (;

Starting with the burgers. The meat I purchase isn't your everyday factory produced and packed meat. As you guys know I live in Florida, and there's a Whole Foods in my area. Well this Whole Foods carries a meat produced by a farmer in Georgia who has an animal welfare number of 4! Click to learn about the numbers (: This means that the cattle he raises to slaughter and sell to the public eat grass, they do not live in the disgusting conditions slaughterhouse cattle live in, they are able to walk around, and do not live in cages or crates. Due to a personal health condition I have, my doctor recommended that I eat red meat once a week or at least once every 2 weeks. However, I never ate it because it disgusted me, I did not know where that meat came from, how the cattle was treated, or in what conditions it lived. Now back to the farmer, while regular slaughter houses kill 400 cattle an hour, this farm kills 4 cattle an hour. These cattle are not hung by a conveyor belt and taken around the slaughterhouse to "increase productivity" by having people rip it apart faster than the eye can see; they are slaughtered the same way they used to be before these factories took over and completely changed the way meat is produced: one by one. This really alters the taste of the beef, and how it looks raw. It does not come all bloody and squishy looking at all! :D Now back to my food, I tasted a [cooked] sample of that meat at Whole Foods about 2 weeks ago and it was unlike anything I've ever had! This is my second week making a different dish out of it and I have not gotten a single tummy ache like I used to with other meats. My body would just reject them and it was not a nice experience. Oh and I forgot to mention that its 90% lean, 10% fat with 20 calories per serving and a low percentage of cholesterol (I think 5%...I can't remember).

How did I make these yummy burgers? Really simple:

Click for the original recipe (:
1 1/2 pounds of beef ($10.43 the Friday before Easter)
3/4 teaspoon Organic pepper ($1.79 on sale)
3/4 teaspoon Sea Salt (we had some at home)
3/4 cup of dry bread crumbs ($2.19)
1 egg

I added all the ingredients to the beef about 1 hour before cooking and I let it sit in the fridge so it could absorb the flavor. Then I made 6 equally sized burgers and cooked them on the stovetop because I don't have a grill to make them outside....they still came out delicious(; The hamburger bread I used was one that came frozen, it was called "Sprouted Wheat *something*" I don't remember the name but it brought 6 buns, and they were soooooo good :O ($3.49 for 6)


Then came my sweet potato fries. I had NEVER made homemade sweet potato fries from actual sweet potatoes! As opposed to the meat, I have no idea where my sweet potatoes are from, I know it said it on the label at Whole Foods but I can't remember XD I went online (AllRecipes.com) and found a simple recipe for "Baked Sweet Potato Sticks," but I altered the recipe a bit:

Click for the original recipe(:
I used 4 organic sweet potatoes rather than 8: $2.29 per pound, 3 pounds, $6.87 total
2 tablespoons of olive oil (we had at some)
1/2 teaspoon of paprika for every 1 tablespoon of olive oil (we had at home)

I added the olive oil and paprika, threw in the sweet potatoes after I cut them up, and mixed them in the bowl with washed hands. It took 2 cookie sheets to fit all the potato fries, 40 minutes in the oven, and after I served them there were no leftovers (;


And finally corn on the cob. BJ's Wholesale now has a program called the Farm to Club Program, where they sell locally grown produce to the public. When I saw this at the store I even tweeted a picture (;


My corn came from Plant City, Florida, and it was SO different from any other corn I've had from other stores. I'm not sure if they used chemicals to grow it but oh goodness it was delicious (; Here's what I did:

I used 6 corn on the cobs ($3.49)
6 cloves of organic garlic (we had at home)
A pinch of sea salt

I cut the corns in half giving me a total of 12 little corns. I put them in water, boiled the water, and let them cook for 20-25 minutes in the garlic. It was delicious, only 2 pieces were left ^_^

So what was the grand total for this home cooked meal? Is it really expensive to eat healthy as most people think? Let's do math:

Natural beef: $10.43
Dry Bread crumbs: $2.19
Organic pepper: $1.79
Hamburger buns: $3.49
Organic sweet potatoes: $6.87
Locally grown corn: $3.49

A total of: $28.26 for 6 people, that's $4.71 per person, try going to a restaurant or cheap fast food and fill up 6 hungry tummies with food that's good for their bodies and will not make them sick for $28.26 (;

And that was my meal, I still cannot believe it was $4.71 per person! I feel so accomplished and happy that I was able to make this food and that they actually enjoyed it. Little by little my parents are changing their eating habits as well and they're bodies are different, they have more energy, and they want to learn more about these foods. They see the change in me and how great I feel, how I don't need medicines anymore, and they want to be that way too! I still have a lot more to learn, but I will share every step of the way with you, and you can teach me what you know. Never stop learning (:

Thank you for reading! ^_^

Stay healthy <3

Saturday, April 7, 2012

The "I'm not hungry" breakfast drink

This morning I did not feel like eating anything but my tummy was roaring at me! Since that "girl time" is coming, I begin to lose my appetite, especially in the morning, and by not having breakfast I get cravings after 11am. Since I've been doing great for almost 2 weeks now, I don't want my time of the month to throw me back to bad eating habits, especially NOT having breakfast, which I did very often.

I'm a huge fan of having fruit and oatmeal for breakfast, I absolutely LOVE it! But today I did not feel like eating at all, so I got all the fruits and fiber I wanted to eat and made them into a drink ^_^ Just like I did a couple of blogposts ago with the strawberry banana...but this one is SO much better (;

Here's what I had:

1 banana
7 strawberries
6 blackberries
15 blueberries
1 teaspoon of Chia Seeds

1. I sliced the banana and I cut the strawberries in half.
2. Put all the fruits in the blender and filled it with water until the fruits were covered.
3. I pushed these buttons on the blender: "Blend" "Mix" and "Puree"
4. Once it was liquified, I added 1 teaspoon of Chia Seeds (Everything is still in the blender). I only added 1 teaspoon because it's my first time having it and I want to see how my body reacts to it.
5. I blended the Chia Seeds in the blender.
6. I served myself a nice tall glass, and wait about 8-10 minutes for the Chia Seeds to become softer in the drink.
7. Add an ice cube or two, and drink your breakfast ^_^


I know this is very similar to my last smoothie but I still wanted to share it with you because it's my official favorite (: Thank you for reading and have a beautiful happy day! 

Stay healthy <3

Thursday, April 5, 2012

100% Natural Strawberry Banana Juice!


This morning I didn't really have an appetite so I decided to make myself a juice. It came out so delicious I HAD to share it with you ^_^ This is what I used:


~My ancient blender, I grew up with him ^_^
~1 Banana
~About 12 strawberries
~Water (Enough to cover the fruits in the blender)


I blended it all together and bam a delicious natural juice that opened up my appetite so I had a bowl of oatmeal and oat bran (; You can also add different berries for a stronger taste! Try it and tweet me telling me "Aily I love it!" or "OMG WTF is this? Do you have taste buds?" Hehe ^_~

Thanks for reading <3

Stay healthy ^_^

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Naturally Healthy: Transitioning from processed to natural foods

I began my journey to a healthier lifestyle August 2011. As many probably already know, the "American diet"consists of many fatty processed foods, refined sugars, and everything is cheap and easily available. There's a fast food on every street in every corner and it's very difficult to not eat it. So transitioning from eating that type of food my entire life, to eating naturally grown organic and healthy foods has been a very difficult but successful journey. My excuse, like a lot of people was: "Eating organic and healthy is too expensive." But what I did not realize is that what I was doing to my body was more expensive than just eating healthy foods. At the age of 23 I already had to take acid reflex medication, vitamin supplements, pain killers for the killer migraines, and 6 out of 7 days a weeks I'd always chew 2 tums a day because of the pain I would get in my stomach. I was prepping myself for a very bad future. And even after all of that, I was reluctant to believe that eating healthy was the only way for me to get better. The day in August when I stepped on the scale and saw the number 145 pounds, I knew it was time to do something. I had "dieted" before in my life but always went back to my bad eating habits. So this time around I knew I wanted to make life long changes, this meant totally changing my eating habits. How did I do it? Keep reading, my long story continues.

In August 2011, I started incorporating 1 fruit into every meal, 3 fruits a day in total. I know that's not much, but it was a start. I did that for 3 weeks until eating 1 fruit in every meal came naturally to me. Then came the difficult part: vegetables. The only way I liked veggies was cooked and with a lot of butter, which is a heart attack ready to happen! So that was when my journey to eating raw vegetables began. Throughout October 2011 to December 2011, I fluctuated back and forth between eating raw carrots, green peppers, spinach, etc...yes you got it right, it took me 3 months to adapt to the taste and texture of these delicious vegetables. But even then, I would still eat frozen and processed foods. Then January 2012 rolls around, I'm not one for new years resolutions so I just continued my journey as I had before. And little by little I found myself drifting away from unhealthy and processed foods, but most importantly I hadn't gone back to eating only processed and artificially refined foods.

Today is April 4, 2012, and I am proud to say that I have not eaten a sugary fatty processed food in exactly 1 week and 2 days. After trying to adapt to eating these different foods, I knew on March 26, 2012 that I was ready to do this long term. Yes it took me 8 months to completely quit and not desire these processed foods, but I have learned so much and I am so proud of myself!

You're probably wondering why I didn't quit it from one day to another, this is simple, you can't run unless you can walk. It would have been unrealistic of me to believe that I could completely change my eating habits in a day. I was very uneducated when it came to food. I did not know what fruits or vegetable were high in fiber, what vitamins they contained, how each made me feel, or the benefits of eating all of them. When I say the word journey, I literally mean an 8 month journey to where I am now(:

Also, I went from drink 8-10 cups of coffee a day, to drinking less than 8 fl oz of coffee a day. Now when I pour my coffee in the morning, I usually drink about 75% of that 1 cup (: That on its own took me only 1 week. How? Well, by eating fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, etc, I just didn't need the caffeine. My energy comes naturally, I don't get sleepy throughout the day, and I sleep like a baby now :D If I feel I need a boost of caffeine, I will have Black Tea with caffeine to satisfy that.

Last Friday, March 30, I began my exercise journey. I know this one will take a while, but I also know that I can do it. Because having accomplished completely eliminating these addictive unhealthy foods from my life gives me the encouragement I need to do anything I want to do (: I went on a 20 minute light jog and that made me realize how badly in shape I am. Yes, I did incorporate exercises into my life when I began back in August 2011, but not as much or close to what I am doing now. Most of my toning workouts I get from YouTube, which is free and easily accessible, so if you go into my YouTube channel (ailyxxxfashion) I have favorites tons of the ones I do repeatedly (: My goal is to burn off all the fat I have in my bum, things, hips, arms, and tummy.

My next journey is going to be juicing. There are so many vegetables that I just cannot eat because its too much to eat in one day! So recently I've been looking at juicing recipes and success stories, and it's definitely something I want to incorporate into my diet as well as my families diet (: We already chose one but have not purchased it yet (;

Oh! I almost forgot to tell you about where I stand when it comes to all the stomach problems and migraines I was having in the past...in the past week or so, I have not had a single stomach ache or migraine(: I have not had to purchase expensive medication, also I haven't had to purchase any supplements because I'm getting my vitamins and minerals naturally from the source. Words cannot express how amazing I feel and the energy I have! But now I must go and continue my journey(: Thank you for reading <3


Saturday, March 24, 2012

Qualities I believe make people subscribe to YouTubers

I will eventually make a video all about this but I thought I'd make a blog on what I think have made people want to subscribe to my channel. I am not saying I'm famous or well known, because I'm well aware that I'm not, but I have been asked by several YouTubers who are just starting out "How can I get people to subscribe to me?" "How can I get more views?"and those sorts of questions. So I came up with a few things that I think are important. The same way that I make videos, I also view them and there are some characteristics that I find make me subscribe to someones channel.

#1. Be kind. I actually have a little story for this one. A while ago, one of my friends (a subscriber) asked me for advice on something. However, I didn't know how to reply to them because I don't have experience in that particular area. So I told them of another YouTuber who I thought would be helpful to them. When I told the person about this YouTuber, the person told me that they'd rather get advice from me, even if I had no experience in that area, because the YouTuber that I recommended "replies in a rude manner, and makes me feel low and unintelligent"....OUCH! Of course I'm not going to say who the person is but that goes to show you how important kindness and being nice to others. What is known as "word of mouth" in the business world also applies to YouTube. People will definitely recommend the channels they like and the channels that make them feel happy. We all want to be respected, treated nicely, and not looked down upon.

#2. Be aware of what you say. When you talk to someone on the internet or make a video and upload it, be careful of what you say and how you say it. Viewers can get offended, not tell you, and unsubscribe. For example, if I am making a video on organizing an agenda, and I say that people who don't use agendas are stupid and disorganized, I am obviously going to offend whoever doesn't use an agenda (btw I don't think that of those who don't use an agenda, I'm just giving an example[: ). And then that person I offended will most likely unsubscribe, not watch my videos anymore, and possibly hate me. So please be very very careful with the wording of sentences in your videos.

#3. Reply to comments, message, tweets, etc. This has to be my number 1 tip! Even if you can't reply to every single comment, at least reply to the questions people ask you. Just because you have thousands of people subscribed to you does not give you the right to not reply to them, if you're making videos be prepared to answer questions because that's what you pretty much "signed up" for (: Personally, I love replying to all of the wonderful and beautiful people who enjoy my videos, but more than anything I like forming a friendship with them. Why? Not so that they stay subscribed to me, but so that they know they can count on me if they need help getting motivated or things of that sort. Nothing makes me happier than knowing I've helped someone(:

#4. Be yourself. As I always tell myself "I would rather have someone not subscribe to a real me, then have someone subscribe to a fake me." Be proud of who you are, what you believe in, and show that in your videos (:

#5. Get to the point. Anything that isn't related to your video title should be said at the end of the video, NOT the beginning. When someone clicks your video, they click it because of the title, but if you come out talking about something completely different for the first 5 minutes of your video, most often than not people will exit out & look for another YouTuber. If you're busy like me, you want to the video to get straight to the point to not waste time(:

If I think of more tips I will make sure to update this blog and let you know ^_^ But that's it for now! Thank you so much for reading!(: