Yes, unfortunately for now this is just another life update post.
Hi everyone, long time no see!!
I know that it’s been a while….*3 months to be exact 🙃*…..but I swear I’m back this time!! I know you guys don’t believe me at this point, and that’s fine, but I’m willing to wait and gain your guys’ trust back little by little as I continue to post more.
But for some background context, I did want to just quickly update you guys on a few things that’s been going on in the past 3 months.
Diego and I celebrated our 5 year anniversary!! (July 5, 2014 ❤️)
We kept it chill and low-key for the most part, doing a few of the things that we always loved to do together (i.e., eat a lot, watch movies, etc. lol). But one of the best parts was being able to do this little wine tour in Long Island, New York, where we were able to visit 3 different wineries and try a TON of different wines. Super fun and really not THAT expensive; we got tickets for this on Groupon!
2. I FINALLY STARTED MY YOUTUBE CHANNEL!!! (July 12, 2019)
This is probably one of the most exciting things I wanted to update you guys on, because even here on my blog I’ve spoken quite a few times about wanting to do this, and I FINALLY did. It was so nerve-wrecking, and I’m still getting the hang of it, but it’s been so much fun and I have a TON of videos coming soon!! 😀 If you haven’t already done so, please make sure to check it out, and don’t forget to subscribe to stay up to date with all of my videos!! 😄 Check it out here!
3. I celebrated my 24th birthday!! 🎈🎉 (August 17th)
The day before my birthday, Friday, me, Diego and about 3 of our other good friends actually ended up waking up at the crack of dawn to go have a little birthday photoshoot for me in the city. I actually can’t believe that we all pulled it off, woke up that early and made it happen honestly, but we did and the pictures came out AMAZING (I think). *If you haven’t seen them already, be sure to head over to my Instagram to check them out!!*
For the day OF, we kept my birthday pretty low-key for the most part. I’m not the type to like to do anything over the top and extravagant, I’m actually pretty simple and appreciate the little things, which Diego knows, and that’s why he ended up surprising me with a group of my closest friends at my house. We just ended up eating pizza, snacks, drinking a little and jamming to some music in my backyard for the night and I had the BEST time doing it. It really was a great time!
4. AND FINALLY, We went on vacation again!!!!! (August 31st-September 7th)
Thats right, ANOTHER vacation!! Except this time it was within the United States and we went with my brother Chris and our good friend Geno. It was actually a late sort of birthday trip/celebration for me. This time around we actually went to California (specifically to San Francisco and Los Angeles). *Stay tuned for my travel diary videos about them coming soon to my channel! 😉 * We were in California for only a week and man did I instantly fall in love with it!! I can’t WAIT to go back! For the meantime though, go check out my Instagram to see my saved California story highlights as well as pictures from throughout the trip (social medias are always linked below 🙂 ).
* * * * * *
Well there you have it guys; that’s my “major” life update that I have for you all at the moment. I really do apologize for being so M.I.A. on here, I just kind of fell off and lost my mojo for it, which I’m sure many people, writers, etc., can understand happens from time to time. But, here I am, starting fresh again and hopefully coming back stronger then before!
I hope you guys enjoyed this post, and I’ll see you all in the next one.
Hey guys!!! How are you all doing?! I hope you’re all doing well and had an amazing past couple of weeks while I’ve been gone.
As you’ve read from the title, today’s post is going to be a travel diary all about our trip to THAILAND!!!
If you guys follow me on social media (which, if you don’t you totally should! My stuff is always left at the bottom of my posts and on my home page), you would’ve seen that Diego and I spent a week in Phuket, Thailand and were posting a TON of pictures and videos while out there.
So, if you don’t follow me on social media, go do that now and show some loveeeeee to my Thailand posts 🤗❤️!
Sorry it’s taken me so long to finally get this post up, it was a little difficult getting back into the swing of things while dealing with jet-lag (if you’ve ever traveled a long distance and/or dealt with this, you know what I’m talking about); but I’m officially back in business, and so happy to finally be too! 🙂
Anyway, this is a trip that I actually completely planned out for us in order to celebrate Diego’s 25th birthday (which was on April 9th). It was a surprise trip that I’ve had cooking for us for about 6 months.
I actually can’t even believe how fast time went by leading up to the trip and then how fast the trip itself went by as well…ugh tragic. Again, if you’ve traveled really anywhere before that you were super excited about, you can probably relate.
Regardless, I’m excited to be able to completely relive the trip with you guys and give you the complete 4-1-1 on Phuket!
It’s probably going to be a long one though, so grab a snack and beware! haha
* * * * * *
Travel Time & Layover
The first thing I want to speak about is the travel time itself and what all of that was like.
The flight in total for us was about 22 hours (more or less the same going and coming).
Our first flight, GOING, was about 15 hours to Shanghai, China. Personally, even though the flight was long, it really wasn’t that bad for me because I (by some miracle) managed to sleep through relatively the entire thing, literally have no idea how, but there are just some things I’ve learned not to question haha.
Once we landed in Shanghai, we were there for our layover for a total of 13-hours.
It was actually really cool because we had made sure to set aside extra money to be able to travel to the heart of the city and explore a bit in order to kill time. It was a really interesting, fun experience and technically means we got to travel to 2 different countries within this one trip.
While there, like I said, we got to travel to the heart of the city and see “The Bund,” which apparently to New Yorkers would be like our Times Square. It wasn’t as lively and packed as I thought it would be in comparison to Times Square, but that’s also probably just because we got there at like 5am so everything was just opening and everyone was just waking up/starting their days.
We really lucked out because the weather was absolutely beautiful the entire day that we were here (70 degrees more or less), and it was PERFECT for walking around and being able to explore.
We were in Shanghai for the majority of Saturday, and I’m not exactly sure if Saturday in general is some sort of holy day for the Chinese culture or it just so happened that the specific Saturday we were there was a holy holiday or holiday in general, but SOMETHING was going on because there were crowds of people everywhere and celebrations going on for something lol.
You would think that because we’re New Yorkers we would be used to those kinds of crowds, which to some extent we were, but generally, we don’t typically like crowds so it was still kind of a lot for us.
While walking around though we were able to find this place that sold dumplings (which Diego was DYING to be able to try when we got to China), along with also finding a Starbucks!!
As you guys know, I’m SUCH a picky eater, so my biggest stress when traveling is the food aspect, but I was very pleasantly surprised to find that I actually LOVED these dumplings, so that was pretty cool. Although as far as trying Starbucks in another country, I wasn’t the biggest fan of it to be honest.
Regardless, we somehow managed to completely walk around the city AND find our way back to our starting-point all while also having ample time to be able to get back to the airport for our flight (THANK GOD Diego is good with directions).
Before we knew it though, it was time to head back to the airport to catch our next flight to our main destination, THAILAND!!
* * * * * *
The specific flight getting to Thailand was not at all bad because it was only 5 hours long, so it was a complete breeze in comparison to our first one. We ended up landing in Phuket at 10pm their time, and by the time we went through customs, found our car service and actually GOT to the hotel, it was about 11-11:30pm.
I’m actually SO disappointed in myself for not taking NEARLY as many hotel pictures as I should have.
Normally I would take like a zillion of the room itself, the surroundings of the hotel, etc., but for some reason this time around, I barely got ANY. I suppose it was from all the excitement and fun we were having, but still…UGH!!
Anyway, because I wasn’t able to take that many pictures of the hotel and its surroundings, I’m going to be using some images of them from the actual hotel site to give you guys an idea (which I obviously do not own).
I do have a few pictures of my own, that which I’ll be sure to pinpoint for you guys.
I literally don’t think I can say enough amazing things about this place. But for starters, I guess I should tell you guys the name of it right? Haha. The name of the hotel was Novotel Phuket Karon Beach Resort And Spa.
The pools, the food, the drinks, the surroundings, the PEOPLE, the workers, the service?! All AMAZING. Checking in and out was SO quick and easy. All of the staff members were so nice and accommodating for anything/everything we needed; it was really a great all around experience.
Karon beach was also located directly across the street from the hotel, so that was super fun and convenient (although the waves at the beach were kinda ridiculously strong!! 😭).
For our particular trip package, I had chosen to get a Romantic Room, with a private plunge pool (a.k.a. Jacuzzi), pictures of which are shown above. The room was pretty spacious and comfy, and was cleaned daily.
As I had mentioned earlier on in the post, the main purpose of this trip was to be able to celebrate Diego and his 25th birthday, so you guys KNOW I had to do a little something extra for him, especially since we were out of the country and I couldn’t get him any balloons or cake like I typically would.
So, I coordinated with one of the ladies at the front desk (who was SO sweet and helpful the entire time we were here and I really wish I had gotten her name to be able to give her a special shout-out 😩), and managed to be able to get them to decorate our room a bit for him AND accommodate us with a steak dinner and complimentary wine (which he LOVED).
It wasn’t much, but it was all SO perfect, and he was so surprised and loved every minute of it, which made me very happy to see.
We met so many amazing people in the hotel alone that it was actually really bittersweet when we left (for more reasons then one obviously, but one of the biggest was because of the people). SO many that came up to us personally to say goodbye and wish us safe travels back home, and some that even asked if we would be back next year to celebrate their new year with them (which we were literally JUST missing by like a day or 2).
They were all just so friendly and genuine that it just made our trip THAT much better honestly.
100% recommend this hotel to anyone that is looking to travel to Thailand.
And for those wondering, we booked our package (which included flights going & coming, hotel, car service and an excursion) through travelocity.com.
* * * * * *
While on our trip we actually managed to do and see A LOT which was great because we were both a little worried about what the jet-lag may or may not do to us throughout the trip; BUT luckily, it really didn’t affect us much during the day so we definitely took advantage of that.
I’m going to breakdown everything we did and saw by the days that we were there since we did something new every single day.
Day 1, Monday, April 8th:Wat Chalong Temple & Big Buddha!
This was technically our first official day out and about on the town. I didn’t have much planned for us because like I said, we weren’t sure how jet-lagged we were going to be, so I figure, why not do some sight-seeing? So that’s exactly what we did.
We went to see 2 of the biggest and most famous Buddhist landmarks (so to speak) in Thailand. They were also both free which was a plus.
As fun as both of these things were to see and learn about, I actually felt REALLY bad because I went into this wearing a tank top and shorts (what did I know?), and once I got there was asked to put these longer garments on to cover-up out of respect for the Temples and Buddha.
Now as I said, what did I know? But I just felt bad because had I known, or someone told me, I would’ve gone into this much more covered up. What was good was that they had these garments on hand for all women that were showing too much skin, so I obviously was not the first and would not be the last, but nonetheless, me being how I am I just wish I would’ve known.
Overall though it was a really great time and great way to soak in some Thai culture.
We also even got to sign these tiles (which were extra, we paid to do this part)!! So within The Big Buddha, I suppose they’re still doing a ton of construction of some sort, so right outside of it they were selling these plain white tiles to be able to sign and eventually it will be used to continue construction IN the Buddha. I mean yeah, who’s to say it’ll actual happen and who knows if we’ll ever get to go back and see this at all, but it was still a cute little thing for us to be able to do to leave our “mark” in Thailand 😅❤️
Day 2, Tuesday, April 9th (A.K.A. Diego’s birthday!! ❤ ): Tiger Kingdom!!
Although I knew that he would end up loving EVERYTHING I had planned for us throughout this trip, I thought that, out of everything, Tiger Kingdom particularly would be his favorite on his birthday.
THAT was definitely an experience.
100% recommend to anyone that is interested in doing this but may be a little on the fence about it for one reason or another.
As I mentioned in my Instagram post when I posted some of these, please keep any and all comments about animal cruelty away and out of this post. If for whatever reason you do have a comment or concern about these, feel free to DM and/or email me privately for us to discuss it.
I hear it all the time, and I heard it during our time here about these Tigers being beaten, starved, and/or drugged and I just want to let you guys know that me of all people would NEVER in a million years ever go to a place like this that may be harming in any way, shape, or form these creatures.
I made sure to do a LOT of research beforehand, read a lot of reviews and ask a lot of questions. The entire time we were here, all of the caretakers were very caring/loving towards the tigers, giving them treats when they wanted, playing with them very much, etc. AND they were very much active. Obviously they are tigers which are wild animals, so they may not be as active as they would be in the wild, HOWEVER, that doesn’t actually mean that because of that, they are being harmed and/or mistreated.
As I say about everything I experience and share/recommend to you guys, come to your own judgments about this, but we both really enjoyed our time when we were here and never once felt unsafe or uncomfortable because of how the tigers were being treated.
Day 3, Wednesday, April 10th: The Elephant Sanctuary!
This was really an amazing and eye-opening experience for both of us, and was not at all what either of us expected (in the best way possible).
We both went into this thinking we were going to be SUPER interactive with the elephants; feeding them, cleaning them, even riding them, because that’s what we had seen and heard about other places in Thailand that had elephants like this.
It ended up being the complete opposite, I mean, we got to feed and learn about them, but that was it.
Ultimately, this place is exactly what it says in the name, a sanctuary for elephants. In fact, it’s actually a place that rescues elephants from certain places (some, not all) that allows you to do the things that I just mentioned.
Again, make your own judgments about this place and the others, but we did learn a lot about how some of these places actually harm the elephants to be cooperative and actually do these things for us, in subtle ways that we would never really see and/or notice.
And you’re probably thinking, well what’s the difference between this and Tiger Kingdom, and how do you know that’s not the same thing? Truth be told, I don’t, but again, I’m going based off of my own judgments and everything that I saw and learned this day.
By the end of it, we were both SO glad that it didn’t turn out anything like what we originally expected. We did have a great time and learned a lot though, which was enough for us.
Oh, and this particular excursion had lunch included as well, which was just an added bonus 😀
And finally Day 4, Thursday, April 11th: Phi Phi Islands (our last day)
This was another excursion that we were pleasantly surprised about. I don’t really know what we thought or expected, but it ended up being pretty much an all-day thing, from 11am-6pm. We were on a speedboat that was taking us around, and we ended up island hopping to like 4-5 different islands, all in relation to ‘Phi Phi Island’ (which is not just ONE particular island, but in fact several).
There was one island where we got to do some snorkeling, one that had the monkeys on them where we didn’t actually get off the boat, but we got close enough to see the monkeys and have an interaction with them, and 2 that we got to get off and wander on for a while.
All of the islands were absolutely beautiful; white sand and crystal clear blue water….absolutely stunning.
This excursion also had lunch included in it and was actually the one that I had booked with my entire vacation package that I mentioned earlier.
* * * * * *
Diego and I had the most AMAZING time while in Thailand. It was literally probably some of the best experiences of our lives thus far and I hope you guys enjoyed this post of me/us being able to somewhat relive the trip while also having it be as informative as possible (without being TOO long, although that part was probably inevitable haha).
It feels SO good to be back to writing and blogging! 😄
Let me know in the comments what you guys thought about our trip, and if you have any questions or want to see any other separate, detailed posts about the trip and vacations in general!
Thank you guys so much for reading, please like, share, follow and comment and I’ll see you guys in the next one!
*Can you guys tell I’m the WORSE at titles/headings?!*😂
If you’re a dedicated makeup lover and follower of Sephora, you know that very rarely do they do any type of sales like this. In fact, they only really do it once a year around the holidays. So when word got out that they were doing this BeautyInsider appreciation sale, you know everyone (including myself) went nuts.
I typically don’t tend to participate in these things even though I am part of the rewards program, and have been at the VIB status for a while, because I almost always forget that it’s going on, and then by the time I actually remember, the sale is over 🤦🏻♀️, since they usually only hold them for a short amount of time.
This year, however, I was fully aware of it and took full advantage of my 15% off everything discount (*which, fun fact, everything I ended up purchasing in the sale upgraded me to VIB Rouge status, which means that instead of having 15% off in the next event like this that happens, I’ll now have 20% off, among other cool benefits*).
With all of that being said, I thought it would be cool to share with you guys all of the products I picked up during the sale, as well as other general makeup products that I’ve bought recently outside of Sephora. I’m going to start off with the Sephora stuff, then move on to the other things.
* * * * * *
*Note: When I started going through everything I bought, and writing this post, I didn’t realize how many ‘mini’ versions of products I got. So this is a half full-sized products, and half mini/sample size kind of post!! 😂*
In no particular order:
Marc Jacobs Beauty.I got 2 different lipglosses from this brand; 1 Enamored Hydrating Lip Gloss Stick in the shade P(r)each (the top one) and 1 Enamored Hi-Shine Lip Lacquer Lipgloss in the shade 318 Pretty Thing (the bottom one).
I have heard SO many amazing things about these lipglosses from girls I know, beauty influencers, etc. so I figure it’s about time that I pick a few up to try them out myself. Both lipglosses are $28.
2. Jouer Cosmetics. I got one of their Long-Wear Lip Creme Liquid Lipsticks in the shade Dulce de Leche. I’m a huge lipstick girl (liquid and otherwise), so I obviously had to make sure I picked up a few during this sale, and I had a ton of these sitting in my cart for the longest so I figure why not? Similar to the Marc Jacobs lipglosses, I’ve heard so many good things about this brand’s lipsticks; their formula, the way they wear, etc. so I’m definitely excited to try these out finally. These liquid lipsticks retail for $18.
3. Kat Von D.I picked up a mini version of the Lock-It Setting Powder from her brand because I’ve heard so many people rave about it, but most setting powders tend to be a miss for me. So, I figure I pick-up the mini version, see how I like it and if I do I’ll just buy the full-size version. This miniature version comes with 0.19 oz of product and retails for $15 (the full-size one is $30 in case anyone was wondering).
4. Boscia.I picked up one of the Boscia Cactus Water Moisturizers. One of my absolute favorite things to check out on the Sephora website is always the Skincare section, especially the ‘just arrived’ part of it. I’m always on the hunt for new and good products that are going to help, hydrate, and brighten my sensitive skin, so when I saw this and read the amazing reviews, I knew I HAD to get it.
The majority of the recent reviews I read on this were all super positive, especially for people with dry skin (which I tend to struggle with), so I’m really excited to try this and see what it does for me! This retails for $38.
5. Anastasia Beverly Hills. Of COURSE I had to run and pick-up the Norvina palette and I think it’s pretty self-explanatory why…I mean just look at it..take a second, I’ll wait……
Done? Okay, let’s talk about it. Just LOOK at this color range and how gorgeous it is. I feel like so many beautiful soft or smokey pinky, purply looks can be done with this palette. UGH it is beautiful. I’ll be honest, I only really watched two reviews on this palette from KathleenLights and Manny MUA, but regardless, they were both good and gave me the extra push to run out and buy it. I mean c’mon especially with the sale going on, I had to. The palette retails for $42.
6. Too Faced. I picked up one of the Too Faced Born This Way concealers in the shade Light Beige. I’ve literally been obsessed with finding the perfect concealer for my crazy, puffy, dark circles lately and have heard a lot of great things about these in particular so I’ve been itching to try it. These retail for $29.
7. Hourglass. Similar to the Kat Von D one, I picked up a mini-size of the Hourglass Veil Translucent Setting Powder. I won’t really repeat why I got the mini because it’s pretty much the same reason I got the Lock-It setting powder (see number 3 for why).
I will say though that I’ve read and seen so many great reviews about this powder all over the internet, so I’m really hoping that it’ll work the same for me that it seems to be working for everyone else. It comes with 0.07 oz of product. This miniature version retails for $18 (and the full-size goes for $46).
8. Laura Mercier. I picked up one of the Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20 Mini, in the shade Sand. I think the idea of being able to have a moisturizer like this and have it give people the impression that you have some type of makeup on when you really don’t, is so cool. And I’ve read that this is one of the best tinted moisturizers in Sephora, so I decided to give it a try and see how I end up feeling about it. This comes with 1 oz of product and retails for $24.
9. Tarte.I also picked up one of the Tarte Creaseless Under Eye Concealers in the shade Light Sand. Again, like the powders, I pretty much already explained my intention(s) for wanting to pick up another concealer (*see number 6*), so I won’t repeat the same thing again.
However, I will say that I’ve seen a lot of mixed reviews on this, but one consistent comment and/or positive thing said about this is that it is AMAZING coverage for those with dry, dark circles, so that’s what really reeled me in and made me excited for it. So we’ll see how that goes!! This concealer retails for $26.
10. Smashbox. I picked up the Smashbox Photo Finish Primer Water Mini. This is something that I had in my cart and had been wanting to try for SUCH a long time, and now with this sale I was kind of just like “screw it, I’m getting it!” This comes with 1 oz of product and retails for $15.
11. Sephora Favorites. I got one of the Sephora Favorites Give Me Some Nude Lip gift sets. I always see these and think that they are so cute, especially with the products they carry. I had gotten one for my best friend last Christmas and had been wanting to try one for myself ever since, so I got this one because I LOVE my nudes…lol 😏
It comes with 3 sample sized lipsticks (a Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Color Splash Hydrating Lipstick in Beach Babe, a Make Up Forever Artist Liquid Matte Lipstick in 105, and a Buxom Lip Polish in Dolly) and 2 full-sized ones (a Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Carmello and a Huda Beauty Liquid Matte Lipstick in Trendsetter). This set retails for $28, but has a $72 value.
12. Saturday Skin. I got this Saturday Skin No Bad Days skincare set. I’ve literally never heard of this brand before, but when I was skimming through the skincare gift sets section I saw this, read the reviews (which the majority for the most part were really good), and decided to try it out.
It comes with a Rub-A-Dub Refining Peel Gel, a Daily Dew Hydrating Essence Mist, a Wide Awake Brightening Eye Cream, and a Featherweight Daily Moisturizing Cream. This retails for $39, but is of a $69 value.
13. Free Birthday Gift!! This is technically the last thing I got from Sephora, although I didn’t actually buy it, it’s free. If you’re apart of the BeautyInsider rewards program, I believe regardless of what status you’re at, every year you always get a little gift from Sephora for your birthday.
Every year they give people the option of 2 gifts to choose from and this year if I remember correctly, the options were either this Bite Beauty gift set (which has a Mini Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Chai, a Mini Matte Crème Lip Crayon in Glacé, an Agave Lip Balm, and an Agave Sugar Lip Scrub), OR a little GlamGlow duo set (which has a SuperMud Clearing Treatment & a GlowStarter Mega Illuminating Moisturizer). I figure I pick the one who’s brand I had never really tried products from before, so that’s what I did.
* * * * * *
Well that’s all of the products that I had bought from the BeautyInsider Appreciation Event at Sephora, but I also wanted to show you guys 4 makeup products that I got from a completely new and separate makeup company recently.
The brand I’m referring to is called Beauty Bakerie. I was actually first introduced to this brand when I was watching KathleenLights YouTube video (can you tell she’s one of my fav YouTubers?) all about her testing out their products to do a full-face of makeup with them. After seeing that video, I did my own research on the brand, and honestly guys if you haven’t checked them and their story out, I HIGHLY recommend that you do. I’ll leave their site linked here so that you can check them out.
ALL of their makeup products are cruelty free and based completely off baking and everything that entails that; all of their packaging, the names of their products, etc. and it is SO FREAKIN CUTE!!
So for right now, I only got 4 of their products which was a concealer, 2 lipsticks and a setting powder. I really wanted to try one of their foundations, but there’s always next time.
How CUTE is the packaging for all of these products btw?!
The first thing I got was one of their Flour Setting Powders in Translucent, which retails for $24.
2. The next thing I got was 2 of their Matte Lip Whips, one in the shade Gingersnap, and the other in the shade Syruptitious, which retail for $20 each.
3. And the last thing I got was one of their Cake Face Concealers in the shade Love You Latte, even though it looks a little dark so I MIGHT have to return it and get a lighter shade, which retails for $24.
* * * * * *
Well guys that’s it for this post, that is all the makeup products that I’ve purchased recently. Let me know either in the comments or through social media whether or not you guys participated in the sale, and if you DID, what stuff did you guys pick up?! Similar products to mine? Completely different ones? Let me know! I’d love to hear from you guys about it.
Sorry that this post is SO long, but I really hope that you enjoyed it and I’ll see you guys in my next one! 🙂