How to Stay Sane During Quarantine

We’re at a strange point in time right now. It’s fair to say that the world is a much different place than it was a month ago, there’s not a corner of the earth that hasn’t been affected by the recent pandemic. Whether you’re on formal quarantine or lock down or are just choosing to self isolate, being at home can feel a little tedious after a while and can increase anxiety when you’re sitting around with too much time on your hands. If you can, see this as ‘downtime’, try and make the most of a bad situation and aim to do fun and productive things where possible to make yourself feel better. The only thing we can do now is to try to make the most of this situation, so here are some ideas to make your day a little better.

Have a spa day

Chances are you have tons of spa products in the house. If you’re like me you probably have them in your cabinet but totally forgot about it. But now is the perfect time to get them out- bath bombs, bubble bath, oils, hair and face mask, foot masks. Spend some time really pampering yourself, get a hot bath and relax with music and candles, treat your hair and skin and paint your nails. On a normal day you probably don’t get the time to do all of this, so why not make the most of it? Not only will it make you feel better physically but it can reduce stress and make you feel better mentally too. If you and your partner are isolated together you could even give each other massages and turn your home into a mini spa for the day. 

Try some new makeup looks

Playing around with makeup can be a lot of fun, but again it might not be something you get the time to sit and do that often. If you have a lot of products, get them out, fall in love with different things again and follow along with some makeup tutorials on Youtube. You might be all dressed up with nowhere to go, but you could snap some photos for your blog, Instagram channel or just for a new Facebook profile picture. You could get really creative and try things you wouldn’t normally do, just because you have the means to do so and the time on your hands! Have fun with it, you can always just wash it off if it goes wrong so don’t worry about trying to get it perfect on the first attempt. I did this the other day, as seen in the photo above. I saw a photo that Kathleen Lights posted on IG and tried to recreate it, let me know what you think in the comments below!

Do some online shopping

Online shopping has become a real lifeline during these times. You can continue to support business by ordering from them and having goods shipped to your door. Just be aware of social distancing when your deliveries arrive, leave a note asking for things to be left on your doorstep or just call through the door so you don’t need to come in contact with people unnecessarily. Maybe some new summer dresses will cheer you up (hopefully we’ll be over the worst of this madness by then) or perhaps you could order some homeware items and have fun redecorating and decluttering a room in your home. You could treat yourself to something that will cheer you up, get materials for a project or buy something you need but have been putting off for a while. If deliveries are still going ahead in your area then do continue to buy as it helps the economy in these difficult times. 

Also don’t forget to shop my boutique John and Suki! Use code SHOP20 for 20% off any item.

Organize your closet

This is something I need to do that I’ve been putting off. Take everything out and put what you won’t wear into boxes labeled donate as it can help to make decisions easier. Put back what you want to keep, and pass along the other items when you get the opportunity after you’re out of self isolation or quarantine. Having a thinned out wardrobe can actually give you more clothing and outfit options as you can see exactly what you have, and you’ve only kept things that fit you and that you like. No more rummaging through items you don’t want or need. 

Write some blog posts (or start a blog)

Blogging is one of the best hobbies you can have. It’s fun, it’s productive and there are lots of ways to earn money later down the line. If you already have a blog, now is the time to create some great content for it. You could review products you’ve been loving, take outfit photos, write a diary of your thoughts or give tips and advice to others. If you don’t have a blog then what better time to start one? It will likely take you a few hours to get set up, think of a blog name and open an account on blogger or wordpress. Buy a template off Etsy to make it look nice, and purchase a domain name to link to your blog. From there you can open an email address and new social media pages linking to your site. Once all of that is done, you’re free to start creating content and networking with other bloggers. Since it’s this starting point that takes the time, it’s a great opportunity now that you have the time to get it up and running. From there you could just post once or twice a week if you wanted to and enjoy this hobby for many years to come.

How will you be staying sane at the moment? Leave your tips in the comments below!

 

Create Your Own Shampoo + Conditioner with Formulate!

Formulate

Ever wonder if the shampoo and conditioner you buy at the store is really one size fits all? There are so many different options out there for you to choose from, what if you were able to create your own?

That is where Formulate comes in. Formulate is a new company that allows you to create your own shampoo and conditioner. It’s super simple, you go on their website and take their quiz aka the “hair wizard”.

On their hair wizard, you get to answer questions about your hair type and what you are looking for. For example, my hair type is fine and wavy. You also answer questions about what it is you are looking for. I was looking for something that helped control oil, protected my color and helped with split ends.

Once you fill out the hair wizard, Formulate gives you your very own personal shampoo and conditioner! It’s amazing. Definitely go check it out now and create your very own shampoo and conditioner here.

 

How to Style a Bridal Hair Piece for Everyday

bridal hair piece

A couple weeks ago my friend Shirley reached out to me to tell me about a new company her mom and her just started. Shirley and I interned together at Burberry in NYC seven years ago, can you believe it?! I feel old. LOL. Anyways, when Shirley told me about her new ventures, I was so excited because I think it’s something you guys will love! Shirley’s new line is called Shirley and Audrey and they sell accessories for the modern bride. Now you might be thinking “Esther, I’m not getting married…”. Well girl, neither am I. But these items are so beautiful that you can wear them on your wedding day, or even just out to an event!

I got the hair wreath in Mary, and I wore it to a charity event I went to. I wore it like a headband and tied it in the back. It went so perfectly with what I was wearing and really elevated the outfit. Not to mention, I got tons of compliments on it! I think a hair wreath like this would be so perfect for any event where you need to dress up a little bit, or could even be used as a fancier “flower crown” for something like Coachella!

Whether you are a bride, or just a girl looking for some beautiful items to jazz up your hairdo, go check out Shirley and Audrey. Their quality is AMAZING and all the items are simply beautiful!

For Girls Who Brunch readers, Shirley was kind enough to offer 10% off anything on their website with code GWB10. Also, be sure to follow me on Instagram at @esthercollins because I will be giving away one of these hair wreaths there!

L’BRI Natural Skincare

Organic and natural products are all the rage these days. I’m a total fan of anything that’s organic and all natural especially if I’m going to be putting it all over my body and face. Over the past few years I’ve slowly switched my skincare over to a more natural approach. That is why I was super excited when L’BRI reached out to me to try their products. L’BRI is an aloe-based line of products that uses natural ingredients and is 100% cruelty-free!

L’BRI has amazing products ranging from skin to body, and even hair care products. All of their products smell natural without any of that fake perfume scent, which is the WORST when skincare products smell bad! They sent me a line of their body and hair care items that smell like cucumbers, it’s so fresh! All of the products feel extremely luxurious on the skin.

Of all the products that I’ve tried so far with L’BRI, I wanted to share with you guys some of my favorites. The Intense Body Butter is definitely one of my favorites. I’m not normally a big lotion or body butter girl but this is SO luxurious. It’s a beautiful whipped texture and just melts into the skin. The other item I really have been enjoying is the Smooth n’ Firm Eye Repair Gel. Normally with eye gels you get such a small tube of it, but you really get a huge tub of this stuff. It will definitely last me a while! And lastly my other favorite has been the Gentle Facial Freshener. This is a toner type that you can spray on your face under or over makeup to just refresh your face and leave it glowing.

So if you guys are looking for a natural line of products, definitely go check out L’BRI! Also, they are offering you guys a week’s worth of products, FOR FREE! All you have to do is pay for shipping and then you can test out these fabulous products!

L'BRI

Photography: Jordan Zobrist

Thank you to L’BRI for sponsoring this post.

Kevyn Aucoin The Celestial Powder in Candlelight Review + Swatch

Highlighters are all the rage, and I have definitely jumped on that train. I picked up the Kevyn Aucoin The Celestial Powder in Candlelight at Sephora (so happy Sephora now carries Kevyn Aucoin!). Now this highlighter is not cheap. It’s $44 for .11oz. But, this has been a highlighter I have been wanting to try for a while. I absolutely love this highlighter. It’s perfect for everyday wear. Now if you are looking for a highlighter that’s super shimmery or really pops, this is not the highlighter for you. This highlighter is the type that gives you a glow from within look. It’s very subtle and you can only really tell you are wearing it when the light hits it.

This powder is extremely finely milled. It’s super buttery and melts onto the skin. It’s super easy to blend and looks very natural. The only downside I have to this product is since it is such a fine powder, if you blend too much it almost disappears. But on the upside you can definitely layer this without it looking overly powdery or cakey. Color wise this has a slight yellow/golden undertone which I think would go great with just about any skin type.

If you are looking for a very natural highlight, I think this would be the perfect fit. If you are looking for that BAM in your face highlight, this is not the one for you. Overall rating: A-

Smile Brilliant Teeth Whitening Review

teeth-whiteningI’m a sucker for white teeth, I have been since high school. I mean who doesn’t love a perfectly white smile? I’ve gotten my teeth professionally whitened four times since high school and as much as I love it, it’s hard to shell out hundreds and hundreds of dollars for a white smile. That is why when Smile Brilliant reached out to me, I was super excited to try out their at home teeth whitening kit.

Since I got my teeth whitened at the dentist less than a year ago, my teeth are still pretty white. But these at home kits are perfect for maintaining that white smile. I was sent a kit in which I was able to create my own molds. The instructions were super quick and easy to understand. Once you make the molds of your teeth, you then send the molds into Smile Brilliant for them to create your custom trays. This only took a few days for them to make the trays and mail them back to me. I was impressed with the quick turnaround.

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Once you get the trays, you are given two different gels. One syringe is the teeth whitening gel, and the other is the desensitizing gel. You put the teeth whitening gel on first and leave it on for as long as you can stand, I did around 45 minutes. After that you put on the desensitizing gel and allow that to sit for another 20 minutes or so. I love that they give you the desensitizing gel. I have super sensitive teeth so for me the desensitizing gel was everything.

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I’ve used the Smile Brilliant teeth whitening kit a couple times a week since I received it over a month ago. I’ve noticed my smile is brighter and whiter with each use! I can’t wait to continue to use this kit. It’s perfect for those with sensitive teeth, like myself! It’s also less than half the price of getting your teeth professionally whitened with the same results! If you guys are interested in checking out the at home teeth whitening kit, here is what you need to know before buying. You can also view a more in depth review on YouTube.

Want to win your own Smile Brilliant kit?? Enter here for a chance to win $139 towards your own teeth whitening kit! *Giveaway open to UK, Australia, Canada, and USA residents*

You can also get 5% off any purchase using promo code thegirlswhobrunch5 at checkout! Let me know if any of you have tried teeth whitening before in the comments below! Good luck!

 


How Much Is Teeth Whitening

Girls Night Out Feat. Dove Dry Spray

dsc02881Deodorant: Dove Dry Spray Antiperspirant // Bomber: ASOS // Shirt: Style Delivers {similar} // Jeans: Frame Denim // Belt: ASOS // Shoes: Burberry {similar} // Bag: Gucci {similar} // Ring: BaubleBar  // Choker: Forever 21

The other night a bunch of my fabulous blogger girlfriends and I got together for a fun girls night out. We all got ready together and then headed to a comedy show at the Laugh Factory in Hollywood. Getting ready for a night out is almost as much fun as the actual event. But let’s be honest here…it’s all fun and games until you realize you’re sweaty and smelly. That’s why I was happy to partner with Dove to share my favorite deodorant with you! The Dove Dry Spray Antiperspirant is perfect for on the go! All you have to do is #ShakeSprayGo and you’ve got full protection for 48 hours!

For real though, am I the only person that gets slightly weirded out when someone asks to borrow your deodorant. Major germaphobe vibes here. But with the Dove Dry Spray, you don’t have to worry about that! I would let anyone borrow my Dove Dry Spray, and actually I insist on it. It seriously smells amazing. I love that it goes on completely dry and also cares for my skin with Dove ¼ moisturizers. There are eight different scents and they’re all so good! I love their Soothing Chamomile scent the best, it’s mild but it leaves you smelling completely fresh.

dsc02860Along with smelling great, my friends and I wanted to share with you some of our favorite beauty tips for getting ready. My beauty tip for a night out is to always do your eye makeup first! This is especially good if you’re doing a smokey eye. When you’re applying eye shadow, liner and mascara it can sometimes get a bit messy and there’s a lot of fall out. If you do your eyes first, you can wipe away the fall out and then cover with a concealer. My favorite concealer of the moment is the Bye Bye Undereye Concealer from It Cosmetics. It’s thick so a little goes a long way!

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Krista: “My major secret for getting ready for a night out, is all about my SKIN. If I feel dry, puffy, red, or just anything out of wack, it can ruin my mood! Of all the crazy beauty products there are, I am really obsessed with a good primer. The one from Smashbox I use all the time, and it fills in any fine lines, smooths everything out and just makes your skin that porcelain dream texture so your BB Cream or Foundation glides right on. Otherwise, your foundation can get caught in any creases, and not look at buttery. It’s been a game changer too for how long my makeup lasts! I love love it.”

Lauren: “For a night out, I always like to make sure my hair is all set to go. With curly hair, it can get frizzy in an instant, so I use my T3 wands for beach-y waves and then finish with hairspray. One tip for getting the perfect beach-y wave, be sure to leave the ends out when using the wand! This creates a loose, no-ringlet wave that is perfect on anyone!”

Michelle: “An important tip which I’d like to share that’ll ensure a successful night out and (more importantly) a refreshing morning after is to use a good firming under eye gel pads. I pop them on for a little over 10 minutes while I sip on a nice glass of wine and relax before an eventful night. It’s my way of unwinding and prepping myself before the makeup, fitted clothes and uncomfortable heels go on for who knows how long. My go to gel pads are by skyn ICELAND. It de puffs, tones and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles to give me the confidence needed all night!”

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After we all got ready, we headed to the Laugh Factory. My favorite comedian of the night was this woman who spent her entire set talking about the Bachelor. A woman after my own heart. It was HILARIOUS! With all the laughing I was happy I put on some Dove Dry Spray Antiperspirant to keep me dry throughout the night!

Thank you to Dove and Simply Stylist for partnering with me on this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Photos by Brooke Taffet

Sephora VIB Sale!

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It’s that time again! The Sephora VIB Sale is in full swing. If you’re a beauty junkie like me, the VIB sale is super exciting. I was lucky enough to shop a little earlier through the Sephora Friends and Family Sale (thank you Jackie!). Here are some items I picked up, and my first impressions.

1. Josie Maran Argan Cleansing Oil – I’ve used Josie Maran’s argan oil before and LOVE that stuff. I was in need of a new cleanser so I decided to try this one out. I’ve used it a couple times and it does an AMAZING job of breaking down makeup.

2. Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Beauty on the Go Set – I got this because I wanted to try out the Bum Bum Cream. OMG. It smells like heaven. I’m in love. Also the lip butter is great for daily use.

3. Urban Decay All Nighter Spray – Shout out to my friend Amy for recommending this to me. This really does a good job in helping your makeup last. I hate the scent of it, but it does work.

4. Bite Beauty Multistick in Blondie – I got this because a YouTuber I watch said it was amazing. Unfortunately the color is too light and washes out my face. I’m definitely going to return this.

5. Anastasia Brow Primer – Another recommendation from Amy! This stuff is great. It’s a wax that you can put on before or after filling in your eyebrows. This will definitely be a holy grail item for me.

6. It Cosmetics Bye Bye Undereye Concealer – This stuff is GOLD. For real, it’s one of the best under eye concealers I’ve ever used. The shade is perfect for my skin tone, also a little really goes a long way.

7. Hourglass Vanish Foundation – I’ve never tried a stick foundation before but I really love this one. It really does vanish into the skin. I’m thinking about doing a review post on this, if you’re interested let me know in the comments!

8. Tarte Lip Facial Lip Scrub – I’ve been meaning to get a new lip scrub, and I love that this comes in a stick vs. a pot. So far, I’m loving it.

These are all the goodies I recently got from Sephora. If you get any from the sale, or want me to review any of these let me know in the comments below!

Kylie Cosmetics Creme Shadow + GIVEAWAY!

Kylie Cosmetics

Kylie Jenner launched a limited Birthday Edition collection of items a couple weeks ago. I had my eyes on the Creme Shadows. These creme shadows come in Copper and Rose Gold. I was a little skeptical because creme shadows can be a hit or miss. Will they crease? Will they have good color pay off? Will they last all day? When I opened these up, I was very pleasantly surprised. The pigmentation on these shadows are UNREAL. Seriously, a little goes a very long way. Also, they stay on the eyes all. day. long. Below are swatches of the two shades, Copper on the bottom and Rose Gold on top.

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As you can see these metallic shadows really pop. They are also waterproof. I tried washing off the swatches with water and soap and they would not budge. I had to scrub it off with some makeup remover wipes. I was really nervous about how these would wear all day. However, on the eyes these look amazing and last all day without creasing. The Copper is a little more orange based, while the Rose Gold is more pink. Both of these shades are extremely beautiful. I’ve worn both of these shadows all over the lid, adding a little brown in the crease for the perfect day look. I can’t wait for Kylie to release more creme shadows because these are seriously the bomb.com.

Lucky for you guys, I picked up an extra one of each color! I will be giving away one of the creme shadows to you guys! All you have to do is subscribe to my newsletter and Instagram using the giveaway widget below! One winner will get to choose the creme shadow of their choice! Good luck!

 

**CONGRATS TO KENZY KARN FOR WINNING THIS GIVEAWAY!**

a Rafflecopter giveaway