Seeing Red!

Red everywhere. Red lips. Red hair. Red nails. Red accessories. It is everywhere- and I LOVE it. I was not always so confident in such an aggressive fashion statement. For many years I had been shy about bold expression. For a long time I found myself buying the same army green, grey, or navy clothing. Never did I veer away from clear lip gloss and nude-medium brown make up.

Ah- but behold: a reformed woman!

A couple of years back I gave in to the curiosity of the Beauty Box (sample box) subscription. The concept is to pay for a monthly subscription of beauty samples that will be sent directly to your home. There are many out on the market now; Birchbox, Ipsy, Julep Maven, and many more. Psst- click here for an article that helps you find the best box to help your beauty regimen. I chose Birchbox, and I am a die-hard fan. Birchbox is a very reasonable price per month or annual and it allows you to personalize a profile to ensure samples are relevant to your needs. Birchbox also has a point system that is a great way to counter the idea of paying for samples (which you can sometimes otherwise get free at beauty counters). Earning points through various activities amounts to $10 or more dollars off future purchases- once I got a high end face wash for $6.00 and free shipping! Score!

Because of Birchbox I am now a fearless woman of the beauty world. Birchbox has allowed me to creep from no eyeliner and clear lip gloss to winged eyes, bold red lips, and full and beautiful brows!


It is hard to try new trends when cosmetics are so pricey. The opportunity to test allows you to say ‘yes’ and ‘no’ with out guilt and disappointment. (Tip: When I find the few products that I am not in love with – I throw them in a jar in our guestroom with a ‘help yourself’ sign! Now if my guests forget their face wash, shampoo, or lotions there are plenty of small options for them to try themselves!)

{Bathroom Organization}: Repurpose a glass cookie jar to organize and store travel/sample sized toiletries in guest bathroom

Tip: When I find the few products that I am not in love with – I throw them in a jar in our guestroom

After learning what a sample can do, I started aggressively searching for samples. Ask at beauty counters or when online ordering. When preparing for my Olive Oyl Halloween costume I was in lust with the idea of a red lip to sauce it up. BUT NEVER WOULD I EVER wear a red lip. I hadn’t even moved past clears and sheers.

Popeye & Olive Oyl ❤

When recently buying a few staples at Sephora I got a Dior Rouge Baume sample pack. There among many pretty colors was the red of my dreams. Color ‘999’. It is the true red I dreamt of, not too dark, not too pink. It complimented my skin tone. Being a baume it goes on a bit more sheer than a true lip stick, but you can add layers to create the depth you prefer. It is also smooth and creamy like a friendly gloss.

This is the lip color for lip gloss wear-ers!

I quickly went to the nearest general retail store to by a cheap knock off. WRONG. Do not bother. Each red of each brand will vary in tones and shades and textures. Once you find the one you love- go get her (in fact, go get two!)  I ended up finding my tube at Nordstroms.

What do you think!?


Being new to lip color I learned quickly why there is a need for lip liner. Colors that are bright show the bleeding in the naturally imperfect line of our lips. When I inquired about the right way to pick a lip liner the beauty professional at Sephora advised me perfectly! She showed me a wax liner pencil. Specifically Make Up Forever brand. She understood quickly as I explained I had never worn such loud color before that a liner may add more drama than I desire. Liners intensify your chosen color even more. A clear wax pencil can go on first and act as a barrier. You can also use it as an ERASER for outside the lines after applying the color. What a blessing!
I now pair my lovely red lip with a fire engine red nail color called ‘Red My Lips!” SAVINGS ALERT:  if you have not already go by the Sally Hansen Salon Gel Starter Kit today! This saves money and time. Gel stays for a week or two depending on how much time you spend it water. Looks professional. The process is quick. LOVE it. Money well spent.  Saves me a fortune on avoiding salon manicures.
So my advise- if you see the girl in the red lip and just WISH you could pull it off – YOU CAN! Remember, if at first you don’t succeed, try, try yet another sample!


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