This to That: Bronzer & Contouring Products.

Hello, friends! Happy Friday to you all! Today’s blog post is the one that I promised in my last post… All about my journey to create a makeup collection that serves me, and the Earth, as best as it can.

I don’t utilize bronzer too much, I tend to instead apply blush with a very heavy hand. However, I do own a couple of such products. And I do enjoy adding bronzer to my routine if I am doing a more dramatic look. Bronzer is something that is certainly not one-size-fits-all, so finding the perfect one is all the more difficult AND important. And I am on the hunt!

Physician’s Formula Shimmer Strips: Vegas Strip/Light Bronzer. $13.49.

  • I’ve had this bronzer for longer than I’d care to admit. Middle school, maybe? I know that it’s bad to keep makeup longer than the recommended date, but I just can’t seem to get rid of items until they’ve been completely used up.
  • Physician’s Formula is a cruelty-free brand.
  • This product is NOT vegan, as it contains carmine. (Carmine, I looked up, is made up of beetles.)
  • The yellow/orange highlighter/bronzer combo is not flattering on my skin type whatsoever.
  • I’m trying to phase out all makeup products that aren’t cruelty-free and vegan.
  • I’m also wanting to move onto makeup products that are more clean and less wasteful.

Final Thoughts: I will not be buying this product again.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Cream Kit: Medium. $40.00.

  • I’ve had this palette for around two years, I believe. I bought it at TJ Maxx, so I definitely didn’t spend that much on it.
  • Medium isn’t my shade, and I don’t know why I bought it. I think I was caught up in the glamour of brand-name makeup.
  • I don’t think I like cream contour. It doesn’t blend out how I’d like it to.
  • Anastasia Beverly Hills is a cruelty-free brand.
  • This product IS vegan.
  • I’m sure that this product could be wonderful for people who do more intensive highlighting and contouring than I do, but for me, it’s just not something I find myself reaching for.
  • I will say that I’ve been mixing some of the shades and using them to fill in my eyebrows, which works really nicely!
  • I may not like cream bronzer/contour, but I really love cream blush, so I will say that I enjoy the blush that’s provided in this kit.

Final Thoughts: I will not be buying this product again.

Pur Epic Illusion Cheek & Contour Palette. $28.00

  • I’ve had this palette for a couple of years as well. I’m pretty sure it was a Christmas gift.
  • It features two highlighters, two contour shades, and two blushes.
  • I actually really like this palette. It has many uses, as I utilize the highlighter and the contouring shades as eyeshadow to create some really lovely natural eye looks.
  • Pur is a cruelty-free brand.
  • This product is NOT vegan. It contains magnesium stearate which is derived from pork. It also contains ethylhexylglycerin and tocopheryl acetate which can be sourced from plant OR animal sources, and I don’t believe that Pur states anywhere whether it’s one or the other.

Final Thoughts: I will not be buying this product again.

What do I plan on replacing these items with?

I’ve been doing some research on brands that are vegan, cruelty-free, and low-waste. I don’t plan on purchasing any of these products until I’m completely out of the ones that I already own. I also don’t plan on buying all of these at once, because that seems counterproductive, but when I do end up buying one, I plan on making a blog post about which I choose! ❤

  • Elate Cosmetics: this is a brand that I’ve been wanting to try for awhile now. On their site, they say that they are cruelty-free, vegan, toxin free, gluten free, and sustainably made! I also really enjoy that you are able to buy refills for your containers once you have bought them! This is the shade that I plan to buy… They have so many other things that I want to try, so I’m sure that this will not be the last time they’re mentioned here.
  • EK Bare Beauty: this is a brand that I stumbled upon when looking for cruelty-free bronzers. Their bio on Etsy says that they are“low-waste, inclusive clean beauty.” Again, there are so many other wonderful products in their shop that I want to try when I’m in the market for some other products. They are also vegan, cruelty-free, low-waste, and all sorts of good stuff. This is the one that I’m wanting to try! It says that it’s a blush, but I think on my skin tone it’ll work great as a bronzer!

And that’s that, my dear friends! I will keep you all updated on this journey.

Thank you so much for reading!


Mattie Mae

Makeup Looks · Uncategorized

Minimizing my Makeup Collection.

Hello, my dear friends! I’m writing this post for you on another day that is just on the cusp of fall. And once again, it has me feeling very cozy and content.

I wanted to write a blog post today about minimizing my makeup collection. My makeup collection is decent sized, I would say. I think some people could view it as me having way too much stuff, and some people could see it and think it’s nothing! It’s just somewhere in-between, I think. I wanted to start another segment on my blog about my journey with not only condensing my makeup, but also what I plan on replacing the items with once they’re used up.

The categories I’m going to feature are:

  • Blush
  • Bronzer/Contouring Products
  • Mascara
  • Eyeliner
  • Eyeshadow Singles / Eyeshadow Palettes
  • Foundation
  • Concealer
  • Lipstick
  • Lipgloss
  • Eyebrow powder/pomade/pencils
  • Highlighter

Makeup is so fun to experiment with, and I don’t think that I’ll ever not love it, but, I want to be more mindful in my purchasing of makeup. I want to still have fun products that I can play with, but I don’t want to have makeup that I don’t like or don’t use. I want to find the best of the best for each category of makeup, and I thought I’d take all of y’all along for the journey!

I’m one of those people that can’t seem to get rid of makeup no matter how old it is, or how unflattering it is on me. I hate getting rid of makeup when it can still be used! So, my goal for this is to use up all of the makeup products I do not care for, and replace them with items that are better for me, and better for the Earth!

I’m thinking as I do each makeup type, I’ll link them so that you can go read all of them through this blog post!

I’m really excited for this process, and I’ve been doing some research on different products and companies, and I’m so excited to share everything I’ve learned with all of you! This post is kind of the equivalent to a movie trailer, I suppose. A little teaser! I’m hoping to start our first segment of it on Friday, so look out for that!

Thank you so much for reading, my friends!


Mattie Mae

Monthly Favorites · Uncategorized

My July Favorites.

Hello, friends! A happy Friday to you all! Can you believe it’s August already? My wedding is in two months! What!!! I’m so excited!!!

I thought that I would do a July favorites for this month, as it has been quite some time since I’ve done one! Here we go!

  1. Eyeliner! I’ve gone through many a phase with eyeliner. Middle school I was very addicted to black pencil eyeliner, messily applied to the top lid and bottom waterline. Then I moved onto black liquid liner in high school, and I went a little crazy with the winged liner there. And then, at the beginning of college, I did a little bit of brown pencil liner. And after that, I didn’t really do much with eyeliner. But for the past week or two, I’ve been getting back into liquid liner. I’ve had an Elf liquid liner in a navy blue shade for longer than I’d care to admit… but I’ve been putting a thin little line of it on my lash line. I thought it would look a little strange with my black mascara, but it really doesn’t!
  2. My kitchen table! I ordered this table a couple months back, but we finally had it delivered! I love this table so much, and I think it’s a very classic piece that we will have for many, many years. It seats six and has an insert that makes it quite a bit longer. We keep the insert in it at all times, so we don’t have to worry about storing it somewhere. (Ha!) I love how neutral it is, and that it will match whatever decor our hearts desire.IMG_3567.JPG
  3. L.L Bean Dress. This dress!!! I am so in love. It is so cozy, and even though I bought it only a little bit ago, it’s safe to say that it’s going to be a favorite for a very long time. Which is what I consider before making a purchase! And blue is one of my favorite colors, and one of the colors I think flatters me the most.IMG_3772
  4. Journaling. Although journaling is nothing new for me, I’ve been making an extra effort to make time to journal EVERY SINGLE DAY. It’s such a wonderful way to work through problems you may have, or even to document the small joys in life. As much as we’d like to hope we’d remember all these wonderful memories, we can’t possibly remember every single day of our lives. And that’s where journaling comes in!
  5. Bar soap. I remember being a kid, HATING using bar soap. To be fair, the ones that foam and bubble are far more whimsical, but not as good for the environment, as I’ve learned. Bar soap requires little to no packaging, and can last you for such a long time! I love it!IMG_3767
  6. Brown Boots. I’m a fan of all things fall, and these boots just scream fall to me. And what’s even better is that they were less than ten dollars! Just like the dress I’ve listed, I foresee these being a favorite for many a year.IMG_3742
  7. Trip to Frankfort . This was such a wonderful day! I had such a lovely time going to Frankfort with Bobby’s family for the fourth. It’s such a cute little town, and being on the beach all day… pure bliss. I can’t wait to take another trip to the beach.IMG_3411
  8. Wedding bands. I was SO happy to find our wedding bands. And they are so beautiful, and so us. The fact that after the wedding, we’ll be able to wear them for the whole rest of our lives is so amazing! How blessed are we???IMG_3325
  9. Banana bread. Perhaps banana bread will be my claim to fame… although I cannot take credit for the recipe. Bobby LOVES when I make this, and I even made some for his boss the other week! And the smell of banana bread… is there a banana bread perfume? If so, I desperately need it.
  10. Anne of Green Gables! This book has been a favorite of mine since childhood, and I reread it for the first time in such a long time, this month. And no surprise here, I loved it just as much, if not more. A classic book that I think everyone should read. It’s such a lovely book to read when you want to fall back deeply in love with life.IMG_3604

Thank you so much for reading, my friends! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!!!


Mattie Mae

Musings · Uncategorized

When You’re the Only First Grader Who Hasn’t Lost a Tooth.

Hello, friends! I wanted to try something a little different on the blog today. I always like sharing stories from my own life, but I thought I’d make this one a little more autobiographical. Flesh out some details a bit, stretch out my creative writing muscles. It’s a little sillier than I usually do, but hey, we all need silliness sometimes.

Here we go!

I was blessed with incredibly strong teeth. I’ve yet to have a cavity, despite my lack of flossing. Sorry to my dentist, if you ever find my blog… This may be a blessing I can recognize now, but my younger self found it to be a curse.

I was a happy first grader. I loved reading and writing, my favorite book being one about the Titanic that I would hide in the classroom so that no one else could take it. A happy and slightly devious child, it would seem. My only real complaint was that I hadn’t lost any baby teeth.

I envied those around me, I was the ONLY first grader who hadn’t lost any. I had a neon pink pillow that had a tooth-sized pocket. Should one lose a tooth, it could be inserted in said pocket to allow the Tooth Fairy easier access. It lay in my bunk bed, TAUNTING me.

At lunch, my classmates would drink from their juice boxes, resting the straw in their newly formed gap. I seethed with jealousy. I begrudgingly placed my straw between top and bottom teeth.

I remember singing “All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth”, but changing the lyric to, “All I want for Christmas is to lose a tooth, to lose a tooth…”. I played this Kidz Bop Christmas anthem on my Barbie CD player on repeat.

Ah, the things we worried about…

Time passed as the school year came to an end. My peers were losing their second, their third, their fourth tooth. I still had a smile full of teeth.

And then, one day, it happened. Ironically enough, I don’t remember the days leading up to losing my tooth. I was most likely too blissed out to function properly. Not washing my hands nearly enough for the length of time my fingers were in my mouth, but one day, it happened. My tooth was loose and then my mom pulled it out for me and I was a brand new woman. At least that’s how I felt. Let’s just say I would have much rather had this as my rite of passage, as opposed to actual puberty.

I don’t know what got me to thinking about this today, but remembering this made me smile. And due to the fact I’ve taken one too many English classes, I can’t seem to take anything at surface-level. My own memories included.

If anything, what can we learn from this story?

Perhaps the lesson that can be learned is that the things that seem life or death to us, really are neither. They’re not life-giving,  but they also will not kill you. Most of the time, they’re just something that will happen or won’t happen. When looking at life this way, some of the day-to-day stress can be removed. Some things are, of course, within our control, and we should try our darnedest, but for the things we cannot control…

Or perhaps the lesson is patience. Good things will happen, one must only wait for them. We’ll achieve life at a different pace than others, we must learn to be content with that. For metaphor’s sake, we won’t all lose our baby teeth at the same time.

What about: empathy for children? For many little ones, the world can seem like a sort of scary place. And small occurrences like this are a big deal to them. As we would with an adult, we must listen to their concerns and have love in our hearts for them. These children are not worrying about job promotions ,taxes, or politics, this is their life, this is what they’re concerned about. Some things seem minuscule to us, but to others, they can mean the world. Which, of course, extends to everyone, not just children.

Maybe there is no real lesson, this is just a silly little story from my childhood. Regardless, I thought I’d share it with y’all and hopefully bring a smile to your face on this dreary little Monday!


Mattie Mae

Musings · Uncategorized

The Art of Keeping a Cozy House.

Hello, friends! A happy Monday to you! I hope that you all had a lovely weekend! I definitely did. I was able to spend lots of time with my family, which I always love. Not to mention how BEAUTIFUL it was outside. Finally! Spring weather! Sundress season here I come!

I spent most of my Saturday at my Momma’s house, which got me to thinking about how cozy it is. How could I have forgotten that? How can I have a house that’s half as cozy?!

I have never wanted to live in a large home with expensive, white appliances and impractical white furniture. My heart skips a beat whenever I see old farm houses way out in the boonies. I love houses filled with antiques and well-loved furniture. Anything handmade or passed down from generation to generation, I adore. I understand that this is not everyone’s style and that some prefer a more polished and expensive home, but I am not one of those people. For us regular folk, it is also probably out of our price range. We shouldn’t feel ashamed about this, not at all. It’s not what makes a good home anyhow.

I’ll use my Momma’s home as an example, since my nest isn’t quite where I’d like to be yet. Especially right now. I’m trying to sell items I don’t have use for and in the process, I’ve kind of turned my apartment into a big ol’ mess. And let me remind y’all, it is far too small for a big ol’ mess. All part of the process, friends…

The flowers that I posted for the featured image are my mom’s. She bought them for $3.00 at Aldi, then put them in various clear jars and put them at both windows. It’s something that cost very little money, but made her home feel so much happier. It also kind of reminded me of one of my recent blog posts where I talk about little luxuries. My mother bought those flowers to brighten up the space and to give her just a little extra pep in her step. She only spent $3 on them and paired them with some jars that she already had. Not only is it the flowers that cozied up the place, but also the way she arranged them. Coziness goes hand in hand with ingenuity. It’s doing something unique with items, repurposing them when needing a bit of change. I took some inspiration from her and picked some daffodils that grow outside my church and put them on my windowsill. My aunt lent me a beautiful white vase to put them in and it pairs so nicely with the bright yellow of the daffodils. Just that little added something makes a home feel much cozier.

Bobby and I went to Goodwill yesterday and scored BIG time. We’re trying to find home decor for when we end up moving to Traverse City. We were able to find so much wonderful stuff. I bought some wicker baskets, a little homemade cup, and some wooden crates from a winery in Traverse City, two of them! (I also bought a beautiful red and white polka dot skirt, and Bobby found 13 DVDS) and we spent less than $50 on all of that! I want to scream from the rooftops that it’s not about where you buy something or how much it costs that makes the item a treasure. I spent the remainder of the day giddy about my $3.00 wicker basket.

A cozy home is one where people feel comfortable. It is a tidy home, but it does not need to be spotless. It’s simply doing your best. Life gets busy sometimes and maybe laundry isn’t number one on your to-do list. That’s okay. It also doesn’t mean you have expensive furniture or a freakishly large TV, instead, it’s a place where everyone has a place to sit and a feeling of belonging.  Where everyone can relax and enjoy each other’s company. Play a board game, talk to each other, maybe even share a meal.

A cozy home is one where the host/hostess is friendly and makes their guests feel at home. You may not have the most expensive food or be the best cook, but let your guests know that they’re welcome to what you have. Offer them a coffee, a tea, or a glass of water. If they’re spending the night, let them know where the extra blankets are. Act as though you are happy that they’re there, do not act as though they’re a burden! The kindness you give, mixed with the coziness of the home can make for a wonderful time, for both you and your guests!

It’s so easy for us to get caught up in photos and lives we see online. We go to Pinterest for inspiration and instead we start feeling bad about our own home. We follow an Instagram account for DIY tutorials, but instead we feel bad about our skills. This is so harmful to us! We’re so lucky to have these resources, but we must remember that our homes do not need to be copies of what we see online. What’s the fun in that anyways? What makes a home beautiful is the people within it. It’s fun to decorate and create a cozy environment, but at the end of the day, what’s truly important is the time we spend with our loved ones, our home is just a place to make that possible.

Thank you so much for reading!


Mattie Mae

A Journey into Self-Love · Uncategorized

5 Ways to Add a Little Bit of Glamour to our Lives.

Hello, friends! I hope that you are having a lovely Friday thus far! It is FINALLY the weekend! This week was seemingly never ending, oh my goodness.

We may not have the time or the money to live quite as glamoursly as we’d like to, but there are many small things we can do to glam up our everyday life. I wanted to write a blog post dedicated to this!

1.Personal Grooming. Its about impossible for me to feel even remotely glamorous if I’m unkept. Some of the things I do in terms of grooming are: showering, shaving, moisturizing, clipping my nails, painting my nails, plucking my eyebrows, and making sure my face is clean and free of leftover makeup.

2. Hair. On a day-to-day basis, I brush my hair and go, but this blog post is not about that, it’s about adding glamour to our lives. So, I will generally put my hair in curlers if I’m feeling extra fancy. It’s great because you can put your curlers in your wet hair, do everything else on your list and when you take them out, BAM, beautiful movie starlet hair.

3. Makeup. Once again, I do not wear makeup every single day. This makes it all the more special when I do. You can add a little extra oomph to your look by adding a some thicker eyeliner, a brighter lipstick, or maybe a glitter eyeshadow.

4. Smelly smells. I recommend some yummy smelling lotion for your moisturizing, but make sure it’s not breaking you out! From someone with very sensitive skin, there’s nothing that feels less glamorous than breaking out or getting rashes from your lotion. Another thing in this category is perfume. I think that perfume is worth a little splurge. I don’t use mine every day, so that when I do, I feel extra glamorous and put together.

5. Clothes. Everybody has different clothing items they feel the most confident in. Heck, even a pair of matching jammies could work. The most important things for clothing would be what makes you feel confident and what makes you feel comfortable. You could be wearing a dress that costs hundreds of dollars, but if it didn’t fit right, you’d still feel uncomfortable in it. You could just as easily feel your best in a dress from Goodwill that cost $5.00. Glamour truly comes from within, but sometimes the physical things help it manifest itself.

Thank you so much for reading, friends! I hope that you enjoyed this post. I know it’s a little different than what I usually post, but I enjoyed writing it all the same! 🙂


Mattie Mae