current loves of winter 2013

hello there! i've been wanting to do a favorite products post again, but i've been seriously slacking in the blogging department lately. cue the sad trombone ;) hahaha. but i am here now with some things that i've been loving this winter:

1. dickinson's witch hazel toner - i saw a blog post on pinterest talking about the benefits of using witch hazel on your skin, and purchased this toner shortly after. it's incredibly gentle, and i like that it's all natural too. i use it before i moisturize in the morning and at night. walgreens carries this brand of witch hazel products, or you can also find it on amazon or

2. NYX super fat eye marker - i purchased this eyeliner to use for my halloween makeup last year, and i really like it for an everyday look now. it makes the cat eye look so easy to achieve. the felt end is starting to wear down a little, but it's still totally useable. i also purchased the skinny version too.

3. s.w. basics's cocoa lip balm - i received this in one of my last birchboxes, and absolutely LOVED it! i rarely use a lip balm until it's gone, but i couldn't help myself with this one. it was super moisturizing and lasted a lot longer than any other lip balms i've tried. you can't beat the flavor either. it's the perfect balm for the super dry and freezing midwest winters. i decided to purchase the flight of 4 balms, and i can't wait to try the other flavors!

4. l'oreal studio secrets anti-redness primer - i actually bought this green primer a long time ago, and i wasn't really impressed with it. i just didn't feel like it did as great of a job as my smashbox primer did. however, i do really like the effect i get when i mix the two primers together and apply after my moisturizer. the green does reduce some redness, and the other primer reduces most of the shine. i guess i could just use the green smashbox version, but since i still have a lot of the clear primer left, this makes more sense for me financially.

5. e.l.f. jumbo lip gloss stick in sangria starters - i have so so many lip products, and i really don't need more, BUT this was an impulse purchase that i actually LOVE. the color is really pretty, and can be used for a daytime or nighttime look. and since it's an e.l.f. product, the price of $2.00 really can't be beat! it makes a great add on if you're trying to score free shipping on ;) which is exactly what i did.

6. st. ives collagen elastin facial moisturizer - i saw this product pinned on a few friends' pinterest boards, claiming that it's "the best wrinkle fighter! dr. oz says so!" or something like that. seemed a little dramatic, but i do really love st. ives' products (their green tea facial scrub is one of my all time favorites) so i decided to give this product a try. and wouldn't you know, i love it. haha. it's a great moisturizer for the winter months... it's not too light and not really too heavy. i don't know if my face feels more firm or anything like that, but i do like how it feels. AND this jar is seriously huge! for only $6. not too bad.

7. super chunky knitted cowl (made by me!) - last saturday ended up being a quiet night in for me, and i decided to try one of the many craft tutorials i've been pinning lately. i picked this arm knitting tutorial, because i loved the chunky look and, honestly, it boasted that it only took 30 minutes. a half hour to a beautiful winter cowl? sold! lol, of course it took me a while longer b/c i had to rewind the youtube video several times, but it did go pretty quick. and i LOVED how it turned out! it's super soft, and it's chunky without being "bulky", if that makes sense. i actually only casted on 6 stitches to make mine (even though in the beginning of the video she states that she used 12 stitches to make the cowl in her photo) because that's how many she did in the how-to video. but i think it looks great, and leaves me with a little more left over yarn. always a plus.

8. hello apparel's red pullover - i have been eyeing the hello pullovers for a looooooong time. they are so, so cute! but $50? i just couldn't justify spending that much on a sweatshirt. not saying that it's not worth that amount, and everyone has to make a living, it just didn't make sense for my budget. BUT lucky for me, hello apparel offered one hell of a sale last month, and i was able to snag the red pullover for $25! so awesome. it's easily the softest sweatshirt i own. i love it so much. i highly recommend it to anyone that's thinking about purchasing one. be sure to follow them on instagram (@helloapparel) for any news about sales and new items.

hope you're all having a good week! it's almost friiiiiidaayyyy :D


watching: the following! anyone else watching it? i really like it, and kevin bacon in it, so far. i just hope they can keep up the pace they currently have going now. when i first heard about this show, i really wanted to like it, so i'm hoping that isn't skewing my opinion. it's also inspired me to dust off my collection of edgar allan poe stories, which is always a good thing. i'm still watching new girl, but i think the mindy project has become my new favorite in that line-up. it's so funny! the walking dead comes back this sunday!!! and game of thrones at the end of march! can't wait.

reading: still reading summer of night, and i've gotten far enough in to read about some spooky stuff, so i'm excited about finishing this one! i started reading the pact on my iphone (the small sample), and the rest of the ebook was only $2.99, so i downloaded it yesterday. although reading on my phone is not preferred, it does make is easy to pick up when i have a spare moment.

listening to: a bunch of different stuff right now. a little mumford and sons, a little of the lumineers, and a bunch of randoms from my winter playlist.

thinking about: our family trip to italy in may!!! we have purchased our plane tickets, and we are figuring out where to stay currently. i stumbled upon this amazing site, her packing list, and spent a couple hours reading several blog posts about traveling/what to pack. if you are taking a trip, here in the US or abroad, check out this site. they have amazing packing lists for a bunch of locations and seasons, and plenty of other traveling tips.

looking forward to: the weekend, as per usual. seems like it will be pretty low key, which is always welcomed. chester and i are trying to save money, and weekends like this definitely help.

making me happy: cozy nights in, finally reading again, and the blackhawks! and ellie goulding's "anything could happen".

hope you all have a great weekend! xoxo