After I mentioned how much I've been loving my new contour palette (here), so many of you expressed interest in learning how I've been using it on a daily basis. I know there are a million contouring tutorials out there, but I hope that mine will show you that you can achieve subtle definition in a few simple steps. My philosophy with makeup in general is to use it to enhance, not overpower, and my goal is always for mine to look as natural as possible. I realize that most women don't have a ton of time to spend getting ready each morning, so I hope that this guide will be easy to incorporate into your usual routine on days when you want that extra little oomph.

As much as I love a traditional red lip for the holidays, this is the time of year to play around with your makeup & try something a little more unique & special. If you've been invited to several events this season, it's a great idea to experiment with different looks for each party you're attending. I always try to coordinate my makeup with the outfit I'm wearing and then style my hair appropriately to complement the look. Today I'm sharing three simple beauty combinations + a makeup blending technique that will keep your skin glowing all night long!

Although I love fresh-faced luminous skin, there is something so beautiful about a completely matte look for fall & winter. This is perfect for those upcoming holiday parties and evening events because matte makeup tends to stay put longer than its lightweight dewy counterpart. Today I'm sharing a new tutorial using pretty feminine colors in blush & deep berry and I'm also providing my tips for how to remove your longwear or matte makeup in a simple & gentle way.

Today is my second & final post sharing my favorite wearable beauty trends from NYFW (see last month's post here). For their fall/winter collections, Oscar de la Renta & John Galliano both sent models down the runway with a fresh face & simple cat eye, which really appealed to me for its pretty simplicity. So often a cat eye is paired with matte skin & a bold red lip, but I loved the concept of balancing out the harsher eye-liner with soft, glowing skin.

Autumn beauty is all about rich hues and pretty jewel tones, but it's easy to be deceived by the way a color looks in the tube vs. on your lips. Because so many of you commented on how helpful my spring lipstick guide was, I decided to do it again - this time featuring darker colors & matte finishes that feel perfect for the coming season. Before applying more pigmented lip shades, I always start with a creamy concealer as a base and I use an invisible lip liner around the edges of my lips - this keeps the color from feathering or bleeding & helps it stay put longer. Sometimes I'll add a dab of clear gloss in the center of my bottom lip to create the illusion of a fuller pout. I also try to keep the rest of my makeup very simple when I'm wearing a bolder lip color so the look is more balanced (a shimmery taupe shadow & black mascara is all you need).

One thing that we're seeing a lot of for fall, which happens to be my personal favorite trend, is metallic lids. This is such a versatile look because it works on everyone, regardless of your skin-tone, and it can be appropriate for day or evening. Even if you're a novice when it comes to applying eye shadow, this is the perfect way to ease into it because it's literally foolproof using the product I'm sharing below. And the best part is that all of these products are budget-friendly & available at your local Walgreens!

There are few things I hate more than spending money on a new lip color only to find out that the shade looks completely different on my lips than it did in the tube. Over the years, through much trial & error, I've discovered a handful of lipsticks that I love & wear repeatedly. So, I decided to put together this handy guide to share my go-to colors with you in a way that shows how they actually look both in the tube & on my lips. I chose to focus just on pinks & oranges, because they are ideal for the upcoming season. I am sharing three different hues in each color group so you can find your favorite based on the intensity & brightness you are most comfortable with. I have tested these on two of my girlfriends who have different skin color than mine (olive & medium) and each shade passed with flying colors.

With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I thought it would be the perfect time to do a beauty tutorial for a romantic date night look. I am one of those people that really enjoys the process of getting ready, especially if it means I'm heading out for a fun evening with friends or on a special date. I like to turn on some music, light a candle and give myself plenty of time to play around with different looks. Although I love a classic winged liner & red lip as much as the next girl, my husband prefers a smokey eye & softer lipcolor on me. I purposely chose colors here that would work well on any skintone (dark plum, icy lavender & soft mauve) + you can easily adjust the intensity of the eyeshadow & eyeliner if you want a more dramatic look.

Mornings are usually hectic & somewhat rushed at our house (especially during the school year), I'm not inclined to add one more step into my getting ready routine unless the payoff is big. For me, this is 100% worth the extra 30 seconds it takes because it gives me a natural-looking glow that lasts all day. The goal with applying highlighter is to create a luminous finish without having your skin appear overly shiny. Today I'm showing you how to do this in just a few simple steps. Once I learned this technique, I was hooked and I never wanted to walk out the door without applying it. But, even if you can't take the time to do it every single day, just pin the image below and pull it up to use as a guide when you're getting ready for girls' night out or a special evening.

I'm so excited to be sharing my first makeup tutorial with you today. Several of you have been asking for more beauty posts, so this is long overdue (thank you for your patience)! Not only am I showing you how to create a smokey eye with colors that are perfect for fall...but I'm also sharing with you about a new service that will help you save money on the beauty products you already buy! I typically reserve a smokey eye look for evening since it's a little too intense for daytime. The great part about this method is that you can use a light hand or build the color up for a dramatic effect. You could also choose to skip the eyeliner for more subtle definition.

With the (finally) melting snow & shift to warmer temperatures, I'm not only switching out my closet with lighter pieces, but I'm also making changes to my beauty routine. Because hair, skin & nails have different needs in the winter than they do in the spring/summer, I've decided to start a new seasonal series that will help you determine which products to shelve for now and what items to replace them with.

When I was in NYC for fashion week, my blogger friends reminded me that I needed to do a post about my beauty tips. While I've shared some in the past (here), including my own personal routine (here & here), I wanted to focus this time on how to make the products you use on a daily basis last for as long as possible.

With the intense cold front that hit the east coast last week, I have already started to notice the dryness affecting my hair, skin & nails. So I'm adjusting my routine slightly to add more moisture back in and to protect myself from the elements. These are my must-haves...all affordably priced and they each do a great job providing what I need for the cold-weather months.