EM Cosmetics Infinite Lip Clouds Review

The EM Cosmetics Infinite Lip Clouds have been in the market for a while now. However, I have yet to write a review about it because I wasn’t blogging at the time that they came out. I did a review on the True Gloss lippies which I loved and decided to write a review on these awesome Infinite Lip Clouds as well. (Update! Review for the Fine Liner Brow Pencil here!)

Disclaimer: EM Cosmetics was kind enough to provide me these Lip Clouds to review (Thank you EM cosmetics!!). However, I am not affiliated with them, nor is this review sponsored in any way.

What are EM Cosmetics Infinite Lip Clouds?

The website claims that Infinite Lip Clouds are long wearing lip crèmes which are “light and fluffy” with “rich color payoffs.” These lippies have a matte finish, applies as a “vibrant liquid lipstick, and wears to a beautiful stain.” Michelle Phan states that she was inspired to create this formula after the beauty community requested a “non-drying liquid lipstick.”

The formula consists of blending the “line-filling properties of a lip liner with the color saturation of a liquid lipstick.” It’s also cruelty-free and vegan!

EM Cosmetics Infinite Lip Clouds Packaging

For those interested, it comes in EM Cosmetics signature black and white box. As you open the box, you see Michelle’s saying at the end of all of her youtube videos – a simple “Good luck.” The makeup is always wrapped in the classic black tissue paper.

Once you unwrap it, EM cosmetics Infinite Lip Clouds are packaged in a simple black and white cardboard box. The color and the name of the glosses are on a sticker that runs from the top of the cardboard box to the side.  The stickers are actually really easy to peel off and none of the gunk gets on the box if people care about that stuff.

Then the lip clouds. Black lids with a golden EM logo on top and see through cylindrical container. Classy and chic.

Time to Try Them On!

I have 4 out of the 9 shades. I sort of knew what colors go well with my skin so I picked the 4 that I thought would be good for me. Faded Clementine, Rose Nude, Violent Magenta, and Crimson Red.

Faded Clementine

The website describes this lip cloud as a “soft tangerine.” I would probably describe this as more of a slightly burnt orange. Not quite as dark as a burnt orange but definitely has some brownish properties to it.

 

Rose Nude

The website describes this one as a “light pink, nude.” If Aurora Pink in True Gloss had a matte version, this would be it. It has the “my lips but better” vibe to it. I love this because I can wear for an everyday look.

Crimson Red

EM Cosmetics describes this color as a “true blue-red.” Supposedly, I read somewhere that this is one of the more popular type of reds so I guess people get this more often. Not sure how it is on my skin tone, but oh well, there you go.

 

Violent Magenta

A “deep magenta” is how this lip cloud is described in their website. I picked this color because I wanted to see if I could pull off a dark matte lippie. I’m not too sure… but I definitely like the color payoff. For a more bold look, two coats actually does the job. The pictures below show how my lips look like after one coat.

 

The Review

I’ll go ahead and break it down to the promises that EM cosmetics made for these Lip Clouds. I do want to say that I usually don’t like liquid lips because most matte formulas that I’ve had are drying and just not comfortable. These… are a different story.

“Light and Fluffy… with rich color payoffs”

Yes, yes, and yes. The formula is light and fluffy. It’s like a whipped cream kind of texture. Feels very light when you put on your lips.

The color payoff is amazing. Truly, very pigmented. I sometimes expect matte formulas to be a little patchy but even the darker colored ones exceed my expectations.

“Vibrant liquid lipstick, and wears to a beautiful stain”

I mean I only have 4, but the 4 that I have are great colors. The darker colors are striking and even the one nude color I have stands out. I often think of “vibrant” as bright colors, so I don’t think that describes these Lip Clouds. Because they are matte, they are not as vibrant as say, the True Glosses. However, the colors are great and then fades into a stain on your lips as time passes.

The pictures below show you my lips without the lippie and my lips after I wiped off the Violent Magenta Shade. You can see that there’s definitely a stain effect to it. That’s with wiping it off too.

 

“Non-drying”

True story. Legit, this is not drying at all. It’s matte and my lips don’t really feel like I have anything on them. Then I smack my lips together and realize I’m still wearing a lippie – but my lips feel soft and NOT dry.

“Line-filling”

I’m not so sure about this because I still see my lip lines. However, I’m not sure if this is really a claim or if this is just how MP described her formula.

Other factors

The application. Unlike, the True Gloss, the Lip Clouds have more of that typical doe-foot applicator. Still very easy to use and I can use the tip to line my lips since I’m lazy and I don’t have lip liners.

Transfer. Most matte lippies are transfer-proof. EM Cosmetics did not claim for these Lip Clouds to be transfer-proof. There is a little transfer after it dries, but most of the color stays on the lips.

Bottom Line

I would definitely recommend EM Cosmetics Infinite Lip Clouds. For those who want a matte finish but don’t want dry lips, this is the formula for you. It’s so comfortable to wear and the color payoff is amazeballs. It’s $16 per lippie and it’s worth every dollar. Just try it and see.

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Thanks for reading and have a great rest of the day!

(all gifs are from giphy.com)

Traveling With E For the First Time

This one is a more personal blog post. When I started blogging in 2013, it was a way to let family and friends know about my life as a mom. I wanted to share all my adventures with E and then when baby bro was born, with him as well. I loved it because I felt like even if I don’t get to see some people in my life that often any more, they can still sort of catch a glimpse of what’s going on if they decide to read my blogs.

Then I took a break from blogging for a bit but when I decided to come back to it, I thought I should publicize it to also share these adventures with others who could be strangers but who could be going through the same things and we could laugh or commiserate together.

However, I had trouble personalizing my blogs without divulging too much information to protect the privacy of my children and to an extent, my husband. So here’s my first attempt at trying to be more me while also protecting my kids’ privacy.

A New Adventure

I’ve never gone on trips by myself with any of my kids. It’s always been a fear of mine that I would not be able to “control” them and they would run around and get themselves hurt, hurt others, or my worse nightmare, get taken away from me. I know, I always think of worst case scenarios. You don’t?

But E is now 4, about to turn 5, and I really wanted to go visit a friend of mine whom I haven’t seen in such a long time. I felt bad leaving A with two kids, so I chose the lesser of two evils at the time. Terrible twos or 4 going on 16?, I chose the latter, thank you very much.

E can now entertain herself pretty much. Give her a coloring book, and she’s quiet for at least 30 minutes to an hour depending on how new the coloring book is. Toys entertain her still. And if ever in desperate situations, yes, the iPad will come out. Don’t judge me. I honestly really don’t care too much about screen time as long as they’re not on it all day, every day. I grew up on TV and I think I turned out ok… not that I needed to defend myself, but sometimes mama bear comes out and well, there you go… sorry… again I digress.

Packing for Our Trip

Ok, so I only decided to drive 4 hours away, and only stay the night. One small suitcase would suffice. I did manage to fill it up though.

I packed her two sets of pajamas – she doesn’t wet the bed anymore, but hey, new territory means new game plan. Packed extra clothes in case anything happens. Her teddy bear is a must if traveling over night. And lastly, her hair stuff because girl has got a lot of hair. (Yes, I did forget her toothbrush, but thankfully, my friend has three kids so her house is well stocked.. phew!)

For me, just a pair of jammies, and a change of clothes would suffice. That and all the chargers that I needed for my phone, my hot spot, and my iWatch. This was also in the middle  my 10 step korean skin care, so yes I brought all of it with me!

Our Trip to Jersey

We left around 9am because in my head, that means we would miss all the traffic. Wrong. For some reason there was crazy traffic in the Baltimore Tunnel… then when we finally reached Delaware, we were stuck.

E took it like a champ! “It’s ok mommy, I’ll just sleep.” She didn’t even want the iPad. She literally sat there and just looked out the window. I dreaded the moment that she would get bored and start crying because that is what I remember would happen when we were traveling as a family.

That moment never came. She was in and out of her sleepiness. When she did finally wake up, we were finally on the Jersey turnpike after 3.5 hours of driving in traffic! She was a little grumpy but grumpy in a way where she didn’t want to talk to me so I’d take that over whining grumpy.

I decided to stop for some food because I realized that maybe E was just hangry. Sure enough, we got to the stop and as soon as she smelled food, girl perked up like “hey, I’m about to get fed!” We opt for a burger and salad and she was as happy as can be because she didn’t have to share with baby bro or A! Ha!

After filling up, we start back on our way and we still had 1.5 hours to go! I was in shock! But E was fed and she was happy. The last 15 minutes was the only time she kept asking “how far away are we” and “are we almost there?” questions. That, I could handle. We just turned on some Disney songs and belted out like there’s no tomorrow. Disney songs?? Yaassssss!

Being with Friends and Staying the Night

As soon as we got there, my friend and I had a happy reunion. E took some time to warm up but she loved the girls in no time! They were playing and laughing and I was so happy that I decided to make the trek to visit. There’s nothing like feeling at home at someone else’s home. That’s just how it is when you go to through PT school together. Friends for liiiiifffeee.

I was nervous about sleep time. But E was so busy with the girls that I don’t even think she had time to get nervous and worked up about sleeping. My friend did give her a light up pillow which helped tremendously. I was able to go have some alone time/mom talk with my friend when our girls fell asleep. That was well needed.

The next day, E and the girls played all morning until we decided to go home right after lunch. I figured it would be the perfect timing because then E would nap on the way home a little.

Our trip home

E fell asleep 15 minutes into our drive.  I was able to listen to some of my own music while she slept for about 1.5 hours. Yes N’SYNC, Britney, and Backstreet Boys, yasssss… go ahead, judge me.

When she woke up, I knew she would have to go pee, so I made it a point to keep on a lookout for an exit. I also needed some caffeine because driving could really suck the life out of you sometimes.

She was very excited when we stopped because she thought we were going to have a burger and salad again. I had to remind her that we already ate lunch and that we were just stopping to go to the bathroom and to get a drink.

We were at Starbucks so I got her a strawberry frappuccino without the syrup and without whip cream – essentially milk and strawberry puree. She felt sooooo special when she got that. I don’t think I’ve seen her smile wider. Ha!

The rest of the trip was uneventful. We sang some songs, ate some snacks, she watched a little bit of the iPad but got bored pretty fast, then she colored on her coloring book.

All in all, it was a pretty easy trip and I think I will take her on more trips like these because it was so easy! Did I just jinx myself? Maybe I won’t take her on so many trips?? hehe.

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What I Took From This Trip

This was the first time, E had me to herself for longer than a couple of hours after baby bro was born. She seemed content and loved telling me stories. Part of what I loved most about this trip is that I got to ask her some questions regarding home life.

I asked her about baby bro and how she feels about him and she told me straight up, “Mommy, I love [baby brother]. I will always love him even when he does bad things to me.” I can’t. So I ask her how she felt when baby bro hits her. She says she gets mad at him but that she still loved him.

I asked her about mommy and is she ok with me working. To which she answered, “Yes Mommy, you have to work so you can get money so we can have food. So go work.” Ha! I mean I did tell her that once, but I didn’t think she would keep remembering it. Oops… whatever, that’s real life man.

I asked her about A and how she used to be so mean to him because she would only go to mommy. She tells me she will be better and not be mean to A.

This trip was tiring. I never drove this long by myself before. I also didn’t sleep too well because E had to pee in the middle of the night and when I wake up in the middle of the night, it’s hard for me to sleep again.

BUT my heart was full. I was able to spend some time with my friend which is always a great time. And most importantly, I was able to have some one on one time with E. I could tell she appreciated it. She was so grateful and just kept asking me if I could take her on other trips as well.

I know I won’t have that all the time. I know she will grow out of the phase when she wants to hang out with me. So what I took out of this trip are the memories. Memories of E wanting to spend time with mommy, E wanting to talk to me about her toddler life, and E smiling the whole trip to and from Jersey (except when she was sleeping and when she just woke up from her naps).

There really are no words to describe how much I loved this trip. To me, this is a trip I will definitely always hold so dear to my heart. They are only so little for so long. I gripe all the time about how tired I am, but I know that this too shall pass. In the meantime, I think I’m ok being a bit tired in exchange for all the memories with my loved ones.

Thanks for reading and hope you have a great rest of the day!

(All gifs are from giphy.com)

Kegels and Core Work During and After Pregnancy

Before I was a mom, I was a physical therapist. Although I stopped practicing (that is for another blog), I’ve never actually stopped learning about how the body works. Especially after getting pregnant, so many changes can happen to women physically (and in many other aspects), that I kept up with reading and learning from trusted PT friends on how to prevent incontinence, back aches and overall instability of the pelvic girdle and core. The answer? Kegels and Core Work. Not only after pregnancy, but during pregnancy as well.

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Why Workout During Pregnancy?

Someone asked me why they should workout during pregnancy when everything stretches out anyway? The stronger you are before any kind of injury, the hope is that the faster you are at recovering. Yes, I said injury cuz y’all… like the pelvic floor is all types of wrong during and after pregnancy ok? Let’s be honest. The human body is amazing, but women’s bodies are exceptional in a way that their bodies can take on so much change in a short amount of time. So yes, kegels and core work can only help during pregnancy.

Why Kegels and Core Work?

Kegels is a type of exercise that aims to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. These muscles are tiny compared to the more well-known muscles in the body. However, they are so important to strengthen along with your core.

Core work are exercises that strengthen your core muscles. These include not only the abs, but also the back muscles. Along with kegels, this will help decrease the chances or prevent incontinence, back aches, and overall instability or the pelvic girdle.

How? Think of a barrel. The front being the abs (rectus abdominus), the sides being the abs as well (transverse abdominus), and the back part being all the muscles in your back. Not only do all sides of the barrel have to be strong, the bottom of the barrel – the pelvic floor – also has to be strong in order to hold all it’s contents. Enter kegels and core work =).

How to perform kegels?

Kegels is basically the act of tightening the pelvic floor muscles. It’s definitely not the easiest to get but the easiest way I can describe it is to pretend to hold in your pee. That’s right folks, tighten them muscles. Do make sure you go to the bathroom first and empty your bladder just in case.

Another way to describe it is to pretend that you’re holding a pencil with your vaginal muscles.  Please don’t insert random objects in your hooha while doing this exercise.

Another recommendation is, with clean hands, you can insert a finger into your vagina and tighten the muscles around it. This can help you know that you are tightening the right muscles since your finger may be able to feel the muscles tightening.

If you are not keen on inserting anything in your hooha, there is a less invasive way you can do it. When you are still ok to lie on your back (with knees bent and feet rested flat on the surface), place your fingers on your side abs (transverse abdominus). Then perform the kegels – pretend you’re holding in your pee. You should feel a slight movement under your fingers as your transverse abdominus will also contract a little.

When you can no longer lie on your back, sit up straight on a chair with your feet flat on the floor. You can then do kegels in this position.

How to perform core work?

A lot of people think core work is just abs, so they just do sit ups and crunches. But your core muscles also include your back and side muscles (hence, the barrel reference). Even when you’re doing sit ups or crunches, you could be targeting other muscles other than the core (like your hip flexors for example).

The most basic move for tightening your core is to imagine that there is a string between your belly button and your spine and that your spine and tugging on that string and pulling your belly button in. Almost, like sucking it in for pictures ladies! 😉

Now to make it a full core workout, do the above and then straighten up your back – sit up, shoulders down, belly button in, hold it for a couple of seconds and relax. You can do this at the office, or while watching TV. It’s pretty easy once you get the hang of it.

Putting It All Together

When you’re going about your day, your muscles are all working together so that you can move about without having to isolate your movements. Same goes for training your pelvic floor muscles and core muscles.

You can do kegels and core training together! Start in hooklying position (on your back, knees bent, feet flat on the floor). Do a kegel and tighten your pelvic floor, then with that imaginary string, pull that belly button back towards your spine. Shoulders should also be flat on the ground and not shrugged up to your ears – make sure it’s and down – almost as if you’re trying to touch your toes.

Once you master this, you can add more movements as long as you’re doing kegels and contracting your core at the same time! You can incorporate light crunches while making sure the whole “barrel” of muscles are working. It sounds easy, but when you’re trying to contract all these muscles at the same time, it’s actually pretty hard.

How to Progress this Exercise

When you’ve mastered the kegels and core workout lying down, you can move to a sitting position. Sit up straight at the end of a chair, feet flat on the ground,  shoulders back and down. Then do your kegels and core tightening, pulling that belly button back towards your spine. Hold for a couple of seconds, relax (but keep your posture), and then try again.

Once you’ve mastered that in sitting, you can add more movements as long as the kegels and core tightening is still in place. You can slowly march in place to work the lower abs a little more. You can bend over forward, keeping your back straight, and come back up to work your lower back muscles a little more. After that, you can even do some biceps curls and shoulder presses. When you’re doing other exercises while keeping your core engaged, you’re actually making that “barrel” stronger.

After Pregnancy

Start slowly and make sure that your physician is ok with you doing physical activity. Since kegels and the basics of core work are not such a heavy activity, you can probably start on it right away (as long as your doctor approves it). Start with exercises lying down and progress as your body gets stronger and stronger.

Seeking Professional Help

Listen to your body. If you’re still having continued problems with incontinence, back pain, and other instability problems, I recommend going to a Women’s Health Physical Therapist. They are trained to diagnose, and treat you based on your diagnosis. They also have extra tools that you may not have or may not be able to buy to make sure that your pelvic floor muscles and core muscles are engaged.

Lastly…

Please remember, you’re not alone. I know it’s embarrassing to not be able to hold in your pee, or have constant back pain that you can’t function during the day. But know that many others are going through the exact same thing! You can do this! Reach out to friends for support and to professionals for help.

Thanks for reading and hope you have a great rest of the day! =)

(All gifs are from giphy.com)