Review: When Masks

Alright, so full disclosure: I totally wasn’t 100% sober when I tried this mask. Apparently the two 4% abv grapefruit IPAs I had at trivia were enough to do me in on a Thursday night…which is all the more reason to use a mask, right?! I’m relatively new to the mask game – first using one the morning of our first day in Paris last may, after just finishing my senior year of art school. Art school finals + graduation + a 7 hour (?) flight to Paris followed by a full day in Disneyland Paris = a very tired Claire waking up the next day. Luckily I had a revitalizing mask to help my face look a bit more photogenic for photos by Notre Dame and shopping on the Champs Elysees. Since then, I’ve been sure to keep a couple masks on hand at all times…just in case.

Despite the sunglasses, I promise I was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready for a fun-filled day in Paris!

SoOoOo, when When Masks offered me a sample of 2 masks in exchange for a review on my blog, I couldn’t say yes fast enough! They have 5 different kinds of masks, all with a soft, jelly like mask sheet made from coconut juice and infused with their respective serums.

Travelmate (When you’re on the road, and your skin has had a bit too much sun, wind, or dry air)

10PM (When you’ve pulled an all-nighter and need your skin to look rested and restored) 

Snow Magic (When you want clear, brighter, and more radiant looking skin) 

Glamour Base (When you want your makeup to look great and last longer)

The Last Choice (When your skin needs that extra glass of water)

We were allowed to pick the two that we wanted to try most, and I requested Travelmate and 10pm. I’m holding onto Travelmate til I feel like I REALLY need it…maybe after a long summer day by the lake…or I might hold on to it until Morocco if I can! (Let’s be real though, it’ll probably get used WAY before December/January.)


Real talk: I really need Joe (or someone) to invent/design a mask warmer. The absolute worst part about putting a mask on is how COLD it is. No matter what benefits the mask on, putting the slimy, gooey, cold sheet on is the absolute worst. Ugh. I’ve contemplated just getting a baby wipe warmer to solve all of my problems. It’s srs biznss.

Even after the recommended 30 minutes of application, there was still some extra goo on the mask, so rather than letting it go to waste, I decided to share the goodness with my hubby. Every couple has their weird ‘thing’ – right? Welp, I give Joe my leftover masks. He doesn’t even have to deal with the gross coldness of the mask that I do…lucky him 😛 I’m so thoughtful! Heh.

On a more serious note – the mask really did work wonders, and my face looked completely refreshed in the morning, despite my body feeling otherwise. (No, I was not hungover; I’m just not a morning person, ever. In fact, I’ve perfected the ‘get out of bed, showered, and out the door in 20 minutes’ strategy. It is implemented most mornings.) If I could use one of these masks every night, I totally would. Unfortunately my bank account would have to disagree.

when masks 10:00pm
BFF status?

Is it bad that I’m already obsessing over these masks and I’ve only used one? Merp. I might have a problem.

Alternatively, the masks might just be that good. You can find the masks in store and online at Sephora and Ulta, online at Birchbox, Anthropologie, or of course, on When’s website. Woop woop!


Finally! My Everyday Makeup.

Okay, I’m pretty sure I’ve been saying I’ll write a post about my “every day” makeup for a solid 4+ months now, but today’s the day – it’s actually happening! Now, I know I’ve given this disclaimer before, but I’m not a makeup pro by anyyyy stretch of the imagination… but thanks to a bit of pre-wedding coaching, I feel like I’ve got a pretty good handle on what I’m doing, and I think it looks alright most days.


There are plenty of days where all I do is fill in my eyebrows and maybe put on a bit of blush, but this is what my face looks like whenever I want to look presentable in public (work or going out with Joe/friends, primarily.) Nothing crazy, nothing sparkly, and pretty dang natural, but it works for me, and maybe if you get just as overwhelmed walking into a Sephora as I do, this will work for you too! 


It’s really not a particularly complicated process, and that’s a lot coming from me.

  1. Caffeinated Eye Cream. I can thank Birchbox for this one. It smells like that fake popcorn smell. I have sleepy eyes in the morning, and this definitely helps.
  2. Garnier SkinActive Moisturizer. I got this recently from Crowdtap, and am loving it so far. Hooray for SPF! I skip this step sometimes if my face is feeling particularly oily, or if I know I’m getting photographed – SPF makes your face shiny in photos 🙂 
  3. NARS Foundation – [color] I know I’m supposed to use some fancy application tool to put this on, but I just pour a small dab onto my fingertips and put it on that way. I tried a (knockoff) beauty blender once and felt like I was wasting a lot of my foundation as it got sucked into the sponge. 
  4. Urban Decay Naked Concealer – The circles under my eyes are, and always have been out of control. This helps. It also helps with the reddish areas around the sides of my nose, and sometimes my chin if I’m feeling particularly ‘red’.
  5. NYX Eyebrow Pomade in Blonde. I could probably be making much better use of this stuff, but I do what feels right, and it seems to work out okay. I need to clean this brush/spoolie (?) more often than I do. 
  6. Mascara. I’m not picky about mascara at all, so when I recently ran out, Joe suggested I get the Star Wars branded kind from Covergirl…so I did! 
  7. Too Faced Milk Chocolate Soliel bronzer in Milk Chocolate. This stuff actually smells like chocolate and it’s amazing. I just put this on lightly down my temples, and a little below my cheek bones…and along my jawline if I’m feeling fancy. It kind of makes a 3 (I read that somewhere once. It works – I think!)
  8. Too Faced Love Flush blush in Baby Love. I just put this on my cheekbones and call it a day.
  9. Lips? This step varies. Lately I’ve been forgetting to put anything on my lips at all (like in the selfie I posted up there ^) but when I remember, I’m either wearing the lip color I got for my wedding: Tarte LipSurgence in Energy (not pictured) or any random lip color I can find that I’ve gotten from Birchbox. 

Hah. Me saying 9 steps isn’t complicated. Who am I? Really though I can shower, dry my hair, get dressed, and put makeup on in 20 minutes or less (probably/definitely less now that my hair is shorter, I haven’t had to test it yet) in the AM assuming nothing goes tragically wrong, like accidentally brushing my cheek with my mascara brush. It’s pretty great, and allows me stay low maintenance which I greatly appreciate! 🙂  

Do you have any go-to beauty products you wear daily? What about makeup remover? I’ve been using wipes from Trader Joe’s lately that Santa so kindly left in my stocking 😉


Gift Guide – For Her

Oprah has her Favorite Things, and Gwyneth Paltrow’s got her Goop Gift Guide. I figure it’s only fair if I make one too! I tried to choose things that I know I would enjoy (possibly because I already own some of them) but would also enjoy giving to a friend or family member and perhaps most importantly, are (generally) pretty darn affordable!



A 3 month Birchbox Subscription (full disclosure: we both get $5 free if you sign up through that link.) I’ve been getting Birchbox for over a year now, and the 3 month gift subscription is my go-to gift when I can’t think of something better! Who doesn’t love getting 5 (or so) trial sized beauty/skincare products to try out every month?!

A tank from Emi Jay for barre/yoga/pilates ooor just lounging around the house. All of the Emi Jay tanks/tops I’ve gotten are so soft – I could probably live in them 24/7 (let’s be real: I’ve done it.) Shop Barre Socks also has some great shirts (and sticky socks!) if you’re looking for a gift for your Barre BFF 😉

Sfumato Fragrances will also probably end up on my mens list as well. They’re a relatively new, Detroit-based fragrance brand (husband and wife team) that creates all natural, unisex, and amazing smelling fragrances. I’ve purchased their “Flight of Fragrance” for myself and a couple of my friends – it’s a perfect foray into the brand – and much more unique than picking up a bottle of perfume at Sephora!

If you know anyone even partially as clumsy as me, shatterproof wine glasses are a perfect gift. I originally received Govino Champagne glasses in a Popsugar box, and have been in love with the brand ever since (they’re good for picnics, and dishwasher-safe too!) They also make a decanter and beer glasses – all good things.

In keeping with the wine theme, a candle is always a good gift – even better when it is wine scented and in a recycled wine bottle, no? I’ve been reading a bit lately about how soy candles are supposed to be much better than the typical candle, and this seems like as good an option as any (as I sit here literally surrounded by 6 3-wick Bath and Body Works Candles…don’t judge, only one is lit!)

I’ve been following Woven Pear on Instagram for probably a year now – I’m in love with all of their patterns, and after getting one pair (thanks, Zulily!) somewhat recently, I am SO in love with how cushy-cozy-comfy the socks are! Whoever started the stigma (?) that socks are a lame Christmas gift clearly hadn’t encountered these socks 😀

I’m pretty certain that a person can never have too many cozy infinity scarves/cowl scarves. This one in particular is from ModCloth, but there are so many out there – some great ones on Etsy, and Loft is always having awesome sales (40% off right now) that it is pretty easy to find one you know your giftee will appreciate.

Having a nice set of coasters can go a long way, and with so many people I know moving into new/first homes and apartments, coasters seemed like an appropriate thing to put on my list. We have a set of 4 nice/fancy ones, as well as a huuuuge stack I’ve collected from bars/breweries locally and in Europe. We break those out when we have a lot of guests. It works out nicely.

I may or may not be putting a Spafinder Gift Card on this list for selfish reasons (hint hint to anyone still looking for ideas for me…but I’m pretty sure anyone in your life would appreciate the opportunity to get a massage (or mani/pedi, whatever.) Sitting hunched over a computer basically all day every day wreaks havoc on your upper back/shoulder muscles – massages are good for at least beginning to reverse that.

Last but certainly not least – an adult coloring book! Sure these are the big/hot new thing this season, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be overdone/under-appreciated by any means! There are some pretty unique ones out there too, shout-out to Brit & Co. for bringing attention to the “Color Me Swoon” book (I know lots of people that would enjoy a relaxing evening of coloring Zac Efron, Ryan Reynolds, and hey, Tom Selleck is included too.) Throw in a pack of colored pencils, and maybe a cute pencil sharpener, and you’ve got yourself a perfect gift!


Hopefully this list has given you some shopping ideas if you’ve been struggling and/or have recently come to the realization that Christmas is only slightly over 2 weeks away. Where did the time go!?

Happy shopping!