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THE HAIR CARE "MUST HAVE'S" FOR WHEN YOU ARE ON THE ROAD

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If you’ve been following our babe-town Beauty Editor on instagram, you know she has been taking the East Coast by storm on an epic road trip. This makes for some prime “beauty in a pinch” situations and I for one need all the advice I can get on travel beauty! Hope you enjoy – xoxo LK


 

When I travel, I like to pack as little as possible. The mere thought of checking bags at the airport, lugging them back and forth between hotels, and dealing with any additional weight on my weak shoulders irritates me. I tend to pride myself on the fact that I can travel with only a carry-on bag. As a beauty junkie, it took me a while to figure out what my hair care necessities are while away from home. I’ve narrowed it down to travel size shampoo and conditioner, a round brush, blow dryer, and a just few accessories and products. For the last eight days I’ve traveled to Boston, New York City, and Washington D.C. with only a few beauty products in my bag.Today I’m sharing my hair travel accessories – particularly the ones that have saved my life here on the east coast.

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I know I’ve talked about it a million times, but the entire LK Team is in love with Living Proof hair products. After having been in the beauty industry for over 7 years, I can honestly say they are the best I’ve ever used, and you really do get the most bang for your buck. Anyway, their Flex Shaping Hairspray has been my go-to when trying to fight the heat, sweat, and humidity. Whether I’m going for a sleek bun, textured braids, or a basic blow out this hairspray keeps my hairstyle fresh throughout the day, without losing volume.

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Another favorite that I packed are these adorable little Zodiac sign pins from Anthropologie. They’re great for adding a little sparkle, as well as distracting from all my fly-aways! I’ve loved laying these above my buns, or integrating into my braid up-do’s.

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Lastly, my most recent obsession has been withe these ribbon hair ties. What’s so great about these little guys is not only do they make the most messy bun or ponytail chic, they also look pretty cute sitting on your wrist. Not to mention, they don’t leave creases in your hair! Ribbon hair ties were my best friends in NYC. I always started the day with my hair blown out, then would put it in a bun when it started to get a little too warm. Towards the evening when we were out to dinner, I’d let my hair down and it still looked great! Total game changer!

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Traveling brings forth such enriching experiences and memories, but can be easily ruined or missed by spending too much time on what you look like. When you simplify your packing, it leaves more opportunity to get out the door quickly and into great destinations!

Plan on packing any of these products on your next vacation? Snap a picture and tag us on Instagram/ Twitter with @laurenkelp and #LKbeauty.


 

breann bowman

 

BLUSH IS HERE TO STAY

jami0067Hello, hello! Breann here and it’s time to talk beauty transition! It seems like the transition from summer to fall is always finicky. While most of us are still experiencing warmer temperatures, there are moments of reprieve that leave us hungering for the changing of leaves and PSL’s. Typically, Fall is host to berry lips and smokey eyes.

While some might consider blush to be a member of the spring/ summer palette, I believe it’s a color for all seasons. There’s nothing like a pretty blush cheek mimicking what it’s like to take an evening walk in chilly breezes. On the same note, a nude or pink lip is the perfect companion to a darker eye-shadow.I recommend this e.l.f. blush and bronzer duo palette. Sweep the bronzer from the temple in towards the cheekbones. Then add a touch of blush to the apples of your cheeks, and maybe the tip of your nose for a flushed look.

My favorite blush lip color is the e.l.f. matte lip shade in Natural. It is my go-to lip color and wear it daily!

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How do you plan on incorporating blush into your fall palette?


breann bowman

GOING BLONDE?

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I’ve had several hair colors throughout my life. All through adolescence I was a blondie. As my hair began to get darker when I was a teenager, I got highlights. Deep down, I always wondered what I would look like with darker hair. While I was in Cosmetology School, I couldn’t help but change my hair color multiple times! I went from extremely blonde, then colored the bottom section of my hair a purplish-red hue, then to brunette, then darker brunette, then brunette with highlights, all the way back to blonde again with some ombre in between! Having experienced several different shades, I can honestly say that being blonde is my favorite! Today I want to talk about a few things to consider before going blonde – all the way from highlighting virgin hair to coming back from a dark shade!

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The Science:

To begin, one thing you need to understand is no matter what, if you want to be blonde, you will have bleach applied to your hair. I realize this is a scary thought, especially for those who have never done it before. Yes, it is damaging, but you can avoid mass amounts of destruction by going to a colorist experienced in blondes. One question I’ve received several times is, “Can I have blonde hair without bleach? For instance, by using a permanent color instead?”  The answer is, unfortunately, no. Think of it like this – if you have a piece of wood that is already dark, you can’t just put a lighter stain on it and expect it to be that color. Bleach is used to remove the pigment from your hair so it can become lighter. On the flipside, you can’t wash out bleach and expect to return to your natural color. Similar to if you get bleach on a black t-shirt. Washing the t-shirt won’t make the bleach spot go away. While it can be invasive, if you have a good stylist you should see minimal damage. My advice is, if you’re going for a dramatic change, take it slow.

What to expect:

As you become blonder, it is likely that you’ll have a bit more damaged and dry hair. It’s an unfortunate side-effect, but isn’t all that bad if you take it easy and use good products. One effect you won’t be able to change is the texture and volume of your hair after bleach. For instance, my natural hair is pretty wavy and curly in certain spots. As I’ve highlighted my hair, my new blonde pieces tend to lose their curl, and are instead more frizzy than anything. If you have pretty dark hair, you will more than likely experience copper or brassy highlights in the beginning. Your stylist should be applying a toner (or glaze as some call it) to calm down those orange-y hues, and instead turn them into a more natural looking color. A toner is a semi-permanent color applied to wet hair, and will eventually wash out. While all these things seem scary, most blondes will note that they have better volume, and a slightly thicker texture to their hair after highlights. If you have super fine or thin hair, highlights might just be the thing you need for a bit more lift! See, it’s not all bad!

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Maintenance:

Blonde, I would say, is certainly the most-high maintenance color. You see roots more easily, you’re a bit more encumbered by deep conditioning treatments, and you’ll definitely need to take it easy with heating tools. Blowdrying and flat ironing/ curling, creates twice the amount of heat on already dry hair. Be sure to pick up a few styling products that protect your locks against the heat, or have your stylist show you a few round brushing tricks so you can cut one of them out. It doesn’t hurt to give your hair a break once a week and let it air dry – I call this braid day! I deep condition about once a week, and try to schedule my appointments ahead of time to eliminate those pesky roots!

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I know going blonde can be scary. I’ve done it several times and usually find myself a bit nervous about highlighting. The thing is, if you have a trusted stylist, you’ll be okay. Ask them questions! They know what’s going to be best for your hair, and what route to take in order to get you to the shade you want to be.

And, truthfully, blondes really do have more fun. Even if it’s just a few peek-a-boo highlights!


breann bowman

“OUT THE DOOR” HAIRSTYLE

Processed with VSCOcam with b4 presetThis past weekend, my husband and I attended a beautiful cliffside wedding in Carmel, California. I knew I would need to wear my hair up for the ceremony since it was right by the water, and very likely to be windy.

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Just before the wedding, we were at the Aquarium in Monterey Bay and completely lost track of time. What can I say? The sea life was completely mesmerizing – also, we are total kids! We had less than an hour to get ready and drive to the ceremony location. We ended up changing in the car and I did my hair and makeup just a few minutes before we arrived to our destination. After we arrived, I got a handful of compliments on my hair, which was surprising to me considering I couldn’t really see what I was doing!

What I love about this out the door hairstyle is not only how quickly you can do it, but how versatile it really is. From wedding guest, to running out the door, to an office meeting, this style will surely sneak it’s way into your weekly routine. All you need are three clear elastics and a handful of bobby pins. Here’s how to accomplish it:

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STEP 1:

Start with your hair curled, straight, natural, etc. – you really can’t mess it up, it’s all about your preference. I slept with my hair wet the night before doing it and ended up only touching up a few pieces with my curling iron first.

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STEP 2:

Next, take one of your three elastics, take a 1/3 section of your hair and tie into a small messy bun at the nape of your neck.

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STEP 3:

Repeat with a second bun

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STEP 4:

And a third bun

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STEP 5:

Now, stretch each bun out and bobby pin into a messier version, interlinking each bun making it look perfectly imperfect.

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STEP 6:

Lastly, pull out a few wispy pieces around your face if you want and top off with a bit of hairspray.

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I’d honestly be surprised if this took you longer than 10 minutes to accomplish! Plan on trying out this simple up style? Snap a pic and tag us on Instagram/ Twitter with @laurenkelp and #LKbeauty.


 

breann bowman

 

MOTHER'S DAY BEAUTY

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With Mother’s Day right around the corner, I’ve been thinking of all the beauty tips and tricks my mom taught me. Like most girls, my mom was the first to introduce me to the beauty world. From the time I had enough hair for pig tails she took special care to make sure her little girl was the cutest thing. (Including making me sleep with foam/ plastic rollers in my hair – the torture!!!) From there, I remember my mom bought me clear mascara in 6th grade because I wanted to wear makeup SO bad, but was too young for it. As a teenager she always reminded me to wash my face to get rid of zits and use moisturizer so I don’t get wrinkles when I’m old. I’ll never forget watching her get ready on Sunday mornings for church, putting on Chanel No. 5 and a sweep of lipstick.

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Growing up, I was always told “Oh my goodness, you look exactly like your mom!” Whether it was at family reunions or by the nice ladies giving us pedicures, I have always known I’m practically a carbon copy of her.

As a kid, I didn’t think much of it. Now as I’m older, it’s one of my favorite compliments. Maybe it’s because she has aged so well that I’m hoping those genes will manifest in me! Really though, I think it’s because she is my biggest role model, and I really hope that I grow up to be just like her.

With Mother’s Day this Sunday, I’ve been trying to figure out the best gift to get her. This holiday is the perfect opportunity to really spoil mom and buy her the stuff she normally wouldn’t get for herself. This year, I’m opting out of the typical flowers and card, and treating my mom with some fun products from Flora Apothecary.

IMG_3606.JPGAfter a long day, I love taking a long soak in the tub, and I’m sure most of our mothers do too! What with trying to raise decent human beings and all. A candle is a perfect gift to tell mom to take a few minutes to herself and unwind.

IMG_3607.JPGAnother product to throw in the gift basket is this all-natural body polish. Not only will it leave mom feeling like a new woman, it smells incredible too!

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Lastly, don’t forget to tell your Mother how much you love her. Let her know how grateful you are for the obvious stuff like giving you life, but also for the little things. For being understanding when you were a snotty teenager, or buying you lipgloss when you were at the cash register at Target. Mostly, tell her how lucky you are to have a built-in best friend.

“All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my mother.” – Abraham Lincoln


breann bowman

WHY YOU DON’T NEED TO CONTOUR

IMG_6700Open up your Pinterest account and you’re sure to find one thing every time: Contouring Tutorials. The art of defining your cheekbones, giving your nose a thinner appearance, and basically trying to look like Kim Kardashian seems to be all the rage. Given the right circumstances, I think contouring is a really cool way to apply your makeup. There are certainly a lot of benefits, but there are also a lot of reasons why I don’t do it myself. Today, I want to share 3 reasons why you really don’t need to be contouring your face.

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1. IT’S UNREALISTIC

When we think of celebrities like Kim Kardashian, who is a master of contouring, we of course try to think of all the ways we can replicate her same look. The difference between Mrs. West and us is that she is constantly in front of the camera, and well, we are not. For someone who is being photographed every day and in optimal lighting, it makes sense to contour. For a gal like me who works most days in office lighting or outdoors, all you will see when you look at my face is the caked on makeup. When I meet a new person, the last thing I want them to notice is how much makeup I’m wearing.

Another thing to consider is the time it takes to apply everything. When I take the time to contour, get everything on my face, blend it in, and still put my mascara on, I’m already about 20 minutes into my makeup routine. Most of us are busy and on the go – dedicating so much time to having sharper cheekbones just isn’t going to fly.

The truth is, contouring is not realistic for every day wear. Save those tips and tricks for actual photos, or in the evening when you’ll be in dim or flattering lighting.

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2. SKIN HEALTH

Contouring requires using a lot of makeup, and when I say a lot, I mean A LOT. On top of the contouring products, you are usually adding a top layer of setting powder, bronzer and blush. That’s a lot of makeup sitting on your skin for extended periods of time. Putting that much on your face everyday is not only preventing your skin from being able to breathe, it’s also clogging your pores. If you’re looking for a bit of facial definition without the layers upon layers of makeup, opt for a tinted moisturize and a dusting of bronzer and blush.

IMG_67093. YOU DON’T LOOK LIKE YOU

Perhaps the biggest reason to not contour is because once you do it, you don’t really look like yourself. Last week, I saw a master contour makeup artist take over a large beauty retailer’s Instagram account for a day. She showed several “how to contour” photos and videos. What was interesting about the takeover is in the majority of the comments readers mentioned one of two things: One – they thought she looked prettier without the contouring. Two – once the contouring was done she looked like a completely different person.

I am definitely a supporter of drawing attention to your more flattering features, but I am not a fan of changing your appearance all together. Heavy contouring gives you the nose you weren’t born with and the jawline you wish you had. To me, it’s a way of hiding behind makeup instead of embracing who you truly are.

As women, there’s already enough pressure on us to be perfect housekeepers, successful in our lines of work, and just have all our ducks in a row. The last thing we need is to change our appearances to fit the mold of what society says is beautiful. We are each unique and absolutely gorgeous in our own ways – and we don’t need heavy contouring to prove it. Makeup is such a wonderful tool we can use to play up our best features and have fun with, but it shouldn’t be at the cost of sacrificing who you really are. Keep in mind that less really is more. Beauty isn’t defined by makeup tutorials and hair how-to’s. It is found in the confident woman who holds her head up high and says, “this is me, take me as I am.”

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breann bowman

SIMPLIFY YOUR BEAUTY STASH

IMG_3269.JPGFor all of you amazing Lauren Kelp Newsletter subscribers, you may have recognized that during the month of March we are focusing on simplifying all aspects of our lives. Simplifying is such a remarkable tool, and seems so fitting during this season of Spring Cleaning. One of the challenges we issued to readers and ourselves was to clean out our makeup drawer(s). This is something I have been in major need of doing. Just check out my baskets of beauty products and hairstyling tools below.

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Yeah, I know… YIKES! Skin and hair care products are definitely items I tend to hoard and have a hard time throwing out. This last weekend, I set out to de-clutter and simplify these baskets that sit in my bathroom. Today I want to share my three rules for simplifying and tidying up your beauty supply! IMG_3272.JPG

RULE NUMBER ONE:

If you haven’t used it in 3 months, toss it.

A lot of hair care and ESPECIALLY cosmetics products have a short shelf life. For me, I love using organic products, so using them in a timely manner is key. Like regular food and liquids, products can begin growing mold (sick, right?!) or just lose their luster after a while. If you are feeling any doubts about throwing an item away, ask yourself “Will I use this tomorrow?” If the answer is no, toss it. If it’s yes, keep it, but toss it out at the end of the day if it still stays untouched.

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IMG_3271.JPGAwesome! Now that you’ve thrown out all the unnecessary it’s time to organize!IMG_3282.JPG

RULE NUMBER TWO:

Organize items by category, and pick up some organizing containers.

For me, I hate seeing boxes of q-tips in the original packaging. Having storage containers not only makes the product look more aesthetically pleasing, but makes it easily accessible instead of boxes stacked on top of each other.

I start out with organizing my products by category, then placing them in the appropriate storage. For instance, all of my skincare products go in one basket and hair care into another. I like to keep disposable items that are used on a daily basis, like cotton balls and q-tips, next to each other and in an easily accessible area. Containers don’t have to be anything fancy – I love storing items in re-purposed mason jars.

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RULE NUMBER THREE:

Leave some space for growth. 

There’s nothing worse than coming home with a shopping bag of new products, only to have them sit on the bathroom floor until you make room for them. Allow yourself a few extra square inches for your new lipstick or body scrub purchases.

Another thing to consider, is leaving space for your significant other. My husband hates it when my products take up all the space, and he has nowhere to put his stuff. Being considerate of other peoples possessions will ultimately help you in implementing simplifying habits into your life.

IMG_3286.JPGPlan on trying out any of this simplifying rules in your beauty drawer? Snap a pic and tag us on Instagram/ Twitter with @laurenkelp and #LKbeauty


 

breann bowman

 

DIY CHOCOLATE FACE MASK

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It’s hard to believe Valentine’s Day has come and gone already! I remember as a kid it was one of my favorite holidays. It was such a blast having the last bit of the day reserved for giving treats and cards to classmates. As an adult, it’s really special to spend it with my husband, taking an evening to be a little more romantic than usual. One thing has never changed in my feelings for the holiday though, and that is my adoration of CHOCOLATE. Even now that it’s over, I could still veg out on the sofa with a box of See’s Chocolates and call it one of the best nights ever. While I can definitely afford to stop eating so many sweets, I got to thinking, “chocolate can’t be bad for my skin, right?

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I did a little research to make sure I wasn’t completely insane, and there are actually a lot of studies that show dark chocolate is great for your skin! It’s packed with anti-oxidants, and when combined with the anti-inflammatory agents in honey, and the soothing components of plain yogurt, we can whip up a yummy face mask with awesome benefits!

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INGREDIENTS

  • 2-3 tbs. dark cocoa powder (at least 70% cacao or more)
  • 1 tsp. raw or organic honey
  • 1. tbs. plain yogurt

MAKE THE MASK

Mix all ingredients together until it forms a thick paste. You can add more yogurt and honey if you feel like it’s still a bit too thick. Apply to clean skin avoiding the eye area. Let it sit for about 10 minutes, then rinse off with warm water and a washcloth that can be stained. Follow with your daily moisturizer.

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Your skin should feel nice and smooth, with a more even skin tone afterward. Plan on tying out this mask? Snap a picture and tag us on Instagram / Twitter with @laurenkelp and #LKbeauty so we can see your creations!


breann bowman

VOLUME FOR VALENTINE'S DAY

IMG_2507.JPGWith Valentine’s Day just around the corner, most of us are starting to think about our ensembles and beauty looks for the most romantic day of the year. We want to look extra hot for our dates, so we pull out all the stops from our primping handbooks. Of course nothing completes our outfits and carefully selected shades of lipstick like the perfect blow out. We want volume and we want it to last throughout the night. Instead of shelling out the cash and booking an appointment with your stylist, here are a couple of tips on how to get natural volume at home, without the teasing and gobs of hairspray.

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The keys to getting soft, natural volume are good products and a bit of round brushing knowledge. The Lauren Kelp Team is a HUGE fan of Living Proof products. I always recommend using their Style Extender before blow drying. Just a quarter size amount distributed throughout damp hair is enough. To get a bit of lift I recommend using a mousse or texturizing spray at the roots. Flip your hair upside down and wave the dryer over your locks until most of the moisture is gone. Attempting to round brush from sopping wet hair is not only frustrating, but time-consuming.

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Think of your round brush as a tool for smoothing and shaping. I usually start by clipping the top half of my hair up and round brushing the bottom section under until smooth. Once done, I un-clip the top and round brush that section in the opposite direction of my part. When you part it back the usual way, your hair will create its own natural volume since it’s just been pulled in the opposite direction.

IMG_2505.JPGWhen round brushing the front section of hair, I always recommend pulling the section away from your face and back. Think Farrah Fawcett hair, but with a brush instead of curling iron. This creates a more natural looking wave instead of it hanging straight down or falling into your face.

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After you’ve finished smoothing and shaping your hair with the round brush, it’s time to bust out the old velcro rollers! While my hair is still warm from the dryer, I like to section the top half of my hair into five sections. One directly above my forehead that I like to call the “pouf” section. Remember when it was cool to pull your bangs back, poof them, and bobby pin into place? You’ll be using that same technique by taking that same section of hair and rolling back. I take the two side pieces and roll them under, as well as two additional pieces toward the back of the crown. Velcro rollers don’t hold well on their own, so make sure to secure them with clips or bobby pins. Using a medium hold hairspray, lightly dust the hair in the curlers and let them set for about 5-10 minutes until completely cool. I usually let them set while I’m doing my makeup.

IMG_2501.JPGGently pull out the rollers and finger comb your hair into the style. You can then curl your hair or straighten the ends for a sleek look. Use a light wax to create texture on the ends, and finish off with a light to medium hold hairspray if you feel like you need it. Now all that’s left is to touch up your make up, and slip on your dress and heels! IMG_2504.JPG

IMG_2506.JPGPlan on trying out any of these tips? Snap a pic and be sure to tag us on Instagram/ Twitter by using @laurenkelp and #LKbeauty.


breann bowman

AWARDS SEASON LIP COLOR

IMG_2377.JPGI don’t know about you guys, but Awards Season is one of my favorite times of the year. Of course the ceremonies themselves are fun to watch, but the red carpet is basically the best part. Those moments when nominees step out of the cars and into the limelight set the precedent for beauty, fashion and style for the rest of the year.

This last Sunday evening, the Screen Actors Guild Awards were no exception. What I noticed most were the sleek hairstyles and structured, almost masculine gowns. I also noticed that most of the women only sported the following two lip colors: nude pink, and bright red. There were hardly any berry, coral or dark reds lips, and I have to say, I really loved it!

Re-create the looks that will leave you feeling ready to deliver your acceptance speech, even if it’s just for making it to work on time!IMG_2376.JPGredsWe saw the bright red lip on some of the best dressed attendees of the SAG Awards. What I love about this color is it looks great on a variety of skin tones, and matches any number of ensembles. For Emma Stone, it gave her all black gown a pop of color, and Rashida Jones, a perfect contrast to her turquoise detailed dress. I’m wearing NYX Butter Lipstick in Coral Red. For anyone looking for rich color with a super moisturizing formula, this is the stuff for you!

IMG_2375.JPGIMG_2374.JPGpinksThe second color we spotted was the pretty nude/ natural pink on actresses Felicity Jones and Kiera Knightley. These British babes seriously dominated this simple, feminine look. With a more subtle lip, it really draws the attention to their beautiful dewy skin, and makes the eyes pop. I say they both win the award for best pink lip! I’m wearing Burt’s Bee’s Lip Shimmer in Grapefruit. This lip companion is perfect for anyone who needs a hint of color on the go, along with a product that will fight against dry or cracked lips.

Plan on trying out either of these looks? Be sure to tag us on Instagram/ Twitter with @laurenkelp and #LKbeauty.


 

breann bowman