These are a few of my FAVORITE things

I used to have piles of eye palettes, concealer, and bronzer stacked in dusty layers on every surface in my room. I was wasting money on beauty products that I would only use on special occasions. I decided it was time to get rid of products bogging down the beauty counter and focus on the everyday items that could transition from day into night. Sometimes I walk into MAC trying to convince myself that I need the bright purple lipstick that will “make me seem edgy” when in fact, it never makes its debut on my lips.

I get that in some professions, a full glam look is warranted. Especially if you are working in the beauty industry. However, many of us are just looking for tried and true products that we can keep coming back to for last-minute primping. When a special occasion is coming up, that is the time to plan your look and purchase those items.

 I used to go into Ulta, picking out ANYTHING and everything that involved glitter, neon… I have always liked to experiment, knowing the worst that could happen is a make-up remover wipe to the face. But when you don’t have any “go-to” products to get the job done, whether its a quick application for work every day or your cousins baby shower, beauty time turns desperate.

I finally feel like I’m at the point where I have my “go-to” products. These products have been working well for me for a long time and it has also saved me a lot of money. I believe everyone needs to find their favorites to spare their wallets… and emotional stability.

Skin Care Essentials

A couple of months ago, my uncle gave me some skin care products that really improved my skin all together. The products are the Modere Cellproof essentials, which includes the CellProof serum, moisturizer, and infusion mask. 

The CellProof infusion mask is different than any other mask I have tried. When you apply it to your face, it has a consistency attributed to a cleanser. After 30 seconds of rubbing the mask into your skin, you will start to see it turn into a foam-like substance. It’s supposed to deliver effervescent oxygen to the skin. Once the mask is applied, you will start see that the mask looks like its dissolving and getting deep into your pores. It makes my skin feel incredibly clean and I usually use it 2-3 times per week. 

The CellProof Serum is my absolute favorite product of all time. I have combination skin so when I applied serums in the past, I felt like the serum didn’t soak in and left an oily sheen. This serum is extremely light, and you can truly tell a difference right after you apply it. Sometimes when I wake up my skin will look dull and tired, when I apply this serum it makes my skin glow. It has even reduced the lines in my neck and under my eyes. Out of everything in the CellProof product line, this is the item that needs to be in everyones makeup bags.

The CellProof Moisturizer is really one of the best for anti-aging. I never knew this until I researched it on my own, but not all collagen is the same. Companies that have collagen products lack human clinical studies, which is scary. BioCell collagen has had extensive research and clinical studies. The real difference is the main ingredient has the naturally occurring collagen type II peptides. I have been using this moisturizer for 2 months now and have seen a nice difference in my skin. I always apply the serum and moisturizer every morning and night. 

*You can purchase these products together or individually on 

Hair Essentials

I have long hair but it is extremely straight and it isn’t very thick. My hair was very short and damaged from using extensions and highlighting in the past. A year and a half ago my hair was right at my shoulders, now it’s significantly longer and I can feel a difference in thickness.

Alterna Caviar is the brand I have been using the past two years and it has changed my hair completely. I first started with the Caviar Anti-Aging bond repair. This helped so much with the damage I had from heat and extensions. Now I’ve switched to the Caviar Anti-aging replenishing moisture shampoo and conditioner. My hair was very dry and now every time I blow dry my hair it feels like silk and looks like I’ve had a salon blow-out. I get so many compliments! The large bottles last me around 4-5 months because you don’t need a lot. I also wash my hair maybe 2 times a week in order to keep it healthy and nourished with its natural oils. 

You can purchase these products on Ulta. You should go through the description of each shampoo and conditioner with hair goals in mind. I also use Alterna leave in conditioner and heat spray.


My favorite mascara is Maybelline total temptation. I have long eyelashes, but they won’t curl to save my life. This mascara keeps the curl but it’s also not difficult to take off at night. One of my biggest pet peeves is buying a mascara that goes on like liquid glue, and won’t come off even with eye makeup remover. This mascara has the best of both worlds. It gives you nice thick, dark lashes and won’t leave you scrubbing your eyes raw when you want it off. It’s a very good price too, only $11 dollars at Ulta, or you can get it at CVS or Walgreens.

Since I don’t wear much eye makeup in the summer, I found the best all-around palette for your entire face. The Morphe highlight + contour palette is my favorite all-in-one item I bought this year. It comes with 4 different colors to contour your cheeks and 4 colors to highlight. I will use the color “Debutante” to contour my face and “Fabulous” as my blush. Then I take the highlight color “Beam” and apply it to the corners of my eyes and right below the arch in my eyebrow. I then add one of the contour powders to my eyelids. I will normally apply “Donut” to my eyes, and it creates a glowing, natural summer look. Even if you wanted to make it glam you can add some winged eyeliner and a bright lip color. This really is the easiest makeup routine I have ever had thanks to this Palette (and its only $12.50!!)

Last but not least, the best go-to concealer is “Can’t stop won’t stop” by NYX. When I had my makeup done professionally the makeup artist told me this concealer is all she uses. Sometimes concealer will make accentuate fine lines and wrinkles under my eyes but this one doesn’t. This concealer has great coverage without weighing your skin down. It’s amazing how some products such as this look and feel better than products five times the price.

You can also purchase this product at Ulta for only $8.50

Angelina Todd- Beauty Enthusiast/ Writer
I am the beauty guru you never knew you needed. When I’m not chasing around my bull terrier, Julius- I’m making masks, testing products and picking out my color palette that speaks to me each day. Follow me on instagram: @angelinamariet

Clearing up the confusion on the best, most versatile skincare routine!

There are so many opinions out there about skin care. Sometimes we cascade down the rabbit hole of which products are best for which skin tones, types, areas, ages… and we end up buying a $200 dollar moisturizer thinking it’s going to work “miracles.” 

We are always looking for the quick fix when it comes to almost anything in life, especially when facing the daunting realities of dieting and skin care. But unfortunately, there just isn’t a shortcut. You cannot trick your body or your skin. Even though no one see’s you eating that tub of ice cream after a stressful day of work, your stomach is watching from below, cackling about where she’s going to store those twelve scoops. Maybe you spent your high school years crisping like cream puff in tanning beds everyday, knowing in your heart that being tan now is more important than your future skin… but then the tables turn. I too, thought my perfect skin would last forever but after a while, life catches up with you. Those casual cigarettes, sun tanning, bad eating, and many nights of forgetting to take off my makeup has aged my face quicker than a two term president. I am sure there are many men and women wishing they could turn back the clock and stop themselves from participating in these fleeting pleasures. Unfortunately, there is nothing we can do about the past except learn from it and I have learned a lot. 

Now I will admit, food is my biggest downfall. Fried foods are terrible for our skin, but also good for the soul in my humble opinion.  I definitely slip up when it comes to French fries. Regardless of what you choose to indulge in or not,  I am giving you information on what I try my best to do every single day but I am far from perfect. Before we get to the actual products I use for my skincare routine, I do want to let you know all the contributing factors you need to change if you actually want to see your skin transform!


1. Stop Smoking everything! To be honest, I smoked for a few years when I worked in the service industry because that was the only time we would get a break. It started as a way to pass the time and turned into an addiction. I switched to smoking E-cigarettes but didn’t know that nicotine causes your blood vessels to narrow in the outer layer of the skin, which means less blood flow. Since there is less blood flow,  your skin does not get as much oxygen and nutrients, thus aging prematurely.  I have recently stopped smoking E-cigarettes and cannot wait to see how my skin changes over the next few months, but I know it won’t be easy.

2. Always wear sunscreen or a moisturizer with sunscreen – The number one way to prevent skin aging, most of us have been drilled about this one!

3. Switch the vodka sodas with vodka waters.  Alcohol dehydrates the skin and most drinks have a ton of sugar, which causes breakouts. An occasional drink isn’t bad (especially if its red wine) but instead of having the entire bottle in one night (which lets face it, can happen to the best of us) narrow it down to 2 glasses. 

4. Exercise! After I exercise, I feel like my skin looks so much better. Exercise literally does the opposite of what smoking does. Exercise increases blood flow and excretes all the junk of out of your body at a faster rate. From the liberating voice of Elle Woods, “Exercise gives you endorphinsEndorphins make you happyHappy people just don’t shoot their husbands.”  

5. Eat healthy! This means stop eating fried foods, fast food, and food with little to no nutrients. Fruits, veggies, whole grains and proteins are the safe zone for your body and by extension, the outer layer of your skin. Stop shoveling in refined carbs and high sugar meals. Once I decided to clean up my diet, my energy sky rocketed and I felt refreshed from the inside out. 

Below is a skincare routine that I have researched relentlessly and really works. This routine is what I do every morning and night. I have combination skin, but these products are very versatile for all skin types. 


1. Remove eye makeup: I don’t wear a ton of eye makeup every day, so I usually just use the Neutrogena makeup wipes. If you wear a lot of eye makeup, you should invest in a makeup remover that doesn’t take multiple wipes to come off.  I know the bi-facial makeup remover by Lancôme has gotten amazing reviews and its around $30 dollars. 

  • Neutrogena wipes: (
  • Lancôme Bi-Facial makeup remover: (

2. Cleanse your skin: I use the exfoliating cleanser by Body Merry for $19 dollars. The first few ingredients are aloe, deionized water, jojoba beads, rosehip oil, olive oil, tea tree oil, Glycolic acid, etc. I always look for products with Glycolic acid because it is extremely effective in treating signs of aging. I put one pump of this cleanser in my hands and massage my face and neck (upwards) for 3 minutes. Never use a washcloth to cleanse the skin since this is already exfoliating, you only need to use your hands. A washcloth is too harsh on the skin. Make sure to not get this cleanser in your eyes, it will burn!

  • Body Merry exfoliating cleanser: (

3. Toner: After washing your face, the PH levels are out of whack so your skin will not absorb moisturizers or serums as well without prepping with toner first. Toner will bring your skin back to its natural PH balance quickly. The toner I am currently using is Dickson’s enhanced witch hazel from Amazon for $6 dollars. This also has hydrochloric acid and vitamin E. I get a cotton swab, add toner and apply it all over my face. 

  • Dicksons enhanced witch hazel: (

4. Serum: I use the CeraVe skin renewing retinol serum for $17 dollars from Target. I love the way my skin feels from this serum and I could quickly tell a difference once I introduced it into my routine. The texture of my skin has improved from the retinol and its gentle enough for sensitive skin.  Retinol penetrates deeper than a moisturizer, but moisturizer works to prevent moisture from evaporating off the skin and protects your skin from external environmental factors. Therefore you do need both serum and moisturizer in your daily routine.

  • CeraVe skin renewing retinol serum: (

5. Moisturizer: I use Surge moisturizer by Body Merry for $21 dollars. The main driving ingredient in this product is retinol. This reduces the appearance of wrinkles because retinol increases collagen production in your skin and can fade sunspots while improving skin tone. Do not go tanning or go in the sun without protection if you are using retinol. It is a powerful substance that thins the top layer of your skin. I have used a retinol moisturizer that made my skin peel, but the body merry retinol works great for me.  

  • Body Merry moisturizer: (

6. A luxurious (and repairing) night cream: I use Luma Glow Skin Care instant lifting crème for $27 dollars on Amazon. I am very careful about looking at before and after photos when searching for a good night cream. For application, I start massaging at the neck in an upward circular motion. This prevents downward pulling on the skin and prevents potential longterm sagging. This Moisturizer feels great as soon as you put it on. It does make the skin feel tighter and after a few weeks my skin has a lovely glow. This night cream is great for sensitive skin, I can tell a difference on my neck and notice a softening of fine lines on my face. 

  • Luma Glow Skin Care instant lifting crème: (

** SIDE NOTE: Everything you do to your face, also do to your neck! Your neck deserves to stay plump and glowing too, just like your beautiful face! 🙂 

This skin care routine is under $120 dollars and has been instrumental in refreshing, cleaning and brightening my skin. These products usually last me 2-3 months depending on how liberal I am with application. You really don’t need a large amount for any of these products. Remember, everyone’s skin goals are different. Mine is focused on sensitivity and anti-aging. If you are focused on acne prevention, your skin care routine is going to look a little different than mine. Make sure you do your research, look at the ingredients, and try a few combinations out. You don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars for great- looking skin!

Angelina Todd- Beauty Enthusiast/ Writer
I am the beauty guru you never knew you needed. When I’m not chasing around my bull terrier, Julius- I’m making masks, testing products and picking out my color palette that speaks to me each day. Follow me on instagram: @angelinamariet

5 Self-Care Tips From a Beauty School Dropout

Guess what? I know what I’m talking about:

Who knew I would be following the footsteps of my Grandmother when deciding to drop out of beauty school, or that it would put me an extra 5,000 in debt. 

My Grandmother

Hopefully I can relate to most of you when I say- “I still have no idea what the heck I’m doing, but truly none of us do. I have changed my career goals at least 132 times. I went from wanting to be a nurse anesthetist one day, to a criminal prosecuting attorney, to a supply chain analyst and… well you get the picture.

It’s not that I don’t know what I want to do, its that I want to do EVERYTHING. I want to try out every path possible until I find the one that excites me. 

I had already graduated college by the time I enrolled in beauty school. My degree was from Wayne State University in global supply chain management. Although that sounded rather exciting, I decided to go the path of sales. I started as a mortgage banker at the largest online mortgage company in Detroit. I really loved it at first, until I felt like I really wasn’t putting people in better financial situations… just cranking out corporate one-liners. I made great money and even met my boyfriend there. But as the 12-hour workdays were not getting any shorter, we decided to both quit on the same day. We didn’t think about our finances, or our future. We just quit and didn’t look back.

We took a few weeks to really understand what it is we were passionate about. He was already on his path to law enforcement and I was stuck really trying to understand what I wanted out of life. In my mind I wanted to wake up every day and feel passionate about my job. I wanted to do something creative, since I had been stuck in a cubicle for over 6 months without even a ray of sunlight. I kept repeating over and over…

“What have I been great at my whole life?, What am I passionate about?”

Then I realized, friends and family would always ask me to do their hair and makeup for events. I was always the friend that could do the perfect beach wave or Jersey Shore tease by the time I was 14. Skin care, makeup, and hair have always been a huge part of my life. My Italian mother had a huge influence on my passion for beauty. From the beginning I can remember her never daring to leave the house without her hair teased, a full face of makeup, fresh manicure and stilettos. Even my beauty queen mother would ask me to put on false eyelashes for family parties.

My mom and I

I knew beauty school was the path for me, or at least that’s what I thought at the time. 

I enrolled in beauty school and realized on my first day I was one of the oldest students at 25. It was an exciting first few weeks in the classroom learning about hair color, skin tone, PH levels… everything. School was all that I wanted it to be. Except financially, I knew I couldn’t stretch myself 9 months until graduation. I was picking up part time jobs at night as either a Lyft driver or server at a Mexican restaurant in town. These jobs did not begin to cover my bills… my debt was piling. One day I received a call from a software company asking if I wanted an interview. I did not want to give up my dream, but I told myself if they offered me a deal I can’t refuse, I would consider it.

A month later I was employed at the software company. It was in a great location and in a role that I wanted. Frankly, I did not think beauty school through before actually going for it, but I’m glad I didn’t. If I hadn’t held out for this software position, I might have taken the first offer thrown at me somewhere else. I would probably be stuck at another unfulfilling job with no hope of seeing daylight, once again.

I realized I don’t have to go to beauty school to still make this a passion of mine. My dad gave me great advice, “Work doesn’t have to be your passion, but it can provide you with the tools needed for your passion.” He is right, work is work. Not everyone is going to love their career day in and day out. My current career has given me stability and resources to fuel my passion. 

So here I am.

I’m a software sales representative by day, and beauty enthusiast by night. As you will see in my upcoming blogs, I am not here to sell anyone on “perfect skin.” It doesn’t exist.

What I will do is take my research and experience throughout my life as an everyday woman going through everyday things, and share them with you. I will never tell you that you need to spend $100 dollars on anti-wrinkle cream to completely remove wrinkles. I will not compare products endorsed by an Instagram model because well… its not real.

This blog is for the working woman. The fierce, badass, powerful, fun, charismatic queens that don’t have a filter on every aspect of their lives. I am still early in my career, with a lot of student loans, and great advice on how to be able to feel beautiful on a budget. 

So, let’s talk about budget… Here are some easy beauty tips, even if you have a very small budget. 

Girl, I understand. If you are student, recent college grad, or mother just trying to make sure you have time to brush your teeth every day… these tips are perfect for you. 

  1. Put Vaseline on your eyelashes every night before bed
    • Vaseline is one of the safe products that you can actually put near your eyes
    • After washing your face- (TWICE LADIES)- apply Vaseline to the stick of the Q-tip and brush your lashes upward. I usually only need about a dime size for both eyes.
    • Vaseline acts like a moisturizer to your lashes. With all the breakage from your mascara, you need to condition those babies too! 
    • Vaseline will make your lashes grow longer, thicker and stronger. (When I get my eyebrows done, the women always ask how my eyelashes are so long. This is my dirty secret!)
  2. Before putting on lipstick, make sure to put on your DIY sugar and honey lip scrub
    • No lipstick will look good if you have dry, flakey lips. Take some sugar and honey from your cupboard and mix it into a small bowl. 
    • Dip your toothbrush into the bowl and start scrubbing your lips gently. This will get rid of any dead skin while also giving you a smooth canvas for your lipstick.
    • Make sure to rinse the scrub off with warm water. 
  3. Turmeric Turmeric Turmeric
    • 3 years ago, my skin was constantly inflamed, the only thing that has worked is turmeric. There are many ways to use turmeric. I mix turmeric powder into my smoothies. You can also purchase turmeric capsules and you can use the turmeric powder as a mask.
    • Take 1 tsp of turmeric, 1 tsp of honey, and 1 tsp of milk 
    • Mix the ingredients into a paste and apply to your clean face for 15 minutes.
    • Wash the mask with warm water. You can repeat this mask daily if you want better results. 
    • Turmeric is an anti-inflammatory, but it can also lighten dark spots, fight acne causing bacteria, help with oily skin, and help with Psoriasis. (We need a whole blog on Turmeric)
  4. Toner is important
    • Toners are meant to bring your skin back to the proper PH levels after cleansing. The reason why so many women hate their moisturizer has nothing to do with the actual moisturizer, its because they aren’t using toner!
    • Without toner, your skin doesn’t have the proper PH levels in order to absorb the moisturizer. Toner is life from now on. Use it every time you wash your face. 
    • You can go to the store and purchase witch hazel (the safest toner) for only $4 dollars. 
  5. Take Collagen
    • Yes, the sad age of 25+ when your collagen production declines, but no worries! We can consume collagen! 
    • Collagen creams do not ADD collagen to the skin. The best way to build collagen is consume it from foods rich in antioxidants such as avocado oil, blueberries, leafy greens, eggs, and of course collagen powder. 
    • Personally, I bought “Pure Collagen” by Genesis Today its only $14.96 at Walmart (
    • I take a scoop and put it in a glass of water every morning and chug. There’s really not a taste and drinking a glass of water as soon as you wake up is great for you. Your body will easily absorb the powder on an empty stomach. 
Angelina Todd- Beauty Enthusiast/ Writer
I am the beauty guru you never knew you needed. When I’m not chasing around my bull terrier, Julius- I’m making masks, testing products and picking out my color palette that speaks to me each day. Follow me on instagram: @angelinamariet