7.24.2014

Boost your Blog // Five Tips for Blogging with your iPad

In a recent post I mentioned that I've been trying to get back into blogging in the simplest ways possible. It's too much work right now for me to pull out all the stops just to get what I have to say out there. So I've been using my iPad & my iPhone as much as possible. It's simpler this way & I find it to be quite successful. The last few posts to my blog have been from my iPad and a few different apps and I thought I'd share how to blog from your iPad pretty simply:

Bluetooth Keyboard - This is the most important part. A bluetooth keyboard, which you can find a variety from different price points on Amazon, makes it a lot easier to type. I have one from Belkin that I got on sale from Office Max or Office Depot a long, long time ago. You can find keyboards with soft case to them that prop up your keyboard - that's what I initially bought, however I prefer using my other Belkin case & my keyboard on a little lap desk from when I was a kid. It's a super awesome set up. I find that the bluetooth keyboards with the soft cases really don't give you a way to store your iPad & the keyboard together. I'm scared that keys are going to pop off if you just stuff the keyboard in your bag so I put my pad & my keyboard in another little felt pouch. On my wishlist right now is a Clam Case, however. This amazing contraption turns your iPad into a mini laptop! You pop the iPad in & it folds up like a laptop to protect everything - your pad & your keyboard! But the main point of this is if you don't have a Bluetooth key board it is really hard to blog from the key board on the screen. You get a more ergonomic experience with a Bluetooth keyboard and it's more like typing on a laptop or desktop. It's easier & more comfortable.

Blogging Apps - You know, I almost called it Blogging Software but if it's on a tablet...does it count as software? I guess it does but they are more commonly referred to as apps. So there are quite a few out there depending on your platform. There are quite a few apps that work with quite a few platforms & there are quite a few apps that only work with certain platforms. Currently on my iPad I have the apps Blogsy, BlogGo, & Blogger. (Here is a link to an article with other blogging apps you might want to try). Because there are so many apps out there for different needs you might have to try a few before becoming sold on one. The downside to that is a lot of these blogging apps are quite pricey. the Blogger app is free, but not the best. Blogsy is $4.99 and has the most options control. BlogGo, designed by a blogger, is $1.99 and one of the most affordable apps that offer more control than the Blogger app. I will do a separate post reviewing these apps shortly since there's a lot to compare!

Photos & Photo Editing - You're probably familiar with this since we're all Instagram crazy but it's simpler than ever to take & edit your photos from your phone. There are plenty of apps out there to correct your photos and even more to add text. A lot of the things we do as bloggers is photo based and often when your creating a post with Pinterest in mind you want to create a beauty shot with all the info that is easy to pin. Currently I use the app Phonto as it offers a zillion fonts & you can even add fonts to the app by connecting to iTunes and dragging & dropping downloaded fonts. (here is an example of a post using Phonto.) Usually I edit my photos is Snapseed & VSCO cam. The only tip I have is to act as if you're editing your photos on your computer - limit the filters & enhance the natural colors of the photo, don't over do it. (Here's a link to all my iPhoneography posts.)

Sharing Apps - Since I have the latest (until, what, September?) iPhone, it has a better camera than my iPad. Also, who wants to be that person taking photos with their iPad? I use my phone & my DIY lightbox to take pictures for my blog and getting the photos between my phone & my iPad to edit is easier with the built in Photo Stream sharing between devices. But say I am running out of room on my phone or iPad and want to save some pictures or video or whatever to edit later, thats where other sharing apps come in handing. You can also pull from these apps to your computer. The current apps I use are DropBox & Google Drive. You can access these across devices and it clears up space from your device.

Limitations - However, there are some limitations to blogging from your iPad like designing your blog. While you could probably use apps to help you make elements for your blog (though, really, I would not suggest that) there is really no way for you to implement the design on your blog. Speaking just from Blogger as an example, it is best to use your laptop. You can access the template design & customized options (at least in Chrome -my preferred browser) but you can't see your whole blog in the preview. You also can't move your widgets around in the Layout page. So an iPad will not replace your main computer for designing. I would suggest maybe if you have a family computer or maybe just one desktop/laptop in your family it might be an easy step for you to blog from your iPad and use the family computer to design. This is an option to save a bit of money if you're getting really into blogging & you can't take up all the time on the family computer or maybe you want to save a little bit of money rather than investing in another laptop especially if your an Apple fanatic like I am!

These are the five important things when it comes to blogging from your iPad or other mobile device. Of course, I can only speak for Apple products since thats what I've got but I'm sure you could blog from any other tablet. I know at least Microsoft has a lot of crazy integration with their desktop applications, but I can't really speak to it.

Also, if your concerned about the lack of a mouse - don't worry, its not that unnatural to reach up & select rather than move a mouse. Ever since I've been blogging from my iPad I've gotten used to it. It's so weird how we adapt to things, in general everyday life, but in technology as well. I find it super impressive that we can adapt to different softwares, etc being a part of this technological age.

Do you blog from your mobile device? What apps or techniques do you use?

xoxo, Moe

7.23.2014

Wet n Wild Cover All Foundation, Concealer, Powder Review

One of my favorite brands from the drugstore is Wet n Wild. Not only do they have an amazing Fergie Center Stage line with a bunch of beautiful, bright colors, but they also recently (as in probably a year ago) released a few new things in the line called Cover All. Last Summer I did a first impressions video on the foundation & the powder - it was one of my first videos! But about a week ago I found more of the line in my Kmart - I found the foundation in the shade fair and their liquid concealer. I'm slowly realizing that Kmart is a really great place to find drugstore make up that you either can't find or didn't know existed. I also found the LA Girl Glazed Lip Paints there & only bought 3...I'm trying to keep from going back for the rest!

Anyway, today I wanted to to a review of these products from the Wet n Wild CoverAll Line because I think they are great for the price!

From the Website

CoverAll Creme Foundation - All day wear with medium-to-full coverage and a lightweight, satin-matte finish. VisiBright Complex reduces the apperance of wrinkles and rejuvenates skin. (I got this description from DrugStore.com because I couldn't get the Wet n Wild website to work. Drugstore.com says medium-to-full coverage but also says sheer-to-medium coverage and also mentions that there is SPF & I don't see that this has SPF at all....find the description here.)

CoverAll Pressed Powder - All day wear with a radiant weightless finish. VisiBright complex to reduce the appearance of wrinkles & rejuvenate skin. (Taken from DrugStore.com)

CoverAll Liquid Concealer Wand - Liquid formula conceals & minimized blemishes. Easily blendable with flawless, long lasting coverage. (taken from DrugStore.com

First Impression & Application

CoverAll Creme Foundation - I did a whole video on this foundation here (including the pressed powder) but I have to say I was fairly impressed with the coverage of this. When I bought it I didn't think I'd be that impressed with it. I thought a $3.99 foundation wouldn't blow my socks off, but this one did. The foundation is rather creamy & won't drip from the tube but it isn't too thick that you can't blend it out nicely with a sponge. The coverage is pretty impressive and I would say that this give medium-to-full coverage and is buildable. The color selection is rather limited and until recently, I didn't know that the shade fair was an option. I first got this foundation in fair/light and it was a little too dark for me...and not a shade I would consider to be fairl/light! I'd actually call it medium!

CoverAll Pressed Powder - This powder comes with a sponge applicator, which you could use for a more targeted application but this powder I applied with a brush. First impression was that this powder is really drying. I could feel it being dry on my skin if that makes any sense. It applied evenly and gave a little bit more coverage. Being in the medium shade, it wasn't too dark - so the shades don't really match across products. Application with a brush did not kick up too much powder & it blended nicely on to the skin. I tend to tap my pressed powder onto my skin rather than sweep or blend it that way my foundation isn't disturbed. The brush didn't apply too much in one area and it blended evenly.

CoverAll Liquid Concealer Wand - While in Kmart I picked up three shades of this concealer - fair, fair/light, and beige. The naming is really weird & so are the numbers. I've only used the fair shade & find the consistency to be a bit unfamiliar. It is also hard to describe. While it comes out of the tube onto the applicator alright, the texture seems to be a bit thicker but also a bit drier. And not in a bad way. The texture lends well to blending & covering under the eyes. Maybe drier isn't the right term - it feels more airy, it's a light enough texture that it blends well under the eyes and doesn't cake or move around.

Wear Time

CoverAll Creme Foundation - For a $3.99 foundation this product wears pretty well, even on oily skin. I would say you would get probably 5-6 hours of good wear out of this foundation on oily skin. You will probalby get more if your skin is more normal or even leans a bit dry. I would go as far as to recommend this to dry skin because of how hydrating it feels - but its still not too much for oily skin. With that being said, I notice a significant breakdown in my t-zone during the day. It is nearly all gone from my nose at the end of the day and you will definately need to touch up. (I hardly touch up during the day, even if I need to!) Since the colors are a bit limiting, you may also need to mix two to get your right shade. I noticed when just wearing the fair shade this week it didn't quite match me going through the day - when it wore off my nose I could tell the difference in the color of my skin and the foundation. When wearing the fair/light shade I noticed a bit of oxidation....so thats a down fall.

CoverAll Pressed Powder - I'm not quite sure if this pressed powser really compliments the foundation as much as it could. I found the powder to be great for my oily skin but not sure I would recommend setting this foundation if you have drier skin. I could feel how dry it was on my skin as soon as I put it on. It wears about as long as the foundation does & would be nice to bring to touch up as it would give you back the coverage that may have faded. If you only needed a little bit of coverage you could even use the powder as your foundation. The only downfall to using this as your touch up powder is that there is no mirror. The sponge it comes with give precise and targeted application which is great to use this as a powder foundation.

CoverAll Liquid Concealer Wand - This concealer wears wonderfully under the eyes. I haven't noticed it creasing or fading away & the coverage is rather nice. It blends beautifully with a sponge - both the Beauty Blender & the Real Techniques Sponge are amazing to blend it out. The shade fair is great for me under the eyes and wonderful for highlighting. The different shades have different undertones so they can offer a little bit of color correction. For a pretty affordable concealer you can grab up all the shades!

Overall Impression & Recommendations

Overall I think these products from this line give you an affordable option if you're not trying to break the bank. I believe the foundation is great even for the $3.99 price! While the down fall is that the color selection is kinda crummy and the shades don't seem to match across the products I would really recommend giving these guys a go. The concealer can stand on it's own & I would use it everyday - and currently am! The foundation would be great for a short day out or for running errands. At one point I was looking for a more full coverage BB Cream just because I want something easy to wear - this fits the bill (though it doesn't have the benefits of SPF, ect) in that it's easy to wear. Because it lasts for a good amount of time I can wear it when I'm out shopping, etc and I don't have to waste my favorite foundations on short trips.

I would also recommend this line if you're buy for a teen or the like who wants to start wearing make up. It is more full coverage if you have blemishes but its not so expensive. I think they would be rather satisfied with these products since they don't break the bank and are pretty impressive.

xoxo, Moe

 

7.22.2014

Granny Bras & Other Things about my Late Twenties

There are some things that have happened to me recently that really make me realize I'm in a different place now than I was even 3 years ago.  I am attributing it to the fact that I've past the threshold of 25 - I'm turning 27 this year.  This is something that is really crazy because I don't remember my age when I'm asked & I don't remember getting this old.  I know, 27 isn't old, but when the last time you checked you were like 22....it's kinda weird.  I guess that the years just sort of went by as I went about my life.  I grew up a bit with out realizing it & grew older with out knowing as well.  So here are somethings I've realized in my late twenties:
Not included in this post is car maintenance.  Why can't things just be magic?
  
Comfortable bras are better than sexy ones - I wouldn't necessarily say that I wore sexy bras to begin with but they did not cover my boobies the way my new bras do.  My boobies are well supported & well covered in granny style bras.  Seriously.  I've also grown to be a D cup --- when the hell did that happen?  Maybe I've been wearing the wrong size bra all my life - but really, now?.  I went bra shopping the other day and bought the ugliest most comfortable bras ever.  They cover my whole boobie in a triangle shape, have weird little lace details, zero padding, but still have underwire (if I don't my girls with just slip right out....).  I feel free.  I feel like my chest is not in boob jail all day & actually continue to wear them into the night.  I'll be honest - I was so uncomfortable in those cute bras that I took to wearing just those tanks with the built in bras while I procrastinated my bra shopping.  Yeah right, with a D cup, I know.  So in my late twenties I've taken to wearing the bra that makes me feel comfortable and not the one that is super cute.  I got them for $6 at Burlington Coat Factory.....and not $45 at Victoria's Secret.

I actually like my Gynecologist - TMI? Well, in my late twenties running into questions regarding lady bits or regarding birth control options when you hate the pill you're on, or about sex drive, or when you feel like 'what the heck should actually be happening to me right now?' - it's nice to have a medical person you feel comfortable talking to.  My gyno now isn't intimidating and the lady at the front desk is my favorite - she sets the whole mood for your lady bits appointment.  Before now I was always stressed & dreaded going to the doctor.  But having a doctor that doesn't judge you and is open to your questions is amazing.  Feeling comfortable means that there's an option for open conversations & if you have a question or concern they are there to help you.  I've never felt that way with a doctor before.

Staying home is a good option too - When we first moved to north west Indiana I was excited about how close the big city of Chicago is and how we'd be able to do all these cool things.  We could travel into the city any time we wanted, we could go do nightlife stuff.....nope.  I will avoid the city at all costs.  If we aren't going to a museum where there is easy parking - I'm done.  We haven't done a lot of city life hopping & I'm fine with that.

Shopping is harder - Not really when it comes to clothes shopping or going to Target or something but little runs to the store for one specific thing have gotten harder.  Mainly it's gotten harder because I don't want to look for the thing or I don't have time to look for the thing & will ask another person.  But not all the time does the sales person know where the thing is.  A huge pet peeve of mine is when someone points me in the wrong direction and the item isn't there or suggests something to me after I've asked them and it's not what I want.  I get soooo aggravated.  I get aggravated to the point where I am not a nice person.  While I'm sure the sales person was well meaning - sometimes I just wonder why the didn't ask someone else.  Look, you are here to help me - if you need to ask 30 people where something is, I don't mind because you are helping me.  When I'm pointed in a direction just to satisfy the question....I get aggravated.  I don't remember feeling this way like 3 years ago!

What did you just ask me to do? - When I was younger I remember my mother would always forget things (sorry mom).  And she'd always ask us to put anything she needed to remember in her purse or she'd come home with notes stapled to her purse strap.  Jeeze mom, how hard is it to remember the PTA meeting, the ball practice, the weekend plans, the bills, the thing you have to return, the appointment you have to cancel, etc, etc?  Well, literally, if it is not written down I will. not. remember.  And, even it if is written down, I won't remember.  You asked me to get you water from the kitchen?  Ok, when I get to the top of the stairs I'll go get myself a snack & completely forget.  Its the same at work - you want me to do something? Send me an email, an IM, stand over me as I write it down.  Cuz it's not gonna get done if it's not set in stone.  You gave me the bills to mail on Monday?  Well they didn't get mailed til Thursday - even though they were in my purse & I've looked at them all week.  Setting into a routine usually means that things don't get forget things...but then again, I still might.

Getting older is really weird.  I feel like I know what I'm doing but at the same time everyday is like what the actual hell am I doing? So freaking weird.

What have you learned in your old age?

xoxo, Moe

Connect on Twitter // Follow on Pinterest // Peep me at Hello Cotton