What I've Learned By Turning 23 | #OOTD

August 26, 2016









Dress: H&M | Sunglasses: Quay | Clutch: Revolve | Earrings: Gorjana | Heels: Steven Madden | Watch: Michael Kors

They say after you turn 21, birthdays just seem to go downhill from there. I'd like to disagree. I had the pleasure of having my first adult surprise party this year, thanks to my best friend. I normally hate surprises (#controlfreakproblems) and for anyone to go out of their way for me, but it was such a relief and a ton of fun to have a real party with all my friends together to celebrate.

Though I may or may not be wiser than when I was 21, I definitely have grew as person over the past couple of years. I've learned a lot about myself and have begun to understand who I truly am as an independent woman. It's no surprise that after graduating college that you start to question who you are and what exactly it is you want in life. You may not figure it out straight away, and that's okay! I certainly haven't. The most important thing that I learned was that my happiness is the most important thing to me. All my life I spent so much time trying to please others before myself, but when you're in your twenties, there will never be a better time to be selfish. Most people look at being selfish as a negative, but sometimes it can be a good thing! I'm not saying being selfish in a way where no one else in your life matters and you can hurt the people you love around you. However, being selfish in a way that makes your happiness and future self a priority: going after an awesome job even if it's across the country, or being straightforward with your feelings of the person you like right now. Whatever makes you wake up with a smile and proud of yourself, no matter how selfish you have to be, there's no better time to do it than now.

I know this went a little deep a typical Outfit of the Day post, but I think it's an important reminder that you have to wake up with yourself everyday of your life and your happiness is the only thing that can get you through it. I want to leave you with my one of my favorite quotes Robin Williams character said from my favorite movie, Dead Poets Society:
"To quote from Whitman, 'O me! O life!... of the questions of these recurring; of the endless trains of the faithless... of cities filled with the foolish; what good amid these, O me, O life?' Answer. That you are here - that life exists, and identity; that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse. That the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse. What will your verse be?"

What's the most important thing you've learned growing up?

xo,
embur.

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The One Where I Graduated

June 7, 2016







Hello, World. It's Emily. I am officially a college graduate.

To say this has been a long awaited moment is an understatement. I never expected to go into school thinking it would take me five years and two degrees to complete. Now, I am the proud owner of a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Performance. When I first started out in college, I wasn't at my university of choice. I cried so many nights in my bed alone in my dorm hating my first year of college. Although I did meet some great people and had the opportunity to live with best friend of 16 years then for a semester, they were shortly followed by a stream some awful people. I didn't feel like I belonged and thought about dropping out every single day. However, a small twinkling inside me kept telling me to stick it out, and that's exactly what I did. I spent more time in the library than in my dorm room and I raised my grades high enough to transfer to my dream school, University of North Carolina Wilmington. That year, I finished with my name on the Dean's List and an acceptance letter to UNCW.

My first year at UNCW was the biggest whirl wind of my life thus far. I met the most influential people in my life that year. Some came into my life as a blessing, like my roommate, Summmer, and best friend, Caitlin. Others came in and taught me some serious lessons, ones that taught me about love and myself especially. That same year, I joined a group of 100+ girls and was a part of the UNCW Dance Company. This group of talented and outstanding ladies will be my best friends for life. Joining the dance company and continuing my love for dance in my college career was the best decision I ever made.

During my junior year, I applied to the BFA Creative Writing Program - one of the toughest programs to get into in my school and state. I submitted my story under the genre of fiction, and a new passion in my life was discovered. I was accepted a few weeks later and added a second major to my list of degrees. In classes, I studied Poe, Keats, Melville, and Shakespeare. I learned the act structure of the film classics like Rocky, Casablanca, and The Wizard of Oz. I was astounded by the symbolism in my favorite books like The Fault in Our Stars, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and Flowers for Algernon. It didn't take me long to discover my true love for young adult literature and screenwriting and insist that would be what I did in life. The same semester, I decided to take a leap and apply to study abroad. After a rough sophomore year, I knew I needed this break from reality and traveled to the new love in my life, London. My time in London is forever sketched in my heart. If any of you are thinking about studying abroad, I highly recommended just taking the chance and going for it. I learned so much about myself in my time abroad that I would have never learned in the States at my small college. Now, all I want is to go back to London. I promise I will be back soon.

Around this time, I was already a couple months into my YouTube and blogging career. I started Embur during my junior year of my undergrad. It was originally another writing outlet for me because no one around me was obsessed with makeup as much as I was. When I was a junior, I was in a bad place and searching for something to bring back my spark. Luckily, my mom gave me the idea to start this little space on the web. Only two years later, and I am so happy I listened to her. I am beyond thrilled that I have been able to take something I majored in and turned it into this amazing platform. It may not pay the bills, but it's nice knowing all those years haven't gone to total waste.

Now, here I am. Two degrees, one stole, two cords for Dance Company and writing for Her Campus later, and I am ready to take on the world. There isn't any talk of graduate school now, maybe ever. I may never be ready to fully adult, but I am thrilled to finally be done with it all. The stress of late night papers is over, and pressure to find a job and pay back my loans is on. It never ends, but this is only the beginning.

Thank you for sticking through it all.

xo,
embur.




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My Key To Glowy Skin | Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Mist

May 5, 2016

Tatcha luminous dewy skin mist, tatcha, skin mist, glowy skin, embur aleece burton

Say hello to my new best friend, and say goodbye to dull skin! This is literally JLo in a bottle. Almost everyone and their mother in the blogging world has raved about this spray, and there is a clear reason as to why it has such a cult following.

Whether or not you are fan of facial sprays, if you love having dewy and glowy skin, the Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Mist will be your savior. As of late, a lot of brands have been releasing their own facial sprays since Tatcha launched of this marvelous one. I, myself, have never been adventurous in testing out different sprays, apart from the Urban Decay All-Nighter Setting Spray. I always assumed that it would only make my T-Zone oilier or make my makeup wear off more quickly; however, this little gem has proven me wrong. The minute I heard other YouTuber's with dry or combination skin like Jaclyn Hill raving about this, I knew I had to get it. At first, I was afraid it wouldn't live up to all the hype, especially after Kim Kardashian's makeup artist saying he used it on her. I thought it was too good to be true, but I am beyond thrilled to have been proven wrong!

Unlike any other mists I have tried before, this particular one is looked at as more of a a serum like moisturizer according to the Tatcha brand; therefore, I do apply this before my makeup following my Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cream instead of on top of my makeup. Although you can use it over your makeup if you want and it will work fine. I love using it underneath because the silky texture of the mist allows for foundation to glide on with ease, prevent concealer from creasing, and powder products from appearing too cakey while nourishing the skin underneath. What else could you ask for?

Besides the radiant benefits that are in this mist, it is also packed full of soothing and hydrating ingredients to help calm the skin. My face feels unbelievably comfortable and not sticky in the slightest. I've been so careful with trying not to use it every single day since I'm running low on it because it truly is that remarkable. Anytime I know that I want to look totally flawless, this is the first thing I grab on my vanity. Not to mention, the packaging is stunning just sitting out beside my brushes. So if you have been on the long hunt for fresh, dewy, healthy skin, then look no further. With summer right around the corner, this is sure to be your best friend too.

Have you tried the Tatcha mist?

xo,
embur.

REVIEW: Maybelline Brow Drama Pomade Crayon

April 26, 2016



As most of my readers know, I am a brow fanatic. I treasure my brows more than my own life sometimes. Most of the time, I tend to stick to my cherished Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz, but lately I have wanted to try more affordable brow products. I adore brow pomades, so when Maybelline released the Maybelline Brow Drama Pomade Crayon*, I was all over it. A lot of the time, drugstore brands don't release brow products in an auburn shade, so the fact Maybelline caters to the rare ginger made me extremely happy as well.

The smooth, waxy texture allows for the formula to color and shape the brows in place. I believe it's a product that everyone can use, whether you're a brow-pro or just kicking off your brow game. I love this for the days I don't have time to fuss around and need to get out the door. Just a couple swipes with the crayon, then I take my Sonia Kashuk brow spoolie to brush out the product to give it a more natural look, then I'm good to go! It's literally that easy. Because it's a pomade, the pigmentation is outstanding. I don't even feel the need to set my brows because of it's comfortable, waxy texture. As a girl who lives at the beach, this baby can withstand the heat and humidity for sure!



As far as the size of the crayon, I did find some pros and cons. A pro for me is since it is on the chunkier side, I don't have to spend 15 minutes just trying to outline my brow and making it so perfect. Therefore, if you are looking for that "Instagram Brow" style, this product may not be for you. Even if you have brows smaller than mine, it may not be for you either. Nevertheless, for my thick brow girls, this crayon is just what you need. Just a couple swipes and you will have flawless brows.

However, this particular brow pomade is unlike any I have ever tried before due to it being in a crayon form. I wasn't sure how I felt about it at first since the tip is fairly large in comparison to my brows. At the start, you have a sharp tip; but I fear as time goes on and I continue to use it how well it will work for my tiny brows. The crayon does twist up from the bottom, like the ABH Brow Wiz, so you can't take just any old sharpener to it. Moreover, since it has a plastic casing and too large of a tip to use in any of my sharpeners anyways, I don't know how long I will be able to use it until it gets too dull. I did try to take my Sigma E75 Angled Brow brush to the crayon to see if I could use it like that after it wore down, but it did lack the pigmentation that it originally had straight from the bullet. The biggest thing I did not like about using it with a brush was that I lost the feature I loved most about the crayon: speed.



Even though the speed and time it takes me to do my brows isn't the biggest deal-breaker for me, I still adore this pomade. I definitely think if you are the kind of girl that is new to the brow game, or an old pro, you will love the ease this crayon gives you. (Also, hello! It's super travel friendly too!) If you have very thin brows, you may not be a fan, but if you have full brows and want an extra boost, this baby is for you! Either way, I definitely would recommend giving it a try at least once. So stop "brows-ing" around and check out this game changer!

Have you tried the Maybelline Brow Drama Pomade Crayon? What do you think?

xo,
embur.



*I did receive this item as a sample from Influenster, but all opinions are my own. To read my full disclaimer, please click here.

Monthly Favorites | February

March 15, 2016




February felt so outrageously long ago, yet it flew by so quickly. It was all-nighter after all-nighter all through the month for me, so I am thrilled that it is over. However, that just means I am a month closer to graduating and that is purely terrifying. Nevertheless, I am here to recap a couple of my favorites from the past busy month! This month I had a bit of lull with beauty products because I just was not experimenting with new things since I literally had no time to. However, the products I did use in the month of February were on constant repeat. I knew that I could count on these little guys and they really helped me out a lot.

The first thing that I was beyond thrilled about in February was my Narciso Rodriguez For Her Eau de Toliette that I treated myself to on Valentine's Day. I did a full review and post on this gorgeous perfume a week ago if you want to have a look for a more detailed review of it. This is such a lovely fragrance that I will constantly be wearing throughout spring. It's so feminine with a touch of warmth that it is beautiful for everyday wear. I also was so thankful I came across my Boscia Exfoliating Peeling Gel because it was my saving grace this month. My skin took a turn for the worst and felt so dehydrated and dry. I had so much texture and dry patches that no moisturizer was getting rid of it, but this little baby definitely made such a dramatic difference. It helped give me a smooth canvas for my makeup providing a beautiful even finish. I also have expanded my love for Verb's hair care products and after I cut my hair a couple days ago, I have been wanting that model-day-off "messy" look and the Verb Sea Spray has helped create that look so simply and easily. It doesn't make my hair sticky or crunchy. It gives it a lived-in feeling that is very flexible and smells incredible.



As far as makeup in the past month, I did a lot of rediscovery. I found a lot of products in my stash that I had completely forgot about for some reason and I have not stopped using them since. One of my most favorite products that I constantly mention in videos and tutorials is the NYX HD Studio Finishing Powder. It's your basic white translucent powder, but I love this one particularly because it is so light weight, it's very finely milled, and is ideal for setting my concealer underneath the eyes. It helps prevent creasing and controlling the oil in my t-zone if I don't want to set my whole face with powder. I also have been reaching for my Stila Eyes Are The Window Soul palette so much. I don't remember why I tossed this to the side when I first got it because I am such a huge fan of Stila eyeshadows. The formulation is outstanding, they are super blendable as well as holding great pigmentation. I already have the all matte Mind palette and am so utterly obsessed with it (like you would have to pry that out of my cold dead hands), but this one has been my go-to as of late.

The new L'Oreal Color Riche shadows, specifically the one I have in the shade Pain Au Chocolat, are unbelievable. I am so shocked that this is a drugstore shadow because these are some of the most finely milled shadows from the drugstore that I have found yet. They don't skip on my lids, they don't kick up a lot of extra loose powder, and they really are something to pay attention to. I have the L'Oreal La Palette and I never reach for it. The palettes never wowed me, but these individuals are truly phenomenal. I cannot rave about them enough! I've also been going back to my MAC Pro Longwear concealer so much lately that I had to give it a mention in my video. That little baby has been a holy grail of mine for years now, and I honestly have no idea why I stopped using it. I ran out of my NARS eyeshadow primer last month, so I tried the concealer as a primer, much like a lot of freelance makeup artists do, and I loved what it did to my eyes and makeup. It evens out the color of my lids as well as giving a long lasting finish to eyes as well. If you have this concealer and have never used it as a primer, I definitely think you should give it a try!

What were some of your favorites in February?

xo,
embur.

My Signature Spring Scent | Narciso Rodriguez For Her

March 2, 2016



As of late, I have been into trying to expand my perfume collection. I have my favorite signature scent that I love and use everyday for a long time now, the Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black, but I've kind of wanted to try something new lately. The Narciso Rodriguez For Her Eau de Toilette is exactly what I needed. Although most would say this particular perfume would be considered a night time or winter fragrance, I definitely will be wearing this in the spring. I find it to be much more feminine and lighter than something like the Nirvana Black or Tom Ford Black Orchid, which are my usual types of scents that I typically go for. I am personally a fan of more unisex and deep scents, almost masculine. However, this perfume, though it is definitely more feminine, is also has those deep bottom notes too.

With For Her's warm note compliments, the body of it has a gentle balance of floral and musk that is perfect for everyday wear. The notes of this fragrance exactly are Honey Flower, Solar Musk, Orange Blossom, Osmanthus, Amberlyn, Vanilla, Tactile Musk, Tactile Woods, Vetiver. All of these combine make for a delicious and sensual perfume. However, I do think that there is definitely a strong powdery top note that does eventually fade as I wear throughout the day. Therefore, I would advise if you are not a fan of that powdery feminine scent, you may not like this perfume. I never thought I would be a fan of a perfume that had that particular note, but when I sprayed this on my arm in a Sephora one day, I literally could not stop smelling my wrist for the rest of the day. It was that addictive that I knew I had to purchase it. The way Sephora describes this perfume is:

"Embark on a journey into a heart of musk with all its multiple facets and discover a mysterious essence for an unforgettable woman, graced with sophistication and femininity. The blend of floral, amber, and woody notes expresses a subtle elegance that captures the senses and leaves a timeless, tender trail."



The bottle of this perfume is one of my favorite features of it. In contrast to the eau de parfum, which is an all pastel pink bottle with a black typeface, the black glass bottle gives a very sleek feel to it. I do find that I have to twist the top prior to pulling it off, but I love that because I know it cannot fall off or have any of fragrance leak if I were to put it in my luggage for a trip.

If you are looking for a new feminine perfume for spring that can take you from day to night that not everyone on street will be wearing, I highly recommend this gorgeous perfume. It is definitely one of kind and a scent that will be timeless that is perfect for any age.

For Her Eau de Toilette is available in three sizes, 1oz, 1.6oz, and 3.3oz, as well as in a 0.23 rollerball. Available now through narcisorodriguez.com, nordstrom.com, and sephora.com.

What is your signature spring scent?

xo,
embur.

Top 5 Mascaras Worth The Hype

February 22, 2016



If you are an avid reader, you will know that one of my favorite products to go through are mascaras, especially from the drugstore. One reason is due to the fact that I have unrealistic expectations for that "false lash" effect. I want something that will give me incredible length, intense volume without clumping, and give my lashes a curl that will lift them up to Heaven above! Mascara is product that you can't just swatch on your hand like a lipstick, you have to wear it a couple times to get a true telling of it. Therefore, I have gone through countless trails and errors in search of the perfect mascara. Now I can thankfully share with you some of my go-to favorite mascaras that I think are worth all the hype!



All of these mascaras do different things, but are amazing in their own way! The mascara that I tend to reach for when I just want a more natural lash that will give me a little boost and help condition my lashes is the Tarte Gifted Mascara. This particular mascara is unique in it's own way because it contains Amazonian Clay, much like the rest of the Tarte range, and helps condition the lashes to grow and strengthen. I love this for days when I'm wearing very minimal makeup and I just want something to open my eyes up and make me look awake.

I picked up the Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara after hearing awesome reviews from other beauty bloggers and that it was a great dupe for the Benefit Roller Lash. I loved the Roller Lash, but I always felt like something was missing from it and the Lash Sensational filled it! It gives my lashes a fantastic curl that last throughout the day, while also providing a bit of volume that the Roller Lash didn't provide. It also defines my lashes and never clumps up on them.

My favorite mascara that I have picked from the drugstore has been the L'Oreal Voluminous Carbon Black Mascara. I specifically love the carbon black version because it is the blackest mascara out there. This mascara gives crazy amount of volume without clumping on the lashes. It's all I need for big and bold lashes. It really helps contribute to that false lash effect that I am always striving to achieve.

Everybody knows about the Benefit They're Real Mascara. There is a reason that this is everybody's favorite mascara! This is the one I turn to when I don't when I don't have to time to fuss with 2 types of mascaras and I can grab and go. It does it all: it lengthens, volumizes, and defines my lashes giving that full lash effect. I find that this mascara is a little hard to take off, even though it isn't waterproof, but I know it won't flake off during the day either.

I'm not a huge fan of waterproof mascara, but the L'Oreal Telescopic Shocking Extensions Waterproof Mascara has changed my mind. I struggle with having short lashes, so I love using this mascara as a base and then adding a more volumizing mascara on top of it. The reason I picked waterproof verison is so the mascara on the tips of my lashes wouldn't flake off throughout the day and it helps hold that curl in my lashes. If you are in desperate need of length, this baby is exactly what you need without getting actual lash extensions

What are some of your favorite mascaras?

xo,
embur.

Valentine's Day Makeup

February 14, 2016



Happy Valentine's Day, my darlings! When it comes to Valentine's Day makeup, I am obsessed with my pinks. I love to look dewy, soft, and very romantic.

When I think of having makeup that is going to last me all night, I need a great base which is why I will always start out with my tried and true love, Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer. It really does a great job at controlling oil in my skin while giving a mattified glow from underneath my foundation. Obviously for foundation I will be reaching for my holy grail Giorgio Armani's Luminous Silk foundation. I talked about this baby in my January Favorites and I cannot rave about this glorious base enough! It gives a healthy glow to skin while also being a very build-able medium to full coverage base. If you're like me and have the most stubborn dark undereye circles, you will appreciate the Urban Decay Naked Weightless concealer. It's going to cover up any spots and reddness that you may have without creasing or being cakey on the skin. I have also been using the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders to set my makeup a lot lately. They brighten up and smooth out my complexion while giving off a soft shimmer that is reflected on my skin when light hits it. We all know, I love to glow like JLo.

If you are looking for a more sculpted look, I never can go wrong with the Smashbox Contour Sticks and my Becca Shimmering Skin Perfectors, especially Champagne Pop! The Smashbox sticks are so creamy and blend out extremely quick and easy. You don't need to be a contouring pro to use them. While the Becca highlighters give off an intense beam that is perfect for a date night out. As far as blush, I can never go wrong with using my NARS blushes, specifically Deep Throat because it is a light rose toned blush with a slight shimmer that compliments every eye look.

As of late, I have been obsessed with my Tartelette in Bloom eyeshadow palette! I mentioned it in my January Favorites too, and the pigmentation and formula of these shadows are to die for. I am opting for more of a feminine day glam look on Valentine's Day, so the rosy and warm tones in this palette are perfect for that. After several coats of the Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara, I apply the Huda Beauty Claudia lashes as they make my eyes look bigger, brighter, and give me longer looking lashes.

Since I am doing a very rosy feminine look, I'll be going for a nude matte lip for the night and if you know me, then you know what my favorite drugstore option will be. I absolutely love all of the Milani Matte Lipsticks, but I will be going for the shade Matte Naked. Even though I won't be kissing anyone, this baby will last through all the spaghetti and ice cream I will be diving into. Of course for a finishing touch, I have to use my Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black rollerball. This is my signature scent and I can't go anywhere without it!

Finally, the best way to spice up my Valentine's is with a little help from Adore Me! They are the hottest brand in lingerie, and even if you don't have a significant other, it's still great to treat yourself this magical day. What girl doesn't love a little bit of lace and silk every now and then? Treat yourself to something that you normally wouldn't! I, for one, am obsessing over their Ellie camisole set!

What will you be wearing for Valentine's?

xo,
embur.

Monthly Favorites | January

February 12, 2016




It's the best time of the month that we can actually looked forward to, monthly favorites time! I don't know about you, but January was jam-packed for me. I'm honestly kind of glad it is over, but it's also weird that we are already a month deep into 2016. When it comes to my monthly favorites for January, it can be a bit overwhelming. I just finished a yearly favorites, and I'm trying to focus on all the new beauty items in my life without drowning you in a never-ending list of products. Because let's face it, I already take too long on these posts and videos. I'm trying to cut you a break here!

Being in the south, January is when winter really hits us. My skin has no oil left in it and I find myself exfoliating almost every day. That being said, hydration is key this time of the year for me. A while ago I picked up the L'Occitane Almond Shower oil thanks to Kate La Vie's recommendation, and it has been a life savior for me along with the L'Occitane Almond Milk Concentrate lotion. My legs and arms crave hydration like Los Angeles in a summer drought, but I never would have guessed that almond would have been the answer to my problems. Not only does the shower oil gently cleanse my skin, but it provides hydration instead of stripping my skin of it's natural oils that it desperately needs. If you're like me and have rough and bumpy skin this time of year too, this oil makes a great base for shaving as well. The amazing scent is just an added bonus!

If you are an avid follower of mine, then you probably are very aware of how much I love luminous skin. Even though I am typically a combo skin girl, I still love to get my glow on. That's why after trying a sample of the cult-favorite Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk foundation while I was in Las Vegas, I knew that I had to treat myself to a bottle of it this winter. I am so glad I did because this is going straight to the top shelf of my favorite foundations. Not only is it a buildable full coverage foundation, but it also gives the perfect amount of healthy glow to the skin. I've received so many compliments while wearing this that I fully believe in the hype now!



Other things in makeup that I have been loving for a while, I was so happy when received the Tarte Tartelette in Bloom palette for Christmas. This palette is every green-eyed girls dream! If you don't have green eyes, you will still love this palette though. The formulation of the shadows is completely different than of the original Tartelette palette. The shadows are more pigmented, they blend a lot better and are not patchy on the eyes. Also this particular palette includes 3 shimmer shades that are to die for! I'm also notorious for trying out new mascara, so when I saw the travel size of the Stila Huge Extreme Lash mascara, I thought why not give it a try and I'm so glad I did! If you want that false lash effect with intense volume and length, you will love this mascara. The applicator is very similar to the Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara, but I personally favor this Stila mascara more because the formula is a lot drier and does not clump on my lashes like the Too Faced one tends to.

I don't often talk about hair care on my blog, but lately I have been adding and trying out a lot of new products in my hair care routine to switch things up a bit. One thing that I have done a lot recently is only washing my hair about once a week. To many people that may sound disgusting, but I'm lucky enough that my hair takes forever to look oily. On top of damaging my poor hair by adding highlights frequently, I already have very thick hair that is drier than my skin! So in order to increase the longevity of the highlights, keeping my hair from turning too orange or yellow, and letting my natural oils condition my hair to keep it healthy, the Verb Dry Shampoo has become my best friend. It's a lot like the Bumble and Bumble Pret-A-Powder, but this particular bottle has a more precise cone tip to really distribute the powder evenly and exactly where you want it in the roots. It's very light-weight and I never feel like I have too much product build up in my hair like most aerosol dry shampoos give me.

My last beauty favorite for January was the Gariner Micellar Water. I was thrilled when I found out that we would be getting this baby in American stores after hearing all the British beauty bloggers raving about it. A micellar water that is comparable, if not better than Bioderma? Sign me up! I loved my Simple Micellar Water, but if I can pay the same price for the Garnier one as I do with Simple and get more than twice the amount of product, then I'm sorry Simple, but we have to break up.

What were some of your favorites from January?

xo,
embur.

It's Time We Talked...

January 5, 2016



Hello. It's nice to see you again. Long time, no see, right? I'm not exactly sure how to even start this blog. Where do I even begin? Obviously it's been a while since I've written a blog post - 5 months to be exact. Yikes. What started out as just a month hiatus turned into me abandoning this poor blog for half of 2015. Part of me feels like I need to apologize, but the rest of me thinks it isn't needed at all.

The beginning of 2015 was great for me. I was having an amazing time: trips with my friends, I got to go to Vegas, I got an awesome job, and I was finally feeling happy. However, then my fall semester came around and things took quite a turn. I was stressed out more than ever. Not only did I ditch my blog, but I ditched my YouTube channel for longer than I ever had. My course work was piling up and I felt like I was drowning in papers. I took out on too many hours at work because I needed the money and I loved my job. I don't want to say I was depressed (because I was never clinically diagnosed), but I lost interest in a lot of things that I used to love, like dance and writing. I did get cast in a show at my university towards the end of the year, got to see Panic! at The Disco in concert, and landed an awesome internship for 2016 which all made me insanely happy, but I still felt empty. The stress I had in my life was suffocating me, and just when I came up for to surface to take a breath, my grandfather wound up in the hospital fighting for his life.

It's funny how you don't realize how much someone means to you until they are lying on a hospital bed in the ICU hooked up to all these machines fighting for their life. All my life I have always been close to my nana. I spent every summer with her and she became my best friend. My grandfather, however, I never got the chance to be as close to. Granted I was closer to him than any other grandfathers or uncles I had, but due to him traveling for work all the time while growing up and being such an quiet introvert, we never had much quality time together. I love him with all my heart and the thought of him dying in that hospital room, leaving my precious nana and mother, and missing my graduation, wedding, and all other important moments in my life to come, shattered me into a million pieces. It got so bad that I had to contact my Dean of Students in order to get excused from my classes while I went home for a couple of weeks. However, I couldn't let any of that pain show. I was the strong one in my family. I was the fighter. I was the one who had to stay calm while the doctors told us the news every morning. I was the rock that everyone wanted to lean on while I was crumbling away on the inside. I knew I had to pull myself together for my family. I never was one to cry in front of others anyways because I never wanted to appear weak in anyway.

The hardest part about this entire thing was my nana. I have come to terms with the possibility of his death. That's one thing I have never worried about because death is inevitable and I've grown comfortable with it. However, I worry so much about my nana. Although I come off strong, I feed off others emotions so much and I am super sensitive, so the stress my nana carried (and still does) and played a lot into my mental state. Even though I have come to terms with his possibility of death, I don't ever think she has. She has always been such an independent woman, but if we were to lose him, I don't know what would happen with her. That part is what scared me the most. She has friends, but not a support group like I do. I am extremely thankful to my friends who helped me get through this situation like Hannah, Emily, Summer, Caitlin, and Lauren. Everyday these girls would ask about him and my family and let me vent and cry when I needed to. I don't think any of them truly realize how much they each save me every single day, then and now. I owe my 2015 to them.

It's been a couple months now and he is out of the hospital. He hates doctors with a passion, so his check ups haven't been the easiest, not to mention trying to convince him that he needs a quadruple bypass. The man doesn't even believe that he had a heart attack and stroke - and I always wondered where I got my stubbornness from. We're slowly patching up the pieces. I have an easier semester this year, in fact it's actually my last semester of college ever. It's absolutely terrifying, yet extremely relieving. I'm so nervous and afraid of what I am going to do after college, but the fact that I don't know is also exciting. There are so many possibilities and I can't wait to see what comes of this year. My grandfather being in the hospital made me realize how much I shouldn't take my time for granted. I want to accomplish so much this year. I don't want to be terrified of my future anymore. I think it's time I became comfortable with the unexpected because 2015 proved how surprising the future can truly be.


xo,
embur.