A Good Day to Die Hard: Or Is It?

Ever since the Die Hard series began, I have been a fan. However, for one reason or another, I’d never made it to the theater to see one…until now.

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I don’t know why, but I think the movie I had in my head was not as good as the one that was in the theater. With every Die Hard movie you can expect action, explosions, and lots and lots of bad guys. In that aspect, the movie delivered. Thanks to this movie franchise, we have come to expect Bruce Willis as the fiesty and highly offensive John McClane. Maybe it’s because he’s much older now, but his character was too tame for this NY officer.

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Set in Russia, the weapons, the locations, and the conspiracies are spot on. If you are an action movie nut, then you won’t be disappointed. I wasn’t surprised to see that John had an estranged relationship with his son, since he had a bad one with his daughter in the 4th installment. If the plan was to set up his son Jack to take over the McClane crime-fighting with attitude role, they did a good job. However, they should have allowed John to maintain his Yippee Ki-Yay Mother F***ker attitude and not the dry humor he presented in this installment. Granted, he said those infamous words, but to me, his character just seemed done.

I enjoyed the movie, but like I said, not as much as I wanted to. The acting was decent for an action movie and the fight scenes were awesome, but the plot was beyond predictable, giving me time to allow my mind to wander and still allow me to figure out the ending before it happened.

If you’ve seen it, let me know your thoughts. I will probably buy it on Blu-Ray when it comes out all the same because I need to keep my Die Hard collection complete!

RED HOT TV: American Horror Story

EN_US_1280x720_70210884_American-Horror-StoryI’m the kind of person that needs background noise when I am studying. If it’s quiet, I’m screwed. I’m probably going to study for ten minutes, then two hours later realize I’ve been online window shopping and no studying has been accomplished. So I use NetFlix & Hulu Plus to keep me occupied. Following the advice of a dear friend, I decided to watch AHS. WOW.

I knew very little about this story going into it other than each season would be a different story and the characters would be different (even if they were played by the same people). Jessica Lange does a phenomenal job both seasons, making me love and hate her at the same time and Evan Peters is incredible at portraying such a large variety of emotion on this show. Lily Rabe, Sarah Paulson, Frances Conroy, Dylan McDermott and Zachary Quinto also bring so much to their performances you believe they really are capable of doing everything they did.

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The biggest let down for me with this show is the number of episodes it brings with each season – I NEED MORE! Having the ability to marathon this show made it worth waiting to watch it until later because OMFG <<insert entire string of swearwords here>> this show is amazing. Season 1 reminded me a lot of Stephen King’s Rose Red, which I loved so much and Season 2 reminded me of House on Haunted Hill. I liked each season for various reasons, but can’t say one is better than the other. Both kicked ass. I can’t wait for Season 3 now because Kathy Bates is going be the villain and if you’ve seen Misery, well rumor has it, Annie Wilkes ain’t got nothing on what she will be presenting.

All I can say is this – get on board. With each season being entirely different from the last, you have nothing to worry about catching up! With that being said, GO WATCH SEASON 1 NOW! I’ll be waiting to hear your thoughts.

Django Unchained: Review

Django-Unchained-wallpapers-1920x1200-2Something I try to do every year before Oscars is see the movies being nominated for Best Motion Picture. Sadly, I didn’t get to see this one in time for the Oscars, but I did see it afterwards. After seeing it, I’m please that Tarantino won for Best Original Screenplay and that Christoph Waltz won for best Supporting Actor, but this movie was NOT Best Picture quality.

I feel in love with the raw gore and emotion that is Tarantino in 1992 when Reservoir Dogs came out. If there is one thing Tarantino knows how to make you feel, it’s uncomfortable. This movie does just that, by using the “n-word” every five seconds and putting Django in so many bad situations, you figure each one will be the death of him. 

This movie pulled an all star cast together, (Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Samuel L. Jackson to name a few) many of them having worked with Tarantino before, or on other movies together, making their chemistry very obvious on the screen.

This movie is very long (165 min) and at times I found my mind wandering, but I still enjoyed it. You need to know that when people die (and boy do they die!), as is typical in Tarantino movies, there is blood, blood, blood. The soundtrack was not that of a typical western, although Tarantino classified this as a Southern movie because it takes place in the south. The cinematography mixed with the location and the music at many times had me expecting to see Judah singing in Jesus Christ Superstar. Of course, leave it to Tarantino to throw in some rap as well because it’s not expected. It’s neat to see Leo as a villain since it’s not what he usually does.

Many people believe this movie to be racist because of the extreme circumstances of the storyline, but people should remember while this story is not a true story – so many other stories out there similar to this one are true. Tarantino shows what could have happened to slaves and how they were bought and sold. While I still don’t think this sort of movie is Best Picture worthy (I still have movies like Gone With the Wind or Schindler’s List in my mind when I think of Best Picture), it was good and something I enjoyed.

If you have the time and the money and can find a theater still showing this movie, go check it out.

Tarte BB Tinted Treatment 12-Hour Primer Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Sunscreen

I purchased the Tarte BB Tinted Treatment 12-Hour Primer Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Sunscreen in hopes of finding a primer to use under my foundation and what I discovered instead has left me in heaven. It is confidence locked in a bottle. tarte bb cream

 

What it Does:

Indulge your skin with this powerful multitasker that works as a primer, moisturizer, light foundation, antiaging treatment, and sunscreen to give you a youthful-looking glow. Worn alone or as the perfect base for makeup, this 12-hour, age-defying, oil-free primer offers light-to-medium, buildable coverage that helps even skintone and other skin imperfections while diffusing light to minimize the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and pores. The creamy, silky formula goes on smooth and blends easily, leaving you with a natural-looking, flawless finish with a broad-spectrum, chemical-free SPF 30 that offers ideal protection from the sun’s harmful UVA/UVB rays.

Remarkable Coverage:

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For me, this product does more than any BB Cream I’ve ever tried. Using my Beauty Blender Sponge, it applies evenly and protects my face from harmful sun rays. It also leaves my face feeling softer and smoother than before I first used it. The top two images show my barefaced complexion without makeup. The bottom two show my face once I’d applied this product. This is DEFINITELY a product I will purchase again. I can use it as a primer and cover it with foundation or I can wear it alone and still feel ready to face the day.

 

Completed Look:

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With the addition of eye makeup, blush, and lipstick, I’m ready to take on the world.

Vault Tinted Lip Balm

 

If you are like me, lip balm or chap stick is a big part of your daily life. I am fortunate enough to experience all for seasons where I live. This allows for outdoor trips in a multitude of conditions. While I love the variety of temperature, the weather can cause a number on my lips. The biggest problem with that is no matter how many containers of chap stick I have, I love the tops.

I don’t know what it is, but I can never manage to keep an intact chap stick – no matter what the brand or type. It doesn’t matter if it’s medicated or tinted, peppermint or berry – within a weeks time, I’ve lost it.

Needless to say, I was stoked when I heard about Vault. California based, this company has found a way to help you keep your lips hydrated and moisturized while you maintain your active lifestyle.

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What makes this product unique is that people like me CANNOT lose the top. It’s physically impossible. It’s so simple to use, you can do it one handed – PUSH, TWIST, CLICK.

 

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Once you’ve adjusted to the unique delivery system, be ready to be fashionable while you are being energetic. With the tinted lip balms, you not only get a dosage of Cocoa, Shea butter, Aloe, & Vit E, but you get SPF 15 as well.

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There are 8 color choices available. The picture above is what I am wearing on my lips. It’s called DISNEYLAND.

 

Colors from L-R:

TOP:  snow bunny (sheer), disneyland, newport (sheer), hollywood

Bottom: red carpet, rehab, triple espresso, napa

The product went on smooth like the Nivea lip products I love so much. It also have great color payoff, so a little bit of the balm goes a long way, saving you money.

For $9 USD, you can get your very own tinted Vault lip balm. Don’t fret over the price, if you hurry and like their facebook fan page you can use the code FIRST KISS at checkout and get 50% off your order!

If you are willing to give them a try, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. This is definitely going in my makeup bag that I take to school. If you are an athlete, this is a must for you. Hurry over to http://www.vaulticon.com/ today to get yours!

The Joey Healy Eyebrow Collection

 

These days, how you do your brows is just as important as how you do your eye makeup. You can have the most amazing eyeshadow on, and if your brows aren’t properly filled in to compliment your features, your work has been in vain. For the longest time, I didn’t touch my brows. They have a nice arch to them, but they are not twins by any means. Slowly, I started figuring out my eye makeup was missing something. It hit me, my brows didn’t do anything to help my look. I looked around and noticed the looks I loved so much on people had a lot to do with their eyebrows – crazy, I know…but true. I’ve tried all the products, ranging from drugstore to designer and am happy to report, I’ve found THE PERFECT eyebrow collection for everyone’s needs.

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Meet Joey Healy!

Luxe Brow Powders

Stop using your eyeshadows to fill in your brows because you can’t find the shade in the drugstore or other designer brands. Joey Healy has more colors to choose from than any other company. Nothing is more frustrating than to want to purchase a product only to see it’s not available in your color.

What’s nice about this product is that it can be applied wet or dry and is waterproof once applied, so your brows won’t fade away over the course of the day. Available in 6 colors: Parchment, Corduroy, Equestrian, Moccasin, Tobacco, Raven. $28 USD

Rating: A

Duo Brow Brush

The right technique really helps when filling in your brows so that you don’t look like a clown, but the right product is equally important. What I really like about the Joey Healy line is that you have so many options to choose from and the quality of the products, from the powder to the spoolie, is top quality. I’ve used Sigma, Coastal Scents, and MAC brushes to apply powder to my brows before and to me, the brush always seems too thick. Trust me when I say, this is the last brush you will ever need. The cruelty-free boar and badger haired bristle applicator is stiff enough to allow you to apply your eyebrow powder with absolute control. $28 USD

Rating: A

Brow Architect Stylo

This fully retractable, waterproof pencil is my new favorite item. Never before has an eyebrow pencil applied so silky smooth and created such a natural looking finish before. The pencil never needs sharpening and the spoolie on the other end eliminates the need to carry yet another tool in my bag. Once I apply, I can blend away the harshness at the beginning of my brows and know that my eyebrows are going to remain this perfect for the rest of the day. As with the other Joey Healy products, there is a great selection of colors available for every skin tone and hair color. Choose from Wicker, Suede, Antler, Molasses, Teak. $25 USD

Rating: A

Review Recap:

Price: $25-$28 USD

Availability: only online at http://www.joeyhealy.com

Selection: I was very impressed by the selection of colors. There are 6 shades of brow powder and 5 shades of brow pencil to choose from.

Overall: After being a long time user of the Anastasia Brow Powder, I have to say this product is better. Once you apply it, it stays in place all day and really puts the finishing touches on your look. The price is a bit high for some, but I promise it’s an investment worth making – a little bit goes a very long way.

Rating: A

 

 

Disclosure: This post contains a sample product sent to A Girl Named Nat for consideration by PR. This site does not offer paid or guaranteed reviews, only honest opinions of the products tested

Fifty Shades of…WHAT? Trilogy

 

I will be the first to admit, that I started reading 50 Shades of Grey with no intent to finish it. I first saw the book while shopping in Carytown in the heart of RVA. This was still during the school year and I hadn’t really read any good books in awhile. I’m a visual person and I was attracted to the cover. My husband came up beside me and laughed, asking me if I was going to read erotica now. Having no clue what the book was even about, I did what 90% of America did, when confronted – I put the book down. Then, my facebook, pinterest, tumblr, and twitter timelines blew up with talk of Christian Grey and Fifty Shades. 

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I’d been under a rock apparently as I discovered the origin of this story. I couldn’t believe it when I found out this was originally a Twilight Fanfic that made it to publication. What the…seriously? Makes sense though – innocent girl meets not-so-innocent filthy rich man. I pictured this is what Twilight would have been like had Stephine Meyers allowed us to see Edward and Bella having sex. Then, I hear the news that it surpassed Harry Potter sales in the UK, breaking a record for the number of books sold ever. Again, I reread the first pages and couldn’t put it together. Now that I’ve finished the series, I feel that I can see how this all happened.  This is really your basic story of boy meets girl and in a sense could be a coming of age story for Ana. What makes this novel so controversial is that it allowed the world to see that sex doesn’t have to be routine, monotonous, or a chore (oh the sarcastic things I want to write, but have decided to be good for this post). This story says you CAN be successful and respectable and still be kinky. Just wait, next year there is going to be a baby boom thanks to this book!

I vacationed at the beach many times this summer and it never failed that at least three women would have that book in their possession. I’ll never forget how one group of housewives were having their own book club while they read by the pool. Funniest thing ever. 

THE FLAWS: 

As I mentioned before, I had issues with the writing style from page one of Fifty Shades of Grey. Some people have a hard time reading in first person, whereas I LOVE IT. All of my stories are told in first person, so this could be a pro or a con for the book.  It’s a simple book series to read, as long as you look past the overuse of phrases, terrible passive voice, lots of telling vs showing, and basic sentence structure. I found myself skimming the long descriptive passages that didn’t move the story forward and concentrated on the conversations. 

The worst part about all the flaws in this novel is that the right editor could have fixed every one of them. I was told that the author had ghost writers on the second and third book, and I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised because the writing improves. It’s not great, but it’s better. 

THE FABULOUS: 

 I couldn’t pinpoint what caused me to like this story until I talked to my husband and he shared his thoughts on why I like reading books he calls, “garbage.”  

…if you think the writing is bad but you like the characters and the same for Twilight, you must just love badly written people lol
I think he’s right. I like characters that are flawed. They fall for someone against their own judgement and decide to let the cards fall as they may. This happens repeatedly in this series. Yes it has BDSM, but according to all my friends that have that sort of lifestyle, it’s very inaccurately portrayed. So inaccurate, they refuse to read the books. In all honesty, the sex became so repetitious (maybe it was the language), it becomes boring. For those of you that don’t want to read it because it’s considered erotic, know that  the amount of sex tapers off dramatically in each book, and with each book, a plot develops. 

So, bottom line – if you are going to read it – you MUST read ALL THREE. You must LOOK PAST the fact that it’s NOT very well written, and ENJOY a story that proves love is worth fighting for and everyone deserves it. I liked the relationship they built, even though I wanted to slap Ana at least 10 times every book and tell her to get her s**t straight. If you are a hopeless romantic like I am, then you need to read this, even if everyone else says not to. 

Can’t wait to see how they portray this in the theater! 

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Urban Decay Naked Foundation Review & Before/After Pictures

Over the years, I have had the hardest times finding a foundation that I really like. I’ve switched from MAC Studio Fix to MUFE HD and while I like those brands, both products are a bit thick and if not careful, can give you the caked on makeup look. This summer Urban Decay came out with a product that seems to be the Holy Grail foundation I’ve been searching for. It glides on smooth, covering imperfections with ease without appearing to be thick or cake-like.

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Urban Decay makes it very easy to find your shade, something that is generally impossible when searching on the internet for foundation. If you go to their site, you can enter your current foundation and the closest shade you are and it will pinpoint your color. I did this, using my MUFE HD foundation as my guide and while it didn’t give me the exact choice for my number, when I picked the closest one too it (a shade below what I wear), it recommend the number below what I ended up buying in the store. Keep that in mind if you buy this product without swatching it first. While it is better than just looking at colors online, it still isn’t perfect. Although, I have to admit, shopping in the store isn’t much better since the lighting in most Sephora’s and Ulta’s is very low and warm, making it nearly impossible to find your color.

I applied this foundation as I would any other foundation, on top of a primer. I used my new L’Oreal BB cream (review coming soon) and discovered just like my other HD foundation, a little goes a very long way. To give me the air brushed look without having to pay for the equipment, I used my favorite beauty blender dupe applicator (egg shaped sponge) and worked on covering one side and then the other.

 

For my problem areas where I have acne scaring (primarily on my cheeks), I didn’t use concealer, I simply added more of the product, layering my already covered skin before blending it in with the rest of my face. The feel of the foundation against my skin was a breath of fresh air, because it allowed just that – my face to breathe. This foundation feels more like a tinted moisturizer than a foundation: very lightweight and dries to give me a flawless coverage, only most professionals could create.

A Buildable Liquid Foundation

Naked Skin is a buildable formula that allows you to customize your look. From light to full coverage, it feels like wearing nothing at all, yet transforms complexions. Skin looks natural, illuminated and bright: like the beautiful skin you were born with.

As with all Urban Decay packaging, the bottle delivers a fair amount of product with each pump. Just remember, a little bit goes a very long way – at least that’s what I discovered.

Thanks to Urban Decay’s state-of-the-art formula, Naked Skin will restore and maintain your youthful appearance, give you a more radiant complexion, hydrate your skin to keep it smooth, soft, and supple; all the while giving you the highly defined finish every woman covets.

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Review Recap:

    • Price: $38 USD
    • Availability: Sephora, Ulta, Urbandecay.com
    • Selection: 18 shades to choose from
    • Overall: Amazing coverage without the heavy cakey-feel. The color selection is decent, but all of them I tested seemed to have yellow undertones to them versus a mixture of pink as well. Even the ones that say they have pink. It is very possible my swatches were inaccurate as the lighting in the Sephora I went to was horrible.
    • Rating: A[/author_info] [/author]

Maybelline Color Show Nail Lacquer

I’ve never been a fan of any of the drugstore nail polishes I’ve purchased in the past. Since Essie is owned by L’Oreal, which owns Maybelline, Lancome, and a few other beauty brands and I enjoy Essie polish, when I saw the bold green color on the end cap at my local Target, I simply had to buy it. When it cost only $2.99 USD for a bottle when I am accustomed to paying $8 USD + a bottle for OPI and Essie polishes, it was hard to buy only one. 

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I only purchased the one b/c I didn’t know how well it was going to work on my nails. Being nail painting impaired (as is demonstrated in the picture above), I didn’t know how well this product would apply, so I resisted all the other pretty colors Target had for me to choose from. To my surprise, the nail polish went on with ease, without streaks and quite thick. In one simple stroke, my entire nail was covered. The deep chartreuse color was obtained with only two coats on my nails. For some extra flash, I added with a sponge applicator some emerald green glitter to the tips of my nails. 

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of this polish compared to other drugstore brands I’ve purchased in the past. With the 40 different shades out there in Maybelline Color Show polish, I don’t think I will run out of different colors to try (for a while anyway). Of course, now that I know they are as great as they are, I want to pick one up every time I see them at Target. 

With such a large variety, which is your favorite? 

Review Recap:

  • Price: $2.99 USD – $3.99 USD (prices vary depending upon purchase location) 
  • Availability: Available wherever Maybelline is sold and online at maybelline.com  
  • Selection: 40 different shades to choose from 
  • Overall: My first impression was that these are very different than any drugstore nail polish I’d used in the past. The formula seemed thicker, covering more of the nail in one coat than some of my more expensive nail polishes. There are a variety of colors to fit every personality, whether it’s bold and bright or natural nudes.  
  • Rating:

Guest Post: Bath and Body Works and I’m in love!

Hey Ladies and Gents!!

I just went shopping online recently (my first time buying hair stuff) and I thought to myself, “How is this going to work on my hair? Should I get a sample just to see how I would like it?” I’m really sketchy buying things online. For the most part, I leave my hygienic things to my local Wal-Mart. I mentioned in a group that talks about beauty things and all things related to health,  that I loved the scent of Cherry Blossoms and wasn’t able to find anything local except body wash in that scent.

One of the girls directed me to Bath and Body Works and I had to check it out.

 For the special they were offering I decided to get the moisturizing shampoo and conditioner along with the body cream. I opened them right away when I received them and was delighted by their smell!

 

It was a light and airy scent, nothing overpowering! I knew I would love the lotion and sampled it on my hands. It was so silky and made my skin smooth without the residue of grease coating my hands making it near impossible doing anything! Later I lathered up in the shower with the shampoo and conditioner and loved every minute! The shampoo and conditioner were like the body cream lotion in respects to not being greasy and weighing my hair down. It too had a light scent. I reread the label looking at the ingredients and found that it was sulfate free which is always a plus. It really made my hair super soft and I couldn’t stop touching it. I have had a stupid grin on my face while discussing this shampoo and conditioner. I highly recommend these products. For the price I paid for them I hoped they would be satisfying and I was right! I would pay what I paid for them again just to keep in stock. I don’t think I am gonna buy store shampoo and conditioner anymore at least for my hair. 

Tina

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