French Beauty Haul/Review

Hello, friends! I was fortunate to be able to spend a week in Paris with my dad at the beginning of this summer. We had a great time exploring the city, trying out different restaurants, and getting our steps in from all the walking! This was the second time I had traveled to Paris, so I wanted to visit places that we had not been to the first time. I also wanted to try out some French beauty products, as I had done some research on French beauty before taking this trip.

French beauty is known to be minimalistic, emphasizing one’s natural beauty in an effortless way. Many of the French beauty products I encountered are intended to be simple, yet effective, helping women to feel comfortable in their own skin. In my travels, I visited a few drugstores and picked up some new products to try out.

Nuxe Reve De Miel: This is a cult French beauty staple and was frequently recommended in my research on French beauty products. This is an ultra hydrating lip balm made from honey and other natural ingredients. I love the frosted glass packaging–it makes the product look and feel so luxurious. I also appreciate that you get a good amount of product. This lip balm is going to last me a long time.

As for the actual product, it smells like honey! The formula is thick and sometimes needs to be warmed up a bit in order to apply it to the lips. However, it is extremely hydrating and makes your lips feel oh so smooth. Since this product isn’t too glossy or shiny, it’s great to use under other lip products.

Embryolisse Secret de  Maquilleurs-Eclat du Regard (Artist Secret Radiant Eye): This  is a refreshing and cooling eye product that is intended to wake up the under eye area and prep it for makeup. It’s a twist balm product that you apply right under your eyes. I love it, because it’s extremely cooling and feels like you’re rubbing an ice cube on your face. It just feels so freaking good under the eyes. I frequently use under eye concealer and I like that this product smooths this area for better application.

 

Bioderma Kit:

The four products on the right of the picture came from a Bioderma kit that I picked up from the drugstore. I was pleasantly surprised at how inexpensive this kit was, especially since it included so many great items.

The kit includes the famous Bioderma Crealine H20 (micellar water), Atoderm Gel Douche (a gentle shower gel),  Hydrabio Serum (a moisturizing concentrate), and Atoderm Intensive Baume (an ultra soothing balm). The kit also includes a clear plastic case to keep everything in–score! I have tried out all of these items except for the shower gel, though I’m sure it’s great.

Bioderma Crealine: I love the Bioderma Crealine for removing makeup and cleansing the skin. The solution is incredibly gentle, yet removes everything from your face. I am amazed at how effective it is at cleansing. This came in really handy when traveling in Paris, as I was able to clean off all the sweat and pollution from the day.

Atoderm Gel Douche: I have not used this product yet, but I really appreciate that the kit gives you a hefty bottle of this. It has a fresh scent and claims to cleanse and soften the skin, as well being good for dry, sensitive skin.

Hydrabio Serum: I have used this product quite a few times and I love it. The formula is light and feels like water, yet hydrates and plumps up the skin as soon as it is applied. It feels super lightweight and can be applied alone or under a moisturizer. I enjoy applying this at night for days when I want a bit more in my skin, then layer a light moisturizer over it. When I wake up in the morning, my skin feels so refreshed and glowy. This product is great, you guys.

Atoderm Intensive Baume: This balm is super thick and is supposed to remedy dry, irritated skin. Since it’s so thick, I have only used it on my hands, but I think it would be great to use in the winter time when my skins gets super dry. Though the formula is thick and moisturizing, it doesn’t feel greasy. This is a great product to have in your kit, though my skin has more use for it in the winter.

 

 

 

I hope you guys enjoyed this post and got some good recommendations for French beauty products. I believe that you can buy some of these items online, as well if you want to try them out.

Let me know in the comments if you have tried any of these products and if you have any recommendations for other French beauty products. Thanks for reading this post, you guys!

-Love Ling

 

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Best Date Spots in Austin, TX

Hello, friends! In my two years of living in Texas, Austin has quickly become one of my favorite cities. Something about its innate quirkiness, friendly people, and Austinian pride charms me every time I visit. I often visit with my boyfriend and we have found that a trip to Austin makes for a great date night. Here are some great date spots for your next trip to Austin, Texas.

**If you want the ultimate Austin date, go to these spots in sequence–I have!

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetStroll Down South Congress Street

Find somewhere (hopefully) cheap to park and just take a nice stroll down SoCo. South Congress street is filled with weird little shops, delicious coffee shops, and live music. It’s a great place to just walk around and window shop. Believe me, you will find plenty of conversations points with all the scenery.

Be sure to check out the “I Love You So Much” mural, located outside Jo’s Coffee on South Congress. It’s an Austin icon and must-do when visiting. When I was there, there was a short line of people wanting to take pictures in front of the wall. However, there are plenty of friendly people around who are willing to take a picture for you.

Dinner at El Alma

I have been to this restaurant twice and it is one of my favorite date spots in Austin. It’s located right across Butler Metro Park, so while you are waiting on your table, you can take a walk around the park. This restaurant is trendy, has a great vibe, and delivers delicious Mexican food. I recommend their tacos and enchiladas, but I’m looking forward to trying more of their menu! Eating here will make you feel like a cool Austinian. Indoor and outside seating is a plus.

**Tip: Make sure to look up busy times at El Alma. Depending on the day and time of day, it can get a little busy.

Visit Butler Metro Park

Like I mentioned before, Butler Metro Park is located right across from El Alma. It’s a great place to visit if you are waiting for your table or if you want to digest a bit after your meal. The park is filled with families, dogs, and visitors–a very relaxing spot.

The park also features a view of the downtown skyline. Walk a little bit further into the park and you’ll find a small summit that gives an even better view of the skyline. This park is definitely one of my favorite romantic spots in Austin.

Dessert at Gourdough’s

After your walk through the park, you’ll probably feel digested enough to indulge in some dessert. I recommend going to Gourdough’s, a food truck with the most buttery, mouthwatering donuts you have ever had. They have a ton of different donuts on their menu. I have tried that maple bacon donut and the honey butter donut–both are delicious. The donuts here are rather large, so I would recommend sharing it. There are picnic tables for you to sit at and free parking on sight.

Travel Tips

When exploring Austin, make sure to be conscientious of busy times of day, as traffic can be a bit brutal at times. In addition to this, restaurants can get busy, so either make a reservation, have a plan of action, or prepare to practice some patience. I would also recommend taking a minute to just take in the city, look out the window, and enjoy all that this beautiful city has to offer.

I hope you enjoyed this travel post and found some inspiration for cool places to visit in Austin. Even though this post is labeled as “date spots”, you can certainly visit these places just to visit them! You’ll still have a great time and have a great Austin experience. Thank you for reading!

-Love Ling

My Favorite Spots in San Antonio

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Hello, friends! I have been living in San Antonio, Texas for a year now and I have absolutely loved my experience. I think that San Antonio is a brilliant city–filled with rich culture and history. From the famous River Walk to the beloved Pearl, there are a diverse range of places that are worth visiting in San Antonio. Here are some of my favorite places and spaces:

The Riverwalk

Ohh the River Walk, one of the most popular spots in San Antonio. It’s definitely a very tourist-oriented area, but there’s something charming about its tackiness. Well, it’s not that tacky. It’s a great  place to just walk around and people watch, but there are a ton of great restaurants to enjoy along the river. I especially love visiting at night, where the string lights from the restaurants illuminate the whole area. The River Walk is one of the reasons that I decided to move to San Antonio and it holds a special place in my heart.

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La Villita

La Villita is located on the River Walk of San Antonio. It’s a tiny little town complete with craft shops and art galleries. It’s also a common spot for festivals and happenings in San Antonio. I love this little area, because it’s fun to walk around and beautiful at night–especially with the beautiful string lights. Can you tell that I like string lights?

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The Pearl

This is a San Antonio staple, especially for my fellow class mates. This is an area of San Antonio located at the end of the River Walk, complete with shops, restaurants, apartments, and hotels. It’s a hip area, where students, tourists, and families alike enjoy visiting. I especially love going to the Pearl for the farmer’s market that happens every weekend. There are a ton of vendors, dogs, and live music–the perfect place to spend a Saturday morning.

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Cowboy’s Dance Hall

One of the reasons that I love Texas so much is because of its affinity for dancing. Let me tell you, Texans know how to have a good time. Cowboy’s is a popular dance hall in San Antonio where people go to hang out, spend time with friends, and dance! They also have a live country music  band and a huge dance floor. I just recently learned how to two step and I love going out on a Friday night and dancing with my friends!

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Gruene Hall

Technically, this dance hall is not is San Antonio (it’s in Gruene), but it’s been a great part of my Texan/San Antonio experience! It’s about 30 minutes outside of San Antonio and a Texas classic. Cowboy’s definitely has more of a club/dance hall atmosphere, but Gruene is a lot more relaxed and family oriented. I really enjoyed dancing here and definitely felt like a true Texan among the cowboy hats and boots. If dancing isn’t your thing, enjoy a beer here and walk around the town of Gruene!

McNay Art Museum

The McNay has a diverse collection of art, from Renaissance sculptures to Cubism to theatre arts! The art museum as it appears today used to be a mansion, so the overall architecture is beautiful. Be sure to check out the courtyard in the middle of the museum! I love the art pieces within the museum, but the surrounding area is really nice too. I highly recommend having a picnic on the grass, then walking around inside!

I hope you enjoyed this post and learning about the many different places in San Antonio . These are just a few of my favorite places–San Antonio definitely has a lot to offer! I feel really lucky to be able to live here and experience the Alamo city lifestyle.

-Love Ling