3 Beauty Products for Halloween

3 Beauty Products for Halloween | Writing Between Pauses

Can I just say something about Blogtober? I am exhausted. I brought this on myself though. I’ve massively neglected my Instagram in favor of writing so many blog posts. The page in my bullet journal dedicated to my writing goal is dominated by writing blog posts in advance every single day… and I haven’t even started thinking about NaNoWriMo. (Gosh, am I going to take on NaNoWriMo after this!?) 

But I’ve also been loving Blogtober—having the chance to write all these posts that I’ve always wanted to write… like putting together my favorite outfits, finding new beauty products, sharing the best tutorials I’ve pinned on Pinterest… it’s been a lot of fun! 

I decided to take it easy on myself with this post. I love Halloween make up; it’s my favorite time of the year because, duh, Autumn, but also, Halloween and spooky-themed everything is so much fun. Here’s a round up of some of the cutest, most fun, and most spooky beauty products. 

1. Pumpkin Bath-o-Lantern Bath Bomb

Lush Pumpkin Bath Bomb

Before every busy Halloween, we all need a little self-care. This pumpkin-shaped bath bomb is scented with “exotic pimento, sweet vanilla and cozy, warming cinnamon,” and promises to turn your bath water a pretty, pumpkin orange. What could be better? 






2. imPRESS Matte Halloween Nails with Glitter Accents

imPRESS Halloween Nails

Press on nails are not something I ever thought I would recommend… or wear. But I really love imPRESS nails—I went through a phase of wearing them every week a few years ago (post-baby it’s much more difficult to rock a long nail) and they always last 7+ days. Seriously. 7+ days! These ones feature a gray-and-white matte color scheme with a spooky church yard and several glitter accent nails. Perfect for a subdued Halloween look. 






3. Make Up Revolution Vampire Night Lip Kid

Make Up Revolution Vampire Kit

This is such a fun lip kit! It features 1 matte liquid lipstick and a matching liner so you can contour your lips (or just prevent feathering—hello aging!) in the color Vampire Night, a rich, bloody burgundy color. Perfect for a vampire costume or just for fun. 

Beauty Review: The Luxe Vox Box*

Beauty Review: Luxe Vox Box | Writing BetweenPauses

*Disclaimer: As always, the asterisk (*) in the post title denotes a sponsored post or a post where I received product for free. All opinions remain my own. For more information about my disclosure policy, please see here

I love getting Vox Boxes from Influenster. I get so excited every single time. Needless to say, when I found out I was getting the Luxe Vox Box, I was beyond excited. I really love this style of Vox Box too because I love getting a variety of products instead of just one. Who doesn’t love trying a bunch of goodies instead of just one? 

For the sake of saving time, I’m going to do mini reviews of each product. Here’s everything I received—and what I thought! 

Dr. Brandt No More Baggage Depuffing Eye Gel

This is one of those products that I was excited to try, but isn’t something I would normally buy on my own. Even though I struggle with fatigue (especially at certain points in my cycle), I don’t necessarily get puffy undereyes or even dark circles. (Ok, that sounds like a humblebrag—but trust me when I say I have other skin issues!) The first time I used this, I didn’t notice a huge difference. 

The second time, however, I used it under make up and I felt like it made a huge difference. I usually color correct under my eyes (just to brighten my skin a little bit) and then use foundation as normal. I used this instead of my usual color correcting and I felt like it made my undereyes look smoother and brighter. I really enjoyed using it, but for $42 for a tube, it’s not something I would repurchase. But if you have undereyes that you struggle with, it’s definitely a great product! 

Amika Un.Done Texture Spray

I received two Amika products and I was most excited about this one, the texture spray. My hair tends to be quite flat and dull, especially on the days when I watch it. This is an aerosol spray, not unlike a dry shampoo, that is supposed provide “instead volume and perfect-imperfect texture.” It “utilizes an invisible, salt-free formulation to deliver effortless, tousled beachy hair.” 

Did I like it? No. Like dry shampoo, it gave my hair a texture that I would describe as straw-like and almost waxy. I love the feeling of smooth, soft hair. If a product can keep my naturally very soft, smooth hair feeling that way, but also give it volume, I love it—but that seems like asking for a lot. I used this two days in a row and both days, the volume it provided barely lasted two hours… but the waxy, gross feeling in my hair did last. Hard pass. 

Amika Nourishing Mask

I love a good hair mask—even though “hair mask” is a nice way of saying “deep conditioner.” I don’t use conditioner daily, because again, my hair texture is pretty lank and flat naturally and my hair is pretty healthy at the moment. It’s not something I really need to worry about. However, my hair does have a lot of breakage because I wear it in tight ponytails and buns a lot, so I was hoping this mask would help with that. 

I have been using this in the shower twice a week and I really love using it. I almost feel like it gives my hair a little bit more body than usual and definitely makes it feel very soft and look very shiny. This mask promises to "restore hair to its natural vibrancy and health from the inside out," which is quite a hefty promise; but it also says it "hydrates for long-lasting softness, shine, elasticity, and manageability." That last one is definitely true. At $28 for 250mL, it's not a terrible price for something you use at most 1-2 times a week! (The mini size which I've linked is only $10--great for sampling!) 

GrandeLips Hydrating Lip Plumper

This is the item I was dreading reviewing. Firstly, a lip plumper is not something I would ever, ever purchase or want to use. But I couldn't very well just not use it and fluff a review. I felt between a rock and a hard place. So I put aside my reservations and I put it on one morning early last week. 

Cue my rapidly scrubbing my lips and nearly screaming. Within seconds to applying, my lips were burning. Not just feeling warm or fuzzy. But burning. I had light chemical burn all around my mouth for several days. Don't buy this product. Don't use this product. I wish I had trusted my gut!

AQUIS Hair Towel

Ok, that last mini review was a bummer, right? Chemical burns are no good. But I love this hair towel. It is made from "Aquitex," a hair drying technology that is "ultra light." It is supposed to rapidly dry hair to "damp stage" without heat. I personally do not use heat on my hair, so this was something I was very excited about. With the change in seasons, my scalp has been very dry and itchy, so I've been having to wash everyday to avoid flakes and nourish my scalp with soothing ingredients. (If you're wondering, I've been using YesTo Coconut Tea Tree Shampoo.) 

I love the shape and thinness of this towel; it makes tying up my hair after my shower to do my make up very easy. It does seem to dry my hair very quickly, which is also very nice. However, at $30-45 for a single towel, it's quite expensive. I have some not-as-fancy hair towels from Target that were $5 a piece at the most that do almost the exact same thing. But if you have a lot of hair and want to cut how much heat you use on your hair, it would definitely be a good splurge. 

Things I Love: October 14

Things I Love: October 14 | Writing Between Pauses

Another week, another TiLT! I've been really enjoying keeping notes for these posts, because it gives me something to really look forward to writing. 

How is everyone feeling about Blogtober? As I've posted on Twitter, I've been feeling exhausted from so much writing and planning. Basically, trying to stay ahead of writing 7 blog posts a week (usually in advance) is really difficult for me--but I'm glad I'm making it work and hopefully you are all enjoying these posts! 

Anyway, without further ado, let's get to the things I love this week, shall we? 

1. #WizardTeam: A Harry Potter Podcast

I swear, I don't mean to include a new podcast every week... but I really, really love this one. #SorryNotSorry. I love the podcast Potterotica, but sometimes I just wanna hear my fellow nerds talk Harry Potter. #WizardTeam is run by the women behind Black Girls Create and I've been binging the past episodes of the podcast to catch up. I have 110 episodes to catch up on. I'll be done in... two weeks. That's my prediction. 

Pumpkin Patch 1 | Writing Between Pauses
Pumpkin Patch 2 | Writing Between Pauses

2. Pumpkin Patches

Listen. Guys. I really love October. I really love Autumn. Need you question why pumpkin patches is on this list!? We made it out to our favorite farm and pumpkin patch on Sunday and it was so much fun. Forrest is so obsessed that I think we abandoned him in a pumpkin patch, he'd be fine. He would have spent all day there. We came home with 7 (yes, 7!!) large pumpkins and 5 (yes, 5!!!) small pumpkins. You read those numbers right. I would almost be embarrassed, but our porch is looking adorable. 

Winery | Writing Between Pauses

3. Visiting Wineries

Danny and I aren't the kind of people that usually go to wineries. I'm not entirely sure why not, because we always have a lot of fun. And now, Danny works just down the road from a really nice, fun winery that we visited last week. We had so much fun! We sampled wines, watched Forrest point out every flower, and spent time chatting with our friends. It was warm, it was Autumnal, it was fun. I loved every minute. 

5 Non-Scary Halloween Movies for Kids

5 Non-Scary Halloween Movies for Kids | Writing Between Pauses

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays and I love all the movies related to Halloween. I think I've written so many lists of my favorite Halloween movies that it would be impossible to round them all up. But trust me when I say: if a Halloween movie exists, I've probably watched it. 

Now that I have a toddler, I've had to adjust my favorite Halloween movies. Some are just too scary for Forrest to watch, especially if they have dark scenes or any really suspenseful parts. For my fellow moms out there, I've put together a list of our favorite non-scary (or not too scary movies) for kids. You'll notice one of my favorite movies ever is not on this list; I find Hocus Pocus to be just a little too scary for Forrest yet. But maybe next year! Here are our favorites right now. 

1. Halloweentown 

I love Halloweentown and thankfully, Forrest does too. This is one of those movies that has some slightly scary parts, but not scary enough to really scare a toddler. I have great nostalgia about this movie because it was one of my absolute favorites when I was little. We recently bought the double feature of it from Amazon. 

2. It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! 

This is such a classic; everyone loves this movie! I've been searching for this movie relentlessly for months and finally, it popped up on Amazon for $10. Thankfully, though, it starts being played on TV as Halloween gets closer so we've watched it several times already. 

3. Trick or Treat on Sesame Street 

Forrest's number one obsession is Elmo and Sesame Street. He loves this DVD. It's basically a collection of Elmo trick-or-treat episodes and scenes. There are also some great special features on it about dressing up in costumes that aren't along the gender binary, which is my favorite part. As with any Sesame Street DVD, there is lots of subtle teaching: counting, learning how to talk to others, being creative, and how to deal with jealousy are the biggest themes. 

4. Spookly the Square Pumpkin

This is a TV movie (that you can buy on Amazon) that came out when my oldest nephew was a toddler. It's about a square pumpkin named Spookly who is different from the other pumpkins. It's a really cute, slightly spooky (but not scary) movie with lots of cute Fall imagery and a really great message about how being different makes you special. It's one of Forrest's favorites. 

5. Hotel Transylvania 

This is one of those movies that... really starts to grate on me after a while. But as a parent, I have to put up with it a little bit! It's definitely not on my list of favorite movies, but Forrest really enjoys it, it's not scary, and it doesn't have anything that I particularly object to (unlike other movies). 

4 Ideas for Fun Fall Dates

4 Ideas for Fun Fall Dates | Writing Between Pauses

For me, Fall always reminds me of cozy days spent indoors, usually alone, or just watching movies. But it's also a good time to get a few last fun dates in before the weather gets too atrocious. Danny and I like to plan fun family activities together, but sometimes, it's nice to get out of the house just the two of us. He helped me put together a list of 4 fun date ideas, perfect for Autumn. 

1. Bake cookies together. 

This is a fun indoor activity for when it's a little rainy or cold outside. Who doesn't love baking cookies? And if you have a toddler or baby (like we do), it's something they can have fun with too. Baking, or cooking a dinner, together can be really fun, especially if it's not something you usually do as a pair. I am the primary cook in my house, but sometimes, Danny likes to help out and we have so much fun every time. I highly recommend these maple cookies or these chocolate shortbread cookies

2. Have a cozy picnic. 

This was Danny's suggestion: load up the car with blankets and your favorite snacks, stop at Starbucks to get some hot cocoa or coffee, and drink to a lake or mountain. Open the back of your car, create a nest, and cuddle up. We drive a hatchback, so this is something we used to do pretty often, but haven't in a while. Might be time to bring it back! 

3. Go apple picking. 

Is this the standard Fall date idea? Yes. Is it still fun? Oh yes it is! Apple picking is one of my favorite things to do, because at the end you have a ton of apples. You can use them to plan another date where you bake apple pies, make applesauce, or preserve them in your favorite way. How fun is that? 

4. Go wine tasting. 

This is Danny & I's favorite thing to do together. We love visiting wineries, trying new wines, and listening to live music at our favorite places. Most metro areas have at least one winery close by or a restaurant that offers wine sampling. We love trying new wines together and finding new favorites. It's affordable and adventurous, and if you visit an actual winery, you can actually see the grapes on the vine--which is always really novel to me! 

4 Outfits Perfect for Rainy Fall Days

4 Outfits Perfect for Rainy Fall Days | Writing Between Pauses

I love rainy days. It’s not everyone’s favorite thing, but nothing makes me happier when it starts to rain after a long, dry summer. (This may be because of my hyperawareness of forest fires.) The air smells fresh; everything gets dewy; the sound is beautiful. I love rain Sundays spent with a candle burning, watching my favorite movies. I love rainy days in the office getting work done. I love rainy days! 

For blogtober, I thought a post about rainy day outfits would be perfect, especially as we get further into October and the rain really starts to set in. Here are 4 I put together recently that are perfect for every different occasion. 

1. A Rainy Day with Friends 

Do you ever see something (like, say, this dress) that makes you just want to stop everything and buy it? Immediately? This dress is one of those things for me. It’s absolutely so cute—if you have access to New Look and can get this dress, please do so and tell me it if it is absolutely as perfect as I imagine. I love the color. I love the interesting cut. And I love how cute it will look with some plain tights and some knee-high rain boots. I completely imagine this outfit for a day spent out with friends—when it’s rainy, but not too cold yet. Pair with this cute cross body bag with rose gold jewelry, a simple shimmery eye look, and a neutral lip color. 

2. When You Just Stay Inside

How realistic is this for a rainy day outfit!? One of the things I miss about my pre-parenthood life is, honestly, rainy days spent at home by myself. Drinking too much coffee, wearing sweatpants, cleaning the house, and watching terrible movies on TV. This outfit was made with that nostalgia in mind. I love these sweatpants from Madewell—I may be asking for a pair for my birthday. Paired with a cute-and-funny sweatshirt, some cozy socks, and your favorite coffee mug… yeah, the perfect rainy Sunday, can we agree? 

3. Casual Workplace

This isn’t necessarily realistic for everyone in terms of work appropriate attire—but at my workplace, this would be downright fancy. (And I have some substitutions for if you work in a stricter office, don’t worry!) I love the trend of simple, warm sweatshirts; it’s never warm enough in my office. Paired with high waisted jeans rolled up over some cute boots (like these maroon velvet ones), it’s perfect for a simple day look. Add in this amazing coat from Romwe, a messenger bag, and some simple, pink make up and you’re ready for all that rain outside. 

Want to make it a little more office appropriate? Swap the jeans and sweatshirt for a simple white sweater and black skinny trousers. See? It works just as well! 

4. Date Night

Is this the most 90s outfit I’ve ever put together? Yes. Yes, it is. Actually, the trend of square-shaped corduroy skirts is giving me major flashbacks to the mid-2000s. I think I wore a gray, corduroy skirt that was three sizes too big to my first date with my now-husband. Yikes. 

I love this dusty pink skirt though; it brings those squarish skirts into the 2010s, at least. Add some tights, a cute t-shirt, and your favorite pinky boots to make sure your date knows you’re absolutely the toughest girly-girl on the block. 

My Top 5 Must-Watch Scary Movies

My Top 5 Must-Watch Scary Movies | Writing Between Pauses

When it comes to October, and Halloween, I’m a bit of a scary movie fanatic. My husband and I own almost every scary movie ever made—and every year, we get a bit optimistic and try to make a list of all of them with the plan to watch one every day until Halloween. This never happens because the idea of me staying awake through an entire movie every night is incredibly low, but we can dream. 

This year, we’re going to keep it simple with just our favorites—which got me thinking, what are my favorite scary movies? What are my must-watches every year? These are them—I highly recommend these movies to everyone who loves being scared. 

1. Trick or Treat 

This is, hands down, my favorite movie to watch right before Halloween or on Halloween. It’s so good! I love the vignette style; I love the stories; I love how they are all intertwined by the end. It’s just a good ol’ fashioned, spooky Halloween movie: a little gory at times (I look away; I can handle scary, but not gory), but overall really, really fun. 

2. Coraline

My husband gave me such side eye for including Coraline, but here’s my logic: This movie is terrifying. Forrest keeps bringing me the case and asking to watch it, but I won’t let him. The concept of having your eyes replaced by buttons? That’s scary. There are some scary scenes in this movie! I love watching it throughout October, because it’s the right amount of Autumnal, spooky, and whimsical. Just like Autumn itself. 

3. Cabin in the Woods

Another movie that doesn’t get the credit it deserves, I absolutely love this movie. I love that it is scary, while also spoofing horror films, while also being very, very funny at times. I also love that the end is so totally an end: the world ends! Nothing good happens! It’s such a fun, goofy movie to watch close to Halloween and my husband and I always end up having long conversations about the same things (such as the recurring mermaid joke). 

4. Halloween

This is such a classic movie. Jamie Lee Curtis plays the perfect, slightly nerdy babysitter with frankly awful friends; the kids are bumblingly awful; and the killer is immortal. It’s perfect! Even after watching it a hundred times at least (it’s perfect for watching on Halloween), there are still parts that scare me, like when the killer is standing in the bedroom wearing the sheet and glasses. 

5. Scream

An absolute 90s classic and one of my favorites. I own all 5 of the Scream series; you read that right, I own all 5 of them. This movie had such an impact on me as a kid and I still find myself idolizing Sidney. (And also, this was the movie that introduced me to Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, one of my absolute favorite bands of all time.) Scary, goofy, and nostalgic all at once. Plus, this movie gave us a revitalized Drew Barrymore career; I mean, what a gift. 

7 Perfect Autumn Accessories Under $50

7 Perfect Autumn Accessories Under $50 | Writing Between Pauses

Originally, this post was going to be all spooky accessories. I know, I know! It’s a bit of a copout. But I couldn’t find any cute, creepy, spooky, but not cheesy and garish, accessories. A lot of the stuff I found was cute, but very Halloween and not something the average person would be able to wear day-to-day. Even in my job that has a very lax dress code, I would get some stares! 

However, I did find some super, super cute Fall accessories. Now, to me, accessories is everything from make up to scarves, so that’s what I put together. Let’s get started!

1. The Too Faced Just Peachy Mattes Palette, $45

Very few make up palettes have really gotten my attention the past few months. Everything is warm neutrals! Warm neutrals! Every new palette is just warm neutrals! And if a palette isn’t all warm neutrals, beauty gurus are only doing warm, neutral, orange-y brown looks. I’m so bored by warm neutral orange-y brown eye looks and palettes. I’m bored! Excite me!

This palette excites me. I know there are very mixed reviews about Too Faced eye shadows, but I personally love them and this palette is giving me such lovely fall vibes… I want it so bad. I love my Too Faced Sweet Peach Palette but sometimes I want some more matte shades, especially in the pink-purple family. This palette fits the bill beautifully. 

2. Fall Leaf Print Case, $40

I love clear phone cases. I know the big, Otterbox style ones protect your phone better, but I cannot stand how they feel in my hand. I love this simple, Fall leaf printed case. So pretty and affordable enough that when Winter comes along, you can just switch it out! 

3. Fenty Beauty Lip Gloss, $34

Listen, we’re all on top of Fenty right now. But have we talked about how universally pretty this lip gloss is? It looks good plain. It looks good over lipstick. It looks good on pale girls, on dark girls, on in-between girls. It looks good on everyone and it gives everyone the perfect rose-hued lips. Drop everything. Go and buy this lip gloss. You need it! 

4. L.L. Bean Wool-Blend Scarf, $50

Nothing beats a good Autumn scarf—and this one is really calling to me. I personally love plaid and I love a larger blanket scarf. This blue color will look lovely with a maroon or olive green sweater and jeans—or with a plain, sheath dress and jacket for a meeting. 

5. Ugg's Women's Cable Knit Socks, $39 

Last Christmas, everyone got me socks. They know me extremely well. These boot socks from Uggs are some of my favorite because they’re so warm and cozy, but they’re loose-knitted enough to fit over my calves (this is often a problem I have with socks). 

6. Leaf Charm Bracelet, $57

This bracelet reminds me of a fairy princess. It’s just whimsical and pretty enough to be special, but without being over the top. I love the color scheme. Please imagine it with a twee little dress (like this one) and knee high boots. So cute. 

When I originally made this list, this bracelet was in stock, but is currently sold out. Oops! Here are some similar bracelets: 1 and 2

7. Leaf Bracelet Stack, $7

This is definitely a little more boho than the other bracelet, which is why I included both. I love that it’s slightly rugged looking—almost like something a Mirkwood elf from Lord of the Rings would wear. I imagine it being paired with a cozy, oversized sweater (in mustard yellow) with distressed jeans rolled up over motorcycle boots.