Instagram images that inspired me this week, Vol. 3

Hi friends!

It’s time to share another round of cool & inspiring images with you! If you are new to the blog, each month I pluck several images off Instagram that I find beautiful and eye-catching and share with you all why I find these images to be inspirational. Usually they are all beauty-related since that’s my jam over on my blog account @weareglamerus (go follow me, please and thank you!). However, I do like to also throw in some wildcards as well to keep things interesting.

So let’s take a look at what I picked for this month’s installment!

(You can catch up on my previous lists here: September, October.)

igimagesinspirationglowrecipe

So far I don’t have anything from Korean beauty brand Glow Recipe in my skincare aresenal, but I so want to get something! It seemed like every beauty blogger & influencer was singing the praises of their now-famous Watermelon Glow Pink Juice Moisturizer last year; it didn’t hurt that the packaging design was so well executed, it alone launched a thousand Instagram posts. Everything in their line just looks so dreamy. Case in point with this photo; look at those colors & textures. I have no idea what a “pressed serum” is but after looking at this, I want it! You can shop Glow Recipe here.

 

igimagesinspirationgeniuss

If you’re into beauty on Instagram, you gotta be into the good ‘ole flat-lay. Everyone wants to see what you’re using and how artfully you can stage all the products. Some are master stagers (I’m still in training myself 😊), and beauty blogger Geniussr certainly knows how to nail them! I love the mixture of textures and prints in this particular photo and how they play off the bright pops of color from the flowers, plus the print of the magazine. I just love how luxe this feels with the golds & blacks and the lush product brands. Check out Geniussr’s blog here!

 

igimagesinspirationmavie

MavieCosmetics is a new brand that will be launching tomorrow 11/6 in the U.S. with shadow palettes, blushes & lipsticks. (Stay tuned for my next post for more information!) From what I can tell so far with this brand, all the products have very inspirational, aspirational or confidence-boosting names like “Let Your Light Shine” and “I Can and I Will.” So all the Instagram promotion leading up to the launch also has very motivational messaging like in the above photo. This one in particular caught my eye. While I don’t necessarily believe the message to be a categorical truth, I do believe that in most cases we are our own worst enemies who stand in our own way. Cosmetics just got deep…oh dear!

 

igimagesinspirationmissoma

I just love Missoma’s style. I’ve been a fan of the brand ever since I got two pieces from their Lucy Williams collection for Christmas last year, which are beautiful and extremely good quality. If you’re not familiar with Missoma, take a quick peruse of their site or their Instagram page. They do really gorgeous-looking pieces that are dainty yet very elegant. I’ve had my eye on the Roman coin-style necklaces for a while now, so that may be this year’s Christmas gift request 😊. Honestly I could pick any of their Instagram photos to feature here, but I particularly liked this one because of the crystal texture in the background and the cool patterns on the trinket tray.

 

igimagesinspirationdakotascarl

Isn’t this just the coolest?? If you love beauty & illustration then you must follow Dakota Scarlett’s Instagram account. She’s an awesome artist that has combined her gift for illustration and her love of beauty & fashion magazines into these amazing works of art. Again, I could have picked any of her IG images to feature here but this was the most recent one and I love all the tones of pink here. Talk about eye catching! I encourage you to also check out Dakota’s website.

 

igimagesinspirationohiibeauty

I first wrote about Ohii Beauty, the new makeup line from Urban Outfitters, in a brand overview-type post when it first launched back in September. (P.S. I bought a few items from the line since then so another post will be coming soon!) I think you probably know by now that I love a bit of texture, so I couldn’t pass this image by without a click. I love the color contrast, and how the product swatches look so bright and light against the greyish-blue background. You can shop Ohii here.

 

igimagesinspirationbeautifulju

We’re back in flat-lay land! Sorry, I can’t help myself! London blogger Mavey, who runs the @onebeautifuljunkie Instagram account, is another must-follow if you love looking at a beautifully edited, beautifully designed flay-lay. I love, love, love the slightly vintage feel of this photo thanks to its off-white, slightly fuzzy focus. And the pale, cool colors of the products playing against the gold jewelry creates such a gorgeous palette to gaze at.

 

igimagesinspirationfourthray

Don’t we all?? While Fourth Ray Beauty is talking about skincare here, this statement could apply to so many aspects of life so that’s why I was drawn to it. That and the color palette, again, is so lovely to gaze at. If you’re not familiar with Fourth Ray Beauty, they are ColourPop’s new sister brand under Seed Beauty specializing in affordable and attractively-packaged skincare products. You can shop the brand here (I haven’t tried anything yet myself).

 

igimagesinspirationlabs

And now for my wildcard! If this photo doesn’t stir some kind of emotion in you, I don’t know what would. C’mon, who doesn’t love cute puppies?? I follow a lot of dog & pet accounts on my personal Instagram (@erica10803 if you wanna follow me over there too!), like #labsofinstagram, so I’m constantly seeing these adorable photos of puppies & dogs in cute and funny situations. I have a real thing for Labs especially; I’ve always had one since I was about 10 years-old and I think they are some of the most beautiful animals.

What images have inspired you recently, on Instagram or elsewhere? I’d love to know!

xo, Erica

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Check out all the images that I’ve been loving from Instagram this week!

 

 

Instagram images that inspired me this week, Vol. 2

As a follow-up to my post from last month, here is another round of cool images from Instagram this week! If you’re not familiar with my first post, it’s a very simple premise: I pick images that I feel are particularly beautiful and/or inspirational in some way, feature them here and tell you why I love them. That’s it. Considering this is a beauty blog and most of the accounts I follow on IG are those of other beauty bloggers, brands, publications, influencers, etc, most of the images are beauty-related (what a surprise?). But I do like throwing in some randoms here and there.

I hope you are as wowed by these images as I am, so let’s get into it!

bobbibrown

Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month I think it’s only fitting to include this post from Bobbi Brown in this list. You’ll be hard pressed to find any person or family that hasn’t been touched in some way by this horrible disease, so it’s important to remember what the fight is against. These particular lipsticks are part of Bobbi Brown’s Pinks with a Purpose Lip Color Duo, where they will donate $17 for every $45 Lip Duo purchase to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. I think that’s awesome.

 

buxomcosmetics

Two things that drew me to this image: the hues of rose-pink & burgundy and the textures. I loooovveee the whole autumn color palette both in makeup & fashion. Sign me up for more deep pinks, plums, burgundys, golds, warm browns & reds, please.

 

doseofcolors

Don’t you just love all the glitter?? This image stopped me mid-scroll and I knew I had to screenshot it. Between the deep (but still bright) glittery eyes, the sheen on the skin, and the twinkle on the lips, it’s like magic. Of course I know that this has been filtered within an inch of its life, Photoshopped/manipulated, but don’t ruin my fantasy. I still love it anyway for what it is. Plus I really like Dose of Colors; they’re a kick-ass indie brand that does some high-quality products.

 

ohglowygirl

Did I mention already that I love texture? Well I do, so #texturetuesday on IG is a fun day for me. I love almost everything that skincare & beauty blogger @ohglowygirl posts, but these kinds of images are particular favorites of mine. We see so many photos of outer packaging, it’s nice to see what’s going on inside sometimes. I love the overall beigey tone of the photo and how the colors of each product play off each other.

 

ragenjewels

I’ve been following the jewelry brand Ragen Jewels on IG since this summer and their whole aesthetic just speaks to me. They do dainty jewelry very well and their prices are quite affordable to boot. I love the mix of traditional golds & silvers with bright pops of color, like in the piece above. Any image with stacked or layered jewelry catches my eye to be honest. And I’m a sucker for any piece with the ‘evil eye’ design; I have a few already in my collection (although not from this brand…yet). The ‘evil eye’ is a huge design element for this brand, so if you’re into that kind of thing you should really check them out here.

 

ohprettythings

This image is just so gorgeous and luxurious to me, yet it seems somewhat retro at the same time, which I assume is down to the fabulous editing skills of makeup artist Jessica or @Ohuprettythings as she’s known on IG. The play of white and black against each other is great. I love a good flat-lay not only because I’m a product junkie but also because it’s a little voyeuristic to me I guess. I just love to see what others are using, what backgrounds they have, etc; almost a peek into someone’s life. You might think the lighter sitting in the middle is a bit strange and out of place, but it nearly blends in with the rest of the image and it adds something a bit personal IMO.

 

milkmakeup

This image speaks to my girly-girl side. Can you guess why? If you can’t, don’t worry I’ll tell you: pink & purple of course! That’s what immediately drew me in but then the high-shine or gloss on both the eyes and lips is what kept my attention. I’m not bothered either way by the expression on the model’s face; to me it’s all about the colors and textures. I’m a real fan of a glossy editorial-looking eye, and the “broken” quality of this (i.e. the nude eyelid with the gloss up to the browbone) makes the image just more interesting to look at frankly.

 

thebeautyidentity

Remember when I said earlier that autumn colors & tones are kinda my thing? Well now you know why this image from Samantha or @thebeautidentity got me excited! I love the staging of this and the shadows that the light is throwing; the products are perfectly aligned and in focus and it seems like the sun is either rising or setting. I also have that eye palette from Dose of Colors (in Baked Browns) and it’s so incredibly lovely. I must use it more!

 

sezane

This is my random pick, but it was a must. In college I went through a serious James Dean phase and enthusiastically read several books on him, watched all his movies (only 3 sadly) and even some of his early TV work. Anything that I could find either on DVD or on YouTube in the early days. I even did a presentation on his life & work in one of my communications classes. I was obsessed. When I saw this image it brought me right back to that time in my life. Rebel Without a Cause was probably my favorite work of his; it’s just so iconic, isn’t it? Little trivia fact: the actress that played Jerry Seinfeld’s mother on Seinfeld actually dated James Dean in the early ‘50’s before he was famous and even wrote a book about it (which I’ve read of course).

What images have inspired you recently, from Instagram or elsewhere? I’d love to know!

Xo, Erica

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Check out the IG images I’m loving this week!

Juvia’s Place has launched in Ulta stores!

So…Juvia’s Place is now available to swatch and play in stores at Ulta! Hurray! I’ve been eyeing this brand up for a while now so I’m thrilled that it’s become physically accessible to the public. If you’ve never heard of Juvia’s Place before, I briefly spoke about their backstory in my post about indie brands that I wanted to try. They’ve exploded in the past few years thanks in large part to social media and the glowing reviews they’ve received from influencers and customers alike. They’re primarily known for their high-performing, bright and colorful eyeshadow palettes, but they also stock highlighters, blushes, liquid lipsticks and brushes. All in all it’s a carefully curated roster of products, which is what you’d expect from an indie brand.

Juvia’s Place became available for purchase on Ulta.com back in late July after the official announcement of the partnership hit social media. Just this week their products started appearing in stores, as seen in the endcap image at the top of this post. They announced that they are currently in about 500 Ulta locations; I’m not sure if they plan to expand that any further.

The brand is cruelty-free and mostly vegan (but not 100%).

I have yet to go into my local Ulta and see what they have in store, but I did wander over to Ulta.com. It doesn’t appear that they stock Juvia’s Place entire line, but they definitely do have their most popular items (i.e. the eyeshadow palettes). So I’ll quickly take you through now which products Ulta offers, and which they don’t.

THE PRODUCTS ULTA STOCKS – Shop here

All 11 EYESHADOW PALETTES!

  • range in price from $20-$25 depending on the number of pans/amount of product
  • all palettes appear to be in stock at the time of publishing this post
juviasplacepalettes
Image source: Juvia’s Place Instagram
juviasplacesaharanpalette
Image source: Juvia’s Place Instagram

 

ALL BLUSHES INCLUDING 2 PALETTES & 2 SINGLES

  • palettes are $18 for 6 pans
  • singles are $8
  • all blushes appear to be in stock at the time of publishing this post
juviasplaceblushes
Image source: Juvia’s Place Instagram

 

TWO LOOSE HIGHLIGHTING POWDERS

  • The Nubian Loose Highlighters in shades Nubia & Nefertiti, both $14/each
  • both appear to be in stock at the time of publishing this post
  • Juviasplace.com stocks a total of 4 loose highlighting powders
juviasplacehighlighters
These are all 4 of their loose highlighters but Ulta now stocks just the top two. Image source: Juvia’s Place Instagram

 

THREE LIQUID LIPSTICKS

  • All matte formulations retailing for $12/each in the shades Soil, Afrik & Lulu
  • all three appear to be in stock at the time of publishing this
  • juviasplace.com currently sells 6 matte/metallic liquid lipstick duo’s for $18/each

The liquid lipsticks on Ulta.com are currently not stocked on the Juvia’s Place website at the time of publishing this post. I believe these lipsticks were part of the Afrique collection that launched simultaneously with their Ulta.com launch, so perhaps these shades are exclusive to Ulta but I’m honestly not sure about that.

juviasplacelipsticks

THE PRODUCTS ULTA DOESN’T STOCK

BRUSHES

Juvia’s Place also sells 8 brush sets on their site but Ulta is not stocking any at this time; again, I don’t know if this will change in the future.

juviasplacebrushes
Image source: Juvia’s Place Instagram

A quick PSA: at the time of publishing this post, Juviasplace.com is having a sale on some of their eyeshadow palettes (plus no shipping charge over $35 order within the U.S.). So right now they are cheaper if you order direct from the brand, just FYI. Not sure how long this will last but I wanted to make you aware. My mother and I did a joint order two nights ago and snatched The Saharan Palette, The Nubian Palette, and The Warrior Palette. So excited to finally get my hands on this brand!

Are you excited that Juvia’s Place is now carried in Ulta stores? Will you be picking anything up? I’d love to know!

xo, Erica

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Check out which products Ulta stocks and which products they don’t from this brand

Instagram images that inspired me this week

Happy Friday! To transition us gently into weekend mode, I thought I’d do something a bit different today. I’d like to share with you all some of the Instagram images in the beauty category that stopped me in my tracks this week and made me go, wow! I find these all to be visually striking images in different ways depending on the personality behind the account (hopefully this will make more sense later). I gathered a nice mix of images from social media influencers, YouTubers, makeup brands, beauty editors and bloggers. To be honest I could have picked so many more than I did, but I decided to cut it off at 9 images. I’d love to periodically do posts like this in the future; perhaps they won’t always be beauty-related either. I like the idea of sharing beautiful images that perhaps will introduce you to accounts you didn’t know of or follow before.

I’m going to try to keep my commentary to a minimum here so the images do most of the talking but I’ll let you know along the way just why I think these particular images are noteworthy and who is behind the account.

3ceigphoto

I’ve been following the Korean makeup brand 3CE or 3 Concept Eyes on Instagram for a while now. I love almost all the imagery they put up mainly because it seems to focus more on beautiful, luxurious skin rather than dramatic eye looks. Also their reverse-ombre lip looks, a huge Korean makeup trend with the highest concentration of pigment towards the center of the lips, are just so gorgeous. Look at how dark that lipstick is in the tube but how soft it looks on the lips.

alexsteinherrigphoto

OK this is not beauty related, but just look at that rainbow! Alessandra Steinherr has been the Beauty Director of Glamour Magazine for the past decade and is a recent beauty blogger as well. She regularly posts interesting content and does lives quite frequently so if you’re not following her already, I recommend doing so.

byrdiebeautyigphoto

Byrdie is a great destination for all things beauty, lifestyle and wellness and their Instagram is always on point. For some reason I find myself gravitating more towards their posts on nails and manicures. In my dreams I’d get a manicure like the one pictured in this image. How beautiful, elegant and fairytale is this? And may I say, I appreciate the shorter nails. I think this would take on a whole different vibe if the nails pictured here were longer.

emanigphoto

This image is like Instagram perfection, isn’t it? Eman does great glam looks on YouTube if you haven’t heard of her before. I think the element that really struck me about this particular image was the different tones of blue used on her eyes. Even though her skin and lips looks flawless here, the focus is still all on those colorful, smokey eyes. Gorgeous.

katiejanehughesigphoto

I love, love, love the makeup artist Katie Jane Hughes. Not just her style but her whole makeup philosophy is appealing to me. Just look at the caption on this image and you’ll get an idea of what I’m talking about. She’s extremely active on Instagram and does lives and videos almost every day, sometimes multiple times a day. Her focus is often on juicy, healthy-looking skin and she shares helpful tips on both skincare and makeup application especially for hooded eyes. She’s definitely one to follow.

glossierigphoto

I still haven’t tried anything from Glossier yet (tear), but I’ve known for the longest time that the first product I’m likely to buy will be the Cloud Paint. It’s just so me! Easy-to-use cream, sheer blush that looks natural on the skin? Sign me up. I just have so many cream blushes at the moment, I can’t justify the purchase right now. Instead I’ll satisfy myself with looking at cool images like this.

glamourgigglesigphoto

I actually first discovered beauty and lifestyle blogger Priyanka Patel from Glamour & Giggles on Pinterest before I followed her on Instagram. Her blog is awesome, excellent recommendations and product reviews. I love the staging of this particular image. Everything about it is striking to me. The black and white of the Sephora bags against the pale pink color of the chair. And those cool makeup organizers and brush holders in the background. Even the tissue paper looks perfectly staged!

pixiwoosigphoto

I couldn’t not include an image from makeup artist Sam Chapman, aka one-half of Pixiwoo on YouTube. I’ve been watching her videos and tutorials since 2011; she’s one of the reasons I really got into makeup in fact. Like Katie Jane Hughes, her makeup philosophy is the primary reason I respect her. She often incorporates broken or disheveled elements into her makeup to give it a more authentic and relatable feel. I feel like this image gives both glam and understated vibes at the same time, which is awesome.

overgloweditigphoto

I love everything that skincare and beauty blogger Melanie at Overglow Edit does pretty much. I adore the aesthetic and overall vibe of both her Instagram feed and her blog. She kills it at snapping and editing her product overlays, and giving us little tidbits of info on the skincare she’s using. I’m not much of a skincare blogger since I rarely change up my very simple routine (although I did incorporate a new product just recently), so I enjoy hearing what others who much more knowledgeable, like her, have to say. I could have picked any image from her feed to feature here honestly, so I just picked one of her more recent posts. I love the pairing of the books & the greenery with the beauty products.

What images from Instagram or elsewhere have inspired you recently? Beauty or otherwise? I’d love to know!

xo, Erica

 

Want to know how ColourPop became so successful? Read this.

I’ve always been fascinated with ColourPop’s skyrocket to success and the dizzying rate with which they launch their products. Since 2014, it’s been the brand on every beauty lover’s tongue, in their wishlists and in their hauls. You turn around and there’s five more major launches and collaborations from them, it’s crazy. To me it seemed like they exploded out of nowhere very quickly, am I right? They were considered very mysterious at the time since there was no official spokesperson for the brand and the founders remained very much in the background. But of course there’s always a story to tell.

Interestingly, I’ve barely tried any ColourPop products before. My mom bought me an old Kathleen Lights collaboration from a while back which consisted of four Super Shock Shadows, Blaze, Kathleenlights, Glow & Cornelius (some or all of these were discontinued I think). Otherwise I’ve never touched one product. This is what’s truly ironic about this scenario. The reason that ColourPop has been “unsuccessful” selling products to someone like me is exactly the same reason (or one of the key reasons) why the brand has been so wildly successful selling to millions of other consumers. Haven’t guessed yet? It’s a true e-commerce brand for the modern digital world. I still rarely buy makeup online that I’ve never used or at least sampled before. This probably makes me “old school” but I’m fine with that.

But despite my inexperience with their product line, as a former student of business I find ColourPop to be its own terrific case study, and I’ll explain to you why.

What does being an e-commerce beauty brand for the modern digital world have to do with being successful at selling and marketing to consumers? Well, everything actually. I wrote briefly about ColourPop’s backstory in my older post on indie beauty brands, but I’d like to go into more detail here. If you don’t know much or anything about the brand, you’ll find this interesting I’m sure. The founders are two siblings, John & Laura Nelson, who grew up in the beauty industry since their father bought Spatz Labs, a beauty supply/manufacturing company, in the late ‘80’s. They saw an opportunity a few years ago that was ripe for exploitation: the meeting point between the prevalence of social media & influencer marketing, and the expansion of consumer spending in the beauty industry. If they created a beauty brand that was entirely e-commerce (no dependency on brick-and-mortar retailers) and targeted beauty influencers who would market their products to millions of followers, well that could be pretty successful. And don’t forget they had experience, heritage and first-hand access to a cosmetics manufacturing company.

So the Nelsons founded Seed Beauty, a brand-incubation company that became the parent to ColourPop Cosmetics, the first official brand under its umbrella. (If you’re curious, a brand incubator nutures and helps grow smaller startups to become full-fledged brands.) From the very start, ColourPop had definite advantages with customers. Like a lot of other e-commerce brands, its digital-first, social media-driven strategy gave it broad & fast exposure to their customer base. Social media marketing has broken down a lot of barriers that used to exist between brands and consumers; they can interact in ways they never used to. This newfound closeness has fast become the modern way to grow community, make sales and boost success. Much like Glossier, ColourPop claims its products are not conceived of nor designed in board rooms, but through interactions with their customers. They’ve designed products specifically requested by influencers and customers.

The second key factor here is having the established infrastructure of Seed Beauty baked into the ColourPop model, which gives it unparalleled speed-to-market. Everything from product concepting, R&D, production, and marketing is housed under one roof in Oxnard, CA; no middleman manufacturer or packager is necessary. So basically, they can pump more launches out more quickly. That’s huge. It’s the concept of ‘fast fashion’ yet applied to beauty, as Laura Nelson has stated. Oh and if you didn’t realize, this makes all their products super affordable. Everyone who loves ColourPop loves how affordable they are without skimping on quality. Hopefully now you understand how they are able to do that.

In four years, ColourPop has gone from strength to strength with no signs of slowing down. A little-known company called Kylie Cosmetics became the second brand to come under Seed Beauty after ColourPop. I think we all know how successful they’ve turned out to be (hello Kylie Jenner Forbes cover). The Nelsons claim there are more brands that will be coming up through Seed Beauty soon, one of which just launched a few weeks ago. Fourth Ray Beauty is an affordable skincare line where almost all the products are under $15.00 from cleansing oils to tonics and serums. I’m definitely intrigued by this line.

What do you think about ColourPop’s rise to success? Are you a fan of the brand? I’d love to know!

xo, Erica

(Sources used here: Refinery29, Revelist, FastCompany, Northwest Business Review.)

Can we hit pause on highlighter, please?

After a few years, highlighter is still having a huge moment in the makeup world. It’s everywhere I look when I shop for makeup, in every conceivable form: powders, creams, gels or liquids in big pans, small pans, palettes, bottles, & mini’s. And in almost every color from gold to pink to peach to purple and blue. I would say every second or third tutorial I watch on YouTube or Instagram, or ad image I see online, features highlighter prominently. Either it’s slathered onto the skin so it can be seen in heaven or layered on top of creams or liquids to give an almost supernatural effect. (To read more about my thoughts on Instagram makeup, click here). “Blinding” skin is in and matte skin is BAD, people. Or at least that’s the message I’m getting.

Continue reading “Can we hit pause on highlighter, please?”

A Meditation on “Instagram Makeup”

I don’t know about you, but (surprise, surprise) my Instagram feed is one large makeup advertisement. I’m constantly inundated with updates on new launches, old favorites and collaborations from brands like Lancome, Benefit, ColourPop & Kiko Milano (just to name a select few). I wouldn’t have it any other way, but with every scroll it drives the point home that “Instagram makeup” is not something that I will personally strive to master.

Continue reading “A Meditation on “Instagram Makeup””