Preparing for Flawless Photos

Hello you, and welcome to inside the mind of an Obsessive Compulsive Designer.

As many of you know, my fiancé and I just recently took our engagement photos. Our photographer, Kirstie of Capture Life Studios, was amazing! She definitely captured our personalities and made sure we got all the shots we wanted. She set aside so much time for us and made us feel like we were her top priority. She made this whole experience so wonderful and easy for us!

I used several staple products of mine to prepare for the photoshoot and I thought I would share! Each of these products made such a dramatic difference and I don’t know what I would’ve done without each and every one.

  1. Crest 3D Whitening Strips – I’ve used these for years along with Crest’s corresponding toothpaste and mouthwash. I use the toothpaste and mouthwash daily but the strips are only supposed to be used once a year. The toothpaste and mouthwash keep my teeth white all year; so, I just use treatment two weeks before the photoshoot just to freshen up my smile.
  2. Jergens Natural Glow – I don’t know which is whiter, my smile or my skin. Luckily, Jergens keeps my skin from reflecting sunlight. I use this after I shower to build up a gradual tan and keep my skin looking healthy and alive!
  3. Sally Hansen Gel Shine 3D Top Coat – With the engagement shoot being all about the ring, I had to make sure my nails were as flawless as possible! (Which was harder said than done since I’m a nail biter.) This product is great to prolong any nail polish since it is a clear coat. Plus, it is way less expensive than getting your nails professionally done but gives them the same effect.
  4. Benefit POREfessional Primer – Makes any foundation glide over it like a dream while making your face look flawless. Is there anything bad to say about it?
  5. Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs – This is a new product (to me) I used for this photo shoot and I am officially hooked! It instantly made me 5 shades darker but managed to still look like a natural tan. Not to mention, I haven’t been very kind to my legs in the past. Being an athlete definitely left by legs bruised and scarred. This product did a great job disguising all of these marks! It has a slight glitter to it which adds a gorgeous glow to the skin and make it look, as the bottle suggests, air brushed! Must have in your beauty collection!

Again, I can’t thank Capture Life Studios enough. She made this such an incredible experience and we will definitely treasure these pictures for the rest of our lives!

Cruelty Free Makeup and Beauty Products

Hello you, and welcome to inside the mind of an Obsessive Compulsive Designer.

This year I made a big change in my life that I’m definitely proud to share. I only wish I had done this sooner! I had all these preconceived notions that making the switch over to cruelty free products was going to cost me an arm and a leg. I’m not saying some products aren’t pricey…but there are great drugstore priced alternatives that are out there. Since I do have rather sensitive skin, I’m fine with paying a little extra for products that will have a major impact on my skin’s behavior. For instance, I tend to shell out a little more money on foundations, moisturizers, toners, makeup removers, etc. Not to say there aren’t great products in the drugstore price range for these items. I just prefer not to chance it with my sensitive skin.


I have always been a big lover of all of our furry creatures but never really paid attention to the impact we had on them. One day I was surfing the internet and came across a gruesome picture that finally woke me up and got me to really open my eyes. Of course I won’t post a picture of that extremely graphic image here, but just know what exactly you’re getting yourself into if you Google “animal testing”. That is probably my most important point I want to touch on in this blog, is research.


Researching for yourself what exactly animal testing means and how it impacts our furry friends. Researching what brands are completely cruelty free and which are obligated to test on animals. And of course, researching which products are worth spending the money on. Youtube has definitely been a great resource for me. Watching and listening to dozens of experts in the field hear about why they use certain products and what products work well with certain skin types definitely broadened my knowledge of makeup (as well as taught me how to better treat my skin).


Making the switch over to cruelty free products is a long one. If I was a millionaire, I would just trash all my old makeup and buy all new. However, for a realistic girl on a budget, I am slowly just replacing my old with the new. Every time I run out of an old product I buy a cruelty free substitute! When old products start to get low, I turn to blogs, videos, and reviews to help me decide which cruelty free product I should replace it with. I started this transition at the beginning of the New Year and I have made a pretty solid dent in my beauty stash.

Making this switch has definitely lifted a weight off of my shoulders and I can sleep a little better at night knowing my selfish habits don’t harm anyone. I do urge you all to take the plunge and do better for our furry friends; but, I do want you all to do your research and figure out what all it entails. Together we can steadily make cruelty products a standard in the beauty industry.