Friday, October 20, 2017

Our Couples Shower

The Neapolitan baby shower

The Neapolitan baby shower

The Neapolitan baby shower

How cute are these blocks that Michelle made?!?! They were the perfect shower decor! I believe she found the DIY instructions on Pinterest. 

{Above and Below}
The absolute BEST girlfriends a girl could ever ask for. I love these ladies SOOO much! Some of them flew in from Chicago and Philadelphia just to be there and I couldn't be more grateful. 

Last Sunday two of my amazing friends Michelle and Shea threw us a couples shower and I wanted to share some photos from the party. My MIL had asked me a few months ago what my ideal shower would be and I said a "Non-traditional couples shower" and I feel so lucky that we were able to be surrounded by our closets friends and Shane's siblings to shower Baby Smith. It was SO much fun and turned out exactly how I had envisioned.  

Baby Smith got so many incredible gifts and books. He has a whole sports collection going already with gear for the Gator's, Fighting Illini, and the Cubs. 

I finally ordered his nursery furniture and we are nailing down paint colors this week. I decided to go with Pottery Barn furniture because the set I loved had many matching pieces. I have ordered so far this crib, dresser, and nightstand. I will definitely do a nursery reveal post when everything is complete. I can't believe I am already in the third trimester and little smith will be here before we know it! Time is flying by. 

Thanks so much for reading!

xo, Alina 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Everyday Makeup Routine

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 // 11 // 12 // 13 // 14 // 15 // 16 // 17 // 18

Today I am going to share with y'all my "Everyday Makeup Routine". I get tons of questions about the products I use so I thought I would share an updated routine. This routine is what I do everyday for work, but I usually don't do bronzer, blush, and highlighter unless I am going out after work. It just takes more time to get those products on and blended.  In the morning I want to be quick, which means more sleep for me :). I had the collage made with the products in the order I use them so hopefully this is easy to follow!

1. After I moisturize my face and let it set for a minute or two I put on Benefit's Porefessional Primer.  It makes my pores look SO much smaller and makes all the proceeding makeup products go on smoothly. 

2. I found these CoverGirl Trublend concealers a few months ago and fell in love! I was using a different product and I thought it was clogging my pores so I went on the hunt for a concealer that would work for my skin. I like the consistency of these concealers a lot. They aren't too thick or too oily. A lot of the concealers I have bought when I try to cover a a pimple and blend it in, it just wipes away. That drives me nuts! I also hate when they are SO thick it doesn't blend at all and you can tell it is there after you apply foundation. I love that they come in such a variety of colors. I have 3-4 different shades depending on how pale or tan I am. 

3. This foundation is life! I searched and searched for a foundation for months before I came across this one. I wanted a foundation with no SPF in it. When I go out at night I hate having the white flashback in my photos. It is so hard to find a good foundation that does not have SPF. {My moisturizer has SPF in it already so during the day time I have that on, but if I am applying makeup to go out, I use a different moisturizer without SPF.}  A friend of my mine suggested I tried Estee Lauder Double Wear, which I did. It was WAYYYY to thick and very full coverage. I went back to Nordstrom to get some help and the lady who helped me suggested Estee Lauder Double Wear Light. As the name suggests, you get all the amazing qualities of Double Wear without the full coverage and thick formula. It is build-able too, so if you want it to be lighter coverage or very full coverage you can add less or more depending on what you want.  I have this foundation in 4 different shades and I just love it! I am currently using shade 2.0. 

4. I use my Beauty Blender to apply my foundation, blend in my under eye corrector, and to bake my under eyes with powder. 

5. I have used this Maybelline Dream Lumi corrector in the shade "Radiant" for years! I found it when I was in graduate school in 2013 and I have been using it ever since. I did stop using it for awhile when I found the YSL Touche Eclat. I went back to Maybelline eventually, because it is more than half the price and is honestly very, very close in quality to the YSL. For me it wasn't THAT much better to justify the cost difference. I apply this is a triangle underneath my eyes and blend it in with my beauty blender.

6, 7 , 8 & 9. Next, I set my under eye. I mix the Rimmel Stay Matte and the RCMA powder together and set my under eye with my beauty blender. I brush off the excess with the Elf Stippling brush (#9). Then I set my foundation on the rest of my face. I use the Sigma F30 (#6) powder brush and Rimmel's Stay Matte powder to do this. I love Sigma brushes and have been using them for years. They are a great price, awesome quality, and don't shed. I have tried so many different powders throughout the years and recently went back to the Rimmel powder.

10 & 11. When I am planning to go out after work, or going out in general, I always use bronzer, blush, and a highlighting powder. I am currently using Mac's Mineralized Skinfinish in color "Give Me Sun". I switch back and forth between a few bronzers depending on my skin tone at the time. I do love Bobbi Brown's bronzer as well. I loveeeee this Sigma F50 Duo Fibre Brush. It puts the product exactly where I want it and blends like a dream.

12 & 13. I have always loved Mac Blushes. They are really the only blushes I use except for one Milania Baked Blush I love. I rotate between a few different shades in Mac Blushes my two favorites are "Warm Soul" and "Love Cloud". I use the Sigma F40 Brush to apply to blush. The goat hair that this brush is made out of allows you to pick up the blush and distribute it evenly without a ton of blending.

14 & 15. Adding highlighter to the tops of my cheeks is the last step for my face makeup. This Becca highlighter in Opal is the ONLY highlighter I use. It has lasted me 2 years and I use it frequently. I have used Mac's "Soft and Gentle" before and still own it, but I never reach for it anymore. I use this Sigma F86 Precision Tapered Brush to apply the highlighter. I then go in with Sigma's F25 Tapered Brush to diffuse it and blend it in {I forgot to add that to this collage}. The F86 allows me to place the highlighter exactly where I want it and the F25 blends in into my cheek bones seamlessly.

16, 17, & 18. This next step is something I do every single time I put makeup on. If I don't do it, I look tired and my eyes just kind of disappear into my face. I need definition on my lower lash line to make everything look the way I like. I RARELY use eyeliner and I NEVER use it on my lower lash line. Instead, I use eye shadow. I mix two colors from the Naked Palette "Buck" and "Darkhorse" together with the Sigma E65 and use it along my lower lash line. I then blend it out with the Sigma E30. Once I have blended that out the way I want I am pretty much done with my makeup. I will go over my whole face with a powder brush to make sure everything is blended perfectly. 

Whoaaaa that was a long post. I hope if you read it you found some helpful tips, and products to incorporate into your own routine. I have very oily skin and live in a very humid, coastal climate. If you have very dry skin some of these products may not be ideal for you. However, you can't go wrong with a lot of the makeup brushes I have mentioned. They are all available at a great price point and mine have lasted years.

Thanks for reading



Monday, August 7, 2017

Gender Reveal.. Touchdown or Tutu!?!?

The Neapolitan gender reveal

The Neapolitan gender reveal

The Neapolitan gender reveal

We are SO excited to announce that Baby Smith is going to be a BOY

We found out yesterday with some of our closest friends and family at a beautiful brunch that my sister in law Danielle and great friend Brooke threw for us. It was so amazing to celebrate with everyone and finally find out the gender of Baby Smith. 

Shane and I were both hoping for a boy. We took a genetic test to find out the gender and to rule several genetic diseases. I didn't want to do any extra ultrasounds {I am only doing two, hopefully} and we didn't want to wait a few more weeks for the anatomy scan. 

I am so exciting to start planning the nursery. As of now, the colors I really want to go with are light blue, navy, and white. I don't want it to be a traditional themed nursery. I want it to be really upscale, unique, and special. I will definitely share the design process as we figure out what we really want. 

Thanks so much reading!



Friday, July 28, 2017

Life Changing Skincare: My Rodan and Fields Journey

January 23, 2017

February 23, 2017

Rodan and Fields The Neapolitan
March 23, 2017

Rodan and Fields The Neapolitan
June 8, 2017

Okay so here we go! I have talked about my acne problems here before and suggested products that I have tried and that worked for me. I really wanted to share what products I have been using now because of the amazing results I have had. 

About 6 months before I got married (around 2013) my skin went out of control. {I even took steroids the week leading up to my wedding to ensure perfect skin for my special day} I had hormonal acne all over my chin areas as you can see in the first photo taken in January 2017. I have lived with this acne for that many years and I have tried SO many products. I used to be on a prescription medication for it, but I got off it because I didn't want that medication in my body. I thought for awhile it was birth control and I got off that as well. Nothing helped. I had stopped eating most dairy products in college and thought that helped initially, but it still persisted. 

I started using Mario Badescu products in 2016 and that seemed to help a little bit. It didn't prevent the pimples, but it helped get rid of them pretty fast once they started. I went back to the dermatologist yearly and each time they told me there was NOTHING I could do for the hormonal acne other than take medication. That was really frustrating for me. 

In comes my friend Jessica Rieter. She bugged me for months to try Unblemished by Rodan and Fields. I had tried ProActive in college and had fairly good results. My skin always responds better to Salicylic Acid so I was hesitant to try Umblemished. She FINALLY convinced me to try it and I received my first kit shortly before the first picture was taken. I did two cycles of the Unblemished and she noticed in the pictures I sent her my skin was really drying out. {My skin is SOOOO oily and the Florida weather does not help it out at all.} She suggested that I start on the Redefined regimen and that is when my skin really started to clear up. I think my skin needed the Unblemished to clean out and purge my pores and the Redefine to start making the pores smaller. 

The VERY first time I tried Redefine I started with the first step, which is the mask. Next, is the Pore Minimizing Toner. I texted Jessica overjoyed because I could see my pores were smaller. That toner is literally a miracle. I don't know how it does it, but it does. I could NOT believe that it worked that fast. By March, you can imagine my shock at literally having almost no visible pimples on my skin in just 2 months!  

Now I do still get pimples every once and a while, but they don't last more than a day. If I get one I will notice it in the morning and by the next day they are significantly reduced if not gone all together. The number of pimples popping up on my face has diminished too. I used to have 5-10 all over my chin area and now if I get one it is just ONE. 

I have felt so liberated since my skin has cleared up. I wake up on the weekends and Shane and I go to brunch and I don't put anything on my face, but moisturizer. My skin has always been my biggest insecurity and to be able to find products that have helped with that is life changing. I am so grateful to Jessica and the ladies at Rodan and Fields for making products that help people who have acne problems like I did. 

You may also be able to tell from these photos that the length of my eyelashes dramatically changed. I would say about 4-5 months ago Jessica convinced me to try the Lash Boost Serum, also by Rodan and Fields. Needless to say I AM ADDICTED. My lashes are SO long and people compliment me on them daily. I always get asked if they are extensions or what I do to make them so long. Unfortunately, lash boost has become so popular that they are running out of their current supply. They have put a hold on those who can purchase the serum. 

But GUESS WHAT!! I am giving away one bottle of Lash Boost Serum to one of my readers! Here are the rules: 

1. Comment on this post what your favorite beauty product is
2. Follow me on Instagram @alinamsmith 
3. Follow Jessica my consultant and good friend @beeingjessicaann

I will announce the winner on my Instagram page Friday, August 4th. 


xo, Alina 

Friday, July 21, 2017

Surprise Announcement

Baby Announcement The Neapolitan Blog

Baby Announcement The Neapolitan Blog

Baby Announcement The Neapolitan Blog

Baby Announcement The Neapolitan Blog

Baby Announcement The Neapolitan Blog

My outfit details:
Brooks Brothers Dress // Steve Madden Shoes old similar here // David Yurman Bracelets here and here // Lilly Pulitzer Bracelet // Honora Pearl Earrings 

His outfit details:

We are so excited to announce that we are expecting Baby Smith's arrival in early 2018. This has been an incredibly hard secret to keep from everyone and it is relief to finally announce. We do not know the gender of the baby yet, but we will be finding out soon and have a gender reveal party for our friends and family. 

We found out about our little blessing shortly after I got back from a trip to Vegas. We did not plan this pregnancy so it was a HUGE surprise for us both. I am still so nervous about what is to come, but I know Shane and I will get through it together. He has been an ANGEL this entire time and I couldn't ask for a better partner. I have been very lucky and I didn't experience really any morning sickness. I would get a bit nauseous in the afternoon, but if I continually snacked it would go away. 

My clothes are already fitting differently and I was lucky to find this white eyelet dress from Brooks Brothers the day before our shoot. I know I will wear it a ton after pregnancy, but for now its hung up deep in my closet. I am also so fortunate to have a few friends that are already Mothers and have been loaning or giving me their maternity clothes. I have a pair of Madewell maternity jeans from my friend and I loveeee them. They are so comfortable! I wore them to a Marlin's game last weekend while we were in South Beach. 

Well I think that is it for now. Thanks so much for reading!

xo, Alina

Photos by: Jillian Lee