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How to Play to Your Strengths

Photo by Benjamin Davies CC0
Caption: Make happiness your goal.

Have you ever wondered about whether you’re fulfilling your potential? If you want to escape the daily grind of your routine and instead, start feeling joyful about life, you need to identify your strengths and play to them. Many of us have hidden strengths that we ignore because we don’t have the time, money or energy to indulge them. However, if you identify where your natural talent lies and build your life around it, you will find yourself effortlessly happier, healthier and more at peace.

Identify Your Talent

The first step is to identify where your natural strength and talent lie. Billionaire Microsoft founder Bill Gates started off pursuing a law career at Harvard but dropped out in favor of his growing interest in computer programming. If he hadn’t made the decision to follow his natural ability and enthusiasm, then the world’s largest PC software company might never have happened, and Gates wouldn’t have achieved his potential.

It might feel impossible to identify that one thing that you’re good enough at to dedicate your life. To start with, think of something you enjoy — something that you feel a real enthusiasm for and would want to do every day. It needs to be something that you are not only good at but excel in beyond most other people. Even if this is spending hours on the PlayStation leveling a video game or making the best poached eggs in the morning, it’s a starting point and can take you further than you might think.

 Photo by Ian Schneider / CC0
Caption: Find your passion.

Make the Most of It

Next, you need to think about how to turn this specific skill into something bigger. When Chris Moneymaker entered the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event back in 2003, he had no idea how much his life was about to change. But he did believe in his ability and put faith in the hard work he dedicated to honing his chosen craft. Nowadays, he has the Moneymaker PSPC Tour of the U.S., helping other poker players around the country to follow in his footsteps and win big.

It might not seem obvious at first which path to take but following your strengths can only lead to success. That’s because when you’re doing what you’re good at, it brings positive results, gives you more energy and motivates you to go further. Video games tester, chocolate taster and island caretaker might all sound too good to be true, but they’re all real jobs that utilize people’s niche abilities.

Look for an Opportunity

Once you’ve identified where your strengths lie, it’s time to look out for an opportunity to apply them in real life. Sometimes, this means thinking outside the box and creating that opportunity for yourself. One of the most successful stars to come out of the blogging boom has been a British woman named Zoe Sugg. She began her YouTube vlogging (video blogging) empire from her bedroom, recording product reviews, clothes hauls and beauty tips and talking about her interests. Fast forward almost a decade, and Sugg now has 12 million subscribers to her YouTube channel, a range of beauty products available in nationwide stores and is a best-selling author. She has successfully built a business around herself, marketing her values and interests through exclusive products.

It might look like a lot of hard work to pursue your dreams, and that’s because it is. It takes dedication, courage and faith to turn what might only be a hobby right now into a career that can support you through life. However, it is much more work to keep doing something you are not best suited to do, not fulfilling you and unlocking the potential within you.

Identifying your strengths is the first step, and once you’ve done that, you’ll find that everything else follows more easily. After all, what could be easier than doing what you do best?

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Best Eyeshadow Palettes Under $25

Eyeshadows have ruled the makeup world for some time now. Everyone needs that perfect neutral shade for daily wear or that risqué color for a night out. If you are looking to try out some great new shades without breaking the bank, here are some of my favorite eyeshadow palettes under $25.

Morphe’s 9A Always Golden Eyeshadow Palette

These nine golden shades in the Morphe 9A Always Golden Eyeshadow Palette are sure to take you places, faux real. Crazy-creamy, powerfully pigmented, beyond-blendable eyeshadows perfect for some fun in the sun or some fake-it-til-you-make-it action. Choose your own color adventure. But one thing’s for sure; you’ll never run out of ways to turns heads.

Price: $12.00

Essence’s All About Toffee Eyeshadow Palette

This Gorgeous Essence All About Toffee Eyeshadow Palette has eight complementing, buildable colors and multiple finishes; satin, matte and metallic effects. It blends easily and the colors will stay on all day! Perfect palette for everyday wear.

Price: $5.49

Covergirl’s Goldens TruNaked Eyeshadow Palette

CoverGirl’s Goldens TruNaked Eye Shadow Palette has a stunning range of neutral shades for your perfect nude eye look. Richly pigmented shadows in golden, and in a range of colors and textures – from neutrals to Smokeys and shimmers to mattes.

Price: $5.99

Makeup Revolution’s Iconic 1 Redemption Eyeshadow Palette

Makeup Revolution’s Iconic 1 Redemption Eye Shadow Palette is a perfect mix of pearl, shimmer and matte shades. As comfortable and familiar as your favorite t-shirt, the bronzy tones of this palette will make you want to strip down and bare all (in the best way possible).

Price: $7.00

NYX’s Cosmic Metals Shadow Palette

Create a spectrum of out-of-this-world eye looks with the Cosmic Metals Shadow Palette – a new eyeshadow set inspired by NYX Professional Makeup Professional Makeup’s beloved Cosmic Metals Lip Cream. Powered by six pigment-packed eyeshadows, this gorgeous set loads your lids with rich, metallic color and incredible color payoff.
Price: $9.99

E.L.F.’s Online Only Need It Nude Eyeshadow Palette

Achieve beautifully natural eye looks with these perfectly curated 10 neutral eyeshadow shades in the e.l.f. Cosmetics Need It Nude Eyeshadow Palette. This collection of hues is ideal for shading, highlighting, and defining the eyes. These silky smooth shadows can be used as a liner, on the lid, and in the crease of the eye for an expertly contoured and blended look. Cruelty free and vegan.

Price: $10.00

Sleek Makeup’s Under A Spell Eyeshadow Palette

Create a variety of stunning looks with these 12 shades of mineral based, highly pigmented eyeshadow in the Sleek MakeUP Under A Spell Eyeshadow Palette.
Price: $12.99
BH Cosmetics Be… by BubzBeauty 12 Color Eyeshadow Palette
Known to her YouTube fans as BubzBeauty, Lindy Tsang hand-picked the must-have shades in her BH Cosmetics Be… by BubzBeauty 12 Color Eyeshadow Palette. Each shade offers day-to-night versatility – and emphasizes fans’ beauty, both inside and out.
Price: $14.50

Models Own’s Supernatural Eyeshadow Palette

Go to a parallel universe with this Models Own Supernatural Eyeshadow Palette. From dark secrets to sultry whispers, it’s totally bewitching. With the brush, apply metallic nudes, shimmer browns and rich golds for a look that’s out of this world.

Price: $17.99

 

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IT Cosmetics Black Friday & Cyber Monday Deals

Take the stress out of your holiday shopping, avoid the lines and endless searching for the right gifts! Let IT Cosmetics help you quickly cross off all the beautiful women on your gifting list with amazing online BLACK FRIDAY and CYBER MONDAY beauty deals! itcosmetics.com is your one-stop shop this holiday season!

 

Black Friday Weekend

Available 11/23/17 – 11/24/17 (11:59pm ET)

o    Promo Code: FRIDAY17

Available 11/25/17 – 11/26/17 (11:59pm ET)

  • Spend $25 and receive a Discover IT Kit – a travel size set of your favorite IT Cosmetics must-haves including Bye Under Eye, Brow Power, Superhero Mascara plus two bonus sample packets

o   Promo Code: FREEGIFT

Available 11/27/16 (11:59pm ET) for ONE DAY ONLY!!!

o   Promo Code: MONDAY20

Wait…there’s more!

 

Available 11/28/17 – 12/3/17 (11:59pm ET)

Enjoy free shipping all week-long! And every order includes an exclusive IT Girl Tote complete with free samples of your favorite IT Cosmetics products!

 

Happy shopping!

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Pumpkin Spice Latte Inspired Beauty

It is finally starting to feel like fall around New York City, and that can only mean one thing: Pumpkin spice everything! Yes—that includes your beauty routine! Try a PSL-inspired look using glimmering bronzers, warm-toned eyeshadow, orange-hued lipstick and more. Shop our favorites below!

 

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Emmy Looks for Less From Azazie

Television’s elite rocked the red carpet to celebrate the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards and a rainbow of fashion frocks took center stage.  If you want to sport a similar style, but not sure you can handle the price tag, don’t fear!  Azazie.com – an online bridal wear retailer that boasts made-to-measure dresses at a fraction of industry costs – has an array of stunning styles to make sure you look like a million dollars, without spending it. For some style inspiration, highlights of the night include:

 

Wonderful in White – With summer wedding season barely in the rearview mirror, many celebrities – such as Millie Bobby Brown (Stranger Things), Uzo Aduba (Orange is the New Black) and Evan Rachel Wood (Westworld) – opted to wear white for television’s big night.  Trying to extend her newlywed status a little longer, Sofia Vergara joined the club, donning a beautiful strapless white Marx Zunino mermaid gown that showed off her amazing figure. For a similarly stunning look, Azazie’s Misty ($249) gown is a flattering sweetheart tulle strapless gown with a full pleated bodice and corset back that is sure to fit you like a glove, without breaking the bank.

 

Red Carpet Ready  – Red is always a sizzling color that ensures you’ll stand out in a crowd. Helping her to do just that, Edie Falco wore a beautiful one-shouldered red gown that accentuated her curves in all the right places.  Similarly stunning, Azazie’s Carissa floor-length one-shoulder chiffon dress boasts a trumpet/mermaid silhouette, twisted flare in the back and one-sided ruching at the hip, all for the incredible cost of $129.

 

Orange is the New Black – Color dresses were abundant at the award show and Viola Davis is always one to embrace a bold hue. Tonight was no exception, as she wore a bright orange Zac Posen gown with thick straps and front detailing. Azazie carries several similar styles that offer a ton of bang for your buck.  The floor-length Melinda dress (shown in Tangerine; $129) features spaghetti straps leading up to a halter neckline, pleating throughout the top of the bodice and pockets to stash some money and your favorite shade of lip-gloss.  Kaitlynn (shown in papaya; $119) is a floor-length, empire style dress with a heavily pleated bodice that is sure to flatter any figure.

Back to the Basics – Celebrities were looking to make their mark at the Emmys and did so with interesting necklines (plunging galore!), embellishments and back detailing.  Shailene Woodley showed off her sexy side, wearing a green spaghetti strap dress with double back strap detailing for a little edge.  Azazie’s floor-length Kailyn ($119) dress boasts a similar strappy look, featuring an overlay of chiffon for an illusion halter neckline and back straps held together with a jewel button.

All Azazie.com dresses range in size from 0-30, as well as custom sizing and come in over 60 colors.

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Let’s Talk About “Bodega”

Earlier this week, Paul McDonald and Ashwath Rajan, two former Google employees, launched their start-up “Bodega”. The goal is to make corner stores, also known to many on the east coast as “Bodegas”, a thing of the past. Safe to say Twitter lost their minds! Almost immediately, “Bodega” started trending on Twitter. Their idea was to “combine the convenience of online ordering with the instant gratification of real world retail.”

There’s only one problem: you can’t replicate the Bodega experience.

A Bodega is defined as a small grocery store, commonly found in a low-income, urban areas, and Spanish-speaking neighborhoods. They sell everything from cold-cut sandwiches to nail files and toys.

To many New Yorker’s, their local Bodega employees are like family. These are the people who will make your bacon egg & cheese at any time of the day/night. This is the place where you find things you didn’t even know you needed. They understand the concept of “I O U (I-owe-you). When you don’t have any money to eat, they always have your back. Now it is time that we come together to help them out.

A big shout out to The Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development in New York for addressing the matter in a statement. “The awful irony of naming the company ‘Bodega’ after the very brick and mortar institutions they aim to displace, to say nothing about the cat their logo is based on that will similarly be displaced, is offensive, utterly misguided, and frankly disrespectful to New Yorker’s,” it said.

All in all, I am all for building a future, but let’s try not to eradicate and gentrify such an important part of many urban communities. More importantly, the vending machine could potentially put many mom and pop stores out of business. Minorities/immigrants own majorities of these small businesses, and depend on this as their source of income. Speaking from a personal experience, I grew up seeing my family work their butts off every day at our own Bodega where we serviced many poor communities and made sure everyone could afford to eat and buy whatever they needed. Using the term “Bodega” is offensive to the Hispanic immigrants who established their businesses in the 1960’s and 1970’s and built their legacy off serving their locals. Bodegas are all about the human interaction. Some fancy vending machine carrying cups of noodle soups and stale candy bars won’t give you that warm experience provided to you at your local corner store.

Check out the best Twitter reactions below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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