Getting Personal #61: My Skin & Makeup Routines (Part 2)


Image Credit: The Odyssey Online

As promised, here’s Part 2 of my skin and makeup routines!

If you missed Part 1, here’s the link to the post:


Here we go!


Like I mentioned last week, my makeup routine is pretty simple. I’ve tried both foundation and powder over several years, and I’ve finally decided that I don’t want to use either one!

Here’s my current makeup routine, in four easy steps:

  1. Blush
  2. Eyeshadow
  3. Eyeliner
  4. Mascara

I remember getting introduced to Mary Kay products back when I was in middle school. Between my mom using their skin care products (She still does now!), and several friends having free facials and makeovers at sleepovers, I loved their makeup back then.

Think of a early teenage Laura Beth experimenting with shades like Cotton Candy, Lime Green, Icy Blue, and more …

Years ago, a friend started selling Mary Kay to help pay her way through college. I bought several things at that launch party that I’ve loved since:

I still like a lot of what Mary Kay makes, but I don’t have a regular rep that I buy from right now. Most makeup that I’ve bought in the last year or so has actually come from the Dollar Tree, Walmart, Target, or your average drugstore (Walgreens, CVS/pharmacy, etc.)

Three Mary Kay items that I currently use actually came from a local Goodwill store:

So, back to my current four-step routine. This is what I do, and use, on an almost daily basis:

  1. Blush – Either Sparkling Cider or Cherry Blossom. With my skin tone, I can be liberal with Sparkling Cider, but cautious with Cherry Blossom. Too much of that, and I turn into a porcelain doll!
  2. Eyeshadow – I use the Eye Definer brush for either Truffle or Chocolate Kiss, on my eyelids. I use the Eye Crease brush for Spun Silk, on the skin between my lids and my brows.
  3. Eyeliner – I normally like/prefer a crayon or twist-up black eyeliner, but recently I’ve been loving my L.A. Colors liquid eyeliner. This came from my local Dollar Tree!
  4. Mascara – I used a few different types of mascara from Mary Kay until it ran out. Then, in 2015, while planning my wedding, I found L’Oreal Paris Telescopic Original Mascara from I loved the look so much on my wedding day, that I bought a second tube!

This morning – Fresh face, no makeup.

Just ten minutes later, all four steps complete.

I definitely love my Mary Kay brushes, don’t get me wrong!

But, I recently found something amazing:

Wizard Wands!!

I ordered these from Storybook Cosmetics a while back, and they are awesome!

Makeup Tips

  • Pay attention to your eye color.
    • I have hazel/green eyes, so I naturally lean toward more brown/beige/suede tones for my eyeshadow.
    • For eyeliner and mascara, I tend to go back and forth between black and dark brown. Both colors work well for me.
  • Always moisturize your face before applying makeup.
    • As mentioned in Part 1, I use Enzymion and Tea Tree Toner from LUSH Handmade Cosmetics. I’ve found that this combination, right now, works the best for my skin. I highly recommend for you to research your skin and test (and re-test) until you find something that works best for you.
    • When I wear makeup (not every day), my skin still feels hydrated and fresh all day.
  • Always take your makeup off before going to bed!
    • I cannot stress this enough – It’s so important. Your face will thank you.
    • This has never happened to me (knock on wood), but one of my friend’s wives got a terrible case of blepharitis (eyelid inflammation) the week of their wedding! It happened mainly because she wasn’t taking off her eye makeup before going to sleep. Lucky for her, she received prompt treatment and everything cleared up for their big day!
    • I currently use oil-free makeup wipes, but you can also make your own.
    • You can also use Coalface or Dark Angels from LUSH. I want to try one of these products next, primarily to cut down on the waste that wipes create.
  • If you’re interested in learning more about makeup, I definitely recommend contacting a Mary Kay representative near you. However, two other good places to learn and explore are Ulta Beauty and Sephora. If you decide to go with either of those, I suggest going into a store. I’ve found that employees at both are not only knowledgeable, but super helpful! Sephora even has the Color IQ test, where you can find out your exact skin tones (red, yellow) and the employees will help you with specific product recommendations for lips, foundation, and concealer.
  • Learn how to wash your brushes/applicators properly, and how often.
  • Make sure to read expiration dates on all of your makeup. Most companies are now required to have a jar symbol with an indicator such as 6M (six months after opening), 12M (twelve months after opening), and so on. There are different recommended dates of use for different types of makeup.

Until the next headline, Laura Beth πŸ™‚

Tag #17: School Subjects Book Tag


Image Credit: iStock

The ladies over at Thrice Read did it again! Another fantastic book tag!

Here’s the link to their post:

Math- A book that left your head spinning in circles.

Allegiant. It was such a frustrating book!

English – A book you think has beautiful written expression.

The Great Gatsby.

Physics – Your favorite scientifically minded character from a book or film.

Dr. Victor Frankenstein.

Chemistry – Your favorite literary couple?

Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice.

Biology – Your favorite book/series/film character.

Harry Potter.

French – Your favorite foreign book/film/program.

The Millennium Trilogy – Specifically, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

Art – Have you ever judged a book by its cover, even if you weren’t meant to?!

Oh, yes. I’ve found that I’ve judged covers more as I’ve gotten older.

History – The last historical book you read.

The War That Saved My Life – I highly recommend this one!

Geography – A literary destination you would really like to visit (real or fictional).

Definitely Hogwarts!

Drama – a book you think has a lot of over-dramatic hype

The Twilight series. I tried to read them, but I didn’t get a lot out of any of them.

Until the next headline, Laura Beth πŸ™‚

Blog Awards #11: Blogger Recognition Award – Number 3!


Image Credit: Found on The Green Onion Blog.

Many thanks to The Green Onion Blog for nominating me for The Blogger Recognition Award!

Here’s the link to his post, where I was nominated:

The Rules:

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  2. Write a post to show your award.
  3. Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  4. Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  5. Select other bloggers you want to give this award to.
  6. Comment on each blog and let them know you have nominated them and provide the link to the post you created.

How Hot Shot Headlines Started:

Thanks to Dr. Bill Stuart (Dr. B.) at Longwood University, I created my first blog through his Computer-Mediated Communication class. After a few years, different blogs that didn’t go very far, and a couple of platforms (Blogspot, WordPress, etc.), I landed here. I celebrate my blogaversary next month – It’s been three years since Hot Shot Headlines officially kicked off.

As for the name: “Hot Shot” is the nickname that my dad gave me years ago. We have no idea how it started, or exactly when it started, but it’s stuck. Since I was a Communication Studies, Mass Media major in college, I wanted to have a news-like angle to whatever blog I created. Thus, I found “Headlines” to be appropriate.

I ended up not going into the journalism field for my career, so I like to think that my blog is an extension, of sorts, of my university newspaper participation that I absolutely loved for eight semesters.

I’ve really enjoyed the last year or so in particular, where my horizons really started to expand. I’ve loved participating in different challenges and tags, writing about real issues, and exploring other items of interest (Books, different types of media, etc.). Plus, I’ve gained so many amazing followers, and friends!

My Advice to New Bloggers:

  1. Don’t put pressure on yourself to have a set schedule.
  2. Always respond to comments!
  3. Don’t be afraid to take “blogging breaks.”

For me, I agonized for a really long time about setting a schedule for my blog. I wanted to post regularly, but I didn’t know how to do so. I felt awkward with a ton of unfinished drafts.

When WordPress came out with the “Schedule” feature, that was a game-changer for me! Now, I can look at the calendar and figure out any day and time that I want to publish posts. It’s fantastic! If a certain post isn’t ready, I can easily change the date and time for publication.

I’m definitely a routine person. Example – I wanted to publish my “52 Weeks of Gratitude Challenge” posts on the same day every single week. I picked Wednesdays, and it’s worked beautifully. Now, I’m finding that I’m posting more frequently, and enjoying it!

I try to respond to every single comment that’s made on my posts (unless it’s spam, of course). It’s a great way to connect with other bloggers and readers alike! I’ve made several blogging friends this way.

In addition, I try to comment on posts that really speak to me. It doesn’t have to be a long comment, but I enjoy reaching out to other bloggers in that way. Plus, if it’s a WordPress blog, the poster can find my blog that way! It’s a great networking tool/resource.

Finally, don’t be afraid to take a “blogging break.” Everyone I know who writes, whether it’s a blogger, journalist, novelist, or poet, gets writer’s block. It sucks!

But, if you’ve found that you’ve hit a wall with your blog or your writing, it’s actually a good thing to take a break. Here’s a personal example – I found that I was absolutely burnt out in early 2015 for about a month or so. Outside of the blog, I was planning my wedding, work was crazy, and I was trying to keep up with my paralegal classes. I couldn’t juggle the blog with everything else. I went on complete hiatus for about two weeks. I felt bad, but those two weeks helped my brain catch up with everything else in my life. Plus, I had fresh material and new ideas for the blog. I came back to the blog recharged, and ready to write again!

Now, I find myself taking shorter breaks every so often – Sometimes a few weekdays, sometimes a whole weekend. It depends. When we travel to Al’s parents’ farm, I really try to hard to “unplug” completely when we’re there. It’s a nice break from technology, social media, etc.


  1. R.H. (Rusty) Foerger – Curriculum of the Spiritual Life
  2. jennanicolee – Bookmark Your Life
  3. Animal Planet Lover
  4. Its Naly
  5. martin houghton – DukkeHus
  6. vinnieh
  7. Panic At The Bookstore
  8. Marie’s library
  9. Cheila – Pink For Days
  10. Suyog Chhatre –Β Positivity Unlimited
  11. The Sporadic Scribbler
  12. Alex Raphael

Thanks for reading! I hope everyone has a terrific Thursday!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth πŸ™‚

Writing Prompt #45: “52 Weeks of Gratitude Challenge” (Week 7)

Week #7: A Friend 1

The first person I thought of for this post was my best friend in this world, Melissa Beebe.

In the photo below, she’s the lovely lady with the glasses, making the bunny ears πŸ™‚

View More:

The girls!

We’ve been friends since we were in 5th grade – Which means that we have been friends for 17 years now!

Astonishingly, the only photos of us, that I can find via Facebook, are from my bridal luncheon and my wedding day. Yikes! We need to take more photos!


Bridal luncheon, August 2015.

View More:

Gorgeous maid of honor and bride, November 2015.

I can hardly put into words how grateful I am for Melissa and her friendship for all these years. Writing this post has a lot of memories flooding back – Fighting over those silly boys at Chittum and Jolliff, voraciously reading, the fort in her backyard, chorus/orchestra trips, going to different schools for high school and college, dating, eating sushi and seeing Lindsey Stirling, calling to ask her to be my maid of honor, late-night Facebook messages, and more.

Thank you for everything, so far. Here’s to many more years!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth πŸ™‚

Getting Personal #60: My Skin & Makeup Routines (Part 1)


Image Credit: Harbor East

Many thanks to Megan over at Freckled Italian for inspiring this post!

Here’s Megan’s original post:


Here we go!


Some of you know that I got into LUSH Handmade Cosmetics products well over a year ago, thanks to a few friends who talked it up. I wasn’t disappointed!

It helps that there’s a store in Norfolk’s MacArthur Mall. It’s an expensive investment, but the benefits have absolutely paid off in spades.

Before I found LUSH, I was using a combination of Clean & Clear products and a few things that my mom and others had recommended. I couldn’t seem to control the oil, and I had absolutely hellacious breakouts during that lovely time of the month. I was massively frustrated. I didn’t want to wear makeup. My skin is relatively sensitive, but I never, ever realized what I was using to wash and moisturize my face could be harming it.

In December 2015, I walked into LUSH for the first time. The staff were wonderful! I was immediately entranced by everything that they offered. They update their product lines regularly, and they always seem to have something new when I visit.

The idea is to use just a little bit of the product every day. Some of my LUSH stuff lasts for MONTHS, and it’s awesome. In all of 2016, I only visited the store four times to make purchases.

This is what I have used and/or sampled since Day 1:

I liked Angels on Bare Skin and Movis, but I probably won’t buy those again. Some of the smells were super strong!

I may buy Aqua Marina again, because it has calamine lotion in it. Considering I usually get eaten alive by mosquitoes in the warmer months, I’ll probably keep a small “pot” of it at home. I will probably do the same with either Dark Angels or Coalface, since both are good to use for makeup remover.

I definitely want to buy Ocean Salt again, closer to the summer months. It smells like the beach, and I felt like I was in a spa every time I used it!

I love the variety of bath bombs that LUSH offers. The baths I have taken with them – Three since we bought our house – have been calming and soothing.

I currently have the following in my bathroom:

The one without a side label is Enzymion. The pots fit perfectly on the shelves in our mirrored cabinet.

Buche de Noel is one of my favorite products. It smells like Christmas, and it does a great job on my face and skin. I use it every day in the shower on my face (unless I just got my eyebrows waxed), and I usually scrub it all over my arms and heels. It’s really helped when the skin on my heels has been very dry and rough. It’s a seasonal item, so I try to make this last as long as possible.

Top: Buche de Noel. Bottom left: Christingle. Bottom right: Enzymion.

Christingle is a new product that I discovered on my last store visit. It smells amazing, and the cool, refreshing tingle I feel after I use it in the shower feels awesome. Like Buche de Noel, I’m trying to make it last, since I won’t be able to buy it again until later in 2017.

Enzymion and Tea Tree Water have been with me since Day 1 – I will always buy these. Enzymion is the perfect moisturizer for my skin. This has helped dramatically reduce breakouts, and my skin feels lighter and far less oily now. The Tea Tree Water is so refreshing. I spritz it on right after I apply Enzymion. In the hotter months, I like to put it in the fridge. It makes the hot and humid days bearable!

I haven’t tried Rose Jam yet. Soon!

This is just a short list of what I want to try in the future:

The other bonus – When you bring back five clean labeled “pots” after using the products, LUSH will give you a free face mask. They reuse the pots, and then recycle them later on.

I’m excited to do this for the first time soon – I had enough pots to redeem in December, but they didn’t have any face masks to give me! I’m collecting them in a box. During my next trip, I can’t wait to see what I get.


Since Megan’s post focused on makeup, this is was my comment:

“For me, I completely skip foundation and powder – The different stuff I’ve tried over the years seems to just clog my pores and makes me itchy! I do four things on a regular basis. First, I sweep on some blush – I love Mary Kay. I switch between “Sparkling Cider” and “Cherry Rose.” Second, I do eyeshadow – Also Mary Kay. Since I have green/hazel eyes, I prefer brown/suede/beige tones (“Truffle,” “Chocolate Kiss,” and “Spun Silk.” Third, I’m loving liquid eyeliner right now – The stuff I use currently came from the Dollar Tree. Lastly, I put on mascara. I loved the Maybelline Telescoping Lashes mascara that I bought for my wedding so much, that I saved the information and bought a second tube! It probably takes 10 minutes total, but the compliments are totally worth it.”

However, since the Skin section took up such a huge chunk of this post, I’m dividing this post into two parts.

Come back this time next week to learn more about my makeup routine!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth πŸ™‚

Blog Awards #10: One Lovely Blogger Award! – Number 2!


Image Credit: Found on vinnieh

Many thanks to vinnieh for the nomination! He is the king of movie reviews!

Here’s the link to his post, where I was nominated:

The Rules:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and link their blog
  • Add the One Lovely Blog Award to your post
  • Share 7Β things about yourself
  • Pass this on to as many people as you like
  • Include this set of rules

Seven Things About Laura Beth:

  1. I love watching shows like Law & Order: SVU, The First 48, and so on, but I can’t watch a marathon of them at night, especially right before bed. I replay the episodes in my head, and make myself scared.
  2. I am officially in love with / addicted to Stranger Things on Netflix. Holy cow, it’s so good!
  3. I don’t get sick often, but when I do, it’s bad/awful/terrible! I was just diagnosed with the flu and acute sinusitis – Yay! I’m camped out at home for the moment, hoping that I recover over the weekend and can go back to work on Monday.
  4. I hope to own all the Dear America / My Name is America / The Royal Diaries books, someday.
  5. I’m currently 14 chapters into John Grisham’s latest book. It’s been so long since I’ve read one of his books, and I forgot how addicting his writing is. It’s hard to stop at night when I need to go to sleep! I powered through four whole chapters in 45 minutes the other day.
  6. I don’t buy a lot of music anymore, but I definitely have the soundtracks to Moana and Hamilton on my wish list.
  7. I’m ready for consistent 60 and 70-degree weather! Not this ugly roller coaster ride! So many people around me have been sick!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth πŸ™‚

Writing Prompt #44: “52 Weeks of Gratitude Challenge” (Week 6)

Week #6: The City You Live In

I currently live in Portsmouth, Virginia. It’s a historic city, and, as new residents, we have a lot of exploring to do!

Since Al was born in Portsmouth and raised in Chesapeake, and I’ve been in the 757 since the age of 4, we mostly know our way around.

However, we’re always up for more adventures!

I took this photo from our bedroom window after the huge snowstorm in January.


The first floor of the Children’s Museum of Virginia, in downtown Portsmouth. Al and I went on an adventure here in August of 2015. We both have fond memories of coming here as kids, but they’ve done a nice job with updating it!

I don’t have a lot of my own photos that showcase our city – Not yet, anyway.


Image Credit: City of Portsmouth


Image Credit:

The Norfolk Naval Shipyard is located in Portsmouth, where it repairs and overhauls ships for the U.S. Navy. It has the ability to dry dock an aircraft carrier! Wow! It was originally named “Gosport.” There’s an amazing restaurant in the downtown district called Gosport Tavern. We went there for New Year’s Eve – Awesome food!

It was first established as a town in 1752, but its roots for shipbuilding date back to 1620! Given that we’re basically a stone’s throw away from Colonial Williamsburg (about 45 minutes), it makes sense.

There are several historic sites in our city. There’s the Olde Towne Historic District – The homes there are just gorgeous! They are always beautifully decorated for most holidays – Especially the 4th of July, and Christmas. Naval Medical Center Portsmouth has been in operation since 1827! Cedar Grove Cemetery was established in 1832.

The Commodore Theatre is another favorite – It’s a restored movie theater that looks and feels like a time capsule. They only show one movie for a limited run, with one nightly show and a matinee three days a week. You can eat lunch or dinner there, and it’s a great place to see a movie!

Portsmouth City Park is a beautiful space, and features the Pokey Smokey II locomotive. Al has taken his quadcopter there a few times, and I want to go back at least once or twice this year.

The city of Portsmouth is part of the reason that my family moved back to Hampton Roads. My dad served in the U.S. Coast Guard for 23 1/2 years. Among other active duty assignments, he served on the USCGC Bear, whose homeport is Portsmouth.

After several years and a few moves, he went into the Coast Guard Reserve, while his main full-time job was across the river in Norfolk. The Fifth District is headquartered in downtown Portsmouth, and the Coast Guard base is about five miles from our house.

I’m grateful that we found our house in Portsmouth, in a beautiful neighborhood. I’m excited to enjoy married life with Al, and eventually start our family here. We have several friends who live close by, and my parents are roughly 10 miles from us. We have almost everything close to us – The gym, grocery stores, restaurants, and a decent school district for a few years from now – and I’m very happy.

Until the next headline, Laura Beth πŸ™‚