Book & Beauty Review: The Vacationers by Emma Straub by Greta Eagan

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As summer rounds the corner and nears its end, it felt very appropriate to indulge in a summer fling. A beach read fling, that is. You know what I'm talking about. A summer read that feels more like you are reading a movie than a literary complex or inspiring novel. This is exactly where I would place The Vacationers by Emma Straub

BOOK REVIEW: The story was predictable and the characters pretty classic. It all centers around a middle- upper class family from New York City who take a family vacation to Mallorca, Spain. They bring their emotional baggage, expectations, a long-time girlfriend of the son, and their best gay couple with them. For anyone who has been on an international family vacation, it certainly hits a familiar cord. 

While the story itself isn't great, the writing is. The flow and use of perspective- which both seamlessly move from one character to the other at different stage of the story is pretty remarkable. By the end, you really are invested in what happens to the characters and find a satisfying finish. This isn't a book I would hands down recommend, but if you are looking for a light read during a vacation or plane ride, this is a good fit. I would also suggest aspiring novelists read Emma's work. Her voice and manipulation of the omnipresent narrator are pretty impressive and something I feel would inspire.

BEAUTY REVIEW: The Desert Island Look

There wasn't much description around the appearances of the characters in The Vacationers, and so your imagination is left to fill in the blanks. I immediately went to my own interpretation of what I call 'The Desert Island' look. It uses the basics- the essential products you would want if you were stranded on a desert (or tropical) island. The key to this look is to keep everything pretty subdued and only offer a hint of enhancing what you've got. In other words, break out the highlighter and bronzer! 

Here's how to get the look:

1. Start with a tinted moisturizer and apply fully to face and down neck. Add an extra layer to your nose or any other areas that might be slightly red.

2. Use a cream or powder highlighter in the following areas: inner corners of the eyes (swept out across the lid), brow bone, cheek bone (swept out and up toward ears), just above the eye brows, and a dab on your cupid's bow. 

3. Blend a cream blush in a caramel shade into the apples of your cheeks and sweep up and out toward your ears.

4. Using a fluffy brush , dip bronzer onto the brush and blow off excess. Then, sweep in the hollows of cheeks up and out toward ears. Repeat application to brush and sweep across jawline, underneath and down neck. Repeat application to brush once more and sweep across hairline on the forehead from the center down toward ears on each side.

5. Add a coat of mascara. Keep it light and natural looking.

6. Swipe on some lip balm with a shiny finish. 

Strong, Simple Yoga Beauty with Sara Clark by Greta Eagan

I'm thrilled to be working a bit more with Yoga Today, the amazing online platform that hosts full yoga class videos lead by some of the world's best instructors. They recently launched an active blog where yoga instructors, enthusiasts and experts contribute valued 'yoga life' content. Think Mind Body Green for yogis. Throughout the summer, I've had the privilege of working on some of this blog content by enhancing the natural beauty of their visiting instructors for contributor profile pics.

New York City resident and visiting yogi, Sara Clark graced us with her calm and positive presence, and turned out to be a real cover girl! Her strength from within shined through and was captured by Lindsay Linton. Working with Sara was a real treat and her rich skin tone proved an amazing canvas for shimmer and highlights to accentuate her natural features.  I literally used a tinted moisturizer to even skin where needed, swept a metallic highlighter across her eyelids and cheek bones, applied a bright pink blush to her cheeks and lips (over a touch of gloss) and groomed her eyebrows. Natural beauty at its best! To get Sara's easy breezy (I sense a Cover Girl commercial in her future!) look, shop the non-toxic beauty products below. xx