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12 Ways to Make Online Shopping Safer

Posted in Blog

Don’t have time to stop in Best Buy and get a new laptop? Buy it online. Won’t be able to hit the clothing sale at Target? Go on the website. Online shopping offers many benefits. With a couple clicks of a mouse, you can easily view a store’s products and search for what you need. Plus, many stores offer online-only bargains.

However, you should be concerned about the security of your online shopping experience. Hackers use various methods to get you to surrender your credit card information and other personal data. They may hack into your passwords, get you to install malware or access information through your unsecured Wi-Fi connection. But with the dozen tips outlined below, you can protect yourself and enjoy a worry-free shopping experience at your favorite websites.

 

  1. Only shop at trusted websites. You can’t go wrong shopping at Amazon or the websites of your favorite retailers, such as Old Navy, Walmart, and Home Depot. Just beware of websites that look the same, but maybe have a different domain name. For example, most retail websites end in .com, so if you see .net or .org attached to a website, it might not be legitimate.

    Source: Business Insider
  2. Use a secure connection. Never shop from an unsecure Wi-Fi connection. That’s an easy way for hackers to access your information. So if you must shop online, do it at home or on secure computer – never at the public library. The website should also have Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption so your credit card information stays safe. You can tell if a site has this because the URL will start with https instead of just http. So look for this extra “s,” as well as a padlock in the URL.
     
  3. Use protection. Keep your computer protected from viruses and malware by using an anti-virus program. And if you already have anti-virus software, make sure it’s updated regularly and working properly. McAfee, Norton, and Webroot offer exceptional protection and have various packages to meet your needs, especially if you need protection for multiple devices.

    Source: Phone Help Desk
  4. Trust your gut. Before making a purchase from a new shopping site, scan the site and look for anything that stands out as being odd. Are there a lot of misspellings? How is the layout? Does the site look like it was created by a kid? Check the pricing as well. Do the prices of the products look strangely low? Remember, if it’s too good to be true, it probably is. Trust your gut, and if a website is giving you bad vibes, don’t shop there. You could be putting your personal information at risk.
     
  5. Use a credit card or online payment service. It can be difficult to get your money back should your debit card number be compromised, Plus, since it’s tied to your checking account, a thief can drain all the money you have. By using a credit card, you’re protected in the case of fraud. Just inform your credit card company and they won’t charge you for the purchases you didn’t authorize. PayPal is also recommended, since the retailer never has access to your bank or credit card information. Some online shoppers get a one-time use credit card, so once they use it, it’s gone and thieves can’t keep making purchases.

    Source: Style Caster
  6. Use strong passwords. This goes for your Wi-Fi connection and your online shopping accounts. The longer, the better, and don’t be afraid to mix up letters and numbers (just keep the password in a secret place so you can access it if you forget). This will keep others from accessing your accounts and Internet information.
     
  7. Use a mobile device. With a mobile device, you can download the apps for the stores you want to shop at, and just shop through them instead of going onto a website that may or may not be secure.

    Source: Total Customer
  8. Divulge the least amount of information possible. In order to conduct business with you, a company typically only needs three things from you: your mailing address, shipping address, and a payment method (typically a credit card). Be wary if a company asks for additional information, such as a birthdate or Social Security number. The more information they have, the easier it is to steal your identity.
     
  9. Check financial statements regularly. Take advantage of the online versions of your banking and credit card statements. Check these regularly (at least once a week) and look for any fraudulent charges. Check your PayPal account as well, since people can hack into those as well.

    Source: Bplans
  10. Avoid spam. Spam emails may seem interesting, but they’re generated to steal your money. Don’t click any links you may find in spam emails. Simply delete them. If you have a question about whether or not a retailer is legitimate, do a Google search.
     
  11. Beware of scams. Thieves will try many things to get you to hand over your credit card number. They may offer you “free” gifts or send emails promising you the multi-million dollar inheritance of deceased royalty if you give them your credit card number to handle the “fees.” You might get an email stating that a friend or family member has been robbed while on vacation and they need money to get back home.

    Source: Washington State Office of the Attorney General
  12. Be wary of buying gift cards online. You can’t go wrong with a gift card – unless it buy it from a third-party retailer. If you want a gift card, get it from the source. That Amazon gift card on eBay may seem like a steal, but many thieves coerce you to buy these gift cards and they arrive with no funds on them. So be wary of eBay and other sites that sell gift cards. If you really want a gift card from Amazon, get it from Amazon. That’s your safest bet.

Don’t be scared to shop online. While it can be scary to think that you could be making purchases from a fraudulent website, learn to be overly cautious. With the tips above, you can safely shop in the convenience in your home.

 

8 Underrated Places to Shop for Makeup Online

Posted in Blog

On the lookout for new beauty brands? Take a look at these undderated online beauty stores along with some up and coming beauty brands that definitely deserve some praise. MAC is great and all but they're definitely seeing some healthy competition from the likes of Colourpop and IT Cosmetics. We've tried a few of these new brands ourselves and can vouch for their quality. Take a look below! You won't regret it.

 

Top 5 Underrated Online Beauty Stores

Not just beauty stores, but if you’ve been keeping an ear out for beauty trends, there are tons of great brands out there that are not in stores. We’ll list a few and point you in the right direction! We’re always on the lookout for alternatives to pricey high end makeup, so feel free to share some underrated beauty brands with us in the comment box.

 

Drugstore.com & Beauty.com

Drugstore and Beauty are actually under the same parent company as Walgreens and pretty underrated as far as we know. You can often find tons of buy one get one 50% off deals on select drugstore beauty favorites like CoverGirl, Neutrogena, Almay and more. Plus, if you head over to Beauty.com, they also carry bareMinerals, Urban Decay, Perricone MD and most other brands you can find at Sephora or Ulta.

The best part about shopping from these two websites is their combined cart option, which makes it easier to hit that free shipping minimum! With free 1-3 day shipping over $35, free samples and tons of weekly offers, it's a can’t miss if you’re looking for deals or simply stocking up on a fave.

 

BeautyEncounter.com

Beauty Encounter is by far one of our favorite go-to for online beauty hauls. Why? They have tons of coupons, hot clearance and deals. They carry pretty much every mid to high end brand you can think of and if you’re a new shopper, you can get 15-30% off your purchase by subscribing to their email updates.

 

w2beauty.com

So this one is for all the Korean makeup lovers out there. Yes, upon first glance, the site does look a bit dingy but we’ve ordered from there before and can vouch for their service, quality and timeliness. The one winning quality about purchasing korean beauty products here is that they have quite the selection so you can pretty much find anything you’re looking for. They also run a lot of weekly sales and we’re always interested in the innovative makeup Korea has to offer.

 

Up & Coming + Underrated Beauty Brands

 

Colourpop

One of our favorite for eyeshadows and lip products is Colourpop. They’re still flying under the radar but they’re all the rage for fellow beauty bloggers on YouTube. The pigment quality of their product comes incredibly close to MAC and at only $5 per pot… it is definitely worth a try. Plus, if you’re a new email subscriber, they’ll give you $5 off your order. You can pretty much try 2 of their eyeshadow pots for the price of one!

 

Makeup Geek

If you want really pigmented, smooth and creamy shadow that won't budge from your lids... we don't even know how Makeup Geek flew under the radar for so long. Their eyeshadows are formulated to be incredibly long lasting and pigmented (like MAC) but we dare say, it is even better than MAC eyeshadow. One of their eyeshadow pans will only run you $6 each and they a huge selection to choose from including fun duochrome and foiled (metallic) colors. 

The Lip Bar

This is definitely one of our favorite for pigmented and long lasting lipsticks AND it's vegan! We tried this color in purple rain and although the true color doesn’t last the entire day, every lipstick leaves a tint/stain that’s in a different shade… isn’t that cool?

 

MatchCo

You might have spotted this innovative makeup app from Teen Vogue or allure magazine but if you haven’t… it’s a must for some gals like us who forever struggle with finding the perfect foundation match.

With the MatchCo app analyzer, it can scan and analyze your skin tone and send you a custom blend formula that’s the perfect fit for you. Give it try!

 

IT Cosmetics


IT Cosmetics is a winning favorite that’s still pretty underrated. Why all the love? Their line of makeup is popular for anti-aging elements and proven quality ingredients to get your skin beautiful and healthy. Don’t know what to try? Check out their top 10 list. We’ve tried the color correcting cream and vitality lipstick stain so far and it's fast becoming a staple in our makeup bag.

 

15 Makeup Charts That'll Turn You Into A Makeup Pro

Posted in Blog

If you've ever been a little blown away by all the options be hind the counter at Sephora, or felt a little clueless about what exactly to do with a contouring brush, well, we've go you. Below, fifteen charts that'll give you a head start on making all your makeup dreams come true. 

1. First thing's first: You need to start with the right brushes. 

2. And then you need to make sure you can clean them properly. 

3. The same goes for beauty blenders. 

4. Here's the best order to put your foundations, primers, and concealers on. 

5. Make sure you're wearing the right concealers for your under eye circles. 

6. Find the right blush that works for you. 

7. Hack your powdered makeup mishaps. 

8. Use this simple trick to make your lipstick last. 

 

9. Remember these three important angles when shaping your eyebrows. 

10. Learn this easy trick to get the best eyeliner of your life. 

11. If that doesn't suit you, here are a bunch of others to try. 

12. There are a world of mascara wands. 

13. Find out what eyeshadows go with which eye color. 

14. Get the Kylie Jenner lip look with just a little concealer

 15. And finally, a guide to how long you should keep everything around. 

 

 

 

Barbie Is Inspiring Your Daughter to Be a Leader With Its President and Vice President Dolls

Posted in Blog

 

Barbie is inspiring girls everywhere by featuring the first all-female ticket with its new president and vice president dolls. According to the Girl Scout Research Institute, only 39 percent of girls say they want to be a leader, so Barbie has teamed up with She Should Run to start a conversation between parents and their daughters about leadership.

"At She Should Run, we believe that women of all backgrounds should have an equal shot at elected leadership positions and that our country will benefit from having a government with varied perspectives and experiences," said Erin Loos Cutraro, cofounder and CEO of She Should Run. "We are excited about partnering with the Barbie brand given its reach and influence to encourage girls everywhere to unlock their leadership potential."

The president and vice president dolls will come in pairs, all with varying physical appearances. Scroll through to see some of the sets ($25), which are available now, and pledge to support girl leadership by downloading the "You Can Be a Leader" worksheet.

 

 

5 Ways to Make Your Clothes Last Longer

Posted in Blog

There are a lot of things that people do for fun, and shopping is one of them. Every year, people spend hundreds, sometimes thousands of dollars on clothes. They shop online, go into stores, and even pick up a few things from local rummage or yard sales. With so much being spent every year, it is surprising how careless people can be with their clothes. But if people realized just how much not knowing how to properly care for their clothes was costing them, they may think twice about the way they treat these items.

The next time you shop, shop quality items and remember these tips to make your clothes last longer. Our favorit shops:

  • Nordstrom
  • Old Navy
  • J.Crew
  • Kohl's
  • Macy's

 

1. Wash jeans inside out.

Source: Bre Pea

Everyone has that one pair of jeans that they absolutely love to wear any chance they get. Sure, they make your butt look good, but all of this wear can be damaging to the appearance because you will have to wash this specific pair more frequently than the others you own. By now, everyone should know that washing your jeans too much can lead to fading. Washing them inside out is a great way to get your pants clean, prevent fading and allows you to enjoy your jeans a bit longer.

2. Switch out hangers.

Source: Something We Know

With all of the clothes you have purchased, they will need to be stored somewhere. Some of your clothes will go into a drawer, while others will be hung in the closet. Depending on how long the clothes are sitting in your closet, the type of hangers they are placed on, and the quality of these hangers, by the time you decide to throw on that blouse or sweater you haven't thought about in six months, you'll find that indentations from the hangers have been left in your clothes. Purchasing hangers that are strong and more appropriate for the specific item you are hanging can prevent hanger bumps.

3. Treat stains immediately.

Source: Samsung

Everyone has dropped a blob of sauce on their shirt, rubbed up against something wet or spilt coffee, juice, soda or tea on themselves at some point in their lives. Stains are going to happen, no matter how hard you try to avoid them. Although some may be quick to chuck their shirt into the garbage because of a spaghetti stain, this isn't something that they have to do. Should they tend to the stain and treat it immediately, they may be able to save their shirt and avoid spending money to purchase a new one.

4. Wear all of your clothes an equal amount.

Source: She Finds

One mistake that people make that has caused their clothes to last only a few months is that they are wearing certain items far too often. Whether it is a shirt, pair of pants, or just some socks, it needs to stop if you want to make your clothes last longer and go shopping less. If possible, try to wear all of the clothes in your wardrobe before washing them. This will allow you to keep your clothes in a better condition because they won't fade or be damaged by too much washing and drying.

5. Consider air drying.

Source: Huffington Post

Over time, clothes will fade and shrink as a result of all of the washing and drying that has been done. You may not be able to avoid washing your clothes, but you can avoid throwing them into the dryer. Air drying decreases the amount of fade and shrinkage that occurs when clothes are dried in a dryer, so this option is ideal when you are looking to make your clothes last a bit longer.

 

Shopping is exciting, and it is always nice to get new clothes, but if you're going to spend money on clothes, you might as well get as much wear as possible out of them before throwing them away or donating them. Even if you have the money to purchase all of the clothes you want from any retailer you choose, you could save significantly if you put in the work to properly care for them. No one wants to buy the same black tee shirt five times in one year, and with a little attention being paid to the way they care for their clothes, they won't have to.

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