We’re married! Finally! As we drove off in our car, we made our way to our honeymoon suite at the Grand America. The Grand America gave us an incredible Executive Suite with a view in exchange for a modeling project I did for them.
The King Executive Suite at the Grand America could not have been more perfect. The size of the room was like a small apartment, and we felt like royalty. There was even a sweet card congratulating us on our marriage, and chocolate strawberries that were left for us as we entered the hotel room.
The next morning, we woke up and went down to the Garden Cafe for the most incredible Sunday brunch filled with crepes, seafood, dessert, omelets, ice cream, and all the coffee and orange juice we could manage to drink. It was perfect.
When we left, they gave us a complimentary bottle of sparkling champagne to set us on our way, and a certificate for our next anniversary for a free upgraded room if we book a room at the Grand America next year.
Thank you Grand America!
Alecsy and Gediminas Rusteika
Plitvice Lakes, Croatia was one of my favorite destinations I have traveled to. I want to share some tips we discovered that will make your journey that much more enjoyable. I highly recommend visiting if you are planning a travel trip to Croatia!
(1) Fly into Zagreb and take a one day trip to Plitvice Lakes
On our Croatia journey, we flew into Zagreb, spent one day exploring, then made our way to Plitvice Lakes National Park. One day in Plitvice Lakes is a perfect amount of time to see all the sites and enjoy everything Plitvice has to offer.
(2) Start your journey early in the morning!
The earlier you get to Plitvice Lakes, the better! By the time we got to the national park, mid-afternoon, the parking lots were packed! We did not think we would be able to find anywhere to park!
(3) If you cannot find parking, park on the road
If you do end up getting to Plitvice Lakes mid-afternoon, do not fret! Park on the road—you will see many other cars parallel parked all along the road and up the canyon. You might have to drive quite a ways away from the park to find a spot, and walk down to the park, but when you find a nook to park in, do it! Do not worry about getting towed, that is what our biggest worry was, but we were fine!
(4) Find an Airbnb, hostel, or hotel in Split
Instead of staying the night close to Plitvice Lakes, where prices can get a little outrageous because there is more demand in that area for places to stay, carefully venture to Split for the night, and explore the beautiful town in the morning for a full day of activities! Try not to leave the park too late so you do not have to drive in the dark. The roads are a little scary!
(5) Take your time, enjoy the sites!
Because Gedis and I had limited time at Plitvice lakes, we rushed through the park in four hours. If you are to take your time, stop, and enjoy, I am sure it would take you 6-8 hours. Plan for that if you would like to enjoy everything!
Here are some awesome pictures of our trip, and some ideas for you to take pictures at these sites!
Photo for Miss Utah International & Miss Utah Supranational 2016
My headshot for Miss Utah USA 2016 where I won Miss Photogenic Utah USA 2016.
A faux Utah wedding photoshoot wearing Maggie Sottero.
Hair painting and balayage highlights, where do I begin? They are the new hair coloring style that I am obsessed with, so let me share with you my hair painting wisdom.
Little did I know, when I found her on Instagram, all of my favorite hair photos of her clients were using a “hair painting” technique, something I have seen a ton but I never knew the name for the style. Thank you Britny for your amazing hair painting, and for sharing your balayage highlighting wisdom!
I wanted to share with you an intro to hair painting, and some things you should know about the technique before you decide to get it done on your hair!
What is Hair Painting?
Hair painting, or balayage highlights, is a sun-kissed natural looking hair color technique with softer, less noticeable regrowth lines. Think of the look as someone getting highlights by sitting and laying out in the sun.
As Britny explained, a lot of people are nervous about hair painting because they are used to having their hair in a bunch of foil.
What are the Costs?
The initial cost of hair painting is more expensive than foil because there is a very specific technique that goes into it, but in the long run you do not have to get your hair done as much.
Can I Do it Myself?
As Britny was doing my hair, I realized how easy it would have been for someone with little experience to make this look come out extremely bad. Hair painting is not something that you should do on your own. Not everyone knows how to hair paint and it takes a lot of training and mastering techniques to do it correctly.
Where do I find a Stylist that Specializes in Hair Painting/Balayage?
Britny suggested that people always find a hairdresser on Instagram. This way you can look at their portfolio and what they have done. And this fits perfectly with where I found her to do my hair… on Instagram! Instagram is really a great tool to find someone that fits your style.
I hope you enjoyed this quick hair painting guide! Feel free to add your thoughts/tips/comments below!
This blog is a compilation of some great makeup tricks that most pageant girls will agree on, but that many women might not know about right off the bat.
Chloe Bennett (Miss Utah Teen USA 2013), was gracious enough to come and give me and amazing makeover and some awesome tips for creating the most photogenic makeup look for my pageant headshots.
Here are 7 makeup tricks that you will LOVE! Perfect for creating a great portrait shot or for pageant headshots!
(1) Highlight Under the Eyes
For this trick, use a light color foundation, concealer, or highlighter to highlight right under your eyes in almost an upside down triangle towards the bottom of your nose. The Perfect Face carries a great concealer/highlighter for under the eye contouring.
(2) Highlight Down the Nose
Another great trick using the same highlighter or foundation, is to highlight down the bridge of your nose in a light foundation color. This will bring out a great outline of your nose, and if you use a darker color on the sides, can create the illusion that your nose is very small!
(3) Use a Drop of Blue Eyeshadow on your Waterline
For this trick, grab a bright blue or green eyeshadow color, and put a dab of it right under your iris on your waterline. This will bring out the color in your eyes and make it more pronounced.
(4) Put Eyeliner on your Top Waterline
One trick that really makes your eyes look flawless is to add eyeliner to your top waterline, in whatever color you are lining your eyes with. When Chloe did my makeup, she used black eyeliner, and added this to my top waterline as well. This makes a more dramatic look.
(5) Get Luscious Lips with Angelia Layton’s Lipstick Trick
One of my favorite ways to do my lips is in Angelia Layton’s Soft Glam video. She lines her lips with a dark liner, then does an ombre effect with a lighter liner in the middle, then puts lip stain on top of the combination, adds some lipstick and some lip gloss, and creates the most perfect lips for headshots.
(6) Set Your Eyeshadow
Another trick I learned from Chloe was to set your eyeshadow first, before you do your eye makeup. If you use an eyeshadow primer, and then a powder over the top of it, it will help the eyeshadow to last longer and to not move from its position on your eyes.
(7) Do Your Foundation After your Eyeshadow
To get a flawless foundation look, try applying your foundation after you finish your eyeshadow. This way, if you accidentally mess up on your eyeshadow and it goes out of bounds from where you want it to be, or you get eyeshadow powder below your eyes, you can easily clean up the look by putting foundation over the blemishes.
Thank you Chloe for an amazing makeover, I had so much fun! And thanks for your awesome tips as well!
Lip stains are some of my favorite products for doing my lips. Couple a great lip stain with a beautiful colored lipstick on top, and you have a great solution to keeping your lips looking great all day long.
Here are some of my favorite lip stains, feel free to add yours in the comments below!
- Yves Saint Laurent Glossy Stain (this one most people absolutely rave about, so I could stop the list right here and tell you to go BUY IT! They don’t try your lips and have a beautiful selection of colors. Out of this whole list, I would recommend this one as the best.)
- Sephora’s Lip Cream Stains
- Beaute Liqui-Gel Stains (you could go with one of their summer colors: Fluoron or Neon!)
- Guerlain Rouge G (this one is moisturizing and long-lasting)
- Jordana Twist n Shine Balm Crayon (a drugstore brand, so it will be cheaper, and you should try the Terra Crave, this becomes a rosy coral shade)
- Le Metier de Beaute Color Core Stain
- L’Orael’s Glam Shine Stains (if you want a drugstore brand, this one gets great)
- Benefit Poisetint Cheek and Lip Stain
- NYC Smooch Proof Liquid Lip Stain (with a Doe Foot Applicator)
- Revlon Kissable Stain/Balm
- Vincent Longo Lip and Cheek Gel Stain
- Too Faced Liquified Long Wear Lippies
And that concludes my list! Feel free to add if you feel I missed anything in the comments below!
We had such a great time in Moab, Utah this past weekend! Here are some of the pictures that just captured the moment so well.
Our time at the Mill Creek Water Hole in Moab sitting on a small waterfall :
The beautiful cabin our good friend graciously let us stay at:
Exploring the abandoned Mines in Moab (which we really were not supposed to be doing):