Review & DIY: Updating a 1-pole light switch to an Adorne Switch

I’ve got a pretty old home but the good thing about being a homeowner is being able to customize and update your home if you don’t like the way it currently is. I bought a house about a month ago and so far, I’ve painted some rooms and I’ve changed some lighting fixtures as well. I still have a lot to do but today I decided to check out the Adorne switch system by Legrand.

I painted my current office to the color, Palisade Blue, by Valspar and despite how beautiful the color was, the old wooden light switch was a sight for sore eyes. I was determined to change the light switch.

I’ve been looking at the Legrand system and I decided to pick up the Paddle light switch in Magnesium (they also have this switch in white) and I got the gang plate in Titanium. I wanted to get the Satin Nickel gang plate and the Touch switch (this is an amazing light switch) but for the sake of trying something new, I decided to get the more affordable options just in case I didn’t like the finished result. I got both the light plate cover and Paddle light switch for under $13 at Lowe’s.

WP_20150219_16_12_36_Pro WP_20150219_16_19_25_Pro

I’ve changed light fixtures in the past so I figured the principles would generally be the same.

So here comes the how-to part (note: the color of the photos are a bit off since I was working during sundown):

1. Disconnect power from the breaker before you begin so you don’t end up electrocuting yourself.

2. Unscrew the old gang plate (light switch plate cover) from the wall.

This ugly-old thing ...

This ugly-old thing …

WP_20150219_16_09_28_Pro

3. Pull the old light switch towards you and disconnect the wires from the terminal holes. You’ll typically find three wires. For this DIY project regarding a one-way switch and not a three-way, we’re going to be focusing on the black and the red wire.

WP_20150219_16_11_05_Pro

* if the wires do not come out of the terminal, you can also cut them and then use a wire stripper to reveal more usable wire.

4. Unsnap the gang plate cover from the metal frame of the new gang plate. Mount the metal frame to the wall where the old gang plate was with the two provided screws. Be sure not to over-tighten.

WP_20150219_16_36_58_Pro

5. Insert the one wire into the 1-pole terminal of the new electrical switch (Paddle) and use a screwdriver to tighten the screw at the top of that terminal to secure the wire. Insert the other wire into the HOT terminal and secure the wire in the terminal as well. (my home is wired insanely weird so in a sense, everything is backwards regarding wire colors. Be sure to use a circuit checker if you are having difficulty identifying which wire is hot.)

WP_20150219_16_46_49_Pro

6. Ease the electrical switch back towards the wall and snap the switch into the gang frame.

7. Snap the wall plate cover to the metal frame. You will hear three audible clicks meaning the cover is secure.

WP_20150219_16_50_17_Pro WP_20150219_16_50_05_Pro

8. Switch the power back on from your breaker and enjoy your new Adorne Paddle switch and gang plate.

Review: Overall, I really like the Adorne system by Legrand. Be sure to check out their website for more options and solutions for anything from under cabinet lighting to cable management. You can spend as little as $10 or as much as $150 for a wall switch plate/electrical switch(or a dimmer/USB outlet/etc.) so there is something for everyone. I am pretty excited that this part of the room has taken on such a modern and finished look with only $13 spent. I look forward to investing in more Adore outlets and fixtures for the rest of the house.

I hope you enjoyed this article and look out for more DIY articles now that I have a new home to work on!

“Fifty Shades of Grey” or Fifty Shades of Disappointment?

So I just finished watching the new and highly anticipated trailer for the movie, Fifty Shades of Grey, and I can’t say I’m that stoked about it. The book was different from most bestsellers out there but it wasn’t exactly a showcase of really good writing. This may sound like a bash on the book and the movie but I’m calling it like it is. Yes, I read the series and being someone who was unfamiliar with the BDSM scene, I was all “Oohs” and “Ahhs” with this book despite the main character repeatedly calling her vagina a “there”.

When I read the Fifty Shades of Grey series, I had to read it at home or have an extra layer of foundation makeup applied to my face so people wouldn’t see me constantly blush in public!

Photo courtesy of image.ie

Photo courtesy of image.ie

Fifty Shades of Grey will be coming to theaters on Valentine’s Day (apparently February 13th now …). People will watch the movie and either leave all hot and bothered and look for some action or (most of the general public) will walk away disgusted and confused. Kinksters who manage to talk themselves into watching this movie next year will be silently cursing the movie the whole time while thinking, ‘You’re doing it wrong! This is going to ruin it for the BDSM community!’ because it probably will. We already know what most curious couples will be doing that night after the movie.

Speaking of the BDSM lifestyle, has anyone noticed how many Christian Greys have popped up since the book was published? You have people on forums and even Craigslist ads claiming to want a BDSM relationship because they’ve read this book. It’s perfectly fine as long as you learn about what you’re getting into and have a genuine interest. A good number of people have been interested in the lifestyle before Fifty Shades of Grey and never knew what that urge and tendency was called until they read the book. Those people will most likely begin to reach out to others in the BDSM community, make friends, and have loads of fun at munches and parties. What concerns me are the whack jobs and abusive people looking to hurt someone without considering the other person’s wants, needs, or limits. These people just read the book and have this idea that BDSM is ‘I’m going to make them sign a contract, pick up some whips from a sex toy store, and I’m going to find someone to beat the crap out of. They’re going to start calling me Sir/Madam/Mistress right away’ or ‘I’m going to find someone just like Christian Grey’.

I told you they were out there ...

I told you they were out there …

After watching the trailer, I wasn’t impressed with the actor portraying Christian Grey. The last thing we need is another Robert Pattinson/Kristen Stewart (lack of) on-screen chemistry. I understand that the full feature will (hopefully) flesh out the characters but there is no guarantee that it will happen. They are working with Universal and particularly Focus Features (Pride and Prejudice, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Hot Fuzz, and Brokeback Mountain) so that is slightly more reassuring.

I am currently researching Atlanta’s nightlife scene, and the BDSM community/lifestyle is one (HUGE) article that I hope to finish later this year. It is only one part of a three-part series so stay in touch and be on the lookout for them!

I hope you enjoyed this article and we’ll keep our fingers crossed that this movie will be a good one.

And finally, the trailer for Fifty Shades of Grey:

On the Search for the Perfect Foundation: Stila Illuminating Liquid Foundation

Stila Illuminating Liquid Foundation

Cost: $38.00 US Dollars

Available at your local Sephora.

Stila's Illuminating Liquid Foundation in shade 60 Watt.

Stila’s Illuminating Liquid Foundation in shade 60 Watt.

Description: “Never heavy, chalky, or dull, Illuminating Liquid Foundation glides on weightlessly for sheer-to-medium coverage and a silky semi-matte finish that evens out flaws while letting your skin’s natural luminescence shine through.”

First Impression: This foundation looks quite goopy, almost like mud. The texture is very light and fluffy, reminding me of whipped cream. The coverage is sheer to medium although it is definitely buildable. The shade that I chose, 60 Watt, is a little off and it gave me a very warm skin tone. This foundation really overdoes the “illuminating” part.

SPF: None.

Shade: There are 8 shades available although they all look to be quite warm in tone. I chose 60 Watt but I’ll probably be more suitable in 40 Watt since 60 Watt was way too dark for me.

Finish: Honestly, this foundation made me look like a disco ball. I love radiance but I find it to be a bit excessive.

Texture: The texture of this foundation is slightly denser. I wouldn’t call it a cream. It does need to be worked in though and blended in thoroughly. Otherwise, it will look very noticeable. I’d say that it almost feels like a gel-cream.

Coverage: This foundation has sheer to medium coverage. It is certainly buildable(to a certain extent) but it is more suitable for a wearer who doesn’t have many problem areas that need covering up. It covered my broken capillaries after a few light layers of foundation so I wouldn’t recommend it for redness or facial veins or even acne scarring. I would give this foundation a 5 out of 10 when it comes to coverage.

Workable: Light and fluffy, it is certainly workable. It blends in well enough although it is tedious if you have to layer. I think the product disappears once it hits my skin and I end up having to use more.

Longevity: This foundation has little staying power. Since the coverage was light, I found myself having to retouch throughout the day. The light-reflecting particles do transfer easily and it becomes a nuisance because it’s genuinely so sparkly!

Application: I used a large stippling brush to apply Stila’s Illuminating Foundation.

Type of skin: This foundation settles into my dry spots and emphasized them slightly despite the light-reflecting particles. This foundation is great for normal and oily skin types and I honestly would recommend a setting power. This foundation was not as hydrating as I expected it to be (compared to Guerlain, Lancome, and Chanel). It is hydrating, but it’s just not enough for drier skin types.

Packaging: The foundation is packaged in a frosted, rectangular bottle that also comes with a white pump (the cosmetics companies are learning lol).

The Verdict: This one is going on the “No” list for me. There are way too many glittery particles in this foundation; it’s ridiculous. I think it looks like you literally sprayed your face with water and them dipped it into a bowl of glitter. I love radiance and everyone should know that, but definitely not when it’s distracting. I can see myself using it for a holiday party but it doesn’t necessarily have the hydration that I need. If you are a dry skin type and want to try this foundation, I suggest moisturizing really well, exfoliating (even before applying moisturizer) your skin, and using a refresher/setting spray such as MAC Fix +.

Stila’s Illuminating Foundation costs $38 and that’s a pretty good price for a foundation (if only all foundations cost around $35).

This is the last foundation of the foundation review marathon. I was supposed to post this last night so I apologize for the wait. I can tell you that it has been very tiring going back and forth between a social life, family, work, and blogging but I’m trying still! :D If I come across any new foundations, I will post a review on them. In the future, I’ll update on the eight that I’ve posted these past two weeks on how they perform in the long run. I have some interesting posts coming up and I can’t wait to share them with you all. (I’m just going to give myself a breather on Mondays and Tuesdays … if I can help it of course. I’ll probably end up blogging anyway.)

Happy reading and have a great night!

On the Search for the Perfect Foundation: Korres Antiageing Foundation

Korres’ Antiageing Foundation

Note: Sorry it took longer to publish this post. I had written it and prepared everything earlier but I had to get to work and I couldn’t access my blog from those ancient computers, lol. I wasn’t really allowed to use my phone either. :(

Cost: $39.00 US Dollars

Available exclusively at your local Sephora.

In shade 25 "Tan"

In shade 25 “Tan”

Description: “Uncover a youthful radiance with this comfortable, crease-proof foundation that promises a soft-focus finish. Quercetin and oak is the first natural, clinically proven alternative to retinol. An ultra-powerful antioxidant derived from the oak tree, it works fast to help minimize the visible signs of aging. The medium-coverage, crease-proof formula helps blur fine lines and wrinkles for a more youthful complexion, while a blend of moisturizing ingredients keep skin smooth and hydrated. ”

First Impression: The fact this foundation is supposedly all-natural is a great thing. Peter is always getting on me to stop wearing cosmetics and everything because of all the chemicals in them but I think if something is natural, then maybe he’ll feel a little bit better about it. I honestly don’t buy it though or at least not until I do some research on this product. The foundation has no scent (a plus!) and doesn’t feel tacky after it sets. Although it doesn’t really make my dry patches start to flake, it does dry the area a bit, and it’ll feel rougher to the touch. The finished look from this foundation is one of the prettiest I’ve encountered so far.

SPF: Not listed. I was surprised that it didn’t have any but after looking at the ingredients list, it does have titanium dioxide hidden in there so I am going to assume that it does have sunscreen in it.

Shade: Korres offers 8 shades in this line and they all appear to either be mostly golden or pink in tone. I am currently wearing 25 Tan and it’s a pretty good match. I want to try 20 Golden Beige but I am afraid it may be too warm in tone. It doesn’t hurt to try though.

Finish: The finish is natural (almost “slightly powdered’) and stays that way since it is a long wear foundation. It looks radiant when first applied and sets within a matter of minutes. When you take photos wearing Korres’ Antiageing Foundation, it looks very airbrushed and give you this soft-focus glow.

Texture: The texture of this foundation is slightly denser although I wouldn’t call it a cream. It does need to be worked in though and blended in thoroughly. Otherwise, it will look very noticeable. I’d say that it almost feels like a gel-cream.

Coverage: The Antiageing Foundation from Korres has a medium finish. I would say that it is buildable but nothing beyond medium coverage. It did cover my redness but my broken capillaries still peeked through. So either I didn’t put enough foundation on or it really doesn’t go further when it comes top coverage. I think using a concealer is probably needed if you have a lot of problem areas. I rate this foundation an 8 when it comes to coverage.

Workable: Since it is dense, it does need a little elbow grease in order to be properly blended into your skin. Having dry skin prevents me from being able to micro-exfoliate my skin but I still managed to work the foundation in by warming it up on the back of my hand prior to application.

Longevity: I think this foundation lasts a standard work day. Anything over eight hours, the wearer will find the foundation looking quite pasty. The foundation does get stickier when you’re in a humid environment but I will have to say that it goes back to being extremely smooth once you’re in a cooler environment. I think the foundation settles into those dry spots at the two-hour mark and like I said earlier, it doesn’t show but you can still feel it.

Application: I used my mineral powder brush to blend the foundation in. I also used my flat foundation brush to layer on more foundation underneath my eyes.

Type of skin: I am going to sound like a broken record but I think it’s suitable for all skin types but if you have dry skin, be sure to moisturize and exfoliate before application. I would also recommend a setting spray (resetting as well) such as the one from MAC (MAC Fix +) to help soothe the dry patchy areas. This foundation does keep your skin hydrated but I don’t feel like it’s genuinely enough.

Packaging: Korres Antiageing Foundation comes in a small, frosted glass bottle with a simple white pump.

The Verdict: I think I am able to overlook the fact that it dries out my skin because it does photograph amazingly. I do have to stock up on MAC Fix + (that setting and refreshing spray) if I am to use Korres’ Antiageing Foundation. I would use it for spring and summer and for camwhoring (most definitely). All in all, I think I will buy it even though it’s only good for one thing in my opinion. This foundation also makes any color I apply to my face pop for the most part and so I end up having to use less blush and etc.

It is priced at $39.00. I hope everyone gets to at least try this foundation on once and snap a photo of themselves as well to see how well it makes your skin look.

The last foundation review of my foundation testing marathon will be about Stila’s Illuminating Foundation. It’s been a great run and I’ll see you all tomorrow.

On the Search for the Perfect Foundation: Smashbox Studio Skin

Smashbox’s Studio Skin

Cost: $42.00 US Dollars

Available exclusively at your local Sephora.

s1349430-main-Lhero

Description: “Stay flawless for 15 hours with this photo shoot secret for picture-perfect skin. This long-wearing, hydrating formula blurs imperfections using light-diffusing, encapsulated pigment spheres, and delivers natural-looking, buildable medium-to-full coverage. Its sweat-free, transfer-proof, humidity-resistant formula keeps skin hydrated and shine-free all day.”

First Impression: I like that the foundation shades are yellow-based and not pink. Foundations used to be pink-based and they always looked unnatural and pasty on any wearer (think of foundation from the 60s). Studio Skin smells like sunscreen and also has another chemical-based scent that I can’t quite put my finger on. It’s a liquid foundation that falls between watery and creamy when it comes to texture. It is highly pigmented, buildable, and does produce a very natural finish. I found that when taking photos while wearing Studio Skin, this foundation photographs very well and does give you that airbrushed effect.

SPF: None. (One of the reasons why it photographs so well. Be sure to wear sunscreen though.)

Shade: Smashbox has 12 shades available and since they are yellow-based, there is a bigger chance that you’ll find something that matches you perfectly. I matched myself to be a 2.4 Natural Beige although if given more time, I can find a better match. This one is nearly perfect but I may have to go one shade higher. I’m crazy about having the perfect match and I literally won’t wear a foundation if it doesn’t blend in with my skin tone and look good with the rest of my body.

Shade 2.4

Shade 2.4

Finish: Natural. Smashbox’s Studio Skin emulates skin at it’s natural state. There is no excessive shine or glow. It just looks like healthy skin. This foundation is great because sometimes you don’t want all the bells and whistles. You just want a foundation that covers everything without looking like you’re wearing anything.

Texture: The texture is normal when it comes to what a liquid foundation feels like. It’s not thin and watery like Chanel’s Vitalumiere nor is it dense like Lancome’s Photogenic Lumessence. I dotted the foundation on my cheeks, forehead, nose, and chin and that was enough for me when it came to full face application. It is blendable until it sets. Remember, this is a 15-hour wear foundation so you know whatever it is that is in there is going to make it stay all day. So work fast and work diligently.

Coverage: Smashbox, like MUFE, are known for creating products that look good even in HD. Their products are camera-ready so I am not surprised to find how pigmented Studio Skin is despite the fact that it still has the ability to look like skin. It has medium to full coverage although I’ll say you easily end up with full coverage at any rate. It covered all of my blemishes and even my broken capillaries (facial veins).

WP_000570

Workable: Very workable in my opinion. Like I said earlier, just make sure you do it before it sets (it’ll set in about five minutes so you have a lot of time).

Longevity: It’s marketed as a foundation that will last 15 hours so there is definitely no need for any setting powder (I think that would actually dry your skin out). It is sweat-free (I don’t sweat), humidity-resistant (a must for anyone who lives in Atlanta), hydrating (I hope so!) and keeps you shine-free all day. It does not transfer at all once it sets so I’m actually quite happy about that. I’ll update on how this foundation did by the end of the day in the postscript.

Application: I applied this foundation with my fluffy mineral powder brush and with my fingers as well.

Type of skin: This foundation is oil-free and hydrating so I think it’s suitable for all skin types. It does tend to lift at the edges of those flaky patches so I think a hydrating mist will be needed throughout the day. I actually have the worst skin today because of the foundation I tested yesterday (Dior Skin Nude … I’ll update on it’s review article and explain everything). I have a terrible dry patch in the area between my nose and my lips (usually my problem area) and Studio Skin is doing pretty well with not drying out or irritating that area. It doesn’t feel tight around that area, but it’s just that if you look really close (like an inch from my face), you’ll see faint outlines of those patches of skin. I think Smashbox is doing a great job keeping my skin hydrated because NARS Sheer Glow always dries out my dry patches of skin. Anyway, I think this foundation would be great for any skin type as long as you thoroughly take it off at night. Also, once it sets, it doesn’t feel tacky like Dior Skin Nude does. It makes your skin feel really smooth and cool.

Packaging: Smashbox Studio Skin comes in a cylindrical glass bottle with a black pump.

The Verdict: Smashbox Skin Studio is a definite yes for me. I will be purchasing this foundation after the marathon and I’ll use it for those hot, humid days, on days when I need all day wear, and probably on days when my skin is feeling better (I recommend never wearing foundation when your skin is feeling bad. However, I have to work and see hundreds of people every day so I don’t really have an option). Since there is no excess shine, I find that my blush, lipstick, etc. really pop and stand out. Studio Skin reminds me of MAC Cosmetics and MUFE so I am glad that this foundation does actually deliver what it intends to do. I’ll test the shade that it one shade lighter than this one to see if I like it more. If I don’t, 2.4 will be the shade that I stick with. I highly recommend Smashbox Studio Skin.

WP_000574

It sells for $42 and this is worth. I honestly can’t stop looking at my face!

For more information on Studio Skin, check out this link below:

http://www.sephora.com/studio-skin-15-hour-wear-foundation-P292403?skuId=1349380

Tomorrow’s review will be about Korres’ Antiageing Foundation. The cast member at Sephora highly recommended it so I had to try it. Take care and see you all tomorrow. :D

On the Search for the Perfect Foundation: Dior Skin Nude

 Dior’s Skin Nude

Cost: $48.00 US Dollars

Available at any Dior counter at your local department store (Nordstrom, Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s, etc.) and at your local Sephora.

s1443522-main-Lhero

Description: “A hydrating fluid foundation that delivers just the right amount of coverage to create a naturally flawless, bare-skin effect.”

First Impression: Dior Skin Nude smells just like Davidoff’s Cool Water. It feels very light and it looks like you don’t have any makeup on. Sporting a very natural finish, Skin Nude leaves the skin looking airbrushed and feeling like velvet.

SPF: 15.

Shade: There are 18 shades available in the Dior Skin Nude foundation collection. I went to Sephora and I matched myself to be 040 Honey Beige. The shades are a good mixtures of yellow-based shades and pink-based shades and they seem to  catered to fairer complexions. There are about four shades for dark complexions. I think Honey Beige is a fairly good match although I think I’ll go a tad bit lighter.

Finish: Once again, we have another foundation with a radiant finish (however, this one is actually no shine and all glow). I feel like I tend to gravitate towards foundations that are more illuminating and luminous. My skin is dry so I tend to look dull and lifeless so I’m always trying to find ways to make my skin look more human-like. Dior Skin Nude is luminous yet it’s not over-the-top. Honestly, I don’t even find it to be a true radiant finish foundation because it almost looks too natural to me.

Texture: The foundation is very watery and light. I think you’ll end up wasting more product if you’re pumping the foundation onto your wrist and dabbing your brush into it. I think it’s best if you use your fingers to dot the foundation on your face before you start blending with your brush.

Coverage: I think Skin Nude has pretty good coverage but it can easily look unnatural and noticeable if you build on it too much. It took about two layers for my broken capillaries to be hidden from view. Once again, this is another foundation that stuns me with how light it is yet it is quite pigmented. Despite Dior marketing this foundation as “Skin Nude”, it is pigmented enough where you’ll look very nude, even washed out in some cases. The coverage is medium to full for Skin Nude and just be sure to use as little as possible because it can look very bad if applied with a heavy hand. It covers blemishes and acne marks like a dream though.

Workable: I think this foundation is watery so it’s easy to apply as long as you do it before this foundation sets. It goes on wet but once it sets, it dries to a satin finish that makes it nearly impossible to work with. I think that you should try to apply one layer of foundation and spot cover any other areas that need a little TLC. Over two layers = overkill.

Longevity: Since this foundation actually does set, its staying power automatically gets a boost. This foundation lasts all day (8 hours) although I find that my skin is a lot drier by the end of the day and that my dry patches feel a bit rough. No powder is required when it comes to Dior Skin because it actually sets to a natural finish already.

Application: I used my mineral powder brush to apply this foundation. I actually had to take some of the foundation off because I found that I had used too much in one area and it made the foundation look a little cakey and patchy.

Type of skin: I think this foundation is more suitable towards anything in the normal to oily skin range. If you have dry skin, you can still wear this foundation although I recommend that you moisturize well before application or use a more hydrating foundation during the winter months. If you are a dry skin type, (like I said earlier) apply with a light hand to avoid plastering foundation on your face and try to go extremely light on those dry patches because this foundation can and will emphasize them. Also, I think once this foundation sets, it feels tacky after a while.

Packaging: Dior Skin Nude comes in a small rectangular bottle that is outfitted with the Dior logo and silver branding. The foundation feels very small and light in your hands and I’m sure that is because it is packaged in plastic instead of glass.

The Verdict: Dior Skin Nude can look very natural if you do several specific things such as not going over the two-layer mark and not use powder. It’s very pigmented and is perfect for anyone who wants a true natural finish. I would not recommend anyone who is new to wearing makeup to use this because you can easily overdo it, scare yourself when you look in the mirror, and end up calling it quits on makeup forever. I don’t want anyone to do that so that is why I am telling you all ahead of time. At $48, it’s priced reasonably for normal to oily skin types but it doesn’t necessarily deliver when it comes to us drier skin types. I think this foundation would look lovely on wearers who have more oil to their skin. The fragrance is unisex in my opinion and it hasn’t bothered me since application.

I don’t think I will be purchasing this foundation at the moment. I will keep it in the “Maybe” section.

Tomorrow, I will be testing out Smashbox’s Studio Skin foundation. Keep subscribing and thank you to all who have subscribed since yesterday.

UPDATE: I’ll be putting this foundation in the “No” list. It caused my skin to become agitated, red, and raw. The dry patches on my face have dried up and are now more noticeable. I think this foundation could be great for other skin types but it definitely has not worked out well for me. By the end of the day, the foundation was cakey and a lot of the foundation had rubbed off elsewhere.