De-Stress and Relax

It’s pretty hard to be stressed in a bathtub. You can’t down a cup of tea as you would a glass of water or soda. There’s no point in flipping through pages of a book the way you’d flip through channels on the TV. Certain things take time and demand you to slow down and take a break. These are the things I find the best if you’re looking to de-stress and relax.

Some of these things work best before bed, others can be done at any point during the day. Everyone is different, these are just a few things that I do.

  • Getting outside and going for a walk can be really refreshing, if you want to get more out of it and make it more therapeutic try to notice small details around you. Look at the grass, the way the sun hits the street, see if you can hear any rustling of leaves or birds. You’ll find that the other thoughts going on in your head will be drowned out by concentrating on your surroundings.
  • I don’t know what it is about baking but I feel like if I can’t put thoughts together or I can’t get something done to be able to put something physical together (like a cake, or a meal if you prefer cooking) allows me to think better. It can also be helpful to “get lost” in the act of baking or cooking.

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  • Showers are good, but baths are better for relaxing. In the shower your head tends to race, or you’ll hear of people talking about “shower thoughts.” A bath allows you to truly take it easy. You don’t need fancy products, but using good soap and epsom salt can add to it.

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  • You may of heard of people describing drinking tea as an experience rather than just drinking a beverage. It’s true, if you allow it to be. Take the time to really enjoy what you are drinking and notice the heat from the tea. Caffeine doesn’t really do anything for me so I drink a lot of different teas, but if you’re aiming to relax anything herbal or caffeine free is very helpful.
  • Reading is a nice break from being on your phone or the computer. There’s no denying reading a book can take you back to something that isn’t as present as it once was.
  • Applying makeup and playing around with new techniques or styles is relaxing for me. It’s something creative I can rely on to improve my mood. Find something creative that allows you to go outside the lines of everyday tasks.
  • Meditating will take an overtaxed mind and let it breathe. I love meditating and being able to think more clearly. Not only will this clear your mind, it will also put things in perspective which will both de-stress and relax you.

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How To: 90s Dark Lips

If you were born in the 90s like me, the last thing you probably thought would happen would be growing up and taking cues on makeup from then. I don’t really know if I even thought about what makeup would be like when I got older, but I kind of like this throwback. It’s simple and bold at the same time. If you’re not sure how to pair a dark brown shade of lipstick then keep reading.

I’ll be honest and say that it wasn’t until recently that I got on the bandwagon with this makeup trend. I didn’t want to go the whole Kylie Lip Kit route and the idea of getting a brown lip color didn’t excite me at all. It was almost like those colors you used to scan over because they were “boring.” Now I’d venture to say that those colors are interesting, they are deep and uncommon. It’s not the classic red, pink or nude. After experimenting I’ve come to realize two very key elements in being able to pull of this look:

  1. Choice of blush
  2. Keeping things matte

 

  • What you choose to put on your cheeks can either bring the look together or tear it apart. I don’t think I’ve come across a family of lip colors that require the amount of care as with these grungey browns. Keep it neutral. Keep it in the same group of earthy reds or terracotta you can also substitute the blush for a chocolatey brown bronzer. Now’s not the time for bright pinks.

 

  • Keeping the rest of your makeup matte is kind of a shortcut to making the look appear authentic. If you were embellish anywhere, use a little highlighter just on the cheekbones.

 

Thankfully matte lip glosses and creams exist, in my opinion these last really well and don’t dry your lips out as much as you might imagine.

Now it’s up to you! Go out and try it, you never know you might like it. There’s lots of inspiration from celebrities of past and present if you get stuck.

Some of my favorite looks :

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How To Be More Organized

Not being organized has always been a part of me. I always thought of it as my own way of doing things. It’s like those people who have a room full of stuff everywhere, but if you name an item they’ll be able to locate it within 30 seconds. It’s a mess to you, but it makes sense to them. I came to realize that I only had half of that scenario right: my room was a mess, things were all over the place, but I didn’t know where anything was.

The problem was this spread to my pocketbook, my closet, folders, important documents, etc. I’d misplace things. I’d always be rummaging around, hoping to find what I was looking for. I saw that being organized is more than just having things neat and in order to look nice.It can change your life.

For anyone trying to get more organized here’s where you should start.

  1. Go through the things that you already have. This is different than cleaning. You’ll reduce the number of things that cause the clutter and confusion. Sometimes if you walk by an old book everyday you won’t see the book anymore. These things become a part of the wallpaper and you don’t realize how long they’ve been sitting there. I’m sure you’ve heard the rule “If you haven’t looked at it in months get rid of it.” It’s harder to be disorganized with less things.
  2. Invest in shelves, boxes, storage compartments. This is a way to make this process somewhat fun. Get things that you can store smaller, loose items in to have them all in one spot. You’ll be able to put things on display by placing them on shelves. You’ll actually be able to see your stuff instead of it sitting at the bottom of a closet! I recommend places like Michaels, Target and Walmart to get started.
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My box for storing make up from Michaels

3.Write lists. There’s nothing like going to the store and not remembering what you went for. Writing everything down will ensure you remember and stay organized. I’ve gone to bed only to realize I didn’t do what I really needed to do that day simply because I forgot. Write down even small things like daily activities or things you want to accomplish to keep you on track.

4. Customize it. Personally I’m not a person who puts everything in their phone. I work best with a pen and paper. If you’ve been looking for tips on getting organized don’t forget to customize them. You’re unique and you need to do things in a way that will work for you. When I write lists I can’t go too crazy and write them in the order that I’ll do them. As long as they are all completed at the end of the day to me it doesn’t matter the order I did them.

Being more organized has saved me time, reduced the stress of not knowing where things are and generally made me happier. It’s something you’ll have to choose to keep on top of everyday, but it’s worth it. You’ll form habits of being more organized and it’ll only get easier as time goes by.

How To Control A Breakout

First, don’t panic and stay calm. After that you can create a strategy to prevent it from happening again. 

This post was inspired by the pimple on my forehead. I didn’t realize it, but there is an actual process that goes through my head when I break out.

Like many, I  start out wondering why this happened. However, I don’t wonder in a “why me?” way. I’ll take a moment and play back the tape. Why did I get this? Did I exfoliate and this was bought to the surface? Did I use something that didn’t agree with my skin? Was my skin too oily? Too dry? If you can narrow down why you got it can help prevent another breakout, as well as helping you to understand your skin better and see its patterns.

I believe you really can minimize a breakout. Once you see it forming or the slightest sign, nip it in the bud.

Use spot treatments. There’s nothing like applying just what you need to the specific area that needs it. I’d recommend something with a slightly stronger amount of benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid or even sulfur.

Wash your face with something stronger. Go with something slightly stronger than you’d normally use. Most days I use a milky cleanser, but during the time I breakout I will use something that will help me out a little more.

Tone your face. This will rebalance the skin’s pH.

Keep your schedule the same. Don’t feel the need to scrub your face every hour to get rid of the breakout. If you wash your face twice a day, keep it like that. Going too harsh too fast will just give your face more to deal with.

Lighten up on cosmetics. You might feel like you want to cover up every square inch of your face, but it’s better if you hold back a bit. Usually I don’t skip wearing foundation when I breakout, but when I get home I make sure to take off my makeup. This gives everything time to breathe.

Pop it. Before you get the wrong idea, this isn’t an excuse to go popping all your pimples. There are some prerequisites to take into account. The pimple(s) must be ready. They must be at the point where just the slightest pressure will cause them to pop. You must sterilize your tools and hands. No picking or using dirty utensils.

*This gets a little graphic, but it’s the only way to describe that you’ve done it right. If you decide that your pimple is ready to go you’ll want to squeeze to the point of seeing blood or an oily substance, that’s when you know you’ve gotten everything out. Be gentle, you may need to take breaks in between. Afterwards put something to disinfect the area to prevent infection.

Some people say never to pop a pimple, that it extends the life of it, but I’ve found on a few occasions it shortens it. If I’m thorough, if can relieve the pain by popping it, if it was ready and I make sure it’s done in a way that’s sanitary, I don’t see anything wrong with it.

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What I’ve been using to keep breakouts under control.

*La Roche-Posay Effaclear Duo (Spot treatment)

*Skin Ceuticals Purifying Cleanser (stronger cleanser)

*Skin Ceuticals LHA Solution Toner &Blemish+ Age Solution Toner (I alternate between the two toners)

*Skin Ceuticals Blemish+Age Defense Serum (can be used as a spot treatment as well as its main use as a serum)

 

 

Bigger Eyes With Makeup

Have you ever wished you had bigger eyes? Generally when you when you want to accentuate a feature another route is to make it bigger to stand out. 

 

In just a few minutes you can get your eyes to really pop. Prep and prime your eyes as you normally would and let’s start.

  • Curl your lashes. This will already make a difference in opening your eyes up.
  • Line your waterline with white eyeliner. (Upper waterline is optional)
  • Apply a nude shimmery color onto lid, stopping at the crease.20160226_143836.jpg
  • Taking the same color (my go-to color for this is “YDK” from Urban Decay) and go under the eye and smudge it out, by doing this you are extending where your appears to end. The color replicates an actual shadow formed by your eye and lashes.
  • Take a matte black and go in just at the outer crease. Blend slightly in, but not up
  • Highlight your brow bone and the inner corners of your eyes. (Brow bone can be highlighted with a matte color, but it looks best if the inner corners are iridescent. .
  • Mascara. Nothing adds to this look like mascara. Upper and lower lashes and lots of it, make sure to get all the small lashes on the inner and outer eye.

There you have it! Your eyes should look bigger and brighter than before.

How To Have The Best Year Possible

More than a week in to the new year, has the novelty worn off yet? The last two years I’ve done something different than years past. I planned to have a good year. It might sound hard to believe, but it’s changed something. It’s the number one tip I can think of for improving a new year. It’s safe to say you’ll never have 100 percent control of how your year goes, but these are tips to make it the best you can.

Planning to have a good year. As I mentioned above this is the most important. It will kill any fear of it not being what you want or expect. If you do whatever you can to make it a good year, then it’s settled. It takes away the “I hope it’ll be a good year.” Sure, we all have that hope, but by doing whatever it takes to make it the best you can everything becomes a lot simpler. Your year is already good and it will continue to be that way because you make it that way.

Accepting the past year or years. Whatever unfolded last year or in years past, here’s a new year to wipe the slate clean. Anything left up in the air realize that you may not get the answer, and be okay with that. Not everything shows itself. Sometimes you won’t know the reason why or how, but accept it and keep going for your own sake. Take it down to a smaller level and even things in your day that you didn’t like or understand take it in and accept it. Don’t let it drive you nuts for following weeks, just watch as it solves itself or takes a new form.

Learning new things. There’s no way to know what you like if you haven’t tried it all. If there’s something that has been hanging around your head for a while, just go out and do it. Do things that you think you’ll enjoy. Learn something you don’t think you’ll need. Oddly enough the stuff you don’t think you need initially will somehow come up in conversation and suddenly it’ll be a moment. You might surprise yourself with finding a new hobby or adding a new skill. Who knows where that will go. That’s the point of it. You don’t know, so try it!

Taking better care of yourself.To get the most out of your year you need to feel okay. Don’t be sluggish. Don’t go halfway. This year do what you need to in order to be more rested and healthier. Don’t go vegan just because your friend did. Don’t cut out gluten because you read it in a magazine. Everyone is different. Find what’s right for you and prepare to feel better.

If you don’t feel it’s right, don’t do it. Trust yourself and go with your instincts, you have them for a reason. If in the past you were a real people-pleaser maybe it’s time to stand firm with what you think. Not to say that you should be cold or never do favors, or have the mindset that everyone is out to get you, but if something makes you uncomfortable and you feel in your gut it’s not right for you don’t do it. End of story. Don’t second guess yourself. If a career move doesn’t sit well with you, or a relationship of any kind, don’t let it slide.

 

What do you do to have a good year? Do you plan it?

 

 

 

 

 

Making Decisions

My page says “Makeup & More.” I wanted to start doing of the “more.” Tonight I wanted to write about making decisions. Big decisions, since those are the hardest. Of course you can always look at this still under the “makeup” part, if choosing makeup is a difficult decision for you (and there’s no denying sometimes it can be).

I’m not here to say I’m an expert at making decisions, or even to say that they come easily to me, but there are some things that I’ve realized and learned that make things a little better.

When facing a big decision there can be additions to the decision itself. Two common additions I find are fear and pressure. It’s not enough to decide, but you also have fear and pressure lurking around in the background clouding the whole situation over. I try to identify if those additions are present and where they are coming from.

Fear: Fear can push you into a situation as much as it can scare you away from one.

What if by not making this decision it will impact the next few years?  People always say “The worst thing you can do is nothing.”, If you don’t make your move soon the opportunity will pass. What if it’s not the right time? What if I’m not ready?  The problem with being pulled and pushed by fear is that pulling back and pushed into things are opposites. You’ll end up being more confused than ever.

Pressure: Other people being impacted by your decision and their expectations will keep you awake at night. Maybe there’s a time limit or a certain date that you have to decide by.

The minute that you give up the fear, you’ll find relief. The minute that you realize that you’ll get through it and find a way as you’ve found a way with everything up to this point is where you’ll get some clarity. The expectations that you think other people have for you may not exist at all. If they are impacted by your decision chances are they are thinking of the situation from their standpoint and their course of action. Test to see if the pressure you feel is coming from within. For myself that was a big realization : the only one putting these expectations and this pressure on myself, was myself. Time is neutral, in that way it’s nice. It will pass regardless of what happens, so don’t let it drive you crazy.

Another way to tackle a big decision is to not look at is at something “big.” It sounds silly, but it works.There can be a lot of build up surrounding certain ideas and landmarks in life. For example, graduating college and deciding where to go next and what to do. Rather than think “I’m graduating, this is a huge deal. I’m so nervous, what do I do with my life how?” Not to ignore that there is an actual period of adjustment that comes with anything starting or ending, but to realize that some of the nerves come from everyone around you talk about what a “big moment” it is. It’s hard to ignore that. Again, not to diminish graduating college, but to take the expectation out of it. To do the graduating and leave the worrying. Moving may not be a big deal to you, but to someone else it’s a major life event. The point is, don’t let other people tell you what’s important or what you should stress about. Also know you have the power to decide what is worth stressing about. You can let it go and just make the decision without looking back.

Perspective and digging past the emotions that come with decisions can change the way you make them.