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Friday Favorites

fall favorites hiking

Welcome to another edition of Friday Favorites!

But most importantly – FALL IS HERE!!!

It’s been another busy week around here, but a good one. The weather is cooling down, and the leaves are slowly starting to change over to their fall colors. I even had to turn the heat on in the office on Wednesday! I’m excited for sweater weather, and can’t wait to start using my giant scarf collection too!

Anyway, enough rambling. Here’s what I found fun and interesting online this past week (or so).

  • If you enjoy workout videos like I do, check out Tracy Anderson’s total body workout video! (Goop)
  • If you saw my Instagram earlier this week, you’ll know my skin has totally gone to shit. None of the usual acne stuff seems to be working at all, so I’ve gone the herbal route and bought some products that use Neem. I’ll report back and let you know how it goes.
  • I also have a giant order from The Ordinary on its way. I’m really not happy about this skincare thing, and willing to try anything to fix it. This stuff is not only potent and effective, it’s also the most affordable skincare out there.
  • I’ve been toying around with the idea of going vegan for, like, years now. I pretty much eat vegan already (except for dinner), so it’s just a matter of getting a better recipe arsenal. Mac ‘n’ cheese is a lot of what’s holding me back, to be honest – that stuff is hard to give up. Might try this recipe this weekend from Goop for Superfood Vegan Mac ‘N’ Cheese to see if it’ll help me get over the “cheese hump” I hear is brutal when making the switch!

I hope everyone has a great weekend! I’m planning to go watch the new Kingsman movie, hang out with the in-laws, and hopefully get some much-needed down time!

Have a great weekend!

Friday Favorites

friday_favorites

(A short attempt to work outside during a smoke-out)

Time for another Friday Favorites!

While this was a short week thanks to Labor Day, it wasn’t a very fun one. First, temperatures were supposed to hit almost 100 this week, which meant hiding in the AC for another week. Next, the entire west coast has been on fire! The smoke and ash has been so bad that it looks like it’s snowing. Yuck! I went to my favorite coffee shop to get some work done on Tuesday, but I only made it 20 minutes before leaving because I was already covered in ash. It didn’t really start to clear up until yesterday, and unless it rains soon, it’s going to be around for a while.

Being cooped up all week wasn’t fun at all, but I did have some extra time to goof around online! Here are just a few of the things I enjoyed online this week!

Friday Favorites

    • The Everygirl did their list of favorite beauty products from Trader Joe’s. I’ve never really bought any beauty products there, but I might now!
    • Since it’s been hot as balls lately, I’ve been using a facial mist to “freshen up” as I sweat all damn day. If you’re looking for a good one to try, check out Darling’s wish list!
    • BUST is killing it lately with their articles. This one is about one of their writers recreating 4 lipsticks from history. I don’t want to spoil anything, but let’s just say some are more tempting than others!
    • I just picked up a copy of The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson, which seems to be the book of the moment. If this weather clears up, you’ll find me reading it at the beach this weekend!
    • In honor of it being almost fall, I decided to grab a pair of pumpkin-spiced flats from Ollio. They arrived yesterday, and I can’t wait to wear them everywhere! It’s going to be hard for me not to order them in every color! Here they are in all their glory:

friday favoritesI’m not sure what the weekend holds for me – it largely depends on the weather! Maybe a trip to the beach, or a seasonal closet switch-over…who knows! What are you doing this weekend?

Friday Favorites + Welcome to September!

Friday favorites

(From my mini-adventure in Seattle: Pike Place Market / Lamplighter Books / Storyville Coffee / Left Bank Bookstore)

Happy Friday + Welcome to September!

As always, it’s been a busy week. However, I did escape to downtown Seattle on Wednesday for a little mini-adventure. While D. was busy with a work outing, I spent the afternoon chilling on my own. I checked out a few bookstores, grabbed a latte, and went to the Olympic Sculpture Park. I met up with D. later for dinner and (a few too many) drinks. It was a wonderful day, and we’re going to definitely do that more often!

Without further ado, here are my Friday favorites from this past week:

  • I’m not a big smoothie fan, but I am looking for a more protein-packed, easy breakfast (I’m so lazy). The Chalkboard Mag has a few recipes I can’t wait to try – especially the carrot cake smoothie/shake!
  • Aimee Song from Song of Style is in the middle of remodeling her new home, and has a drool-worthy list of small items to add to any home. I kinda want all of it.¬†
  • I’m always looking to clean up and simplify my beauty routine, and Into The Gloss has a great list of beauty products with the fewest ingredients. My life goal is to smell like a beautiful hippie, can you tell? ūüėČ
  • It’s been hot as balls here lately, which makes it so hard to cook (or better yet,¬†want¬†to cook). If we get another 90+ degree day, I’m gonna give this recipe for¬†One Pot Summertime Pasta¬†from Camille Styles a try!
  • Now that fall is finally on its way, I’m looking into upping my shoe game. First up – a pair of green suede flats that don’t match anything I own, but will look killer anyway.

I’m off to keep working on some editing work, then hopefully spending the weekend relaxing and reading. I picked up Rebecca Solnit’s book The Mother Of All Questions at the library, and I think I could easily get through it this weekend while relaxing at the beach!

What are you up to this weekend?

Friday Favorites

Friday favorites august 18

Happy Friday!

It’s been another crazy-busy week with work and blog planning. Thankfully, the weather finally cooled down around here so I can work outside! I missed sitting outside and soaking in the sunshine, but the 90+ degree temperature and smoky air made it impossible.

We don’t have any real plans for this weekend – I may end up doing some thrift shopping in Seattle, or taking a long hike. I spent last weekend sick, so I look forward to accomplishing more and finding time to relax, too!

Here are some of my favorites from the internet this past week:

  • I’m obsessed with face masks right now, and Hello Glow posted a handy guide to choose the right mud for your skin type! My next purchase will probably be some Fuller’s Earth Clay Powder to combat the hyperpigmentation I’m fighting this summer!
  • During the summer, I am lazy as shit when it comes to my hair. I usually just let it air dry, or put it up in a bun and leave it be. Camille Styles rounded up the best products to use while air drying your hair to leave it silky, beach-wavy, and smelling great!
  • It’s that time of year again when I start eyeing up new sneakers – and these from Nike are my current favorites. I am keeping a close eye on Amazon to see if they go on sale!
  • Man Repeller asked their readers for the most addicting books, and they delivered! I will need to add a few of these to my library list!

Oh, one last thing – a few people wanted to know about the large plant in this photo. It’s a Calathea Lancifolio, also known as a Rattlesnake Plant. I got it a couple weeks ago and love it – the leaves fall in the morning, and close back up by evening – you can even see time-lapse videos of them opening and closing online!

Happy weekend!

Target Mask Haul for Indecisive Skincare Hoarders

target-face-masks

During the summer months, my skin always goes a bit crazy. Between the extra heat and sweat, my skin breaks out and stays an oil slick from June to pretty much October. To combat that, I’ve started using masks to treat and calm my skin.

Since I love trying new things, I love going to Target and buying several travel-size masks instead of one full-sized mask. I get to try out a bunch of new products without breaking my budget, and if I find one I love, I’ll go find the full size later. Plus, they are great to stow away in a carry-on bag or in your luggage while traveling. They take up much less room, and give you an excuse to indulge a little.

Target has really stepped up their face mask game lately, so I went recently to pick up a few new masks to try out!

Burt’s Bees Rejuvenating Eye Masks

I’m dying to try these eye masks soon! They are a bit pricier than the Que Bella eye masks, but hopefully they will be worth it! I’m planning on packing these into a carry-on during my next trip, but if I use them sooner I’ll let you know how they are!

Yes to Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Mud Mask

Since my skin is prone to breakouts in the summer, charcoal masks are my best friend! They do a great job of clearing my pores, and the added salicylic acid means it’ll fight off future breakouts too! I can’t wait to give this one a try, and hopefully replace my previous charcoal mask, which was too irritating. This one is also made with 96% natural ingredients, which is important to me now that I’m trying to clean up my beauty products!

Que Bella Professional Moisturizing Gel Eye Masks

I have to admit, these are not a new purchase for me. I’ve been using Que Bella’s eye masks ever since I did a review of their professional range last year. They are so good that I just keep stocking up whenever I go to Target!

They feel so luxurious, stay in place, and leave my eyes feeling soothed and plump afterwards! I also love that each pack comes with 3 pairs, which is a great deal!

Alba Botanica Fast-Fix Sheet Mask in Papaya Anti-Acne

I don’t typically like sheet masks, but I absolutely love Alba Botanica’s products – so let’s say I’m cautiously optimistic. It’s hypoallergenic, which my sensitive skin loves, and I imagine it smells divine, like the rest of their products!

Shea Moisture African Black Soap Clarifying Mud Mask

I actually did a review of this Target mask for a freelance client a few weeks ago, and after writing about it I had to try it! This mask feels more like a gel than a traditional mud mask, and I’m not sure it ever fully “dries.” However, it comes off easily and left my skin feeling clean without the dry pulling feel of a regular mud mask. This is a great mask to wear while meditating – no distractions from the drying/pulling on your skin while you’re trying to focus!

So if you’re like me and obsess about trying new skincare products, save your money and do a Target mask haul of your own! It’s hard not to come home with a dozen each time, but I do my best!

Friday Favorites

friday favorites yoga

Welcome to another weekly edition of Friday favorites!

Man, it’s been a crazy week around here!

Summer finally decided to make an appearance, with temperatures well into the 90s all week. We’re also dealing with a smoke cloud over the Seattle area, thanks to a forest fire that started in Canada. Needless to say, I spent the last week cooped up inside hiding from either the heat or smoke!

Here are some things I enjoyed this week while hiding from the heat!

  • Free People wrote a great post this week on when to toss your green beauty products. If you recently cleaned up your beauty routine, it’s worth checking out to make sure your beauty products are still safe to use!
  • I’m in the process of re-organizing my closet, and Aimee Song’s closet tour was full of so much inspiration!
  • You know I love a good DIY face spray, and Orchid Grey came up with a quartz-charged rose spray I’d love to make! I’m not sure if I buy into the whole quartz thing, but the scent sounds divine!
  • I am currently cooking my way through Veganomicon, and recently made their Southwestern Corn Pudding. I’m definitely making this one again soon!
  • My husband’s succulent has exploded, and I’ve been shopping online for some small pots to plant all the little baby succulents. I am going to do my best not to buy, like, 10 of these adorable Japanese-style painted pots:

Aren’t the adorable?

Anyway, before I go down the rabbit hole on Amazon…I hope you all have a great weekend! I’m planning to maybe go to the beach if it’s not too hot. Otherwise, I’ll be in front of the air conditioner like everyone else in Seattle!

Recent Skincare Favorites

recent skincare favorites

Winter is on its way out, which means swapping out skincare routines. I thought now would be a good time to document my recent skincare favorites before I switch them out for more spring and summer friendly products!

Recent Skincare Favorites

Thayers Alcohol-Free Rose Petal Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera

I use this toner year-round because it’s non-irritating (thanks to the absence of alcohol) and doubles as an eye makeup remover. It doesn’t hurt the packaging and smell are sublime!

Mario Badescu Acne Facial Cleanser

This is a cleanser I keep going back to every winter. It’s non-drying and gentle, and has kept my breakouts at bay over the past few months.

DIY Face Elixir Spray

I can’t stop spraying this stuff! If you’re looking for a Caudalie Face Elixir dupe, this is a great substitute. You won’t mind spraying it on your face, pillows, or anywhere really! Click on the link above to learn how to make your own!

Murad – Rapid Age Spot and Pigment Lightening Serum

I decided to try this¬†to get rid of hyperpigmentation (thanks, birth control). So far, I haven’t seen a lot of change in my skin tone, but the texture of my skin is much better since I started using it. I guess I’ll have to be diligent and patient with the pigmentation.

Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre Moisturizer

When I first purchased this, I thought it would be far too thick for my already oily, sensitive skin. Boy, was I wrong! I slather this on every night after my serum, and I wake up every morning with soft, glowing skin. The French know their skincare, that’s for sure!

Freeman Facial Apple Cider Vinegar 4-In-1 Foaming Clay

I found this at my local Ulta last fall, and loved it because of the smell, mostly. However, after using it as both a mask and exfoliating scrub, I am now on my third tube! It’s a great multi-use product that smells great, and leaves my skin feeling smooth without being too irritated. I loved using it this winter because it’s not as harsh as my other exfoliants, and as a mask it’s not too drying.

4 Pretty Nail Colors for Fall

4 Pretty Nail Colors Fall

While I am painfully aware that trends exist, I don’t always follow them. So when it came time to choose some new nail colors for fall, I ignored what I read in magazines and went with colors I knew I’d actually wear.¬†For example, I keep seeing pastel blue everywhere? It’s not a color I associate with fall, and one I probably wouldn’t wear anyway. To me, fall is about adding a little¬†brown or gray to shades I already wear – nothing too far off my normal routine.

Since I am trying out some new colors for fall, I thought I’d go with the Sonia Kashuk line at Target. They’re only $4.79 per bottle, and they come in some on-trend shades for fall. Here are the 4 pretty nail colors for fall, whether you’re a trend-setter, trend-follower, or neither! Click on the names below if you want to buy them for yourself!

Mauving On Up:

I’m not a light pink polish kind of gal, but this one seems perfect for fall. It’s mauve with a grayish tone to it, which I think will look perfect with all the grays I wear in fall and winter.

Rich Girl:

I wear orange polish frequently, but the orange polishes in my collection¬†are bright and cheery. This is a straight-up pumpkin shade that’s perfect for fall. It looks less pink in real life, and¬†will be a great shade¬†to add a bit of pop to my fall wardrobe. I would love to wear this on my toes instead of my usual red or pink.

Forbidden Fruit:

This is a deep magenta that I think will be a color I wear year-round! I looked for something similar for years, but most shades were too purple or red. This is a great in-between that would look great on toes too!

Gray Matter:

I have been wearing OPI’s “Metro Chic” for years, which is the perfect muddy gray-purple shade. It’s since been discontinued, but I do love the look of grey nails in fall. It’s a great alternative to black polish (which I wear a lot in winter), and this one has a slightly bluish tone.

So there you have it! Head on over to Target to check out this collection, and I hope you find a shade or two that are perfect for your fall nails!

Fall Beauty Updates

fall beauty updates

(Sorry for the crap quality photo. Sometimes things just don’t go your way!)

Fall is finally here!

I’m looking forward to updating my beauty routine to reflect the new season. Summer is easy, with little makeup and simple updos. Once the weather cools, I get excited about the new beauty trends I can try out. It must stem from my years as a teacher. Instead of stocking up on new school supplies, I’m focusing on new lip colors and some old favorites I still love.

Fall Beauty Update

L’Oreal Preference Hair Dye in Medium Chestnut Brown (5CB)

For many reasons I should probably write about in another post, I chose to stop dying my hair around Christmas last year. It turns out that while I don’t really have any grey hair yet to cover (yay genetics!), my natural hair color is boring the shit out of me. So I’m excited to mix it up for fall with a deeper, warmer hue.

Not Your Mother’s “Love for Hue” Shampoo & Conditioner

Since I haven’t dyed my hair in almost a year, I want to make sure what I do sticks. I used other products from them in the past and they were all great, so I look forward to using these too!

Maybelline Fit Me! Matte + Poreless Foundation (Classic Ivory 120)

I have been using the “Dewy + Smooth” version of this all summer and loved it. For fall, I wanted to switch it up and go with the matte version, which is just as great. My skin gets stupid oily in the winter, so this should help.

NYX Butter Gloss in Red Wine Truffle

Okay, this was a total impulse buy. I don’t own a dark red lipgloss, and this shade is perfect for fall. The best part of the butter gloss is that you can really customize the look. I usually wear a little of it more like a stain, but it also looks amazing piled on too!

CoverGirl Clump Crusher Mascara in Black Brown

This is my all-time favorite mascara. Nothing new – just bought a new one after I got pink eye and had to throw mine out.

NYX Slim Eye Pencils in Charcoal and Light Brown

I have these in black and dark brown, but I like going a bit lighter on the eyes if I’m going darker on the lips. These are a great because I don’t have to be super precise when applying them, and on lazy fall days that’s just perfect.

Earth Therapeutic’s Triple Butter Intensive Foot Balm

I’ll gladly admit that my feet get absolutely wrecked in the fall/winter months. Changing out sandals for boots leaves them pretty dry and gross. So this year, I’m hoping to keep on top of it with a nightly ritual of foot balm and cozy socks. This one smells and feels amazing, and not at all greasy.

What are you planning to stock up on this fall?¬†I’m still looking for a good hand lotion, so if you have any good suggestions, let me know in the comments!

Summer Beauty Cleanout

Summer is coming to a close, and our September magazines¬†are already telling us what to buy for fall. As seasons change, it’s always a good idea to do a summer beauty cleanout. This is a great time to go through our beauty arsenal, noting what we’d love to keep, what needs to go, and what to stock up on for the future.

My beauty stash isn’t nearly as large as others, but I still need to take stock to make sure the products I have are¬†safe, loved, and useful. It also keeps me from buying things I don’t need, which is a huge bonus!

Here are 5 tips I use to do my own summer beauty cleanout each year. Whether you have a small stash like me, or a giant one, this should be easy to do in an afternoon!

Summer Beauty Cleanout

summer beauty cleanout

1: Get it all out

I find that when cleaning, it’s best to just get it all in one place to start. This helps you see what you have and take note of how you feel about it. Do you feel okay with how much you have? Overwhelmed? Underwhelmed? If you are overwhelmed with¬†how much you have, it’s a good sign that it’s time to pare down.

Before you begin,¬†grab a notepad and pen to take notes of what to buy/replace when you’re done. I never remember what I tossed out, so I always do this!

My beauty products were stored in my bathroom, office and bedroom. Once I got it all out and looked at it, I realized I shouldn’t have it divided among 3 rooms. There isn’t that much, and I don’t know why it was spread out all over the apartment.

My goal for this project became simple – try to get everything in one room!

summer beauty cleanout

2: Check expiration dates

The first thing you should do to start¬†your summer beauty cleanout is to grab everything with an expiration date and check that it’s still good. It’s also good to go through your medicine cabinet and travel kits too. Anything that’s past it’s prime, toss it – no excuses¬†– and jot down anything that needs replaced!

For anything without an expiration date, you can check out this handy guide for how long to keep common beauty and makeup products.

summer beauty cleanout

3: Be brutal with makeup

Many women I know agree that makeup is tough to pare down. We¬†keep things well beyond their shelf life, buy duplicates of products over and over, and keep things we don’t like. Being ruthless with your makeup stash will ensure your products are safe, effective, and will actually get used.

My biggest issue with makeup is that I buy duplicates. Do I need two bronzers that are basically the same? No Рespecially since I know the Sephora one is at least 4 years old. I also got rid of all the nubs of eyeliner I was holding on to. I bought new ones months ago, but never replaced them because the nubs still had product in them. It felt wasteful to just throw them out Рuntil I noticed I kept stabbing my eyes every time I tried to use them.

Once I pared down my makeup, I took notes on what needed replaced, and some ideas of things to freshen up my makeup routine for fall.

summer beauty cleanout

4: Toss / Keep (and what to do with each)

Once you’ve gone through everything,¬†now you have to deal with the “toss” pile.¬†Do you throw it all out? Give some of it away? Sell it? Here are some simple rules for how to get rid of things:

  • Throw away anything that’s past its expiration date – no exceptions!
  • Throw away any used makeup that didn’t make the cut. I know it’s tempting to give it away to friends or family, but it’s too risky – especially if the product is old and/or used.
  • If you have any makeup that was never (and I mean never ever) used, and it’s still relatively new, see if you have a friend you can give it to. If not, toss it.
  • Don’t sell makeup online. I know some people do that, but it just seems…shady to me.
  • For those almost-empty bottles of lotion, shampoo, soap, etc.: Decant them into travel-sized bottles and toss into your travel kit! Why spend money on a travel-sized bottle of shampoo when you have 2 ounces of it sitting in a bottle in the back of your bathroom sink?

After doing my summer beauty cleanout, I was also left with a small box of “things to use later.” It’s a great place to keep things that I haven’t used in a while, but should work on finishing before buying new stuff. Keep it under the sink so you¬†don’t forget about it!

summer beauty cleanout

5: Stock up on essentials

The last thing to do¬†is easy – go shopping! Take your notes of what to replace or stock up on, and head on out! Fall is a great time to stock up on essentials like cotton pads, cotton swabs, sunscreen (lots of end-of-summer sales!), and other basics. With everyone heading back to school, or moving off to college, stores are having crazy sales right now. I hit up my local Target and grabbed a few things I knew I’d need soon, and a few things just for fun!

I met my goal of getting all my beauty products in one room, and feel more confident that nothing left will go to waste. I’m also looking forward to stocking up on some new fall makeup soon too, whenever it’s not 90 degrees out anymore!