We can all agree that 2020 was just... UNREAL... to say the least. Nothing we could've ever imaged, nothing we ever would have expected. I am SO proud of us!! Let's all just take a moment to really sit in this moment, take it all in. We can do hard things!!
This new year has already proved that 2021 will not be a breeze. However, I know after all I have gone through over the last year, I am more experienced, resilient & ready to take on the new joys & challenges that 2021 will bring. I know you are too!
There was so much that helped me through 2020. Here are 5 things helped carry me through last year's traumas that I hope to bring with me in 2021...
The "work from home" life woke something up inside me. I needed to be outside! I started just walking around my neighborhood every day. As the weather warmed up, I ventured up to the Wasatch Mountains that surround my home. I road tripped to Bryce Canyon National Park & Teton National Park for summer adventures. Towards the end of the year I was able to spend a few weeks on the beach in South Beach, Florida & on my favorite Caribbean island Sint Maarten to get fully grounded with the sandy earth & to be healed by the sun & the ocean water.
I learned how to truly fuel my body this year with beautiful whole foods from the earth. I found a love for fruits, veggies, super foods & spices. I started eating all my meals in a quiet space, totally focused on how I was feeling. I discovered so much more mindfulness & gratitude for my food & for my body through this process.
Moving my body became more & more essential as quarantine life dragged on. I needed a way to release tension & express myself. Through a simple video workout I found online I discovered Barre. Barre workouts are a beautiful mix of ballet & pilates. It just speaks to my soul. After doing barre workouts for months on end & loving it I decided to get certified to become an instructor. I can't wait to start teaching in the new year!
I discovered breath work one day after a run around my neighborhood. I downloaded a popular breath work app & started on my first session. After one round I felt like I was having an out of body experience. I felt like I was on some sort of high! After learning a few easy techniques, I am able to now do breath work on my own. I know it helps me survive the hard days!
Towards the end of the year my whole world came crashing down but I was given the gift of truth. It was like everything I had been experiencing, romanticizing & dreaming of was frozen & I could now see things, people & experiences as they really were. It was heartbreaking & soul crushing but I had the most valuable thing & that was my truth. With that truth I was able to own my power & control the narrative of my life. I can still feel those truths feel in my soul. They are were what carried me through the darkest, saddest most painful times of this past year.
Pick one of these habits to start focusing on & level up your life!
In the comments, tell me which one of these habits is speaking to you!
Last spring I started implementing more plants into my meals. It really became a game. How many veggies could I sneak into my own meals?? By eating more plant based, I felt better, I was living more mindfully & my digestion was 10X better!! As I really leaned into my plant based diet I started focusing on the ingredients in my food as well. A product I fell IN LOVE with was Chickpea Pasta. The ingredient list is slim & it tastes amazing. If you are a foodie I highly recommend trying some. Out of all the plant based pastas, chickpea in my opinion is the tastiest!
Benefits of swapping normal pasta for chickpea pasta??
You sold me at FIBER! I will do anything for an optimized digestion system! LOL!
At the grocery store when I am restocking my pasta stash, I always check the ingredient list when trying out a new brand. Steer clear if it has more than 2-3 ingredients. There are better ones out there! I love to make a box of pasta & keep it in my fridge for easy, fast lunch & dinner meals! Don't forget to cook all your pasta in PFOA-free pans!! Here are my go to recipes:
Simple Pasta & Greens
Spiced Pasta Salad
Try out these recipes & chickpea pasta! Tell me what you think in the comments!
Last summer I lived in Atlanta & my skin was THRIVING!! When I came back to Utah right before winter my skin was so dry & everything I tried could not boost my skin hydration. One day I was listening to this podcast & the host was talking with their guest about a few of the benefits of facial steaming. Later that day I got a facial & the esthetician was talking about how the steam from my facial would help so much with my dry skin. After those two back to back experiences, I went home that night & ordered a facial steamer on Amazon!
The day the package came I ripped it open & put it to the test. After just a few minutes I felt SO much better! My cracked lips finally plumped up & my face felt so relieved. This device isn't just for people with dry skin. It's really for anyone! You need one if your skin concerns are aging, acne, dehydrated skin or large pores. It clears and clarifies your complexion & helps to soothe & soften skin. I like to do it on my neck too. Never neglect your neck!!
I try to steam once a week at least!! It's a great step to do before & after masking. Before exfoliation, or before you apply your skincare morning or night. If I have an extra 10-15 minutes in the morning I will try to squeeze it in but I usually do it at night. I also love pairing it with gua sha.
Another WEIRD benefit I've found is that it helps the skin inside my nose. My lips & the inside of my nose get SO dry & the facial steamer totally works as a humidifier too. Talk about multi-tasking!!
Recommendations from Nordstrom are to turn on the device and steam for up to nine minutes. For dry, dehydrated skin, use for 8-12 minutes. For combination skin, use for 12-15 minutes. For oily skin, use for 15-20 minutes.
There are so many high tech steamers that are probably amazing & so worth the money but I recommend trying out an inexpensive one first. See if you have the discipline to really use it in your routine. I have THIS adorable pink one that was so inexpensive but after it gives out, I will definitely upgrade!!
Invest in your skin this winter & don't snooze on this amazing tool! It seriously is such a game changer!! Do you have a holy grail skin secret?? Tell me in the comments!
As trends come & go, one thing I have always been drawn to is BIG jewelry. I love big earrings, chunky necklaces, flashy rings & big arm stacks. During quarantine while I was experimenting with my athleisure style, my work from home style & all the new lounge wear trends, I started gravitating towards dainty jewelry. I love the look of a dainty ring on every finger & lots of stacked chain necklaces.
Stacking necklaces can seem daunting so I want to give you a few tips that help me style my stacks!
Various Chain Textures & Weights
When collecting chains & dainty necklaces, I like to look for pieces that are different from things I already have. Get different chain styles & different chain weights. It's good to have variety! From dainty chains to chunky chains... it really changes up the look when you have different chain styles!
Various Chain Lengths
When starting to put together my look, I always start with a choker, or a chain that is short enough to sit tight around my neck. Then I pick a long chain that works well with the neckline of my shirt & also compliments my outfit. Lastly I pick 1-3 chains that fit in the middle of the longest & the shortest necklace. Most necklaces are adjustable so it's easy to put the clasp where you want it to make sure all your necklaces have the right length to give you that layered look.
Odd Numbers Always
Sometimes I will do a dainty choker with a bigger chunky necklace, but if I ever add more than two necklaces to my stack, I try to keep the numbers odd. 3 necklaces, or 5 just look better. This is a tip you can take to ANYTHING you're styling. Odd numbers is always a good rule of thumb to have. Odd number of accessories on a bookshelf, odd numbers of layers in an outfit, 3 or 5 pillows on your couch... & odd numbers on NECKLACE STACKS!!
The following necklaces are from Twisted Silver that I have worn on repeat for the last YEAR. I had the pleasure of spending time with the designer Debra in Florida this year. She has a heart of gold & is so enlightened.
You can use the code "TSLEXIE" to get a 15% discount...
Mixed Metal Choker | Mixed Metal Chunky Chain | Favorite Dainty "Y" Necklace | Fav Chunky Chains | Chain Bolo
I hope these tips help you to style your own amazing necklace stack!! These tips can also be used when styling bracelet stacks. Let me know which tip was your favorite & I will pick a commenter to send some jewelry to!
At the beginning of quarantine in March 2020 I quickly realized how to move my body at home. I had always been reliant on the gym & I really used it as an excuse. Saying things to myself like, "I'm not a morning person, I can't commit to going to the gym early every day." or "Today was a late night at work & I missed my favorite group fitness class." When quarantine started & the gyms shut down I started WALKING!!
I had just moved into a new apartment & I was in walking distance to the local cemetery. I started walking there every day. It was an easy 3 mile walk round trip. I obviously noticed changes in my mood & anxiety levels (DUH, ENDORPHINS) but I also started noticing little changes in my body. I was feeling longer & leaner so I started doing more low impact workouts at home & my world is forever changed.
Here are the workouts I love that have served me in 2020:
Walking & Hiking
One thing I have learned from the challenges of 2020 is how grateful I am for nature. Even walking in the suburbs of SLC. Getting outside has helped me so much. It boosts my mood & helps me feel productive (gotta get my steps in lol). It all started with those 3 mile walks I talked about earlier. Then I went on a trip to Jackson Hole & rediscovered hiking. I spent the rest of the summer walking & hiking on the trails close to my home & even took a few road trips to explore new trails.
I noticed such a difference in my mood & my body during the weeks where I would consistently walk around my neighborhood every day. I felt happier, leaner & longer!
Barre was another gift brought to me by quarantine! I have danced since I was 3 years old, did dance team in high school & am even a certified dance competition judge. To say the least, I LOOOVE dance. Dancing is my favorite way to move. During quarantine I discovered THIS barre video on YouTube & fell in love. The movements get your heart rate pumping but are low impact which is KEY for me. My joints feel so much better when I stick to low impact workouts. I loved barre so much that I actually got CERTIFIED earlier this month. I'm so excited to bring you more barre focused content here on the blog & on social media. I would love to have you in one of my classes but if you want to do it from home, you can get an Upbeat Barre subscription & feel the burn in your living room.
Yoga & Breath Work
I have loved yoga for years, but pairing yoga with meditation & breath work is something I discovered in 2020. It's such an amazing way to move your body, relax & refocus. Add a little pilates in there & you're GOLDEN!! Some places to get you started with these methods of movement are WIM HOF for breath work & the free FitOn app for yoga & pilates! Both of these resources have helped me so much this year!
Les Mills Body Combat
I've been doing Body Combat group fitness classes since I was in junior high. I would go to the gym with my mom & she would teach me how to lift & then we would go to a class. Body Combat is one of her favorites. Les Mills has free Body Combat classes on YouTube. I definitely pulled these out during quarantine. Not only are these classes so fun, but you leave the class feeling so accomplished & hard core!
My first High Fitness class was my senior year of high school during my last year on the dance team. It changed the way I performed as a dancer & athlete. It's basically sprinting for an hour, your heart rate is up the whole time but it's SO FUN! It is a pretty high impact work out so over the years I've had to dial it back. My joints & feet just can't take all the jumping but there are a lot of ways you can modify the moves. There are 2 free High Fitness classes on YouTube if you want to try them at home before trying out a live class!
Not only is moving your bod SO GOOD for your physical health, but it's so good for your mental health too. One of my favorite fitness accounts to follow is Melissa Wood Health & she always says, "movement is my medicine" & I completely agree with her on that!! Show up for yourself by making time for movement! I hope you will try out these methods! Maybe you will find one you love! Tell me in the comments which one is your favorite!
Want to know a fun fact that is hilarious, but also SO cringe worthy?? When I was in high school on my way to 6 am dance team practices I would stop at a gas station & get a 52 oz. diet cola. THEN at lunch I would refill that 52 oz. cup with AGAIN, diet cola & that would get me through the rest of my day. That ladies & gentleman is 104 OZ. OF SODA A DAY!! I looked forward to it & it honestly got me through the day. Not the caffeine but just the taste & the ritual, LOL!! I just really love a gas station vibe. It's weird but if you know, you know.
In recent years I have made the switch to water. Not to get all woo, woo on ya but just really connect to water as an element. I feel so much gratitude for my body when I'm drinking water. It also helps to keep me mindful & present. I have a whole post on 5 ways to up your water intake, but this post is not it.
These tips are for the days when you just don't feel like lemon water. When you're in the grocery store & a bottle of Diet Dr. Pepper is just calling your name. What to drink when you don't feel like water...
Body Armor Lyte
My parents introduced me to Body Armor & I love it!! One of the reasons why I love drinking soda so much is it helps me stay away from snacking & cravings. This body armor drink has that same effect. It is sweet & just hits that sweet spot to avoid the constant snacking.
Kevita is my favorite probiotic drink. The benefits are very similar to kombucha products. A lot of kombuchas are black tea or green tea based & I love that Kevita isn't tea based. These really hit the spot when you need a carbonation so strong it makes your eyes water a little. Ahh I honestly love that feeling!
Green juices are something I love to have on hand. I try to have ingredients to juice my own juices in my fridge. I also like having cold pressed juices from the store too for those days that I just don't have the time or energy to juice my own drinks. Green juices are so refreshing but they are SO DANG GOOD FOR YOU!! You can get so many greens in when you juice. It kick starts your digestion & is like liquid gold for your body.
I love water packets to flavor my water & Zipfizz is my recent favorite. Not only does it taste amazing but it's so jam packed with vitamins & minerals. Just dump it in your water bottle in the morning & you're good to go! My favorite flavors are grape, orange, pina colada & limon.
I love keeping sparkling water in my fridge. It's always smart to have a lemon flavored La Croix on hand! I love a lemon La Croix over ice with extra fresh lemon!! So yummy!! My very first TikTok was all about how I drink my sparkling water if you want to watch that video HERE.
I totally drink a soda every once & a while but these back up help to keep me on my goals. I hope these tips help you! Which water alternative are you going to try first??
Mental health days are a must & it's okay to take a day to care for yourself when you are feeling off... but sometimes, THE SHOW MUST GO ON. You know those days when you absolutely have to show up, even though you're on the verge of tears & feel like garbage?? Every day this week has been "one of those days". I've gone to bed feeling sad & have been waking up with zero motivation to tackle my mandatory list of to-dos. Each morning, with a tiny burst of energy that probably comes from God, I peel myself off the mattress & shuffle into the bathroom. THIS is what I do to pull my shiz together & show up for myself...
Tongue Scrape, then Hydrate
I make sure to always have water on my nightstand. I take a big gulp before I go to bed. Then when I wake up, I take that big glass of water into the bathroom with me. I FIRST scrape my tongue with a metal tongue scraper to get all that nasty bacteria off. I then brush my teeth before getting all hydrated with that big glass of water.
Starting my day with a huge glass of water (add lemon for extra points) makes me feel good about myself. I've already done something intentional to take care of my body without really trying that hard. It's the little wins, ya know??
I got a dry brush a few months ago & it is a GAME CHANGER! I chose a brush with a handle so that it's easy to get my back. The key to dry brushing is brushing your skin in the direction of your heart. What I do is start at my ankles & brush up, one leg at a time, in circular motions. Then I brush up my stomach towards my heart. Then I do the same thing on my arms, brushing upwards in a circular motion. Then down my neck & chest towards my heart. It ZINGS you awake!! It's really amazing! It also stimulates your blood flow & lymphatic drainage!! Not to mention it's a full body exfoliation treatment. After that I jump in the shower. Not just any shower...
...a freezing cold shower!! WIM HOF, does that ring any bells?? Earlier this year I discovered Wim Hof's breath work app. His breath work is amazing but he also has a cold shower challenge on the app! I tried it & loved it. The cold water shocks your system, wakes you up & makes you forget about all your problems. It's amazing! Such an amazing way to reset for the day, get focused & get present.
Stay Off the Phone
I do this whole routine without checking my phone!! No phone, no cortisol, no problems. Getting out of bed is hard for me more often than not, so there is no reason I need to set up my day for more stress by looking at my phone. I try not to touch my phone until I'm all ready for the day, dressed & usually eating a banana.
Those are the steps I take in the morning to pull myself out of a funk! Sometimes I feel 100% better, & sometimes it just gives me enough energy to get ready & out the door to start my day. Life is hard & all you can do is your best. Keep trying & keep showing up for yourself. It's those little wins that make the biggest difference sometimes!
What do you do to shock your system into happiness??
Each year I'm alive, the more I obsess over skincare. I feel like I've been dealing with acne since I left the womb so like any other acne prone gal, I am a product junkie & try anything & everything I can to care for & heal my skin. In 2020 I have found some FAVORITE products that I have repurchased multiple times this year & I want to share them with you. A 2020 skincare rewind if you will.
If you're a freak about skincare too & want to deep dive, you can check out my other skincare posts here, here & here! Now let's get into my favorite products!
Just last week I did a WHOLE post on cleansing balms. They are a game changer! My favorite one is the Clean it Zero! Ditch the make-up wipes & get this cleansing balm. You'll be so amazed!!
I listened the a podcast at the beginning of the year that talked about how oily skin needed more exfoliation & a cleanser with a chemical exfoliant in it was best. After talking to my BFF who is in esthetics school, she recommended the salicylic acid cleanser from Image Skincare, Clear Cell. It's amazing & I LOVE IT!! I would totally recommend this product to anyone with acne prone, oily skin!
This product is for EVERYONE!! You, your boyfriend, your mom & your dog. Everyone! This clean beauty toner by Eden Belle offers so much hydration, lactic acid for exfoliation & just leaves my skin feeling so plump & amazing. I use it day & night. I traveled a bit this year & got some really weird little sunburns. I sprayed this on my sunburns & they went away so quick! SUCH a staple!!
I started using this moisturizer by Image Skincare at the end of 2019 & I've been hooked ever since. It has been my favorite day time moisturizer with SPF for my oily skin! I love it & it works so well with my make up which is important for me. The finish on it is so nice!
Last but not least! This Lip Sleeping Mask is another product that is perfect for EVERYONE. The boys in my family steal this from me, it's kind of entertaining actually. The texture is like creamy pink butter, YUM, so good!! I just love the look of pink on my vanity but they have so many flavors. It's designed to be worn at night while you're sleeping but I love to put it on before I do my makeup too. It just plumps up my lips & gets them ready for whatever lipstick I want to wear that day. A staple for sure!!
I love trying new products. Tell me in the comments what your favorite skincare was this year & I will pick someone to send a little skincare goodie bag to!
I am STOKED for today's guest post!! I have followed Erica for years & was so excited to interview her for the blog. Erica is the San Diego based creator of the blog Fashion Lush & has the most unreal style. She is an OG blogger & has been at it for 10+ years. Talk about ICONIC! We have a lot in common too which I love! A million beverages at all times are a must, we are freaks about skincare & our moms are our BFFs. Um hi... are we soul sisters??
Enough from me, take it away Erica...
You recently shared that you have started to embrace your naturally curly hair. Walk us through your curly hair journey & spill what products have been your go-to for hydrated, bouncy curls? YES! When quarantine started, something came over me that I wanted to try to rock my natural curls. I haven't worn my hair curly since I was probably.... 6 years old (haha) & was curious if I could get my ringlets back. I called my hair stylist, we got on a facetime call, & she walked me through exactly what to do! First & foremost, the most important thing she taught me- dry your hair gently with a t-shirt!!! Towels are abrasive and can ruin your curl pattern right out of the shower. Next, a good curl cream & mousse are a must (davines 'love curl cream' & 'this is a curl' moisturizing mousse!) & then diffuse! I use the Dyson blow dryer with the diffuser attachment & with those few steps- my curls bounced back full force. A couple weeks ago, I got extensions put back in, so I no longer can rock those natural curls- but it's such a fun look that I definitely miss already!
2020 has been A LOT... What have been your biggest takeaways from 2020 so far? oh man- I feel like mercury has been in retrograde alllll 2020 long!! It's really hard to pinpoint one takeaway from this year because it really has presented so many challenges & so much growth!! I think first & foremost- the importance of health!! I have so much gratitude everyday for the health of myself and my loved ones- this has always been something I keep at the forefront of my mind, because health truly is the only wealth in this world I care about- but this year, an extra light has been shined on how lucky we are everyday to have our health. Secondly, I woke tf up this year. I am not necessarily proud of the fact that it's taken me this long to be fully "awake" to the racial injustice in our world today- but I will forever be grateful for the path 2020 has put me on as now not a day goes by that I don't acknowledge my privilege, educate myself, and stand in solidarity with the Black community in the fight against racial injustice. Lastly, stepping away from social media when needed to protect my mental health. The political divide that is shown daily through social media has taken a toll on my mental health, but I now fully embrace the fact that I can filter/control the content I consume which has been a HUGE step in the right direction for me.
Congratulations on your new home!! I love seeing how you style rooms & little corners of your house. How do you style your home & use accessories without making it look cluttered? What is your decorating process? Thank you!! I am SUPER into vintage items & upcycling old items to make them fit my vibe- specifically art deco from the 80's kinda feels (think Miami vice/Scarface/Golden Girls- all meshed together). As far as my decorating process goes- I don't have a method to this madness. I used to be VERY minimalistic with my home decor, but now that I am incorporating more color/vintage vibes, I actually am into a sort of intentionally cluttered vibe! I don't want it to feel hoarder-ish, but I feel like the more, the merrier. I move things around a lot, always switching things up, spray paint makeovers are the most fun, & I think they key is to just really have fun with your decor. Play around with things, move furniture around, don't get complacent!
What are your tips for an iconic & perfect dark winged liner? start with a cat eye stamp! You can get them on Amazon & it's literally a stamp that creates a wing for you! The cat eye stamp doesn't always stamp fully, so grab a liquid liner (revlon colorstay liquid liner is my fave) & trace the cateye stamp- this helped me learn how to do the shape & eventually I was able to take away the stamp & just.... wing it ;)
Your style is the perfect blend of classic pieces & the hottest style trends. How do you do it?? thank you!!! I love to play around with trends & always put my own twist on them. Fashion really is my number one form of self expression & creativity, so I play around with new styles all the time. There is no real method to my madness when it comes to getting dressed, & sometimes it's just straight madness with clothes thrown everywhere, but I do try to mix the classic pieces with the trendy pieces to even it out!
Morning routine or night routine? If you had to pick, which one is your favorite? & what is the routine? Give us all the details! Night routine! I am a nut for my skincare routine and my nighttime skin routine really helps me wind down. I sit at my vanity, get off every speck of makeup on my face (this is almost to the level of being OCD- I wash twice & then I tone to make sure there is nothing on my face) & then I get wild with my skincare products. I only use clean skincare, zero pore clogging ingredients is a must for me & makes it so I can really play around with my products. I start with a serum, then move onto eye cream & moisturizer (sometimes 2 moisturizers, if my skin is thirsty), finish it off with a good facial oil & a spritz of any kind. Lastly, I massage it all into my skin using gua sha!!
What is your top, game changing secret?? Something you do that is your very best tip?? back to that gua sha- I swear by it!!! Get a gua sha tool, watch a youtube video on how to do it, and do it on HALF your face. You will be amazed at the difference it makes- it's literally like a mini facelift in 5 minutes & I absolutely love it. Plus, it's super relaxing!!
What advice would you give your 20-25 year old self?? stay in your own lane & stop giving a damn what people think!!! It's the best thing you will ever do for yourself & I wish someone shook that into me when I was younger (although I am sure someone did, and I probably didn't listen... just one of those things you have to really learn for yourself!)
& that's a wrap!! Thank you Erica for your generosity & time. I'm so grateful to have you on the blog! Leave Erica a comment on this post & tell us your favorite part of this post!!
Let’s talk make-up remover!! I wear a lot of make-up & one of the things I dread doing each day is taking of my make-up. Like, there’s not better feeling than a clean face after a long day, but it’s also the worst, messiest, process. I used to use a million cotton pads with make-up remover or micellar water & I still didn’t feel totally cleansed. Plus my mascara was always lingering with that ugly raccoon shadow. THEN, I DISCOVERED CLEANSING BALM!!
My getaway drug was a little travel sized bottle of Clinique’s Take The Day Off that was an impulse buy when I was waiting in the check out line at Ulta one day. Man, the just really get you with those cute little mini bottles don’t they!! I tried the cleansing balm that night & WAS HOOKED!! My makeup all came right off & my eyelashes were mascara free. I also love that there’s not as much waste (goodbye cotton rounds)!!
Now Cleansing Balms vs Cleansing Oils… I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but Oil Cleansers just don’t work for me. I never feel like I can totally get all the oil off my face, even after double cleansing with other cleansers. It stresses me out since I have problematic, oily skin. If you know what I’m doing wrong, drop a girl a tip in the comments haha!! CLEANSING BALMS THOUGH!! They aren’t as messy, they break down product beautifully & come right off with a little water or a swipe of a washcloth.
My favorite cleansing balm is the Banilla Clean it Zero. There are a few different formulations so you can choose one that will perfectly work with your skin type. Another one I love is from Versed. They have a travel size which makes it so convenient to travel with & it smells AMAZIIINGGGG.
Those are the two balms I have purchased on repeat & would totally recommend. I also love that they are both so accessible. You can find the Versed one at Target & Clean it Zero at Ulta or on SOKO Glam.
Want to know my favorite game changing product for my problematic skin?? PIMPLE PATCHES. I discovered them on a late night Target run. You know, the ones where you go to Target because you have nothing to do & end up buying so many things that you don’t even need? Yeah, it was one of those. The Mighty Patch caught my eye & I spent $7 on 4 little acne patches to try them out. One night with those bad boys on & I was hooked. Since that Target run earlier this year I have purchased almost every patch on the market so that I could find the best patch for the best buck. I’m not here to bash brands so out of all the ones I’ve tried, here are the patches that I think are worth your time & money.
Best Value - MISSHA Speedy Solution Anti Trouble Patch
If you’re trying to clear your skin on a dime, (um, is that even a thing??) these patches are for you. No matter what the brand is, I can usually find enough imperfections on my face to use a whole sheet. This patch comes with 96 & is only $7!!! These are best worn over night. They don’t wear the best as far as blending into your skin or staying on your face. However, I have found when I wear them at night they work like a charm!
Best Wear for Best Value - The Klog Pimple Patch
These patches are THE BOMB. They stick on your face so well & are the patch you’ll want to use if you plan on wearing them in the daytime. These are perfect for no make up days or to wear under your mask #MASKNE ugh!!
Best Trendy Patch - Truly Acne Patches
Not only are the Truly patches SO CUTE, but they work!! I love how thick they are & how well they wear throughout the day or night. If you have one little break out & want to just be fun, stick any of the Truly patches on for a little pimple accessory. Like, it’s actually so cute!! I bought all of the different variations to try them out & my favorite by far is the Hemp Patch. I applied these on my white heads as well as my cystic break outs & it took my cystic break outs DOWN!! The other patches don’t really do anything for my cystic break outs... so yeah, these are the bomb!!
How I Use the Patches:
Hopefully after that break down of my favorite patches, you will be able to figure out which patch is best for you based on your lifestyle, where you break out & your budget. Now it’s onto best practices… the best skincare to really get the most out of these patches. If I sound passionate, it’s because I am haha. I have spent every night for the last 3 months figuring out what works best. At least what works best for me anyway. This is my skincare routine when I am planning using a pimple patch…
Cleanse!! Start with a clean face. Just use your favorite cleanser or what you have on hand. The cleansers I have been loving for the past 6 months are IMAGE Ormedic & Clear Cell. I use Ormedic in the AM & Clear Cell in the PM.
Vitamin C Serum is next! One gift the horrible year of 2020 brought me was Vitamin C haha!! I new to it & have tried some I love & some I hate. My favorites are Banish Vitamin C, Dr. Dennis Gross Vitamin C & the Acure Vitamin C & Ferulic Acid. The Vitamin C serum helps give my skin a bit of hydration & a grippy surface for the patches.
The last thing I do is spray 3 too many sprays of the Eden Belle Toner all over my face. I loooove this toner because it gives me just enough hydration. Then I apply the patches!! If my skin is still feeling dry I will pat a tiny bit of moisturizer onto my skin, over the patches.
Thanks for coming to this pimple patch seminar haha!! This skincare tool is for everyone & would also make the perfect little gift for friends or stocking stuffer!! I would love to know in the comments what your holy grail product is!
If giving gifts could be considered a hobby, it would be my FAVORITE hobby. I love giving gifts. Curating pretty packages full of things that I hope people will love. One cost effective way to do this is HOLIDAY GIFT SETS!! You know what I'm taking about right? When you walk into department stores & all your favorite products are in the cutest packaging, wrapped up in special boxes like an influencer PR box or something?? OBSESSED!! There are 3 different ways I like to gift these gift sets, let me walk you through it.
Now we can't overlook the obvious. GIFT the GIFT SET. Gifting the already pre-packaged gift set is perfect if you are short on time & looking for a fun gift. These gift sets are also great for that person who has EVERYTHING. Getting a lipgloss or fragrance set it perfect for someone like this. Items that are functional & they can use no matter their style, skin type, or level of "high maintenance" haha! This is also the perfect gift to bring to a gift exchange/gift swap or when you have to buy a gift for someone you don't know very well.
When picking a set remember that functional, everyday items are best. No fancy skincare on this one. Look for really cute packaging, maybe even something they can keep & continue to use like a bag or decorative item.
Now on to my favorite way to use gift sets...
Break it Up...
I love buying multiple gift sets & breaking them up to put in my own packaging. This is perfect when you have to get a lot of gifts for people who have similar taste. Maybe like a holiday dinner with friends, the holiday work party or a Christmas Eve gift exchange with all your cousins.
When picking your sets that you will then use to split up into smaller bags or boxes look for gift sets that have all the same product in it, just a different variant like different shades of the same lipstick, or different scents of the same fragrance line. This helps to streamline the gifts without having to buy one of every item at full price. I think it's fun to pick 3 categories. Something like fragrance, eyes, lips. Or you can stick to the same category. Do 2 hair products with a hair accessory. Whatever you pick, keep it to odd numbers. They always look better grouped together. Gift 1 item, 3 items, or 5 items together.
Keep it for Later...
While your out & about, look for gift sets that don't have any holiday branding. No snowflakes, or Christmas trees. Buy a few of those sets & keep them in your gift closet to use later in the year. You can break up the sets & gift the items in little "thinking of you" goody bags, or to give to friends & family on their birthdays. I love giving fun, thoughtful gifts but doing it on a dime is just better for everyone. The day after Christmas, all these sets (whatever is left) will be on massive sale! This is the prime time to stock up!
Time to Get Testing...
The last way to take advantage of holiday gift sets & bundles is AMAZING products are on AMAZING discounts. Sometimes over 50%!! Getting high end skincare & makeup sets for yourself is the best way to test out those dream products that you aren't quite ready to splurge on! If you end up not liking it, you can just hand the mini bottle of cleanser or makeup primer to your sister or friend without feeling like you are throwing a full size product in the trash.
Happy holiday shopping!! Let me know in the comments which way you will be using gift sets this year!
If you see a girl walking down the street with a million beverages in her hand, it's probably me. Every morning before I leave for work I prep 3-4 drinks to carry around with me throughout the day. I always need to be sipping on something & if I don't prep a healthy option I'll probably end up with a 44 oz. diet Dr. Pepper in my hand at some point. One of my favorite drinks to make is a YUMMY, 10 calorie sparkling orange juice. I feel silly writing a "recipe" for it because it really is so simple.
I got the idea from my dad. We are avid soda drinkers in my family (oops, guilty pleasure.) & at the beginning of quarantine, after he drank 32 oz. of water, he would fill up his water bottle with his drink of choice, Mountain Dew, & then top it off with orange juice. The next morning after he told me this, I filled my tumbler up with citrus flavored seltzer water & topped it off with orange juice. SO delicious!! It really feels like a treat.
Now I'm sure you could figure this all out on your own but here are the specifics:
Want more yummy recipes?? Check these out:
++ Healthy, Protein Packed, Orange Julius Copycat Recipe
++ Easy Pink Drink Copycat Recipe
Autumn is here!! The weather is cooling off, the leaves are changing & the grocery stores are full of all things pumpkin. It all just makes me want to sit at home, wrapped up in a blanket, with a hot pumpkin spice drink & some cinnamon ice cream. Am I alone here, or can you relate??
Last weekend my husband & I were in the mood to stay in. I was feeling the spooky vibes & decided to plan a little date night at home. I made a little video about it too. We watched some nostalgic Halloween movies & ate all the seasonal goodies from my recent Trader Joe's trip. I made a charcuterie board & it turned out so dang cute. I had to share with you!! I think you could totally do dinner & dessert on a charcuterie board while you & your fall cuddle bud watch some movies. Just throw your cute boards on the nearest coffee table & snack away!!
Here are all the things I used to make this board. Use this for inspiration & put your own twist on it!!
I got most of the items listed above at Trader Joe's. I just bought anything I liked, or wanted to try that was apart of their fall seasonal items. Then I got home & put together the board.
Now this is the fun part!! I made two different boards & it was so fun to experiment. I found it best to group bigger items in a straight or diagonal line & then cluster the smaller items around in groups. If you have little bowls you can use these to help keep things separated & make the board look more dynamic. There really is no wrong way to do this, so grab a board & have some fun!!
Try this at home & tag me in your photos on Instagram so I can see your creations!!! Check out the following posts for more Halloween content:
++ 4 Unique Halloween Costume Ideas
++ Easy Cat Costume
Growing up my mom always had a "gift closet." It was full of beautiful soaps, jewelry, candles & everything you would ever need to package a gift. After Juvol & I got married last summer, I started curating my own little gift closet. I love having meaningful gifts, ready to go & on hand for when someone in my life needs a little pick me up. One gift that is a perfect, go-to gift is a little "box of sunshine!!" This is not at all a new concept. I've seen people receive cute little themed gifts like this over the years but they are usually filled with really nasty, sugary foods & candies that just aren't my jam. Like name a fan favorite candy that comes in a yellow package?? Yeah, none come to mind.
At the beginning of 2020 my grandma passed away & my BFF Mckaila dropped off the sweetest little sunshine package on my doorstep that was full of all the functional items I love. She gave me a beautiful candle, a good, clean ingredient dish soap & some of my favorite drink packets. All the packaging was YELLOW. That gift inspired me to always have an array of yellow items so at a moments notice I can package up a thoughtful gift, even if it's 8pm after a busy work day. Here's everything you need:
So the first step is to find some packaging. I think it's fun to have a few different size options on hand to give you versatility. Here are a few ideas:
The Sunshine Items:
Really anything you pick will be amazing & so kind. It really is the thought that counts. However, I love specifics, so I'm going to give you SPECIFICS. These are my favorite yellow items:
Add a Card:
Don't forget to add a note. I'm all about a detail am just about as extra as they come. I live for great stationary, a perfect pen & a gorgeous wax seal.
Now here's a little challenge. Spend some time today intentionally thinking about someone in your life that might need a little sunshine in your life. Maybe you know exactly who it is. Maybe someone you haven't talked to in a while comes to mind. Act on those promptings & send a little sunshine their way. We never know the impact a small act of kindness can make on someone's life.
Halloween is right around the corner & I've never been THIS in the mood for Halloween. I think with everything in 2020 that has been so new, it's exciting to celebrate the traditions we know & love as the holidays approach. To stark SPOOKY SEASON off with a bang, I thought it would be so fun to give you guys as many Halloween costume ideas as possible. To make this possible I will be teaming up with a few of my favorite bloggers!
First up is Lauryn Hock of Lauryncakes. She is wicked smart & so creative. Lauryn is the founder and creative face of the Lauryncakes blog and social media. Since 2013, she has worked on hundreds of social media campaigns, organized various blogging events and workshops, and offered individual consultations for influencers and social media marketers. Like I said, she is so smart & really knows her stuff. Lauryn says, "Spooky season is one of my favorite times of the year! I love the ability to make yourself into anyone or anything that you want! It's empowering to create and execute a fashion look that transforms me into someone else for a day. Some of my favorite Halloween outfits have been DIY or thrifted, which makes it an even better challenge!"
Here are four of Lauryn's favorite Halloween looks. Cleopatra, Snake, Butterfly, & Ms. Frizzle:
I hope these amazing looks by Lauryn helped spark some ideas for your own Halloween costume. Which look was your favorite?? Tell me in the comments!
++ Easy Cat Costume
++ Easy Cleopatra Costume
One of my favorite things to gift & receive as a gift is a classic candle. I LOOOVE them. My mom had a no flame rule growing up in our home so we never had candles in the house. It's like she thought we were going to burn the place down or something. So naturally when I moved out at 18 the first thing I stocked up on was candles!! I went to Bath & Body Works to spent my whole paycheck on those yummy candles. So nostalgic right??
Candles are the best gifts because they are perfect for everyone. Here are just a few scenarios of when I would gift a candle, to help you spark some ideas....
Now let's talk about my favorite brands of candles. This is important!! Like I said earlier, I used to live for a BOGO Bath & Body Works candle sale until I learned about the harmful effects of paraffin wax. What I learned through the book Cleanse to Heal by the Medical Medium is that when we inhale the scents from air fresheners & candles, it leaves an oily, waxy film on our lungs. So basically, you have wax in your lungs, YUCK!!! You could opt for essential oils & a diffuser but candles just feel so luxe & elevated, so I choose to burn soy candles instead. Here are a few of my favorites:
My first love & forever classic is the Volcano candle from Capri Blue. It smells like magic & is my favorite scent of all time. I love having one in my home & light it when I am feeling fancy or when we have guests coming over. I love giving this gift to important people in my life.
Another favorite soy candle brand that is local to Utah is BlueLily Candles. I have met the owner Sarah. She is so sweet & kind. If you're looking for a small business to support, I highly recommend this one!!
Target has an affordable & accessible soy candle line by Opalhouse that I love to keep in my home & in my gift closet. They have so many fun colors & scents. The candle is a great volume for the killer price of $9.99!
Want to reuse your beautiful glass candle jars? A small business called Hive & Home has soy candle refill kits & guess what?? They have a volcano scent!!
Okay! So you've found your all time favorite scent & spent your hard earned money on a non-toxic soy candle that won't fill your lungs with wax LOL!! Now what?? Here are some tricks I have picked up over the years to keep my candles lasting long & in tip top shape!
There it is! I've spilled all I know about candles & I hope you caught a bit of my candle obsession! Now it's time for a little giveaway!! Leave a comment telling me your favorite candle, or your favorite tip you learned from this post to be entered to win a Capri Blue volcano candle along with other goodies!
Other posts to elevate your home:
++ Why you need a white noise machine!!
++ 4 Amazing Kitchen Hacks!!
At the end of last summer I felt the urge to CHOP MY HAIR OFF. My long curly hair went down to my butt & I looooved it but it was so hard to take care of. Because I have course, curly hair, I try to only wash it once a week. Those wash days were loooong. I would be in the bathroom for 2+ hours combing & brushing out my hair & untangling knots. We spent the summer living in Atlanta & after we arrived back to SLC in our new apartment I stared at the shower, knowing I needed to wash my hair & just couldn't even think about untangling all the knots. So right then & there I booked an appointment & by Friday I had cut over 12 inches off my hair. & I LOVED IT!!! A year later & I still love it. If you're thinking about cutting your hair, here are a few things to think about before the chop:
You have Realistic Expectations
GET REAL SIS!!! Have realistic expectations for your hair type. My initial inspo for the chop was the cute Kemper from @joandkemp on Instagram. I know that my hair will never & can never look like her's. She has thick straight hair!! Mine is thick & curly! Trying to do my hair like her's every day would be toe 2020 version of the iconic 90's Rachel look. So with this in mind, I looked up short curly hair styles too to get different ideas on how to style MY hair. A couple times a year when I get a blow out, of course I could rock that do, but it's not an every day thing. Setting realistic expectations is the first step to making sure you love your new look.
You Can Part with your Go-To Hairstyle
What is your go to hair style?? Would you still be able to do it (or a variation of it) if you cut your hair off?? What happens if you're running late? What do you do with your hair?? These were all important questions for me. My hair isn't always effortless. It takes a lot of attention & upkeep so really being intentional about this step was important for me.
Evaluate after a Month or Two
Sit on it for a while!! No need to rush! I waited a whole season (all summer) trying to decide if I wanted to cut my hair & I'm so glad I did. I was so confident with my decision & loved every second of having short hair.
Go To Someone You Trust
Go to a stylist you trust & set CRYSTAL clear expectations. Bring pictures to help show length, cut & color. Make sure the pictures are realistic too. Maybe bring a picture of your dream hair & then one of someone who has more of a similar hair type to you.
Immediately Find New Hairstyles
WOW... you hair is now cut!! Take a pic for the gram, show your friends & family your new look & then immediately get to work on finding new styles for your hair. I did this & found 2-3 staples that I loved for the first few months. As your hair grows out you'll be able to get more & more creative & have more options. Make sure you experiment with new hair accessories. I never liked how clips or headbands looked in my long hair but LOVED how "the knot" headbands look with my short hair! Step out of your comfort zone & try new things with this new look!!
Follow all these steps & still end up with regrets?? Don't sweat it sis!! Hair grows!! You'll never know if you don't try it!! I hope these tips help anyone on the edge make a confident decision!! Have a tip you would add in the mix?? Tell us all in the comments!! Help a gal out!!
People who know me will tell you that I always have a million beverages in hand. I roll into the office & every single meeting with at least 3 drinks in hand. Always water with lemon, sometimes sparkling. A smoothie, a green juice & then a fun drink that tastes amazing & will help me stay away from the cookies & garbage that people bring into the office. I want to share with you one of my favorite "fun" drinks that really is so easy & so delicious!! It's not an exact copy cat recipe because (in my opinion) those take way too much time & too many ingredients. So this is like the step sister of pink drink recipes, ya know. So good!! You'll love it!!
What You Need:
Tumbler Cup: I prefer making these in a tumbler but you can do it with any cup & straw you have laying around. I feel like drinking it out of a Starbucks tumblr just really enhances the experience. Elevate your life where you can ya know?
True Lemon Packets: I love adding things into my water & the true lemon packets are some of my favorites. Awesome flavor & better ingredients than Crystal Light & all those other ones. For this recipe I like using theirenergy flavors because it gives me a little caffeine boost & I think the flavors taste the best.
Milk: The next ingredient you need is some sort of milk. I LOOOVE unsweetened coconut milk but you could useunsweetened almond milk, or oat milk. So delicious!!
How to Mix:
Now you have all the ingredients, time to mix up this magic!! Fill your cup a little more than half way with cold water, then pour in your drink mix. Stir the drink mix into the water until it's completely dissolved. Once dissolved in the water you can top off your cup with the milk of your choice. Again, I just love the taste & creaminess of unsweetened coconut milk.
You can play with it. Find the water to milk ratio that works best for you. I prefer 3/4 water to 1/4 milk but that might be too much milk for you. You can also add lots of ice & fruit slices if your feeling boojie. My style is more, throw it in & go!
Try this out & let me know what you think!! Ready for a little GIVEAWAY?? Mix up this magical drink & post it on your Instagram stories!! Be sure to tag me in it & I will pick a few of you to send a curation of my favorite drink packets to!!
Enjoy your new sips!!
I'm pretty specific when it comes to the products I use on my face. Anyone who deals with acne will tell you that they don't mess around with their products!! When I find something that WORKS, I never let it go. I love drugstore products but I have found that once I find my tried & trues, they discontinue the products & launch something new. That leaves me with tons of trieds & not so many trues... SO, as I've gotten older & had a little more room in my budget for higher end products, I have once again found my favorites but luckily, these ones will be here to stay forever. Well, maybe not forever but at least a good 5 years or so.
Here are my favorite products in my makeup bag that I've used all of 2020. I've repurchased these items over & over & hope this helps you on your quest to find the best products for you!
Foundation & Concealer
My one true love when it comes to foundation is the It Cosmetics CC+ Cream. I looked for a high coverage foundation all of my teenage years & found this gem when I was 19. The first thing I look for in a foundation is for it to be full coverage. I don't want anything tinted, I want 100% opaque!! & this is a 10/10 on the coverage scale for me! The best part is it is so light weight!! If I need a little extra coverage for my really bad cystic breakouts I just mix in a little concealer, which leads me to my next product...
CONCEALER! I have been loving the Born This Way Multi-Use Sculpting Concealer by Too Faced for years & it is still the one I come back to after trying out other options. I have tried the Born This Way foundation too. It's fine but doesn't compare to the texture & coverage of the It Cosmetics CC Cream in my opinion. My favorite thing to do with this concealer is mix equal parts concealer + foundation & apply it over break outs. Then I set it with my all timeFAVORITE translucent powder...
The No7 Translucent Powder is my all time favorite. The price is amazing for how much product you get! I reaaaally pack this stuff on my face!! I concentrate a lot of product in my oily zones & then go over my breakouts. If my breakouts are still catching my eye I will do one more step that just gives it a really flawless finish.
The MAC Cosmetics Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation is a miracle worker. I first discovered this last year before my wedding. My mom had it & I would steal it to cover up my breakouts. When I put it over my translucent powder it gives this beautiful airbrushed finish that just makes my breakouts not seem as texturized. Yes, I do realize that I put 4 layers of "foundation" on but a girls gotta do, what a girls gotta do. Right??
In 6th grade I got my first ever high end makeup palette. That's when I started experimenting with smokey eyes. I've been a fan of a purple smokey eye since the young age of 12 but really locked it in as my classic look when I was 17. My free birthday gift from Ulta that year was a purple eyeshadow quad that they just discontinued this year but LUCKY FOR ME I found one I love more. I like the Shine Cosmetics Be True Palette because the colors are so pigmented & they last all day. I have really oily skin & am used to my eyeshadow creasing but this one doesn't crease or fade which was HUGE for me. I got this at the beginning of 2020 & instantly knew it was my new eyeshadow BFF. One bonus reason why I love supporting Shine is that it is a Utah based small business. You can use thecode LEXIE10 at Shine to get 10% off.
I have been buying tube after tube of the Maybelline Colossal Lash since 2013!! I never was a fan of the classic pink bottle formula or the spoolie so this is the nostalgic middle school mascara for me. I have long curly lashes so this mascara just helps fluff them out & give a little length. When I feel adventurous grocery shopping sometimes I will pick out a new kind of mascara just to try it & always have instant regret. I loooove this spoolie & formula!
99% of lip products break me out. I get these little breakouts along my lips that look like cold sores so this category will be short & snappy!! I feel like lip shades are so personal. It has to be the perfect shade that compliments your skin tone but doesn't make your teeth look yellow, you know?? My go-to lipstick is the MAC Lipstick Creme in Modesty.
My go-to lip gloss is from another Utah based small business. It's the Lip Plumping Gloss from Athia. It stays on but doesn't feel sticky or goopy. The perfect balance. I love putting this on before bed too for a little extra moisture.
Pick a few of these products & try them out. Remember that anything you get from Ulta or Sephora that you end up not liking, you can take back!! It makes trying new products less scary, especially when they aren't at the drugstore price! Let me know which of these products works for you!!
Now it's time for a GIVEAWAY!! Leave a comment on this post & I will pick a few of you to send beauty goodies to!! Super fun right? I appreciate it so much when you guys leave comments! It helps me know what is helpful & what to create more of!!
Fruit has been a big theme for me when making breakfast decisions in 2020. I have really leaned into eating more plant based this year & it has helped me cultivate a better relationship with food & just overall, it's helped me to feel my best.
One of my go to recipes, especially this summer while we've been traveling, has been this dairy free yogurt bowl!! It's also great for when you are running late but aren't feeling cereal or oatmeal. I always make sure to have these ingredients on hand. Super easy to throw together!! Let's get into the recipe!
What You Need & How to Make!!
To start this yogurt bowl of you need the YOGURT!! The So Delicious Dairy-Free Unsweetened Coconut Yogurt is my favorite. I love to buy the bigger 24 oz. tub & keep it in my fridge however, the smaller, individual sizes are amazing for traveling. I have been taking those little ones camping all summer & they are a life saver for staying on track.
Frozen blueberries!! Not fresh, frozen!! & let me tell you why. At the beginning of this plant based journey I would spend aaaa lot of money on fresh fruit just to see it go moldy DAYS later in my fridge. So sad!! I have found that frozen blueberries in my yogurt bowl are just as enjoyable as fresh ones & they freeze your coconut yogurt a little bit which gives it an ice cream vibe. YUM! SO just buy the bulk size frozen blueberries & keep them in your freezer for these awesome bowls & yummy smoothies!
Next I slice up a whole banana. Another fruit that is really budget friendly.
For toppings I always have coconut chunks, chia seeds & honey on hand. To throw this whole bowl together it really takes less than 5 minutes!! You can add in whatever you have on hand or whatever you are craving to give your bowl some extra goodness!!
I would love to see how create your own yogurt bowls!! Make one, post it on your Instagram stories & tag me (@lexiefaithdopp) & I will choose one person to send some wellness goodies to!! I can't wait to see what you create!!
When it comes to food & cooking, I am all about keeping it simple. Especially when it comes to meals I can prep & have ready to eat. Whether I'm working from home or eating on the go, I think having easy prepped meals on hand is the key to staying on track & feeling healthy.
I love following food accounts & food blogs to get new ideas!! One blog I always have bookmarked is My Own Meal Plan by Alex Daynes. She combines homestyle cooking with the healthy alternatives I love but also has KILLER baking recipes for my sweet tooth. I love following Alex on Instagram! I try to only follow 1-2 people in each industry so that I don't have too much noise & she is my go-to food blogger!! You can watch our Instagram Live that we did together HERE!! She makes cooking look so easy so I've asked her to come on the blog to teach us her magic meal prepping ways!! I'll let Alex take it from here:
Hello! I'm Alex Daynes and I am the owner of Food & Recipe Blog, My Own Meal Plan! I started my blog my freshman year of college, when I chose to forgo purchasing a meal plan, and created my own each week in my dorm room. Today, I share all kinds of recipes on my blog! I love sharing simple, easy, and healthy recipes that are perfect for people of all ages. Whether you are a single student in college cooking meals for one, newly married, have a growing family, or you just need a one stop recipe shop, www.myownmealplans.com really has something for everyone! Be sure to follow me so you never miss a new recipe!
One area that I specialize in is creating easy and healthy meal prep recipes! I am ALWAYS on the go! Like many of us, I want something portable that can be prepped and packed before my busy day get started. I am thrilled to be guest posting for Lexie today and sharing all of my tips and tricks with you! I'm sharing my top 5 tips for successful meal prepping, along with 3 easy meal prep recipe ideas! Let's get to it!
Top 5 Meal Prepping Tips
Did I help answer your questions? Are you ready to start meal prepping? Are you excited about meal prepping? You should be! It's fun and easy! It's time consuming to do the prep, but the rewards are worth it!
Hi, it's Lexie again!! Just letting you know that it's GIVEAWAY TIME!!! Alex just launched a new amazing cookbook called Back to Basics & she wants to giveaway one to YOU!! Here's how to enter:
Giveaway will run from Sept. 17th - Sept. 22, 2020. Winner will be announced on Instagram!!
The older I get, the more I value sleep!! I used to pride myself on being able to get 4 hours of sleep when I was a teenager. I could basically pull off a booming social life, straight A's & high school dance team without sleeping a wink, BUT NOT ANYMORE. Too be & feel my very best I need 8-10 hours. Anything less than 8 hours... it's realllllyyy hard for me to get out of bed. I know all of you with kids are laughing at me! Trust me, I'm terrified to be a sleep deprived mother.
One thing that helps me get to sleep faster & STAY sleeping until my alarm goes off is a white noise machine!! I have THIS specific noise maker & have been loving it for 5+ years. It has so many different sounds & you can control the volume. It even has a timer if you just need it to help you fall asleep but don't want it running all night long. I also love how compact it is. SO easy to travel with. I always throw it in my backpack with my laptop & bring it on trips with me.
Let's talk about WHY you need to get a white noise machine TODAY!!!
Like I said earlier, it helps me get to sleep!! I am an avid over thinker & it has costed me many sleepless nights. I over think the deep stuff & silly things. For example, when I go on a big shopping spree, I'm so excited about all the things I bought that my creative brain just puts outfits together all night. Weird, I know! When I turn on my noise machine (my favorite sounds are stream, ocean & campfire) I am able to better tune into the sounds & my breathing, & then disconnect from my thoughts. It really helps me get to bed & fall asleep faster!
My noise machine also helps me STAY asleep!! I'm not a light sleeper by any means but my husband does snore. I've never woken up in the night when our noise machine has been on. If your partner or roommate snores, YOU NEED one of these!!!
This tiny little noise maker is the best travel buddy. It fits in any bag (you really could even fit it in your purse) & helps me get to bed no matter where I'm sleeping. You can't always control your sleeping conditions or the noise around you when you are traveling so having a noise maker is always a safe bet & it saves your phone battery so you don't have to play sounds on an app or play music all night.
The last reason why I really feel like this little sound box is worth every penny is that it helps set the tone for your day. Your alarm goes off (make sure you pick an alarm sound that doesn't instantly spike your cortisol) & it's time to start your day. I love having these water sounds going in the background as I get up & get ready. It helps keep my mind calm & collected as I prepare for my day.
Want to elevate your experience further?? Get a diffuser going & flip on a salt rock lamp. Those are two other things that I just really feel like get me sleepy!! For my diffuser I always put in lavender oil at night. THIS is the diffuser that has been on my wish list for years so live my dream for me & pick it up. One day I'll make the plunge. My favorite essential oil brand is Butterfly Express!
We all deserve the best night sleep possible. Try out a white noise machine & let me know what you think!! Here are a few other wellness posts you may like:
It's no secret that I have acne prone skin that has been kicking my butt for the last decade! It's awful & I'm doing everything, trying everything I can to heal my skin & body from the inside out on top of all the topical treatments. BUT THE SHOW MUST GO ON!!! Right??
I get up everyday & cover up my acne FOR ME (cause I am not about to have a million convos every day when sally sue asks, "what happened to your face??" LOL.) I filmed a video last summer all about how I cover my cystic acne, check that out HERE!!!
But when I have big events like a party I want to look good for, a photo or video shoot, or I just want my skin to look really good the next day, here are some things I do a few nights before to prepare.
I love retinol products but it's definitely something I've had to experiment with to find what's right for me. I used to just get the retinol prescribed by my dermatologist & it would leave me soooo flakey. It wasn't painful & totally worked but in the process I feel so bad about my skin cause it's flakey & gross on top of all the acne. Try this out first if your insurance will cover it! All of my friends are able to use retinol every other night without this problem. Like I said, it takes some experimenting to see what will work best for you.
I have found that skincare products with retinol in them work best for me. I can use them almost nightly without peeling. Retinol helps promote cell turnover which in turn helps get rid of breakouts. Plus it has long term benefits that will keep my skin looking young foreverrrr, which I'm all about. The two products I have tried that work best for me are theImage Skincare AGELESS Total Repair Creme. I notice such a big difference with this. The only thing that keeps me from using it is it REALLY stings my skin for the first 5-10 minutes. I can't put it on right before I go to bed or else I just lay in bed focusing on the pain. I put it on & then do other things in my night time routine like moisturize my body, set my alarm, make food for the next day. Once I'm done with a little project, the pain is gone & I can go right to sleep. Beauty is pain & I like I said, I'll do anything for my skin to look as healthy as possible.
The other retinol product I reach for is the Athia Retinol Night Creme. This one doesn't sting my skin so if I'm super tired or just don't want to deal with the slight pain of the other product I will reach for this one. Fun fact, Athia is a small business out of SLC, UT & their office is just 20 minutes away from my home. If you love supporting small businesses, theirs is one I love!
My skin was so dry last winter & the thing that saved me was facial steaming. I have this cute pink one that I just grabbed on Amazon. I try to do this every day because my skin looks so much more healthy when it's hydrated but it does take 10 minutes so you really have to plan it. Before an event I go over the top & facial steam at night & in the morning. Especially the morning before the event. Grab a facial steamer right now!! Your winter skin will thank you!
I always do a sheet mask or two before an event. They hydrate my skin & my make up application is so amazing on a plump, hydrated face! My two favorite sheet masks that I always have on hand & love to give as gifts are the TONY MOLY Red Wine Sheet Mask & the Athia Sheet Masks. I love all of the TONY MOLY ones but the red wine one just makes my skin feel amazing.
While we are on the subject of sheet masks, I have a little hack that I love to share. Make sure to squeeze out all of the product in the sheet mask package. It's basically a serum & if you throw away the package without squeezing out the product, you're basically throwing alway 2 more days of serum!
The easiest thing you can do for better skin is get hydrated!! DRINK SOME WATER SIS!! I won't dive deep into this cause I have a WHOLE blog post on how to up your water intake, plus a new YouTube video you can check out with a few more tips.
I hope these tips will help you get glam for your next big event!! I hope you will feel confident for your date, your job interview or photoshoot because sis!! You are amazing & so much more than your imperfections. Let me know which one of these tips was most helpful!!
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Did you miss my last posts about skin?? Check them out here:
You're in the right place if you want to feel ZEN AF but 2020 is beating you down!! Glad you're here! I feel like I can confidently say that 2020 has been quite the emotional rollercoaster for all of us. One thing I realized early in the year was that I wanted to be proactive about my stress & anxiety. I have realized over the years that I feel so much better when I practice little habits every day that help me stay proactive! Here are 6 things I try to do during the week to stay on top of my stress levels & anxiety:
Working out is such a great stress reliever for me. Every time I get my body moving I can physically feel the negative energy & stress leave my body. I think it's so important to do something to move your body every single day. Even on the days you don't feel like moving... which leads me to my next point...
2. Take a Walk
One of my favorite ways to move is to go on a walk. A brisk 3 mile walk is like gold to me. Going on walks or hikes are a great way to lower your cortisol & get your 10,000 steps in for the day. I always feel so much more calm after a walk & my mind feels clear & focused. I have been obsessed with low impact workouts this year & have seen the biggest change in my body. I attribute that to walking. If you need help finding good trails in your area I highly recommend downloading the AllTrails app on your phone. I discovered the app this summer & LOVE using it to discover & plan hikes!!
3. Meditiate / Prayer
Meditation is something I started practicing this summer & it has been a game changer for me. I know so many people who meditate in the mornings & can't live without it. For me, the mornings are too busy & it just doesn't work for me. I meditate at night before I go to bed. I have this long wind down/night routine that I do & meditation, breath work & prayer are a key part of that routine. I either look up a meditation on YouTube or use the Oak app. I love making it a little ritual by making my favorite bedtime tea or hot coco & lighting my favorite candle.
4. Cook to Fuel
Stepping away & cooking a meal is something that really calms me down. I love to cook & eat in silence. It's a really amazing mindfulness practice for me. There's just something about cooking beautiful foods that respect my body & fuel it. I love sautéing veggies & cooking one ingredient pasta. I'm REALLY simple with my meals. Nothing crazy complicated. Then I love to sit & eat slowly in silence, which brings me to my 5th point...
5. Mindful Eating
Eating slowly in silence??? I'm sure that sounds so weird but really, you should try it on your next lunch break. This doesn't mean that I don't go out with friends, or never eat dinner with my husband, but when I can, I like to take a mental break & focus on my meal. When I do this I feel calm, I feel grateful for my body & for the food I eat, & I don't over eat. Most of the time I leave food on my plate. When that happens, I package it up & eat it as a snack if I feel hungry later or I will eat it for lunch the next day.
I hope you can take a tip or two away from this post & use it to relieve your own stress. Let me know what tips spoke the most to you!! Want me to do a post on my long & amazing night time/wind down routine??
Head to my Instagram to see little tips like this every single day!! I love sharing helpful hints that are full of value!!
Below are all the products I talked about on this post that help me reduce stress. Totally not necessary but I love little things to indulge myself. Treat yo self everyday ya know??