Have Your Hot Girl Summer on a Budget

I’m sure by now everyone has heard the phrase “Hot Girl Summer”, but do you know what it means? The phrase can be traced back to a Megan Thee Stallion song a few years ago.

On Twitter, she explained: “Being a Hot Girl is about being unapologetically YOU, having fun, being confident, living YOUR truth, being the life of the party, etc.”

A couple of my friends have embraced it, and I think that it’s a pretty amazing outlook to have, especially since last summer was, well, Sad Trombone Noise? I know the kids are looking forward to having fun, more adventures, and getting out of the house. Here are a couple ways I’m bringing Hot Girl Summer (and sharing it with the fam).

New Bathing Suits. Kids grow, but what about me? Well after having the same swimsuits for 3 years, it’s time. Especially since we swim daily.  I bought a few new suits from Amazon. Since I’m fair-skinned I picked up one with long sleeves, the kids tease me about working at SeaWorld. This is just one of the many suits I’ve got. It’s perfect for prime sun time.

 

New Pool Bag and New Pool Toys. Every Summer it seems, we need new pool toys and a new pool bag. The Chlorine wrecks our bag (which is mesh- this helps the pool toys dry quickly), and daily use of toys leaves them.. wrecked. Dollar Tree has a great selection of sturdy pool toys, including inflatables for kids (We have a cool cookie ring that has a “bite” taken out of it). For me, I picked up a sweet inflatable float pool chair. 

Plans to meet up with friends. Now that most people have access to the vaccine, getting together with friends is a lot more feasible. We are still limiting ourselves and staying away from large gatherings where we don’t know everyone, but dinner and drinks with friends sound amazing. I’m hosting dinners a couple times a month over the summer for a few reasons: 1. To keep all of our costs down (Dinner out with drinks costs $$$ these days), and honestly, I don’t feel super safe going out for dinner all that often, especially now that there are no mask regulations in our state. And I’m having a weekend getaway with some girlfriends in a few weeks. I am really looking forward to a weekend away in a vacation rental doing a whole lot of nothing!

Take Advantage of the season: What does that mean? Summer has all sorts of fun advantages: Long days, Amazing fruit and veggies are in season, nice weather. Spend time outside (poolside, at the beach, exploring nature), enjoy a big bowl of fruit salad, make a huge salad! Community events are starting to come back (with limited event sizes), and there are lots of free events throughout the summer. EventBrite is a great place to find community events.

Make Time for You: I know… So many blogs and social media tell you to get self-care time and spend time doing things that you love, but as a parent, it can be hard without staying up late or waking up before dawn. Finding a sitter can be tough too. It’s ok to lean on family and friends. The past year has been exponentially tough on parents, and you need time to yourself. Swap child care with friends, or if you want to have a night out, split the cost of a sitter. Your kids can hang out together, while you and your friends get some time away.

Take Care of Yourself: And I don’t mean the stereotypical self-care of putting on a mud mask and drinking water with lemon slices. That’s fun, but I mean the simple acts that we often overlook as caregivers.

  • Sunscreen for your face and any exposed areas when you’ll be outside for more than 10 minutes during peak sun hours (usually 10am-4pm). Don’t forget the tops of your ears. Being super fair-skinned I also wear a sun hat too. Not super sexy, but I don’t want skin cancer.
  • Take something to drink with you. I know most of you pack snacks for your kids when you leave home, but take a few extra minutes to make yourself something that you like (bonus if it’s a snack that your kids do not like- No sharing!), and fill your water bottle. This is the water bottle I use. If you like fruit-infused water, bottles like this are great.  You can also opt for an infuser to go into your favorite bottle or insulated cup.
  • Find Something to Keep You Occupied.  Besides your kids. Pick up a book, grab a craft kit (I like embroidery- it’s easy and portable), Craftsy has some cool online classes to get you started.

I’d love to hear about how you are bringing Hot Girl Summer. Leave a comment below!

 

 

 

Fun Hair Colors from Sally Beauty!

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

One of the ways that we’ve combated boredom through the stay at home orders over the past 11 months is by coloring our hair bright, fun colors! Little Bit has had various shades of pink, and I even did “mermaid” hair for her. I wasn’t sure exactly what she meant, so we did pink, purple, and teal. Pink was the all-over color and she had highlights of purple and teal. It was a hit!

We rely a lot on Sally Beauty for bright colored dye. For the Kids, I use Color Jamz Semi-Permanent Color. They have a lot of great colors (19), and they last about 2-3 weeks.

One bottle is usually good for 2-3 all over colorings, but you may get more or less usage depending on the length, thickness, and texture of your hair.

For myself, I prefer Inspired By Nature from Ion (Also available at Sally). It’s a permanent color, so you will need a developer too. I’ve been using Medium Plum, and it’s unlike any other purple hair color I’ve ever used. It has minimal fade, and leaves my hair so soft and manageable!

If you are looking for more short term color, Check out color sprays or hair chalk.

If you are new to coloring your hair, Sally beauty has step by step tutorials to achieve salon-quality results at home.

 

 

At Home Color with Great Results from Madison Reed!

Madison ReedMost of you know I color my own hair at home, and I have FOR YEARS. With all that is going on, more and more people are joining me.

If you are new to coloring your hair at home, I suggest you check out Madison Reed. From start to finish, it’s easy and their website takes all the guesswork out of choosing a color.

Semi-permanent, permanent, conditioning gloss, whatever you want, Madison Reed has! I love that the coloring kits come with everything you need to give yourself a salon-quality color:

  • Customized Instructions: Their Color Crew is available by phone or chat if you have questions or need expert advice along the way.
  • Barrier Cream: Keeps your ears, forehead, and neck color-free.
  • Cleansing Wipe: An easy way to clean up any unwanted color.
  • Radiant Cream Color: Rich with nutrients like argan oil, keratin, and ginseng root extract to strengthen and protect hair while delivering radiant, multi-dimensional color. Free of ammonia, PPD, resorcinol, parabens, phthalates, gluten, SLS, and titanium dioxide.
  • Conditioning Color Activator: Formulated for longer-lasting color and easy application. The bottle comes with a screw-off cap and tip to make mixing and applying color simple and tidy.
  • Protective Cap: Keeps your color in place until you are ready to rinse.
  • Gloves: Thick gloves to apply color.
  • Color Protecting Shampoo and Conditioner: Rich with nutrients and free from sulfates, parabens, and gluten, our shampoo and conditioner locks in your color and creates long-lasting shine.

Madison Reed
Madison Reed has a great blog too! With all sorts of styling tips, information about caring for hair (no matter what type of hair you have).

All You Need to Know About Straight Hair
All You Need to Know About Wavy Hair
All You Need to Know About Curly Hair
All You Need to Know About Coily Hair

My Quarantine Beauty Favs and a Giveaway!

Here in California, as well as all over the nation, many businesses that are not essential are closed. That means no hair cuts, manicures, pedicures, massages, all the fun stuff that helps us relax and de-stress. Lemme tell you, after 5 months (as of Thursday) of being home with the kids all the time without knowing what is going on most of the time (or what is coming up next), I’m feeling a little stressed.

Most of you, I’m guessing, are in a similar situation. Recently I took some of my side hustle cash and splurged. Well, for me it was a splurge. I spent money on myself on some self-care items that were very much needed. These are my favorite beauty/personal care items that are helping me get through these uncertain times. 

I’m in love with this scrub! Everything by Tree Hut is awesome, but this sugar scrub is tits. It’s got Shea Butter to moisturize, sugar to exfoliate, and it smells like summer. I usually buy it at Walmart, but Amazon has it cheaper (especially when you subscribe and save).

 

Nature Nut Hair Conditioner for Dry & Damaged Hair– I discovered this conditioner through one of the companies that I test and review products through, and for the life of me, I can’t remember which one. Regardless- I am HOOKED. First of all, it smells great. Second, and most importantly, it makes my hair feel great. Smooth, soft, shiny, all that good stuff. And that’s important because my hair has been through some ish this past year. Purple hair is a lot of work. The shampoo is good too, but the conditioner? That stuff is tops!

Speaking of purple hair, I use Ion Permanent Brights Creme from Sally Beauty in Purple. Of course, you gotta have a developer, and a bowl and brush, and gloves too. I color my hair with this about every 8-10 weeks. My hair grows pretty fast, and to be honest, my hair is coming in more and more grey, so it’s super noticeable. To stretch my permanent color, I’ll hit the ends with a semi-permanent dark pink about week 4-6, and refresh the remaining all-over color with a semi-permanent purple. Right now I’m digging Color Jamz ( Reapsberry Kamikaze and Purple Passion to be exact). I use the pink on Bitty Bird’s hair too- It washes out in about 2-4 weeks.

I’m a huge fan of good skincare products. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen my self-care DIY facial flat lays. A couple of my go-to summer skincare products are:

Noexema– Seriously. It is incredible for soothing sunburned skin. I keep a jar under the skin for this very reason. Slather on a thick layer over sunburned skin and rest for about an hour. Rinse off any excess on a cool shower. Pat skin gently to dry.  

Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs and Rosewater This toner is very soothing and calming. I stash this in the fridge in the summer and give myself and the kiddos a spritz a few times a day. And it smells nice too. 

I know that some extra time in the shower, scrubbing with some yummy sugar scrub isn’t going to make all the shenanigans going on in the world melt away. But if I can give myself some grace, chill the fuck out, and have a few extra minutes to myself, I’m going to do it. 

Oh, and if you are wondering what kind of hand sanitizer (called hanny-sanny by my daughter) we like- Usually I’d say whatever is on sale, but since there was a recent debacle about some imported Hanny-Sanny being poisonous (WTF?), we’ve got a couple of large bottles of Kundal Fresh Water Hand Sanitizer that are pretty good. And it’s not sticky. Having used many types over the past few months, I’ve come to discover that some types/brands are sticky. EW. Also, I’ve come to realize that most of it smells like cheap vodka, and now I have no desire to drink vodka. 

And now for the Giveaway- I want you to splurge and get yourself some awesome self-care goodies too. Leave me a comment on this blog post: What would you buy FOR YOURSELF with a $25 Amazon GC? You can earn a bonus entry by commenting on this Instagram post. I’ll choose a winner on 8/23/2020. I’ll notify the winner via email.

Personal Care in the Time of Covid-19

**This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

If you’ve seen some of my Instagram posts lately you may have noticed my greys. Yeah. I’m sporting almost 2 inches of roots/re-growth, and I’m feeling kinda shabby.

Now that most of us are settling down in our weird “New Norm” and are getting settled into a new (and weird) routine we are starting to notice that our regular personal care rituals have fallen to the wayside. It’s healthy to do self-care in whatever form you prefer: Hair color, painting your nails, doing a cleanse. Whatever you need to do to help yourself feel better in this strange new time.

Madison Reed has come to my rescue! I’ve used their service off and on for the past 5 years, usually when I couldn’t get to Sally Beauty to pick up my favorite Ion hair color. I ordered my kit on last Friday, it should be arriving this week.

Besides selling hair color kits, Madison Reed’s website has some of the best articles and tips on their blog.

deadlynightshadeIf you are a little more in the know or want more of a DIY experience, man Sally Beauty locations are offering curbside pick up.  You can order hair color, developer, shampoo, conditioner, spa stuff, nail stuff, even waxing stuff if you are feeling up to it online, and then pick it up at your local Sally Beauty location. Pretty sweet, right?

I was at the drugstore yesterday (getting our rX refills), and I happened down the hair color aisle and it looked picked over. Lots of blues and greens available, but nothing in tamer colors.

The CEO of Walmart has commented that we are Hair Color phase of panic buying (source), and I 100% agree. Cruising the HBA (Health and Beauty Aids) aisles of CVS, it’s pretty barren. Most of the nicer/pricier brands of shampoo and conditioner are sold out, there isn’t much in the way of DIY facial supplies (Secret Tip: Dollar Tree sells name brand skincare masks. I’ve seen the same masks at Walmart for over $3 each).

Remember:

  • Wash your hands
  • Cover Your face
  • Flatten The Curve
  • Take Care of Yourself

New PinchMe Samples Drop 4/7/2020!

Set your iCals to remind you that the new PinchMe samples drop on 4/7/2020 at 9am Pacific Time!

Sneak Peek of April’s samples:

  • Caliper CBD Dissolvable Powder
  • Eva NYC Mane Magic 10-in-1 Primer
  • Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta® Extra Strength Daily Peel
  • InTune CBD Peanut Butter Dog Treats
  • Nexcare™ Tegaderm and Tegaderm™ + Pad Waterproof Transparent Dressings
  • Nexcare™ Max Hold Waterproof Bandages
  • SlimFast Diabetic Weight Loss Nutty Caramel & Chocolate Cluster Snack
  • Lumify® Redness Reliever Eye Drops
  • Acne Wipeout™
  • Skylar – Salt Air Eau de Toilette Rollerball

New To PinchMe? Join PINCHme and receive free samples that you can provide feedback on.

PinchMe is awesome! Once you are signed up, they will email you reminders when new samples are about to drop, and remind you when it’s time to leave feedback.

Answer a series of questions about your household and shopping habits in the Member Profile. PinchMe learns what you like and offer samples just for you.

Once you’ve had a chance to try the samples, complete a short feedback survey to tell PinchMe what you think of the samples.

What are you waiting for? Sign up here and get on the free sample bandwagon! I’ve gotten all kinds of awesome sample/trial size items, as well as full-sized items to try out from PinchMe!

Follow My Month Long Skin Care Challenge with HD Beauty!

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Doesn’t everyone wash their face in the shower?

You only get one face, so it’s important to take care of it. My grandmother said that you should always spend good money on shoes and bras. I’d like to add skincare to that list.

This week I started my Month long Skincare challenge with HD Beauty. I took their 2 Minute Skin Code Quiz here to determine what type my skin was. No Surprise, I’m Type 2: Normal, Sensitive, Red.

My kit included:

HD Pure Balancing Cleansing Gel- Gentle cleanser with chamomile essential oil, antioxidants, and peptides soothes and hydrates normal to sensitive skin.

HD Revitalize 7 In 1 Rejuvenator- Concentrated anti-aging serum with lilac stem cells, vitamin C, and marine extracts. Dramatically improves deeper lines, brightness, texture, and pores.

HD Perform Multi-Complex Crème- Antioxidant moisturizer combining the strongest antioxidant, Lipochroman® to help reduce and prevent visible aging changes. Peptides and brighteners visibly improve the appearance of lines, wrinkles, and age spots.

I’ll be posting weekly photo update selfies on my Instagram page, so you can see the changes my skin undergoes. Already in less than a week, I’ve noticed less redness and my 11’s (you know, those lines between your eyebrows) and forehead lines are less noticeable. I’m only using these three products in addition to the SPF I use when we are outside.

In addition to my home care regimen, I’m looking forward to a facial! If you’ve never had a facial, I completely recommend going to see a trained esthetician (like Melanie at The Skincare Boutique). Estheticians are trained to access your skin type and help you take care of your skin with professional strength products and a great at home daily treatment plan.  Blackheads, whiteheads, aging skin, redness, adult acne (oh, hello breakouts after 40!)- These are all concerns that estheticians can help you with!

In addition to using these awesome products, and getting a professional facial, I’m taking a month off my beloved Primer (seriously, I’m in love with this product), liquid foundation, and mineral powder. I wear a full face of makeup a few times a week, but I’ve noticed lately on my days without face makeup, my skin looks a bit ragged. Time to refresh and renew!

In addition to great skin care products, and a little help from the pros, here are a few more helpful tips to get your skin looking (and feeling) it’s best:

Water– Yeah, yeah, drinking water is good for your insides, but it also helps keep your skin hydrated!

Hands off– This one is hard, even for me. Keep your (dirty) hands off your face. If you’ve been touching stuff, your hands are dirty. Even moms get dirty hands. Reminder- After reading this, go wash your hands with soap and water.

No Need to Scrub– I know most of us grew up scrubbing our faces with a washcloth until our faces were bright and shiny, but really… Those things are scratchy. Washing your face with your fingertips is probably enough for most skin types (especially me). If you need to “scrub” with something, try a microfiber cloth. I got a super soft one in my product kit. It’s like washing my face with a soft kitten (minus the purring).

Talk Back: What is your go-to skincare product?

 

 

*Disclosure- I received these products free in exchange for my participation in this challenge and my thoughts and opinions. I received no financial compensation.

 

 

Apply for a Tryazon Silk’n Infinitely Smooth Party!

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Tryazon has a new party that is accepting applications! If you struggle with old-fashioned hair removal processes like shaving, plucking or waxing? Experience a better solution and discover your confidence with this Tryazon Featured Party opportunity, featuring the Infinity Hair Removal Device from Silk’n. Put the power of the most advanced home hair removal technology right in the palm of your hand, and get safe, painless, irritation-free hair removal from the comfort of your home.

They have 250 hosting spots open for this opportunity! Those selected get to receive a party pack with an Infinity Hair Removal Device valued at $399, PLUS a selection of other Silk’n products to share with friends and family!
We’ve done several Tryazon parties- it’s a great way to try and share new products!

An Awesome Giveaway to Celebrate 1000 Posts!

Last week, we hit 1000 posts- That’s a lot of writing, sharing, and teaching in the past 4 years! To celebrate this milestone, I’ve put together an awesome giveaway.

Bloggers score free swag at every turn- Conventions, events, PR companies send us packages of swag to share, etc. I’ve been collecting swag for this giveaway for a few months (Thanks to the companies that were at the most recent Moms Meet Blogger Event last month- they gave me a lot of goodies to share), and I’ve got a box valued at over $250 to share.

FFC2F03E-48DA-4E1C-9B31-BE3392438284 (1).jpegThis box contains snacks for moms and kids, beauty items (including some AWESOME colleagen drink from NeoCell), adult coloring books, a moleskine journal, Vitamins and supplements (including probiotics and some awesome elderberry syrup), and perhaps my favorite item:

5f9d406f-5325-47a0-a0a3-9241fd5668a9.jpegPlus CBD oil Hemp Balm. It has a light mint scent, and it really helps with muscle and joint pain.

And not pictured but included is a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card, which will be delivered via email to the winner.

I’ll continue to add items to the box until the giveaway concludes- and I’ll be posting pictures of those items on our Instagram feed– don’t forget to follow us!

Entering to win this awesome box of goodies is super easy. Click here: a Rafflecopter giveaway  to enter via our rafflecopter widget (It may not be mobile friendly). You can also enter via our Facebook page here (Not sure this is mobile friendly either).

A winner will be chosen at random via Rafflecopter on 12/18/19 and will be notified via email. US residents only, local San Diego, CA area winner may arrange for pick up of prize in lieu of package being mailed.

This giveaway is to thank you all for reading and following my blog for 4 years, and some of you have been following me since I started blogging, over 8 years ago.

To Get Started after you visit the rafflecopter widget, leave a comment: What will you spend the $25 Amazon Gift Card on?

 

New Health and Beauty Brands on Fetch Rewards!

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Fetch is now hooking us up with savings in the health and beauty aisle! From nutritional supplements to over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, they are making healthy living even more rewarding for your whole family.  You can see the full list here.

You can learn all about Fetch rewards here.

So, if this seems like an app you’d enjoy, check this out: Use my code ND2TB when you sign up and you’ll score 2000 points after you scan in your first receipt with Fetch Rewards. That’s 2/3 way to your first $3 Amazon Gift Card (or whatever $3 Gift Card you choose). You can find Fetch Rewards in your app store.