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.
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.
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.
This 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:
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?
For some of us, fall means changing leaves, cool weather, and busting out sweaters. For those of us in the South West, it means nothing has changed. EXCEPT: Santa Ana Winds, and fire danger is LIEK WHOAH.
None the less, there are some things that to me mean that fall is here! And here are just a few of my favorites:
Siggi’s Plain Skyr Whole Milk (Yogurt)– This stuff is THE BEST yogurt I’ve ever had. I love Greek Yogurt, but it’s got nothing on Siggi’s. It’s thicker, richer, and creamier than any other yogurt. It’s a great substitute for sour cream, and when mixed with fruit and granola (Like this stuff from Bear Naked– which is another one of my new favorite things), it’s heaven.
Slow Cooker Liners– Fall usually means that your Slow Cooker/Crockpot gets a lot of use. Nothing sucks more than scrubbing crusty stuff off the bottom of a slow cooker.
Enter the Slow Cooker Liner- it makes clean up soooo much easier. It’s kinda like a baking bag, but less crinkly.
Santa Ana winds and fire danger. Not fun for the environment. Also, not fun for people. The hot dry air makes your skin dry, it makes your lips chapped and cracked. UGH. My favorite product hands down to combat the dry weather shenanigans:
Bag Balm. It’s awesome for your hands, feet, and lips. Slather some on your feet, cover with some cotton socks, and hop into bed. The next morning, your feet will look and feel a million times better.
Talk Back: What are some of your favorite items this fall?
If you click on any of the links above, I may receive a commission for items purchased. Commissions cover costs associated with running the blog. If you want to know more about our use of affiliate links, Please check out our Disclosure Page.
Recently, the awesome people at Tryazon and Ritual sent me an incredible box of the most heavenly products to review… The Ritual of Ayurveda-Balancing Ritual.
Ritual recently opened up a store at one our local more upscale malls, and I was entranced by all of the varieties and scents. I was so excited to dig into the box and discover what Rituals products were all about.
The Ritual of Ayurveda-Balancing Ritual, comes with:
The Ritual of Ayurveda-Body scrub 4.4 oz
The Ritual of Ayurveda-Hand Wash 10.1 oz
The Ritual of Ayurveda-Balancing Body Cream 2.3 oz
The Ritual of Ayurveda-Harmonizing Foaming Shower Gel 6.7oz
Each of the products in the set have the most intoxicating aroma: Indian Rose and Sweet Almond Oil. What I love about the scent is that it’s not what you commonly think of as ROSE. You know what I mean.. Heavy, sweet, cloying. Kinda like old lady perfume.
Indian Rose is a light, delicate aroma. It’s a mood booster, and roses have long been the universal symbol of purity and love.
Combined with sweet almond oil, which not only has a light scent, but is also rich in proteins and vitamins. It regulates moisture in the skin- the perfect base for skin and body products.
I started my Ritual in the shower with the Body Scrub. Not only is the smell heavenly, but, the scrub has an amazing feeling. The base is a mixture of rich oils: Sweet almond oil, macadamia nut oil, and jojoba oil. The actual scrubby part is pink salt, which exfoliated gently and left my skin so soft and smooth.
Afterwards I used the Foaming Shower gel, which is unlike anything else I’ve ever used. It goes out as a gel, but quickly lathers up to a rich, creamy foam.
I’ve been keeping the Body Cream next to my bed and applying it right before bed. I wake up with soft, supple skin. It’s a great feeling, especially with all the dry late summer/early fall weather we’ve been having lately.
If you want to check out The Ritual of Ayurveda or any of the other awesome Rituals, Check out their website, or visit one of their stores.
While I received this set for free, all opinions are my own, and I was not financially compensated to write this review. You can learn more about my reviews on my disclosure page.
I love reviewing products. If you want to start reviewing products, I have a list of sites here.
Every once in a while the product isn’t awesome. When that happens, there area few steps you should take:
Email the company or your point of contact and tell them know there are issues. Be precise as to what the issue is- being vague helps nothing. Often times they will not ask you not to review the item.
Offer to ship the product back if they email or send you a shipping label (The reviewer shouldn’t have to pay to send an item back). If the company doesn’t want the item back and it is not broken, consider donating it to charity or giving it to a neighbor on your local Buy Nothing group.
Most review websites give you a timetable in which to complete your review and other social media mentions. If you can’t get an answer back from your contact prior to the completion date and you can’t get an answer, you have to post some kind of a review or risk losing your account on the platform or having a negative effect on your standing. And that is where we are right now. I don’t want to lose my account or standing with Tomoson, because for the most part I have had great experiences with their site and tried some really cool products.
I signed up to review InstantPeel via Tomoson. I was hired to review it on 11/8/17 with 14 days to complete all of the activities (write a blog post and share on social media). The company was supposed to ship the item to me directly. After 12 days (that leaves me 2 days to try the product, take pics, write a review and post to social media). I messaged the company via Tomoson right away to let them know I was allergic to two of the ingredients and that I needed some advice on next steps ASAP.
That was last night. I have not heard back from them yet, and since I only have until 12:01AM to complete my tasks, here we are… I have messaged them again, but without any other way to contact them, I’m at an impasse.
Yeah, Shrimp Extract. For someone allergic to shellfish, that’s not something I want to rub on my body.
And yes, I did look online for the ingredients before I signed up. The ingredients listed on this Amazon listing for the product are completely different.
And this isn’t really a peel. It’s a gommage (which is French for erase or eraser). A peel sloughs off the dead layers of skin generally by using enzymes or acid (sometimes fruit based like Alpha hydroxy acids). A gommage is treatment applied to the skin, then after a length of time, the skin is rubbed and the product balls up and flakes off the skin.
So here is my review: I don’t have one because I can’t try a skincare product that contains allergens, and given the time frame I was given, I don’t have time to find someone I can test this on.
It’s finally cold here in San Diego (it’s 55 degrees and I am wearing a sweater as I type this)! So besides peppermint mochas and sweaters, it’s time to look forward to some changes to our skin care routines.
Recently I was excited to add two new products in my #selfcareSunday routine. Each Sunday night after the kids are in bed (and Mr. is watching the latest episode of Star Trek Discovery), I give myself a DIY facial and do a few other fun self care rituals (like a mani/pedi, or a body mask and body scrub). I play some music on my phone and spend about an hour just focusing on me.
The first new product was Anavita Renewing Foaming Facial Cleanser. It smells GREAT. It has orange essential oil, as well as a slew of other botanicals (Aloe Vera, Chamomile, and Olive Leaf). It’s 99.8% natural and contains 70% organic products! It foams up providing a healthy lather and left my skin feeling clean and hydrated. The best part is you only need 1 pump to clean your entire face and neck, so a 6 ounce bottle will last a few months!
After my face was nice and clean, I was onto my next step, was the Alana MitchellQuick Comeback Masque. It was hard to photograph, but the little container has two parts, the bottom looks like a tiny cotton ball, and the top is liquid. You depress the top of the package until the liquid releases into the bottom. The liquid mixes with the fluff to dissolve the fluff and make a cool masque that helps withplumping, tightening, and firming lines and wrinkles. You can either remove the masque with warm water or you can do what I did, which was to peel it off.
Ahh, the satisfying sense of completion when it’s time to peel a masque off, amirite? My face felt so much better, it’s hard to describe, other than nourished and healthy.
Not to be done in just two steps, it was time to move onto the moisturizing mask for my neck and chest. The skin on your neck and chest ages a lot faster than our faces, since most of use neglect to moisturize and cleanse those delicate areas like we do with our faces. I like to use Valentia Ultra Plumping Hydration mask. It contains silk protein amino acids, hyaluronic acid (which is a humectant), as well as other botanically to protect and moisturize. To remove, I used a warm, wet microfiber towel.
I really recommend indulging in your own #selfcareSunday or whatever day of the week works best for you. A little time to yourself to focus on you and your needs is just what every person needs. Maybe it’s not a DIY facial, maybe it’s playing a video game, cooking a favorite meal, getting a massage, going for a walk, or hitting the gym. Doing something you enjoy every week that helps you recharge is an awesome way to reduce stress.
Thanks to the awesome peeps over at Tomoson, Anavita, and Alana Mitchell Skin Care for the cleaner and masque. I feel a kindred spirit with Alana Mitchell. As a mom of a child with autism, life can be hard, especially in the first year of diagnosis with all of the changes like doctor’s appointments, therapy appointments, IEP meetings, and changes in life to help support your child and give them all they need to succeed. I really relish and embrace each Sunday night when I can focus on helping heal and restore my spirit. I throughly enjoyed her masque and I can’t wait to try her other products!
Slim- Natural herbal supplement that is added to water.
Everyday Face Care-Serum for regular and mixed skin.
Body- 100% Natural Body Cream.
I’ve been adding the Slim to my water every morning and afternoon and I haven’t noticed a difference on the scale, but my skin is looking incredible! It contains extracts of several types of mushroom, turmeric, Milk Thistle, and several essential oils.
The Everyday Face Care is my new favorite product. I’ve added it to my beauty ritual. The directions tell you to apply a few drops to a clean face twice daily, but I’ve been mixing it with my usual Vitamin C serum. Everyday Face Care contains tons of nourishing essential oils in a sweet almond oil base. It is perfect for those days when my skin is super dry- which has been all the time lately.
The last component to The Moms Package is Body- 100% Natural Body Cream. This is worth it’s weight in gold! It’s 100% Natural products, no synthetic scents or mineral oils. It’s also free of petroleum-based ingredients and parabens. It’s really soothing and easy absorbed into the skin. It’s been perfect for my rough elbows and knees and for my sons dry skin. I’ve been applying it after I bathe and I wake up the next morning smooth and soft.
Healtop is based in Israel, and all of their products are Manufactured under international standards of GMP, HACCP, ISO90. They are naturopath approved, cruelty free, and vegan. Healtop’s products will make a great holiday gift for anyone on your gift list. they have bundles for everyone on your gift list: Teens, Toddlers, Infants, and Moms over 45!
I also love the blog section of their website. There are a lot of really great articles about various health topics. Get Rid of Back Pain Easy and Fast was of interest. Carrying around a 30 lb. 2 1/2 year old leads to a sore back frequently!
Disclaimer: I was provided with a free Moms Package from Healtop and USFamilyGuide in order to facilitate my review. All opinions are my own. I received no financial compensation for my review. Please review my Disclosure Page and contact me with any questions.
Recently I posted a photo on Instagram of some of the body scrub I whipped up. I love making body scrubs, balms, and lotions. Anything I can make at home with all natural ingredients is a plus in my book.
I dislike commercially available scrubs, so often they contain silica or other “micro-beads”. They are often times not biodegradable, and they end up in oceans and streams, harming wildlife.
I got quite a few DM’s asking for the recipe, so I thought I would share it.
All of this stuff I had in my house already, so you may have to go out and grab some ingredients, or just make a few substitutions, depending on what you have on-hand.
I’ve linked to some of the ingredients on Amazon (prices may change, and if you buy something from one of my links, I *might* get a small commission). Then you don’t have to leave home to shop!
This recipe makes A LOT, so, be prepared with a large container with a lid (I used a plastic coffee canister that I sterilized).
As the new year begins a lot of women (and men too) resolve to take better care of themselves, both physically and spiritually.
Today we’re dealing with the physical self-care, and one way to start is with a good facial. It’s important to put your best face forward, and taking care of your skin will help!
I’ve listed DIY formulations that I like as well as links to professional products that I’ve used recently. Products that I use and recommend tend to have a high concentration of natural/botanical ingredients. I’m a huge fan of using products that have a basis in nature! Facials are a fun thing to do as part of a Ladies/Moms night in!
For your Ladies/Moms night in, have every one can bring their favorite product to share, or a quick trip to the beauty supply and the grocery store can get you everything you’ll need for a soothing facial.
1: Cleanse your skin using a gentle cleanser in order to remove surface oil, dirt and germs. If you have oily or combination skin, use a foaming gel cleanser; if you have dry skin, look for a creamier blend that won’t dry out your skin. I like Dermalogica UltraCalming Cleanser
2: Exfoliate. Exfoliation helps remove dead skin cells that clings to your skin. You can either use a mechanical exfoliator (something that is rough/ scrubby like oatmeal), or a chemical exfoliator (something that dissolves the oil and dirt that holds the dead skin cells to your skin, like the acid in pineapple or dairy products).
Natural exfoliatants include: Ground oats and pineapple. Grind oatmeal in your food processor and add 3 T. oats to 2T. Plain natural yogurt (I like greek yogurt because it’s nice and thick!) Apply to the face and remove after 10 minutes with a warm towel. Or put ¼ cup pineapple and 3 T. plain yogurt into the food processor and pulse. Once combined apply to the face and remove after 10 minutes with a warm towel.
At this point, you may wish to apply a serum (I like this vitamin C serum, it’s got all kinds of botanicals and humectants in it to help moisturize your skin) or spritz the skin with a nourishing toner. I like this Vitamin C Toner. Remember to use anything that stings, burns or causes discomfort. That means NO SEA BREEZE OR ALCOHOL BASED ASTRINGENTS!
3: Mask. If you have oily or combination skin, try a clay-based mask; for dry or mature skin, look for a hydrating mask (with a creamy or gel texture). Peel off masks are better suited for oily or combination skin (They can be a little harsh for those with sensitive skin). Most beauty supply stores or drug stores sell masks in small sachets (like these) if you do not already have a favorite mask. Apply mask to the skin, being careful to avoid the eye area (this can lead to sagging skin). Leave mask on for 10 to 20 minutes or as directed. Do not allow clay masks to dry completely. The active ingredients only work as long as the mask stays moist. Sprtiz the mask with a spray bottle of water to keep it moist once or twice. Remove the mask with warm towels and follow with a light spritz of toner.
Most facials end with a special moisturizer or lotion applied to the face. Look for a moisturizer with SPF 15 or higher in order to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Don’t forget to apply moisturizer to your neck and décolleté. You can use SPF moisturizer in the evening too if your budget is too tight for two moisturizers. If you use a moisturizer that contains retinols (they are vitamin A derivatives), it’s imperative that you use an SPF during the day. Vitamin A can thin the skin and sensitize it, so you need extra protection from the suns rays.
If you wish to apply an eye cream, use only a pea sized amount and apply it with your ring fingers in a gentle patting motion. Don’t drag your fingers across the gentle under-eye tissue. It can damage the delicate skin in that area.
Here is my photo collage of my recent Spa retreat. Ok, so I was in the spare washroom after the kids were sleeping and hubs was vegging out.None the less, it’s nice to take 30 minutes or so out of your day once a week and pamper yourself!