3 Summer Masks Your Skin Needs, Stat

Summer is here, and we are all spending more time than ever outdoors. From beach days to pool parties to boat days, the sunshine is making us all feel good. But, it’s also taking a toll on our skin. With the changing of the seasons comes a change in our skincare routine. Right now, you’re sweating more than ever. Your makeup is clogging your pores more than ever. You’re getting sun, your skin is being dried out by the sun, and everything is changing.

Summer is a time for change, and it’s not just about later nights, later mornings, and more carefree fun. It’s also about changing your skincare routine, and I highly recommend you incorporate one – or more – of these amazing masks into your skincare routine. I have, and love, all three, and I typically alternate what I’m using throughout the week. I use them once or twice a week this time of year, and I alternate what I’m using based on what I feel my skin needs.

Your skin will thank you for these.

1

Laneige Water Sleeping Mask – $25

I’m starting with my favorite. I actually got this mask as a sample in one of my beauty boxes from Sephora, and I fell in love. It’s so refreshing and hydrating for my skin that I ended up ordering the full-size product almost immediately. I use this mask one to two times a week after my shower. My face is clean, I put this one, go to bed, and wake up with brighter, more refreshed skin.

2

Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask – $45

Can you tell I have a thing for sleeping masks? It’s got hyaluronic acid, which is exactly what my skin needs in my mid-30s. It’s also got a gentle exfoliator in it that helps my keep my skin healthy, and it makes my pores shrink. I have larger pores, so this is a great option during the summer. I use this mask once a week – I don’t want to overwhelm my pores, nor do I want to exfoliate my skin too much. No thanks to that kind of redness.

3

GlamGlow FlashMud Brightening Treatment – $59

If there is one mistake women make during the summer, it’s assuming the sun automatically brightens their skin and makes it glow. It’s true that it does make your skin look glowing and gorgeous, but it’s not enough. You need to try for this mask once a week to help your skin look as radiant as possible. Your skin is dealing with a lot of stuff this time of year, and it needs a little help to keep it bright and beautiful. You won’t regret this one, even if you use it once every two weeks.

What’s your go-to beauty mask this time of year?

Advertisements

Best Beauty Buys of the Year

Happy Friday, loves!

It’s Friday, the kids have been back in school for a few days now, I’ve had some serious quality time with my husband this week, the weekend is officially here; my mood is stellar.

It’s Friday, so I’m going to make this quick and just round up a few of my favorite beauty purchases. I’ve mentioned before – to an extent – how much my skin has changed in the past few years. I hit 35 in 2018, and my skin is still changing. I’ve changed my skincare and even my makeup routine, and so far, so good. I’m really impressed with a few purchases I made in the past year – some after a few fails and some on the first try.

I put a lot of weight into the reviews of a product, and I tend to stick to classics. I’m not a ‘fad’ or ‘trend’ kind of girl in most aspects of my life, but especially not when it pertains to my skincare. I value my skin, and I work hard to keep it looking good. That said, here are a few of my absolute favorite skincare must-haves.

1

Beauty Blender

I just switched from my all-time favorite powder foundation to a liquid foundation in the past year. My skin just couldn’t handle the powder foundation the way it did for so long (though I love, love, love and recommend it to anyone whose skin can handle it before that whole age situation hits). I cannot believe I lived my entire life without ever using a beauty blender until 2018.

But, I also learned that you cannot go the cheap route on the blender. You must buy the real thing, or you’re not doing yourself any favors. This is one tool that will change your life, but the cheap version falls apart, doesn’t handle the job well, and it leaves your skin looking less than flawless. Do not try to save here.

2

Clinique Pore Refining Solutions Charcoal Mask

I’m a weekly mask girl, and this is the one I use weekly. For my skin – pores, *eye rolls* – this is the best. It’s perfect for what I’m looking to achieve, and you absolutely cannot beat the price point ($28). I highly recommend Clinique for your skincare needs – it’s an established brand with a long history of making women feel gorgeous, and it’s one that you cannot go wrong with once you find the mask that works for you.

3

Clinique Moisture Surge 72-Hour Auto-Replenishing Hydrator

Florida weather is weird, and my skin dries out so hard during the fall/winter months. We also travel a lot, and we spend quite a bit of time in the air. This also makes my skin thirsty. Of all the moisturizers I’ve found, this is by far the absolute best of the best. I use it every single morning after I shower before I put on my makeup. It’s a dream come true.

4

Clinique Smart Night Custom Repair Moisturizer

Nighttime is a great time for your skin, but only if you’re using the right nighttime moisturizer. This one is a dream come true – literally. It’s everything you want at night to keep your skin firm, hydrated, and looking younger than ever.

5

Belief Moisturizing Eye Bomb

I’m going to be honest and tell you I only use this a few times a week. I’m fortunate that I don’t suffer from many fine lines and wrinkles at this age, and my crinkly laugh lines are not something I’m looking to get rid of. But, this is great when my eyes are feeling tired – which they do a lot with four kids and a business.

What are your favorite beauty buys? I’m loving so many these days!

Mother’s Day Gift Guide: The Luxe Edition

Mother’s Day is a little bittersweet in our home. It’s a day when we celebrate our moms, and it’s a day when our kids and my husband celebrate me. It’s also the anniversary of the very first baby we lost. We were expecting our second baby in 2010. I was a few months along when I began experiencing some issues – I knew it immediately. Our sweet Addison was almost 2, and she spent the day with my aunt while we were in the hospital learning that our sweet second baby wasn’t going to live long enough for us to give birth. It was the week of our fifth wedding anniversary, and it was Mother’s Day. Our hearts were nothing short of completely broken.

It was the first of two. Eight year later, we are a week away from celebrating our 13th year of marriage, and we have four beautiful babies who make me a mom. It’s a sweet, sweet day. But we never forget.

I love Mother’s Day. I love the beautiful church service every year. I love the big brunch we host with our own mothers. I love the sweet gifts from the kids (my favorites are the cards they make me and the gifts they actually pick out for me on their own…there’s never any shortage of imagination and a gift or two that might just benefit the giver more than the recipient).

When I was thinking about a Mother’s Day gift guide to share, I struggled. It’s hard for me to put myself in the shoes of others on this day. Part of me wants to keep my family all to myself for the day. The other part of me wants to send them all off somewhere while I spend the day at home doing things I can’t do when they’re home – drinking my coffee uninterrupted on the deck while reading a book, for example.

But at the end of the day, as crazy as they make me, it’s being with them that makes me the happiest. We typically go away for the weekend and come home Sunday morning for church and to host brunch for our moms at our home, but this year our oldest daughter has cheer tryouts the evening before…and we aren’t missing that! So, it’s a weekend at home for us.

But, there’s one thing I know for certain most moms will love – something outside the flowers and candy and beautiful meal you already do. What do moms do?

Oh, you know, everything. But what do they not do? They don’t get to spend nearly as much time pampering themselves as they do everyone else in the household. Between wrangling the kids and their schedules, their own careers, and maintaining a household, not much time is left for mom to indulge herself – which is why I’m sharing some of my favorite at-home indulgences. They’re the perfect gift for the mom in your life because she wants to be able to take a few moments during the day to feel just a little spoiled and a little pampered right at home.

But don’t forget the homemade cards and gifts the bunches of flowers that don’t go together at all, but totally represent each child and their amazing little personalities, the sticky little kisses, and the sweet hugs – those are always the best gifts. These are just a sweet second for all the moms who want to pamper the skin they’re in at home.

la mer

La Mer Lifting and Firming Mask

It’s a little pricey, but you can get a smaller jar here to try out in case you’re not certain mom will love it. However, if you have a mom who loves to take care of her skin, you have a mom who will adore this firming mask. It’s life-changing. I promise. Trust me as a mid-30s mama…tightening and firming your skin is never more important in life as it is right now.

jo malone

Jo Malone Red Roses Bath Oil

Full honesty disclosure here – I don’t take baths…and I’ve never used this. I have an unexplainable, unimaginable, weird-as-hell fear of grout and the corners of tubs pushed up against walls. The idea of sitting in the water and possibly having germs touch me…I shudder. You guys, I wear shoes in my own shower in my own home because I don’t want my feet to touch the grout. I know…I know.

BUT…I know most moms aren’t total paranoid freaks like myself, and they love a good bubble bath (it’s actually physically hurting me to even write about taking a bath…I have issues, I know). And I love Jo Malone soap. So I assume I would also love her bath oil. So there.

cannabliss

Cannabliss Organics

When Cannabliss Organics reached out to me and asked if I’d be willing to try their amazing skincare products, I was pumped to try something new – and it did not disappoint. It’s all natural, all organic, all vegan, and it’s really amazing. Basically, the products contain hemp oil and CBD, which works to help our skin grow healthy new cells while also getting rid of the dead ones. You cannot go wrong with the body oil or the moisturizing face lotion. I’m always a fan of a lightweight face lotion, and this one hits the mark.

peter thomas roth

Peter Thomas Roth 24k Gold Hydra-Gel Eye Patches

If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you already know I am a huge fan of anything Peter Thoma Roth comes out with. From his cooling cucumber mask to this gorgeous 24k gold hydra-gel eye patch, I’m a fan. #Momlife ruins your eyes. I mean, listen; I have four kids who all slept through the night within a month of birth and only woke up once or twice a night to eat before that. I never went through the whole sleep-deprivation situation, even when the twins were newborns.

But, you guys, I’m always tired. Kids are just exhausting even on 8-9 hours of sleep per night. I’m always moving, always busy, always on. And the bags under my eyes are definitely not designer…at least, not until I discovered this gem. My eyes look brighter, firmer, and less mom-like as a result.

You took your mom’s bright eyes away from her, but the great news is you can gift them back with these sweet eye patches. Do it. She’ll thank you. Also, you probably owe her.

dipytique

Diptyque Candles

If you really want to get mom something that makes her feel all kinds of luxurious and relaxed, try Baies or Vanille from the Diptyque collection. These are my two favorite scents, and you’ll see I always keep one in my master bathroom to make the entire space feel more spa-like and inviting while I’m getting ready in the mornings.

Here’s the deal; Your mom is going to love any and everything you give her for Mother’s Day whether it’s a long weekend getaway or a day at the spa or breakfast in bed and a day of fun in the sun at home. She loves you, and that’s what matters most. However, you can help make her feel a little more luxurious, a little more spoiled, and a little prettier (if it’s even possible for your mom to be any prettier) with one or more of these boujie gifts.

**Bonus points if you throw in a luxe spa robe like this one, this one, or this one 

 

 

 

 

Summer Beauty Round-Up: New Favorites from Sephora

6

August has me doing my happy dance (complete with zero rhythm and not a care). August, to me, is the almost-but-not-quite-but-so-close to the beginning of all the best things in life.

  • The kids go back to school next week (Hallelujah!)
  • It’s almost September – my birth month
  • Gator football is just a few weeks away
  • The kids go back to school next week
  • It’s almost fall (is it ironic I love fall the most considering we Floridians haven’t one, ever?)

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Beginning September 1st I lovingly decorate our home for fall and begin celebrating the four most spectacular months of the year – the months I live for. The other 8 are basically pointless black holes of time in which there is no pumpkin anything anywhere.

*Shudder*

Anyway, this year is (as always) flying by. And that means I’m checking myself and my goals for the New Year…which is so long ago now! I’m impressed with myself and how well I’ve managed to do the things I said I was going to do this year. Specifically, I’m proud of how well I’ve adapted to trying new things. Going outside my comfort zone, if you will.

As a creature of intense habit – my weekdays are basically Groundhog Day the reality…and I LOVE it – I tend to pick my favorite beauty products and stick with them. Being that I’m turning 34 next month, my skincare needs are changing. And I was forced to adapt.

Do you see how I gave myself credit there for totally going outside my comfort zone and trying new things when in reality I had zero choice because my skin kicked me in the ass and gave me no other option? I’m still taking the credit, mmmkay?

This summer I’ve tried a few new products (note: new to my beauty routine; not new products) and I’ve fallen in love with some, tossed a few others to the side, and let my kids have all the fun in the world with others, and I thought I’d share a few of the new things I tried every time I placed a Sephora order – which, contrary to what my husband believes, is not every other day – and fell in love with this summer in a beauty round-up.

 

1. Boscia Sponge – It’s the perfect daily exfoliant without actually harming my skin and making it seem dry or irritated. I use it with my Clinque Pep Start 2-1 exfoliating cleanser for just a little extra, and it’s perfect!

2. Belif Aqua Bomb – Dry skin is such a summer problem for me, and this is the perfect moisturizer to use overnight. I apply it after my evening shower and my skin is so much smoother and better moisturized immediately.

3. Clinique Pep Start Sampler Kit – I use the regular size at home, but this is the PERFECT travel set! I keep it in my travel bag so my skin is always happy when we aren’t home.

4. Dior Diorshow Maximizer – I’ve been a strict Diorshow mascara user for more than a decade now, but I’d never tried this. Let me just say – LOVE. I love the way my lashes look!

5. IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores – Pores. Yuck. Mine are huge, and this has been a lifesaver this summer as I swear they grow with the humidity!

Do you ladies have any must-have recommendations for me to try before summer is over – or leading into fall?

Summer Skincare: 3 Killer Masks Your Face Needs Right Now

face

34

That’s how old I’ll be on my birthday in September only nine weeks from now.

I have no problem with 34. I look good, I feel good, I am good. But I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I have noticed major changes in my body/life/skin since my 33rd birthday almost a year ago. I thought it might happen at 30, but 33 was my magic number.

For years I did nothing but take basic care of my skin, and I’ve finally learned I have to get serious about my skin if I want to maintain a clear complexion and a healthy face. It’s important to me, and it should be important to you.

But ladies, listen; you’re not too late. I spent 33 years thinking I was fortunate I didn’t have to do much more than just wash my face with Clean & Clear (and under control! Ha Ha!) before it hit me that this routine wasn’t one that was benefitting me anymore. I may have been 33 when I realized just how important my skin really is, but I think I’m okay.

face

With that in mind, I thought I might share a few of the simplest, most basic concepts with you regarding your own skin – as well as three of the seriously most amazing face masks I’ve ever tried (I have combination skin. It’s either bone dry or greasy enough to fry some chicken depending on the day). It’s not easy to care for skin like mine where it’s combo – yet dry and oily on different days.

I know you feel me, right?

Aging is no joke (I mean, I’m a 33-year-old brunette who had to go super blond because I’m 60% silver and there’s nothing like silver roots and dark hair, y’all). Whether you’re still going strong with your healthy young skin or noticing some changes in your own complexion, why not start taking better care of it yesterday? You only get one face, you know.

Wear Sunscreen

There’s no excuse not to wear it all over your body no matter where you are or what you’re doing, but you must put it on your face every day. It’s amazing when you can find some lotion and some makeup with SPF in it to keep your complexion pretty and young. Also, skin cancer sucks, so let’s not encourage that by skipping skin protection.

Wash Your Face

Don’t sleep in your makeup. It’s so disgusting, so dirty, and so filthy. I can’t even begin to tell you how bad it is to do this. Just wash your face every night. You owe it to your skin.

Wash Your Sheets

I’m going to assume you guys already wash your sheets every 2-3 days, and I’m just going to leave this here as a reminder.

face 1

Wear a Hat

Bad hair day? Check. Hot? Check. Lazy? Check. Protect your skin? Check. Basically, hats are awesome, chic, and spectacular. Embrace them.

Hands Off

Don’t touch your face. Ever. Your hands are super gross. And don’t put your phone up to your face, either. Learn to embrace your vehicle’s Bluetooth or get some earbuds and use those. Your phone is probably the nastiest thing you touch, and you don’t want it on your face. Or your hands. Don’t touch your face, ladies.

Embrace Face Masks

I love my face masks! You can’t use them all the time, but you can alternate them, use them a few times a week, and get to know what works for your skin.

This Peter Thomas Roth Cucumber Gel Mask is everything after a long, hot day outside. It’s perfect following a beach vacation. It’s soothing, refreshing, and your skin instantly perks up. And it’s not even remotely messy.

face 3

My Clinique Pore Refining Solutions Charcoal mask is spectacular. I use it on Sunday mornings before I get ready for church. My skin is brighter and my pore are practically gone when I wash this off in the shower. Charcoal masks are spectacular – but DO NOT think you can order one for $2 online from China and end up with healthy skin. Please invest in your face, ladies.

The Dr. Jart Dermaclear Trans-Foam Clay is another favorite. It’s most helpful on days my skin is really oily, and I’d recommend it all day long.

One face, ladies; that’s all we get. Make it count!

Do you have any mask recommendations or other tips you utilize to keep your skin so fresh and gorgeous? I’d love to hear them!

What I’ve Learned About My Skin in My 30s

skincare 3

I’m a creature of habit. I like schedules, routines, and I don’t like change – unless the change is my idea, and it’s executed with exceptional planning and my own control. Control freak, anyone? I just like things my way, all the time, without anyone or anything changing my plans. Is that too much to ask?

Change happens in my life all the time. I never rarely handle it well, but I always see how God’s plan works out in my favor in the end. Everything in my life has always worked out in a beautiful way that I never imagined possible, and that’s why I have such a love/hate relationship with change. I hate it until I love it.

I promise there is a point to this.

My skin.

I didn’t have great skin as a teenager, but that was a sheer lack of knowledge. I didn’t know how to properly wash my face, that I shouldn’t sleep in my makeup, or that I needed to care for my skin better. Um, Google didn’t exist when I was a teen. When I entered my 20s, I began buying better makeup, getting regular facials, eating well, and taking better care of myself as a whole. But, I never changed my skincare routine. I began using Clean & Clear (morning burst) in the shower at night and in the mornings, and my skin was so clear, so pretty, and I loved it. I never thought to change.

I was afraid using too many products (yet I use about 27351849194 makeup products) would damage my skin. So, it was Clean & Clear (and oh-so totally under control) for the past 15-ish years. Not that I’m complaining about it – it was an amazing product for me, and I loved it and my great skin.

But then I turned 33.

skincare

Thirty-three.

It’s been 9 months since my 33rd birthday…and you guys, I swear my entire life has changed. Cruising through life with good genes and a fast metabolism suddenly became a challenge. You guys, I actually had to start working out to maintain my weight. Drinking all day on vacation and waking up to feel super good the next morning following some water and a few ibuprofen became a thing of the past – if I drink all day on vacation, I feel like certain death for days.

And guys, my skin changed. My pores turned into the Grand Canyon. I began breaking out when my monthly visitor was only a few days away, and my skin began to dry out.

33 and I swear I’m falling apart.

Thankfully, I eat well and always enjoyed exercise so no life changes were necessary when my metabolism changed at 33. I just work a little harder, but I feel a lot better. I just toned down my drinking – a lot – and I’m happier as a whole. All the negative changes have turned into serious positives. I have more energy, I sleep better, and I’m happier. That’s all translated into more productivity when I work, which has brought me even greater success. No complaints here.

But my skin. What a different story. The same routine and skincare schedule I’ve had for 15 years suddenly needed an overhaul, and I was scared. I took my time trying new products to help with my newly unwanted skin. I drank more water, wore more sunscreen, and even changed up my makeup with the seasons for the first time in my life.

Skin Changes in Your 30s

It turns out your skin changes with your age – which we know, but we don’t really pay much attention to. For me, it happened at 33. For you, it might happen at 30 or 37 or some other time in your 30s. But it does change; and knowing what to expect helps you change with your skin.

  • Estrogen levels drop dramatically in your 30s, and this means your collagen, elastic, and hyaluronic acid levels fall, and your skin becomes thinner and less beautiful
  • Cells turnover slower
  • Skin doesn’t bounce back as quickly from imperfect days
  • Dryness is more likely to occur in your 30s
  • Acne makes a devastating reappearance in your 30s

 

Finally, I found the perfect skincare routine.

skincare 1

 

Clinique Pep-Start 2-in-1 Exfoliating Cleanser followed by the Clinique Pep-Start HydroBlur Moisturizer (and this one when I’m having an outdoor day) to start my day. I use the same cleanser at night, but I follow it with Belif The Truth Cream Aqua Bomb at night. Twice weekly I use the Clinique Pore Refining Solutions Charcoal Mask – usually halfway through the week and on Sundays to refresh my skin after a long weekend of fun in the sun. The best thing – aside from how amazing my skin looks – is each of these products is super affordable under $40!

I’ve learned my skin needs the exfoliating cleanser every day, but I also need additional moisturizing cream to keep it from drying out. In the three months since I began this particular skincare routine, my pores are back to their normal size, my skin is tighter and brighter, and it’s far less dry. It’s helped dramatically.

Handling Skin Changes In Your 30s

What’s helped me is not just my skincare routine, but also the other positive changes in my life.

  • Drinking less means sleeping better and better sleep means prettier skin
  • Drinking more water is good
  • Exercise is good
  • Don’t sleep in makeup
  • Wash your face immediately if you work out in your makeup after a long day at work or being out
  • Wear sunscreen Every. Single. Day.
  • Don’t burn
  • Wear a hat
  • Don’t touch your face
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Care for your skin at night when it’s most likely to rest and regenerate while you sleep

Your skin is going to change, and this means changing with it. It’s been a big adjustment for me, and it’s been one that really caught me off guard. Perhaps it caught me so off-guard because I don’t feel like I’m in my 30s (until about 8 pm…then I feel it). Either way, prepare for the change, expect it, and challenge it.

Do you notice any changes in your skin? What have you done to combat these changes, and at what age did you begin to notice them?