Monday, December 5, 2016

November Empties

It's been a great few months for empties and I find I'm going through things I love quickly! In the empties bag this month...


1. Dr Teal's Epsom Salt (not pictured): Before I took this updated picture I threw away the bag already! Anyway... I love this stuff. It smells great and really helps to relax my muscles especially after a hard workout. I already bought another bag of this. Problem is I don't really love taking baths and it's so hard for me to just sit and soak in it without getting bored. I should really soak my muscles more than I do... but when I do this is what I reach for!

2. Jason Lavender Body Wash: This is the second bottle of this that I've gone through. This is one of my favorite body washes and I did a full review in my last empties post! I haven't repurchased yet, but am planning to soon because I already miss it!

3. PCA Skin Rebalance moisturizer: This is actually the second one of these little samples that I've gone through. I started using this about 4 weeks ago and I've really come to like it. I just ordered the full size along with their facial wash for oily/problem skin. Although I love green skincare my goal is to find the best, most effective, and NONTOXIC products so they don't necessarily have to be "natural" to accomplish that. That being said, there are really some GREAT ingredients in their products. This helps to control oil throughout the day and I don't feel greasy, but I feel thoroughly moisturized. Some of their products are a little too harsh for me and possibly toxic but this is one I really like and am excited to see if it continues to work for me!

4. Good Medicine Beauty Lab Clarity & Rain: I have reviewed both of these products before and I still like both of them. I have already opened another bottle of each. I really love using rain if I've worn makeup during the day because it does a fantastic job of removing everything and making my skin feel soft and clean. As for Clarity, I've taken it out of my rotation for now. I found when using it that I kept getting those small bumps on my neck. I'm not saying this was the cause for it at all, but since it does have coconut oil in it I wanted to remove anything and everything from my routine that had comedogenic ingredients in it. Although this is a great moisturizer, I wanted to stop using anything that could POSSIBLY be keeping those bumps around. If you don't have acneic skin this is such a beautiful moisturizer!

5. Loreal The Supersizer Mascara: This is hands down my favorite mascara. My lashes look long, full, and thick when I use this and I have yet to find a mascara better than this one. Unfortunately Loreal is not a cruelty free brand and I try my best to buy cruelty free. I just can't give this up and have already repurchased! Any mascara suggestions anyone??

6. Amika Dry Shampoo: I got this in one of my Birchboxes and it's perfect to keep in my purse for when I start to look like a grease pit. This is one of my favorite dry shampoos along with batiste. My hair get SO oily and I try to wash it every other night and without this stuff it would absolutely not last. I use this after I workout as well as before school on day two. I am currently using batiste mainly because of the price difference, but I do really like this. 

7. Eminence Clear Skin Willow Bark Serum: I can't say enough good things about this serum. I love this so much. I already bought a new bottle and I use this every night before bed. It's lightweight, soaks into the skin easily, and I can honestly say that I see a difference in my skin when using this product. This has willow bark, of course, which is a natural form of salicylic acid and great for acneic skin. This also has tea tree oil, vitamins, and antioxidants that are so good for the skin! Cannot recommend this enough!

My skin looks so much better lately so stay tuned and I will do an update on my skincare routine and what I've been doing differently. (I have been trying to stay consistent lately and find what really works for me.)
 I will also be doing some other types of posts including a few Christmas outfits, my gym essentials, and maybe a recipe or two :) 



Have a great week everyone!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

A few of my favorite things: Mask Edition

I absolutely LOVE masking. When I feel a breakout coming on I rush to my favorite masks to calm them down before they get crazy! I also love to mask when I just want to relax and pamper myself.
Here are a few of the favorites...


1. Earthwise Beauty: Frightening Green
This mask has been SO helpful with my skin being fussy from all of the products we have to use at school. If you didn't see my instagram post about being in esthetics, my skin has been SO fussy from all of these yuck products on my skin. I am a firm believer that everyone's skin responds differently to different products and mine loves and responds so well to green skincare. 
Back to the mask...this is 100% my go to mask. It includes french green clay to draw out impurities in the skin and to dry up those breakout areas. This also includes witch hazel, juniper berry, eucalyptus, and many fruit acids. I love how cleansing and detoxifying this mask is. It's pore purifying and I use it straight from the fridge to get the added cooling effect. Anytime I feel my skin is getting irritated from other products or acting up I immediately slather this all over my face. Although this is a clay mask this does not irritate or burn my skin in any way. This mask is SO aromatherapeutic, I absolutely love the way it smells. Sometimes I will just leave it on a little longer because it smells so amazing!
Honestly my skin loves this so so much. Very calming when my skin gets mad at me! Looks like it's time for the full size.

2. MOSS Sacred Ground
I use this mask when my skin is feeling extra oily/greasy and I get those little bumps on my chin and neck. This helps to calm down the excessive oil and does a great job at soothing my skin and clearing those stubborn spots. With lovely clays such as bentonite and rhassoul this really helps with congestion. Also love that it includes aloe and tumeric to fight inflammation. Tumeric is another of my favorite ingredients for healing acne as it is rich in antioxidants and overall fantastic for acne prone skin! Another favorite for sure!

3. MOSS: Private Island

This mask is "esthetician grade" with many powerful exfoliating ingredients. When I received this I knew it was perfect for what my skin has been going through, needing exfoliation but the RIGHT way. First of all, this mask is BEAUTIFUL. The color oh my gosh...
This mask can be used two ways. The first as an enzymatic mask (apply, leave on and let dry, rinse off) and let the goodness just soak in. You can also use it for gentle manual exfoliation by letting it pill and peeling it off. I have used this mask both ways and I like both! I do NOT use it as a mechanical exfoliator if I have any active breakouts because this would do sort of the same as a scrub (pick up bacteria and move it elsewhere on the face) even though it's not harsh. Some star ingredients include  organic royal jelly (which makes this an enzyme mask), guava powder, camu camu powder which is packed with vitamin C and also includes astringent, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and emollient properties. Overall this is a GREAT exfoliating mask and I use it about once every 1-2 weeks.

4. Good Medicine Beauty Lab: Honey Bee
This mask is more of a hydrating/soothing mask. If I double mask, this would be the second mask I would use. This being because honey is one of the main ingredients which is a humectant that draws in and holds moisture to the skin. This mask also includes aloe vera for healing and soothing, apple pectin for moisture and protecting the skin's natural barrier, glycerin for added moisture, and lots of lovely EOs like frankincense, amber, and myrrh. 

5. Siam Seas Purifying Herbal Mask

(Photo from siamseas.com) 
This mask is packed with healing herbs from Southeast Asia including tumeric and mangosteen, two of my favorite ingredients for acne. You can customize this mask by using it with whatever liquid you'd like. My favorite way to use this mask is mixed with honey and little water. I also like it with ACV when I need it to be a little more astringent like. I find this formula to be very powerful and quickly heals blemishes. 


REALLY wanting to try Leahlani's mermaid mask and Earthwise Beauty backstrap molasses which everyone raves about! 

Have you tried any of these? What is your favorite mask?

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Week of: Eminence Organics

Read this one ALLLL the way to the end to find out how my skin went from the picture on the left to the picture on the right.

Eminence is the organic line we use at school, and we each received a kit from the line. Everyone got a cleanser, toner, two masks, and a moisturizer. I knew this would be the perfect line to try for my next week of especially if I was using this line on clients. The label was especially appealing to me with all of my favorite key words like organic, biodynamic (which means the standards are even higher than certified organic), non-GMO, handmade, and they give back by planting a tree for every product sold. For the most part the ingredients sounded great to me. I was surprised that I haven't seen much of this brand around the green beauty community good or bad and I figured it was the perfect chance for me to try and see how I liked them. We had a class on the line and the lady who came and spoke to us explained it as "organic with results" so I said "we'll see."
In my kit I received the citrus cleanser, rosehip and maize exfoliating mask, grapefruit clarifying mask, and arctic berry illuminating peptide moisturizer. I used a sample of the clear skin probiotic moisturizer as my main moisturizer for this test instead of the peptide one because I felt this would be better suited to my skin type and would have a better chance at helping to heal my acne. I read a blog post about probiotics for the skin, externally not just internally, and was intrigued. So here are my results from using only this brand for 2 weeks...


Citrus Exfoliating Cleanser: This cleanser has tiny exfoliating beads in it. At first I thought I would like this product... I used it after working out in the morning to get all of the dirt, grime, and sweat off of my face. I noticed the small bumps and breakouts on my neck were spreading to my jawline and hairline. After talking with my new instructor at school who is very knowledgeable (she has worked in a spa and then a dermatologist office for years) informed me that if you have an active breakout the grittiness of this cleanser will cause the bacteria to spread. This makes total sense but it's something I wouldn't have thought about. You would think your cleanser would take bacteria away from the skin instead of picking it up and spreading it around. Although good for exfoliation, this is too harsh for my skin and was only spreading bacteria around. As soon as I stopped using this one I saw a difference. Needless to say, this one is not for me.


Clear Skin Probiotic Cleanser: This is mainly the cleanser I used once I stopped using the citrus exfoliating cleanser and I really like this. This cleanser includes yogurt which is a good form of lactic acid that gently exfoliates and nourishes the skin. Other ingredients include tea tree oil which is great for acne, and willow bark extract (natural form of sal acid). I like the smell of this cleanser as well as the creamy/gel texture.


Stone Crop Toner: This is one of my favorite products that I used throughout this process. This toner is very calming and it feels good on the skin. Stonecrop is one of the favorites among the instructors and students at school and everyone agrees that it's very balancing, calming, and smells amazing. Stonecrop also known as sedum is a succulent similar to aloe vera. It is packed with healing properties, reportedly more powerful than aloe. It is very refreshing on the skin and is great to prepare the skin for moisturizer.

Rosehip and Maize Exfoliating Mask: I only used this a few times throughout the past couple of weeks. I liked how it made my skin feel afterwards. I will probably continue to use this to see if I can see any results from using it a couple times a week.

Pink Grapefruit Clarifying Mask: Honestly, I didn't use this enough to get a good review on it. I used it once and my skin felt nice afterwards, but that's about all I have on this one. I will have to try this one further to form a solid review.

Clear Skin Probiotic Moisturizer: The clear skin line is definitely my favorite. It includes ingredients such as willow bark, a natural form of salicylic acid, which is great for active breakouts and great for exfoliation. This also includes tea tree oil (natural astringent, antimicrobial), calendula (great for healing, antioxidant), cucumber juice (purifying). I liked this moisturizer and will continue use of this at school. I could see myself purchasing this moisturizer as well. (I tried the clear skin serum  a couple of times so I can't report on this product for sure but I did like it the couple times I used it.)

Arctic Berry Illuminating Peptide Moisturizer: This moisturizer includes a lot of anti-aging ingredients (jojoba oil, lingonberry seed oil, cloudberry seed, arctic root, arctic meadowsweet, juniper sprouts, hibiscus seed extract, yellow plum extract gardenia stem cells, gotu-kola stem cells). I don't know a whole lot about any of these ingredients so it will have to be something I look into. I liked how my skin felt after using this, it wasn't too thick for me and my skin felt nice and moisturized. I don't think this would provide enough moisture for someone with dry to very dry skin, but it was sufficient for me. I didn't especially love the smell of this. It smelled like berries but it wasn't a FRESH berry smell, it has more of a fake "berry flavored" smell.


Another thing I believe helped my skin clear up tremendously was using these products along with getting a high frequency facial. I was seeing results from using the products alone, but I believe that the high frequency gave my skin the push it needed. Each time I got high frequency I was using only eminence along with it. For those of you who don't know what high frequency is, it's a machine that an esthetician will run across your face using an electric current to kill all bacteria on the surface of the skin, increase circulation in the skin, and boost collagen and elastin production. They will "spark" major blemishes a couple of times to further dry it out. This is great for oily skin types. I was a little hesitant about this but honestly my skin has not looked this good in a while and I am loving this! This also draws toxins out so that they can be safely extracted. The problem on my neck was that the milia spots were not to the surface they were stuck underneath the surface of the skin so I couldn't get them out. This brought it all up to be safely extracted.


I was pleasantly surprised by the results I saw from using these products. I had a facial at school once a week using only eminence as well as using them in my home routine and my skin looks drastically better especially my neck area, which I felt like nothing was taking care of. 
I will say I was a little biased coming into this thinking I was not going to like it and that they wouldn't do anything for me but I was proven wrong. These are the most results I have seen in a few months. The clear skin line is definitely my favorite. I like the cleanser, mask, and the moisturizer. I would rather use the clear skin moisturizer in the morning and the peptide one at night. Definitely unexpected but happy with the results I received. I will continue to rotate these into my normal routine. 

With this being said I would still check the ingredient list of these products especially the sunscreen products. I personally like using zinc oxide and steer clear of Ethylhexl Methoxycinnamate (octinoxinate) which are included in several.  I would not recommend ALL of the products in this line, but with school I got to pick and choose and these were the ones that were most helpful. 
Also, I didn't find a full ingredient list online, BUT we got a packet from school that has ALL ingredients so if you have any questions about any of the products ingredient-wise let me know!

Hope this was helpful!

Tori

Saturday, October 1, 2016

September Empties


MOSS Vert Pur: This oil cleanser is amazingly aromatherapeutic perfect to rub in for a few minutes to give the skin some TLC. I love the way this feels, smells, and works! My favorite way to use this was before bed, and wipe off with a warm wash cloth; it was quite relaxing. This removed all of my makeup and didn't irritate my eyes. There's a good bit of essential oils in this product, so if your eyes are sensitive, I would be aware of that and use with caution around the eye area. I absolutely love this cleansing oil. The ONLY reason I haven't repurchased this item is because I make one VERY similar. Of course our formulas are going to vary a little, and I use different essential oils, so the aromatherapeutic experience is completely different, but mine is lovely as well so for now I can do without.

MOSS Clear Resolution: P E R F E C T for balancing out my crazy oily skin. If you have oily/acne prone skin you NEED this in your life. I used every last drop of this and loved every bit! This is so lightweight and sinks in quickly. The smell is so mesmerizing. This oil includes hemp seed oil, which is a light oil great for oily skin, as well as guava seed oil which is FULL of vitamin C, SO good for balancing out the skin. Lots of beautiful anti-inflammatory ingredients in here. My skin is much more balanced now thanks to this baby. I haven't yet repurchased because of that reason, but I have purchased another oil that's a little more moisturizing. I'm not needing this anymore, but if I were to need it again I would repurchase in a heartbeat!
(That was written a couple weeks ago when I ran out... my skin is needing it again and I WILL repurchase!)

MOSS Equilibrium: like every other moss product, I loved this one as well. This was beautiful under makeup (I reviewed this here). It was so great for exfoliation and I used up the last bit I had when the milia under my neck was the worst. I loved using this for a gentle daytime or night time exfoliation. It had a great texture and such a beautiful scent. Unfortunately this product is discontinued so I am extra sad that this bottle is empty!

Earthwise Beauty Carrot-a-day (sample size): I was so excited to receive a sample of this serum. I popped it in the fridge as soon as I got it and tried it out the next morning. The texture of this serum is SO amazing. It may be my favorite product texture so far. It sinks in quickly and my skin just drinks this stuff up. I love that I can use it under the eyes as well, it's pretty much a one and done serum making my morning skincare routine so minimal. If my skin needs it I can use something more moisturizing afterward, but I like the feel of this on my skin throughout the day. It's not too oily and not too dry for me. I also love using this before applying makeup. I can see myself buying the full size once I have a little extra cash (currently saving EVERY PENNY to pay for school!) Another way I used this was on my eye/eyebrow area after an eyebrow wax. I found that area was burning a little more than usual so I used this on them straight out of the fridge and it instantly took away that burning/stinging feeling. Love this serum! Ava also sells a sensitive skin version that I have yet to try, same thing just less essential oils so less irritation if your skin is extra sensitive!

Earthwise Beauty Frightening Green (sample size): Love this and will absolutely purchase it. If you want to know exactly how I feel about this and why I'm in love with it stay tuned for my post coming up which will be ALL about masking! Definitely one of my absolute favorite masks for sure and will buy the full size!

Earthwise Beauty Catharsis: First of all, I got SO many uses out of this sample. I am thankful for that, because I felt like I could really get a feel for how it worked for me and how I like to use it best. I either like this in the morning as a cleanser or if it's been a day where I haven't worn any makeup I will use it at night and leave it on in the shower. You mix a little of this with some water and then apply as a cleanser or you can leave it on for about 10 mins as a mask. I love me a good multi-tasker. Smells like green tea which is lovely, and overall really like this product. Gentle yet effective.

Earthwise Beauty Ambrosia del Cerrado (sample size): I have reviewed this product here. This is SO perfect for summer and I have the full size. I love using this in the morning and will probably continue to use it during the seasonal transition, but won't use it in the winter as my skin will need a lot more moisture. Overall BEAUTIFUL and innovative product!

ISUN Phyto-Cleanse II: I did a full review in my "week of:ISUN" post here, but I definitely love this lightly emulsifying cleanser. It if perfect for morning use. I like using it after I work out to get all of the sweat and dirt out of my pores. My skin is cleansed yet not stripped and I love the way my skin feels after using this! Will purchase the full size as soon as I can!

ISUN Clarifying Toner: See details in ISUN post.

Jason Lavender Body Wash: I really liked how this product smelled and it worked perfectly fine for me. I love almost anything lavender and this didn't disappoint. I also love how the bottle is SO big making it long lasting and the price was GREAT. I purchased this from Vitacost and already have another bottle!

OSEA Atmosphere Protection Cream: I liked this moisturizer although I think I prefer the blemish balm over this one. It is very lightweight and sinks into the skin quickly. I would purchase the travel size to get a better feel for this moisturizer as it was just the sample size!

Degree spray deodorant: Let's be honest here, I sweat a lot and I NEED something that's going to work for me. This stuff WORKS. I was a little hesitant at first to try a spray deodorant thinking maybe it was just a marketing ploy, but this works wonders for me. Smells nice and keeps the sweat at bay. As you all know, I have a growing love for green beauty and I want to try something that's a little more on the natural side, but I need something that's going to keep me dry, not just slightly mask the scent. A lot of the reviews that I've seen of the more natural deodorants say that they can't really compare, so for now I'm sticking with what I know and what I know WORKS. If you guys have any suggestions, please let me know!!

Acure Organics Argan Oil: This was a pretty decent argan oil. Not the best I've ever tried but I did like it and it was a good price. I have a love hate with argan oil and still haven't decided how I like it. Honestly, I think it depends on what my skin is like and what it is needing at that point. When it needs more moisture my skin will soak it right up and LOVES it. When it doesn't need it I cannot use it or it gets feisty with me...

Grapefruit Seed Oil: I use this oil in my oil cleanser and I love it. I didn't like that this was such a small bottle and will be purchasing a bigger one. Maybe not this same brand, but I do like including it in my skincare products!

Grapeseed Oil: Grapeseed oil is one of my absolute favorite oils. I will either use this in my skincare products or on its own. It is a beautiful multi-tasker that I can use to take my makeup off and cleanse the skin or it is great to use as a sensitive skin moisturizer. It is non-comedogenic and perfect for sensitive fussy skin.

Trader Joe's Tea Tree Oil: I have been using this for SO long. I love tea tree oil. I use this on just about everything. I use this as a spot treatment. I have a bump on my scalp (gross) and I've been using tea tree on it for about a month and it has shrunken SO much already. I have already repurchased this and love it!

The Body Shop Body Butter: This was nice and moisturizing, but I have been on the search for a new more moisturizing butter especially for the seasonal change ahead. I have tried and liked a few, which I will share later!

Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper: Hands down my favorite eyeliner. This has the perfect tip providing the perfect size line and the perfect color. This makes it easy to get a good wing or just a thin line, whatever your style may be. I have already purchased another! Also a plus that Kat Von D makeup is vegan and cruelty free!


xx


Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Week of: ISUN

I am starting a new "week of" series which will feature different brands and I will use ONLY their products (with the exception of my oil cleanser if I am not given or have a cleanser from that particular brand) for one to two weeks to test effectiveness and synergy of the brand. I want to see how each brand and product works for me before I start rotating it into my routine. My skin has been so crazy lately and I haven't quite figured out why. I know what my skin likes and I ALWAYS check the ingredient list first before using something. I think I was using too many new things at once and different routines every day making it hard to pinpoint what my skin didn't like. It may not have necessarily been a specific product, but something I was using together that my skin didn't agree with.
Anyway I am so excited about this! First brand up is ISUN. I have seen their products all over Instagram and I was SO excited to get some samples of their products to try out. 
I received samples of Phyto-Cleanse II, Rhassoul exfoliant, clarifying toning most, and clarifying serum.

First of all, I love this cleanser SO much. I love that it makes my skin feel clean without feeling stripped. This cleanser is perfect if I'm not wanting to use an oil cleanser or if you're not into oil cleansing. It has the perfect texture. It is full of beautiful ingredients such as aloe gel, calendula, glycerin, lavender, sage, etc. This formula helps to remove bacteria and to soothe the skin. I also loved mixing the exfoliant in with this cleanser when I needed a deep exfoliation. The exfoliator is beautiful and I prefer to mix it with the cleanser. The toning mist felt nice but I'm not sure that this is a necessity for me. I like the ingredient list of this toner which includes aloe, EOs, willow bark extract, beta glucan, helichrysum exctract, hyaluronic acid. Great for giving hydration to the skin, and eliminating bacteria. My skin soaked this right up. I also LOVE the clarifying serum. The texture is light and sinks in SO quickly. This is a water based serum which is why it feels so light and quickly is absorbed into the skin. This products includes niamicide which is great for oily skin as it is restorative, clarifying, and brightening. This also includes willow bark extract (natural form of salicylic acid), and many potent essential oils. It felt great on and smelled amazing. I did find that my skin was craving more moisture after using this and I got oily throughout the day. It is said in the description that this is supposed to help control oil and I did have a lot of excess oil during the day although that's not really something new. I will mix this in with my routine but definitely pair it off with a good moisturizer. It is a great serum for daytime! 
Overall my favorite product is probably the Phyto Cleanse II. Love this product and will be rotating it into my routine as well as the exfoliant!

Have you tried ISUN?

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Weekend in New Orleans

This past weekend we headed down to New Orleans to do a little shopping, get some coffee, and walk around city park. We wanted to do something different than our normal weekend routine before everyone headed back to school. It was my sisters last weekend here until she headed back to Oklahoma for her sophomore year at ORU. She packed up and headed out this morning and now two of my favorite people are over 6 hours away from me (once again cue crying face). She is about 8.5-9 hours away. We have such a special relationship. She is absolutely my BEST girlfriend and she is so wise for her age. She overflows with love for people and for Jesus and I know he is going to use her in a mighty way. I'll miss my sweet singing sister. I'll stop before I tear up!
Anyway... here is a peek into our NOLA adventure.
 First stop because COFFEE...
She's so cute!




Shop this look:

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Fun in Austin

I had an AMAZING week with my love in Austin this week, here's a little peek into our weekend.
Absolutely everything I've tried in Austin has been DELICIOUS. The coffee, the food, the dessert, it's all been amazing. This is surprising because I am a very picky eater.


Trying to take artsy pictures at the coolest coffee shops!
Pictured above was an iced vanilla latte from Thunderbird
Below is a half moon latte from Summermoon coffee shop which so far is our favorite! It's made with their own "moon milk" which is top secret and SO good. Half moon means it's cut with half skim.


Beautiful pictures from our hiking/swimming trip. First we off trailed it and went wayyy too far and got lost... but who says getting lost is a bad thing? We had a blast and eventually found our way to the swimming hole.








My first time trying real ramen and it was SO good.

Of course on ice cream day we had to stop and get some!


Literally my life slogan

Iced coffee with a little (a lot) of cream from Irie Bean coffee bar. Very caribbean/Jamaican vibe.



And my favorite... the PIZZA from Home Slice...


Sorry... couldn't wait.


I had such an awesome trip and I already can't wait to go back! If you're ever in Austin check out some of these awesome places!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Good Medicine Beauty Lab

I recently placed an order with good medicine beauty lab after seeing their products all over instagram and they had a great sale going on on their starter kits (and they're having another NOW). I ended up ordering the kit for oily skin which includes Rain deep cleansing oil, Ashes cleansing grains, Purity clear skin tonic, Honey Dew youth serum, Clarity awakening cream, and Sand red mineral polish. I got all of these at such a great price. I have used all of these products and am really loving this brand so far.


Rain deep cleansing oil: I really like this oil and I'm going through this stuff so quickly. This feels really good on my skin and I like to rub this in for about a minute or so and leave it on in the shower. It takes off all of my makeup and leaves my skin nice and deeply cleansed. I love that this includes tamanu oil, which is one of my favorite oils for acne. This also contains other oils for cleansing, clearing, and moisturizing such as sweet almond oil, jojoba oil, aloe vera oil, castor oil, and many more. Really enjoying this so far, it's a great oil cleanser.

Ashes cleansing grains: this stuff is so interesting to me. I have never seen a cleanser like this before. You add water to this and it bubbles up and turns into this "silky liquid" as they describe. This includes powdered pearls and powdered potato which is great for aging and acne. I do get the subtle smell of french fries and essential oils when rubbing it into the face haha, quite interesting. I love the way this feels when cleansing the skin and I enjoy the texture it turns into. This cleanser is not stripping at all, it feels very gentle and doesn't dry out my skin. I like using this in the morning and would rather use an oil at night. Overall a very good cleanser.

Purity clear skin tonic: I haven't exactly figured out how I like to use this yet. It is a great product but I don't like using it with a cotton pad as recommended because it soaks in. I don't feel like I get enough product on the skin and for the size of this bottle I can't justify wasting even a drop. There are such fantastic ingredients in here that are anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antiseptic. This is so great for acneic and oily skin.  I feel like this really helps with controlling my excess oil bringing it down to a minimum. Great for balancing the skin's pH.
From website:
Organic aqueous tincture of wildcrafted desert sage, wildcrafted juniper berry, wildcrafted larrea, organic dandelion and organic alfalfa. Pure extract of organic limes, organic aloe vera, vegetable glycerin. organic apple cider vinegar, citric acid, wild desert honey. Organic potato, sodium bicarbonate, citric acid (vitamin C), 50+ trace mineral sea salts, organic sugar cane, organic milk and powdered pearls. Pure Essential oils and attars of juniper berry, pine needle, cedar wood, lime, vetiver, rose geranium, lily and peppermint.
Just looking at this ingredient list makes me so happy!

Honey Dew youth serum: this stuff is awesome. I love the feeling of this product as well as the scent. I absolutely LOVE honey and all of the amazing benefits it contains for the skin. This is amazing for getting that youthful glow and the ingredients are perfect for reducing fine lines and wrinkles, as well as fading skin discolorations and blemishes. This is perfect to use as a primer before makeup creating a perfect base and it doesn't make the skin not too oily or too dry. A few star ingredients that stand out to me are organic grapefruit, organic aloe vera, raw honey, juniper berry, frankincense, and myrrh.
From website:
As bees gather morning dew from flower petals and change it into a golden nectar fit for the gods, so we have turned the honey and precious moisture from fresh fruits, potatoes, and wild desert botanicals into a beautiful fluid for the face. Draped in this golden cloak of sweet nectar, Honey Dew brings you rays of sunshine, joy and energy.
They have such a way with words just reading this makes me want to buy it!

Clarity awakening cream: This is probably my favorite product of the bunch. I have had a little of a hard time finding a cream for my skin that it likes and I have been using a lot of oils instead. Of course I love my oils but I like to mix it up because to me there is nothing like the texture of a cream I just love it. This works great under makeup and on the website they also recommend mixing in a drop of Rain for night time for a little more nourishment, which I've tried and liked the result. This cream is so hydrating and I find my skin drinks it up. This is packed with vitamins and antioxidants that are so great for the skin. This cream includes ingredients such as calendula, aloe vera, and wild honey which are all great for healing. This does contain coconut oil and olive oil which can be comedogenic to some so I would watch out if your skin has problems with either of these ingredients.  I haven't found that this has been comedogenic for me and it hasn't caused any problems.

Sand red mineral polish: SO many good things in this...Yucca Root, tincture, calendula, lily of the valley, aloe, desert mineral sand, rosemary, raw honey...YES! I like to use this a couple of times a week. Beautiful exfoliator, not too harsh. Gives me a beautiful glow and brings down the amount of redness and irritation on my face.

I know a lot of people love the Starry Eyes eye cream. I haven't had a chance to try this yet but sounds amazing! I JUST ordered another started kit to try out a couple of other products that were missing from this one. For a few more hours they are having a sale on their started kits and they are HALF OFF with code MEDICINEBAG. Yes... HALF off so RUN DON'T WALK to their website. Seriously.


How you tried any of these products? If so, how do you like them?

Learning to live in the present

Lately I have been caught up in the "what ifs" of life. I have been catching myself thinking way too much about the future instead of living in the present moments. I find my mind wandering to "I can't wait to be done with school and get a job" or thinking "when I'm out of school I can finally do what I want" or "I'll finally have time to..." or "when I'm married I won't have to worry about this"... WHATEVER. There's so much "I can't wait for this, I can't wait for that" and it's become all I'm focused on instead of what I'm actually doing. The Lord is teaching me how to live in the NOW and enjoy where I'm at no matter the circumstance because I'll never get this time back. In a few short months I won't be at this school, with these people. I may not even be at my same job with the same people... By looking too far forward I may be missing things I am supposed to be doing and learning RIGHT NOW. It is hard to be content where I'm at sometimes, but there's a reason I'm here and a time for everything. Yes, I am back in school after 4 HARD years of college, but I'm learning to do what I love and I need to enjoy and be content in the learning process.The truth is it's not that bad, although I don't have all the freedom and time to get the things I want to do done, I'm setting myself up for a better future and need to be okay with the stage I'm in. It's easy to get caught up in the thoughts of the future and thinking of the life I may one day have, but by doing that I can miss out on opportunities the Lord may be putting right in front of me.

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."  Matthew 6:34 NIV

“It is a mistake to look too far ahead. The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time.” -Winston Churchill

These words continue to resonate with me and I absolutely believe that destiny is grasped one link at a time... I didn't know that this was what I wanted to do with my life until about 6 mos. ago and the Lord is showing me one step at a time. With that being said I am where I am for a purpose and I need to take life one step at a time and ENJOY each step! I was getting caught in believing the lie that if only my circumstances would change then things would be better/different, but the truth is that my mind set is what needed to change so that I can live happily in the present.

Have a great week everyone! Don't just look forward to the weekend but ENJOY this week wherever you may be in whatever you may be doing! Seize every opportunity that The Lord gives you!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Soaking Up Every Moment

I haven't had much time to blog lately with school work and spending time with my guy. I am trying to squeeze in time to write and get into a new routine.
The time has come and my man has moved to his new home in Austin for good and I am soaking up every single sweet moment I get with him. He moved last week and this week has been pretty hard to adjust. When it came time to workout and do things that we normally do together I had to suck it up and do it on my own... I can absolutely say that life is more fun with him in it. He makes mediocre tasks and chores something that I look forward to. I know everything is new for him right now and that he's having a lot of fun where he's at. I am so proud of everything he has accomplished and that he has gotten into a fantastic school. I couldn't be happier for him (unless I was there with him)!

Here's what we did leading up to his move, moving in, and now...
We went to New Orleans the weekend before he left and stopped in Sucre which smelled of sugar and happiness. I got a delicious vanilla cold brew and some yummy macaroons (strawberry, chicory, and blackberry lemon).
We had a quick Starbucks date on my lunch break, because I needed every second with him even if it was only 20-30 mins!
When we moved him in we came to visit the school! Isn't it so nice??
First meal in the new apartment thanks to his momma! :) 
We found the cutest little place to get organic fair trade desserts called Fat Cats. They had coffee, ice cream (vegan and non-vegan), donuts, cookies, anything sweet! Everything was so delicious, will definitely be going back to this place!
I'm loving Austin and can't wait to visit more often and explore the things that they have to offer there! We are definitely foodies and we LOVE our coffee and they have sooo many options! Compared to the 2-3 local coffee shops we have here in BR and the 4 restaurants we rotate through every weekend, there's a whole list in Austin of cute local coffee shops and delish restaurants... Everything we've tried there so far has been top notch and I'm excited to see all they have to offer.

Thanking the Lord that this weekend is a long weekend so I got time to come up and see him! We met in Houston and are having a great weekend together.
We spent the day shopping for him some business casual clothes and shoes so he can look fancy for all of his upcoming events. We stopped and got some coffee and dessert (duh).

 We got lemon blueberry cupcakes and cupcake lattes which is basically a latte made with vanilla icing as the sweetener/cream and milk (YES PLEASE).

Not looking forward to leaving him again, but I know it won't be like this forever. I know he will have a great but challenging time and all we can do is soak up the moments we get, have faith, and PRAY.

Have a great safe 4th everyone!



Thursday, June 16, 2016

New Moss & Aqne Products Review

When MOSS products go on sale, which is RARE, I HAVE to make an order. There was a Memorial Day sale and I had to snatch up these two beauties. These are two I had never tried before so I felt this was a great time for a review. Not long before the sale I placed my first Aqne Pharmacy order as well. I've already reviewed a couple products from my order but didn't do a review on all of them so I threw the rest of those in this post to review as well!


I broke the top to my Ambrosia Del Cerrado :(
(L to R)
MOSS Purist- This oil has a great texture, it feels very "creamy" (as creamy as an oil can feel) and luxurious. My skin drinks this stuff up. Clear Res is so good at balancing my skin out, but this is what I use when my skin needs MORE. It is more moisturizing, not as light and dry. It doesn't contain any hemp seed oil, which is a dry oil included in Clear Res. Purist doesn't have a strong essential oil scent, it's more of a neutral clean scent, it smells more of the carrier oils. I am finding myself loving the smell more and more. I love using this oil at night, especially if my skin has had a rough day after all the sun and sunscreen. This will probably be an oil I will be drawn to more in the winter months, but I am still using it for night time now as my skin has been dried out from all the chlorine. Overall I think this is a lovely oil, very anti-inflammatory, so good for healing acne, and great for oily skin. Yes please and thank you!

MOSS Clean Canvas- This oil is made for sensitive skin and only has 5 ingredients. I make a product very similar to this (give and take a few ingredients) and I love the one I make, so I decided to go for it and try this one. As expected, I love it. There are no essential oils in this one because it is made for the most sensitive of skin types. It has a beautiful earthy scent. I had to get used to this smell, but once I did I really began to love it. I love the way this feels on the skin and I can use this morning or night depending on how my skin is feeling that day. There are few ingredients in this oil, but it still packs a punch. So many good things in here. I love black bacuri butter from Brazil which is SO good for healing the skin. Camellia oil (tea seed oil) is very anti-inflammatory, sinks into the skin quickly, and is quite hydrating. This also includes tamanu oil which I believe has been one of the oils that has helped my skin SO much. It does such a stand up job of healing acne and scars. Needless to say, clean canvas is a winner.

EarthWiseBeauty Ambrosia Del Cerrado Liquid Moisturizer- This has the feeling of a toner moisturizer hybrid. I love using this on a hot day after I work out or in the morning if I need a pick me up. I've found myself applying this mostly in the morning to help wake me up, I keep it in the fridge so it's cool and refreshing on the skin. I REALLY like this moisturizer. It's so light and breathable and perfect for summer. It sinks in to the skin quickly. The smell is bright with a light fruity/citrus scent. With aloe, pequi fruit oil, and buriti oil, it is anti-aging, and great for oily/acne prone skin. My skin LOVES this stuff. I will use this by itself or follow with another moisturizer if I feel my skin needs it. It works beautifully either way. Next on my list is the Moroccan Garden Eye Cream!

Roccoco Decongesting Porefection- such a great lightweight serum! I won't say a whole lot about this because I've already done a full review on it. If you want to check that out click here.

Zatik Argan and Yarrow Suncreen Moisturizer- This is a great sunscreen moisturizer at a great price. I love the way it sinks in and doesn't leave a white cast. I've also done a full review on this in my battle of the sunscreen post. Check that out here.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Simplicity

When I think of a simple outfit, a white tee and jeans is the first thing I think of. My style has become very simple lately and I love wearing outfits like this with a pop of color in my accessories. I love this little necklace I got from the jewelry show it's perfect for layering with anything, I know I'm going to get a ton of wear out of this guy! I also loovee these bracelets. In case you don't know, my favorite color is turquoise so I'm obsessed with these bracelets and this long necklace from the babe.

I love how simple these sandals are and they go with everything. It's been a challenge to find the perfect pair of white sandals and when I saw this pair of Steve Maddens I knew I had to have them. They're comfortable, versatile, and so cute. Shop a similar pair here.

And can we talk about this bag? IN LOVE. This was my graduation present to myself and I absolutely love it. My parents got me the matching wallet for graduation, which was much needed! It goes with everything and it's perfect for summer. I love the size and the two tone colors. I sure love me some Kate Spade. Similar here and this one is on sale!


Of course I have to have my coffee. This coffee was DELICIOUS. We found a cute little coffee shop (of course) in Austin called Summer Moon to stop on our way back to Houston.They make their own special sweetened "moon milk" and use that in their lattes and capuccinos. SO GOOD, we will be going back for sure! We went to Austin last weekend with the babe's parents to look at apartments for him. We found one and it's so nice! He moves in 2 two weeks. I can't wait to go visit him and explore Austin! Although, not looking forward to being away from him and for the first time ever... dating long distance (insert crying face). 

Just a quick life update...
I start school next week! Friday is my orientation day and then I start school Monday at 9 am! I am a little anxious and A LOT excited for this new chapter in my life. Anxious because my boyfriend starts his orientation week the week after I start school and he will then be 6 hours and 41 minutes away from me... excited because we will both be working towards our careers and doing new things that we love. I will keep you all updated on here and share my new experiences!

Have a great week!

xx