Saturday, November 29, 2014

4 Tips to Maintain a Balanced Lifestyle

If you're like me, keeping some sort of routine and balance in life is difficult for a number of reasons.  For me, it's a combination of two problems.  The first being prioritizing the right things, and the second being very little follow through on my ideas. 

One of the areas in my life where I am really lacking is balancing my time, and it definitely has affected my personal life and my "career" life.  Lately, I have been trying to adhere by a few things so that maintaining balance in my life is easier.  These tips are great if you are new to the working world, are starting college, are a mother, or are just a teen trying to get through high school.

1. Hone in on your organization systems- I cannot tell you how crucial this is.  I've always been an organized "planner" sort of girl, but sometimes I have too many organization systems.  I recently found that honing in on a few really great routines for organization has been my savior.

First, I invested in my Erin Condren life planner to organize personal, work, blog, meal, and exercise commitments.  BAM.  All of my "stuff" became accessible in one place.  You can see my review here.

Second, I put all of my "Must have" papers in an organizational tray in my office (tour coming soon).  All of my bills, letters, receipts now all have a home.  I find that when I'm adhering to these two systems, balance is definitely more attainable, as everything is planned ahead.  Now, just stick to those plans and make sure to follow through on your commitments.

2.  Split up your bigger tasks-  Some of you, like me, are workaholics.  You really enjoy working, but neglect to give time to your friends and family or yourself (You are just as important!) Use systems honed in tip number 1 to split up your tasks throughout the week.  I find it helpful to make sure I look at my week and make a list of all of the goals I want to accomplish in that week.  I then make sure I split the bigger goals between a few days.

This is a simple example. This week my number one goal was to sit down and finish re-reading the two books I'm teaching next quarter this school year.  I had 100 pages left, and I simply split them between 3 days, doing a little bit at a time. By splitting up larger tasks, you won't feel as overwhelmed, and will also have them done well in advance.

3. Schedule time for yourself and loved ones- Make sure you pencil in times when you are going to spend some time to yourself.  I always make it a point to schedule in manicures and pedicures, or just some simple "relax time" so that I can be sure I'm spending time on my personal well-being.  Do this with loved ones as well.  My boyfriend and I will often sit down and decide which nights we will have dinner together (sadly enough) and which nights we will have a "date night."  Especially as you get older, this time becomes really necessary, and schedules are a must for busy lives. 

4. Keep one day a week clear of any activities- Well, try to aim for a whole day.  If you can't do that, at least a morning or a night.  By having at least a block of time in your schedule free of plans, it leaves room for spontaneity.  Do what you feel like doing in that moment! If that's unexpected extra time with your family, awesome.  If that's hanging at Starbucks with a book, great! Try to have space where you haven't made any plans and can do what you want to do, instead of what you have to.

What tips do you have that help you maintain balance in work and play? Let me know in the comments!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Boots No7 & Botanics Fall Must Haves

When the seasons change, so come the change in our daily beauty routines.  We need to find new products to pamper our skin, especially as the fall and winter bring dry patches and cold weather.  Well, for a lot of you cold weather is a thing, but Arizona still hasn't got the memo.  These are a few of the products from Boots No7 and Botanics that I have been loving/ lusting after.  They may give you a bit of fall and winter beauty inspiration:

1. Boots Botanics Rebalance Refining Body Scrub ($11.99)- This scrub features all natural ingredients such as sea salt and golden sugar to scrub away your dry patches.  But, with almond oil and cocoa butter, it definitely won't dry you out. The perfect remedy to a long day in the cold.

2.  Boots Botanics Ultra Calm Skin Calming Night Cream ($13.99)- This night cream has marshmallow in it...What?! Absolutely awesome in my opinion.  But it actually really calms and soothes the skin overnight.  It will help replenish your skin after those brisk fall walks and football games.

3. Boots No7 Luxurious Foaming Shower Oil ($8.99)- This is the best $9 I've ever spent.  When the bottle says luxurious, they really mean it.  With an aroma that is reminiscent of a spa, it leaves the skin soft and supple while nourishing with multiple vitamins. 

4. Boots No7 Lip Crayon ($9.99)- These lip crayons seem to be all the rage once fall hits, but these are new to the Boots No7 line. While most lip crayons dry you out, these ones are extra moisturizing, and I didn't have a problem.  They have a range of colors from nude to hot pink, and a couple of darker colors suitable for fall. 

5. Boots No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Serum Bottle ($24.99)- This is a new product that I have not yet tried, but am extremely curious about.  I have a lot of skin tone problems and pigmentation issues.  This is technically an anti-aging product and it helps with firming the skin and skin tone improvement.  This is a product that will definitely be in my skin routine soon.

What products are your fall must haves? Let me know below!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Benefit "Cheeky Sweet Shop" box o' blushes Holiday 2014 Review

A couple of days ago I was finishing up my lovely vacation in California with a friend.  We were exploring La Jolla, and strolled passed the Benefit Boutique.  As soon as I saw the Benefit Holiday display through the window, I had to go in.  Being a sucker and all, I usually always buy Holiday sets from at least a few brands.  Mostly because they are such a good deal!

I could not pass up Benefit's "Cheeky Sweet Shop" Box o' Blushes at the low price point of $36, even though I already own 4/7 products featured in the set. Let the justification begin.  I have never seen Benefit come out with a blush palette, and it is something that I always wished they would do.  I absolutely love my boxed powders, but they are frustrating (over-dramatic much?) to bring with you on the go.  They are quite bulky, and if you have a few that you can't live without, they'll take up room in your travel makeup bag.

Enter: The Box o' Blushes.

This is a dream come true, actually.  Six of Benefit's most loved box blushes transformed into a boxed set accompanied by a brush and a mini of the Watt's Up highlighter.  This is the perfect palette to travel with, as you have most of the blushes you would need for any scenario.  Although, I do wish Benefit would come out with a deeper red or plum blush. 

The Palette:
The packaging is tin, and has a hinge at the top.  I do wish the packaging were a little less bulky.  Although I love Christmas, I think this is slightly over done.  It may have been in their best interest to create something a bit more convenient and thinner.

The blushes: 
I feel like these blushes can be found swatched all over the internet, including on Benefit's website.  Instead, I have provided close ups of each blush.

A light pink blush/ highlight

A matte light brown bronzer 

Bella Bamba: 
A shimmery bright pink blush with hints of gold

The perfect orange-toned coral

Swirl together these colors for the ultimate wash of pink

Brown/mauve toned pink blush

Watts Up!: 
Shimmering nude/gold highlight

Overall, I am so happy that I picked up this palette.  Not including the highlight, for $36, that comes in at $6/ blush.  I have a lot of trouble getting through the boxed powders, so this is perfect for me when I travel or for daily use.  Even though I already owned Hoola, Dandelion, Bella Bamba, and Watts Up, I'm stoked to have them in a useful palette.  I actually prefer the Watts Up in a small container.

What do you think of this palette? Will you pick it up? Let me know below!

Friday, September 12, 2014

PopSugar Must Have Box: September 2014

Happy Friday!

I hope that you've all had a wonderful few weeks here in blog-land.  I've been getting back into the swing of things with a new job, and balancing life in general (aka- insert excuse here). I thought I would ease my way back into blogging with a quick post on my September PopSugar must have box (Because who doesn't love a good guilty pleasure subscription box).

I used to be a hardcore subscription box junky, and I've backed off lately because of a couple of reasons: A) I don't have money for that and B) I'm over-run by samples.  I don't always get PopSugar.  I usually preview the spoilers and then decide if I want to get the box or not.  

Enough rambling, onto the goods:

This box is getting my very ready for fall, even though it is still 90+ degrees in Phoenix! 



Tilo Scarf ($125):
Let's talk about the price tag of these scarves for a moment. WHAT? So expensive.  However, these scarves are sold in places like Saks Fifth and Fred Segal, so you know they must be good quality.  I love the neutral colors of this scarf for fall, and I cannot wait to layer it with a fun jacket. Did I mention how soft it is? Absolutely amazing. 

Nicole Miller Stereo Earbuds ($20):
I love the fun cobalt blue of these headphones, and the sleek design.  Usually, these types of headphones with the rubber caps bother my ears, but these came with interchangeable caps to coordinate with your ear size.  Small ears, have no fear! These stay in and are super comfy.  The sound quality is pretty good as well.  Another plus is that I desperately needed new headphones.

Ghiradelli Milk Chocolate Sea Salt and Almond Minis (about $4):
These were an "Extra" this month, and I'm so pleased.  As you can see, I had already ripped into these by the time I took these pictures (that sort of week), and I can attest that they are to die for.  However, being very hot in Phoenix, I had to put these bad boys in the freezer for a bit before I could eat them, as they were chocolate soup. 

Rifle Paper Co. Garance Dore Assorted Girls Set ($18):
Don't get me wrong, I love Rifle Paper Co.  I have several products from their store, and I use most of them daily.  However, these cards are not my favorite.  They are good quality, but I don't love the designs.  I would have rather had something fall inspired.  I know these were sent out with Fashion Week in mind, but I can't think of anyone I would actually send these too.  


Letter C Design Gold Foil Arrow Pencils ($5):
Isn't it funny how the cheapest item in the box becomes your favorite? I'm in love with these hand-foil-stamped pencils, and love the fact that they thought to include a little pencil sharpener.  I'm totally a stationary and pencil nerd, so these were right up my alley.

 Oribe Superfine Purse Size Hair Spray ($21.50):
I have heard amazing things about Oribe, but have never tried their hair products before.  I love a hair spray that has a superfine mist, so this is awesome.  But, I couldn't believe the price tag of this 2.2 oz bottle. Full size is $32.00.

Urban Remedy Almond Brownie ($6):
I cannot wait to try this brownie.  All natural ingredients, and looks totally yummy. They also included a coupon for $10 off a $50 purchase.

 Nike $20 Gift Card:
This is one of my favorite parts of the box.  I love the small touches Nike put in this package.  They included a $20 gift card and free shipping to try their new range of Nike Pro Bra's. They even included a little measuring tape to find your perfect size!

The total value of this box was $199.50 without the Nike gift card. Super pumped! I really loved this box, and was so pleased that I bought it.  Again, I always preview spoilers before deciding if I want the box, and this was a must for me.I was so bummed I missed out on August's box, but this one almost made up for it.

 What do you think of the PopSugar September box?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

A Tour of my Makeup!

A crappy screen shot of my cat for no apparent reason, other than she made the following videos almost impossible to film and it makes a good thumbnail.
It's another late night here on the blog and there have been lots of goings-on in the last two weeks since I've posted.  It's been quite a rough couple of weeks personally, and I plan on sharing it later this week, but for now I'm keeping things light and fluffy on the blog with some good old makeup collection videos.  I have recently posted two videos that center around makeup/ product organization and storage (everybody's guilty pleasure). 

If you're like me (aka nose-y), then you definitely love to see what other people hoard in their product collections.  I think there's something sort of comforting knowing that someone else has the same obsession as you, and also has a stupid amount of blush in varying "coral" colors.  We should really just call it what it is, an addiction.  Alas, this obsession (Addiction, sickness, whatever), is obviously not going away so we need to find cute and effective ways to store our obsession in a healthy way, and also so that it's neatly put away so our loved ones don't start to worry about us.  Enter: my makeup collection and storage and bathroom tour videos.

Enjoy! And, let me know down below what your obsession is. 

Friday, July 11, 2014

My Current Empties!

I've been on quite a roll lately uploading videos to my YouTube channel, and on Wednesday I uploaded quite a long one! My current empty products! Since I hadn't done one of these videos in about 2-3 months, I have been one of those weirdos hoarding trash in my cupboard.  It's nice to say that all of those things are finally in the trash! But, it's great to report back in the form of several mini reviews and remember what I had loved.

Watch below if you're interested in seeing what sort of trash I have been storing :) And comment down below and let me know what you've been using up!

Previous video:
What's in my purse?!

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All products marked with a (*) were sent to me for consideration or were a gift.  Otherwise, all products were purchased by me.  All opinions, as always, are my own :)


Keywords: Empty products, product empties, products I've used up, makeup I've used up, Bath products I've used up, beauty reviews