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Two Misconceptions About Dry Skin

So your skin is dry, rough, flakey, and/or sensitive and let me guess you keep grabbing your creams and lotions and potions? And its not getting better? Hm, this sounds familiar.

We spend so much time in the beauty world talking about acne and very little time talking about dry skin and how to keep non-acneic skin in balance. Since I have been working at a medical spa and spending time with some of the best estheticians I have EVER met, I am equipped to provide you with some insight to this dilemma.

Myth #1: My skin is so dry it needs a heavy cream

Sure a thick cream might feel great and provide some temporary relief but it is just putting a bandaid on the problem. Most of the time when a client complains about their skin being dry, it is usually dehydrated. Dehydrated skin lacks water (not oil). This is most likely the case if you are still having breakouts and blackheads while some areas are dry.

The Solution

If your skin is lacking water then the most logical solution is to drink more water right? Well sure that will help but to be honest it will take forever of drinking TONS of water.

Our skin is the biggest organ of the body and it is the very last organ to receive the nutrients that we ingest. So basically, all the water you drink is going to hydrate every other part of your body before it starts having benefits on your dry skin.

Try using a hyaluronic acid serum. This isn’t your typical acid by any means. Hyaluronic acid carries 1000x its weight in water per molecule. It is a soothing gel-like serum that efficiently delivers water into your skin. You can use this in addition to a moisturizer or in place of one, depending on your skins needs.

Myth #2: My skin is too dry or sensitive to exfoliate

Everyone. I mean everyoneee. Needs to be exfoliating in some way.

The real cure for your dry skin is to make your skin create its own hyaluronic acid from within. To do this, we need to promote the production of new healthy skin.

No matter what your skin problem is, the solution is typically to speed up your skin cell turnover by exfoliating. When you take the dead skin off the top of the epidermis, the bottom layers of the epidermis kick into high gear to produce new skin!

The Solution

There are many ways to exfoliate even if you have sensitive skin. Here are the main ways you can exfoliate.

  1. Enzymatic exfoliators tend to be the most gentle. I have recommended this cleanser by Mario Badescu to my mom and friends and they absolutely love it! My mom has really sensitive skin + rosacea and this cleanser has been working great for her!
  2. Chemical exfoliators include products that contain AHAs or BHAs. Glycolic acid, an AHA, is my ingredient of choice most days. Lactic Acid is another great ingredient you can look for. If you are more acneic, Salicylic (a BHA) may be a better choice for you. Look for cleansers with these active ingredients to make sure you are breaking down the dull and dead skin cells.
  3. Mechanical or physical exfoliation is the third option. This includes using a scrub or some sort of device that removes dead skin. Physical exfoliation (especially those of poor quality) can be the more irritating for skin so its best to only do it a few times a week in conjunction with the other methods listed above. BE CAREFUL what type of scrub you use. Most over-the-counter or drug store brand scrubs can cause microscopic tears to your skin because the beads are not fully rounded. My favorite scrub is the exfoliating polish by ZO. The beads in this scrub are magnesium crystal and are completely rounded (the same crystals used in micro-dermabrasion!)

Other Products To Consider

Retinols (or vitamin A derivatives) are AMAZING for almost every skin problem including acne, dark spots, fine lines, wrinkles etc. I have been using a retinol from Skin Drop Beauty and my skin has improved dramatically!

When starting a retinol product you will experience what is called an anticipated reaction. Your skin will get red/dry/peely/flakey until it adjusts to the new product. This is just your skin’s way of purging off all the dead skin so the new, healthy skin can come to the surface.

Start by using a retinol every few nights and slowly build up to using it every night. Make sure you wear SPF very single day especially while on this product! Discontinue use of retinols 4 days pre and post waxing or other facial treatments.

If you live somewhere where the climate is very dry, consider getting a cold air humidifier. This will help bring more humidity into the air in your home and in turn, hydrate your skin!

The Take Aways

Dry skin doesn’t just need oils or cream, it needs to be hydrated with products that contain water! People with dry skin still need to be exfoliating. Promoting the production of new, healthy skin is the best way to cure your chronic dry skin problems.

I hope this was helpful! Stay glowing xo

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Making an apartment home, affordable furnishings and more!

Welcome back to the life of a Glow Getter! If you’re looking for some inspiration to furnish your new place this post is for you.

A little background on me, I moved from Huntington Beach, California to Las Vegas, Nevada about four months ago. My boyfriend Connor is in the US Air Force and is stationed here in Vegas so unfortunately moving out to California wasn’t an option for him. After graduating college in June I decided to take a leap an come out here!

I signed the lease for our apartment while Connor was deployed and I was still going to school and working in California. It was super difficult for me to scope out a good place from so far away. I basically drove out to Vegas for one day, quickly looked at a few places, and chose the best price/most convenient location. Let’s just say I absolutely hated my choice and actually cried when I got the keys.

Now that I live there, its really not that bad. But I was nervous about starting a whole new life and wanted everything to be perfect. I got disappointed when it wasn’t what I had been picturing the last 8 months. I was upset because our apartment wasn’t “insta-worthy” and I kind of gave up on creating content. Then I realized I was being pretty dumb. I have come to realize that one day we when we have our dream house we will probably look back at this time and miss the little things about it. So I am focusing on making it home, navigating how to live with a significant other, and how to make a rental apartment as “insta-worthy” as I can on a budget.

Instagramable-Modern-Homey

I have no idea what I would describe my decor style as. I think its like mid-century modern meets boho meets whatever the hell catches my eye. Here’s what I purchased:

Living Room

This couch is super affordable and the perfect size to fit our small apartment. My favorite thing is that the bottom part pulls out making a queen size bed. I thought it would be great for guests but I’ve probably ended up using the most because Connor is a bedhog and I enjoy watching TV completely sprawled out. I highly recommend it if it’s your first time living together lol.

Shop it here : Sleeper Sofa

I got these to put by the front door for keys and my purse. Under $20, gotta love Target.

Shop it here: Brass Hooks

I know everyone, their mom, and their sister has this mirror but I had to have it too. This is the cheapest price I found for this style!

Shop it here: Round Mirror

I was tempted to go with all white furniture but I think adding some wood makes the space more homey! This TV stand is under $200 and fits our 55″ TV perfectly.

Shop it here: TV Stand

I debated for a while if I was going to put any holes in the wall and I decided the apartment just looked too creepy without a little decor. I got this simple shelf and it totally fills up the empty space while still being simple!

Shop it here: Floating Shelf

This print was the perfect piece to add some California vibes to our home. I purchased it in the largest size and hung it in my dining area! I also got a frame in white from the same website.

Shop it here: VW Bus Print

This was my unnecessary fun purchase that was absolutely necessary. Its so fun to style bar carts and change it up with the seasons. Target came in clutch again.

Shop it here: Bar Cart

This piece is totally extra but I had to find a place for it. I got it in the smallest size with a gold frame and put it on our bar cart.

Shop it here: Champs Print

Square wine glasses are definitely cooler than round ones. I bought a set of four off Amazon (only three are still living but at least they weren’t horribly overpriced).

Shop it here: Wine Glasses

I definitely don’t drink whisky but I thought this would look pretty on the bar cart. Connor thought it was pretty cool too.

Shop it here: Whiskey Glasses

Got this fake plant off Amazon. Honestly its not very good quality up close but I feel like no one will notice… At least it won’t die on me.

Shop it here: Paradise Palm

I thought putting my plants on a stand was classier than the floor. So I bought this plant stand.

Shop it here: Plant Stand

Simple, pretty and homey print. I bought the smallest size with a gold frame. I currently have it sitting on a side table leaning against the wall. I might even move it to the white shelf, it can go anywhere!

Shop it here: Dried Bouquet

Bedroom

I will never forget when we unboxed this bed at 10 pm when Connor had just arrived home from the Middle East. We thought they forgot to send us the legs + frame… THEY PACKAGED THE FRAME INSIDE THE HEADBOARD..?? Since the moment we solved that mystery we’ve loved the purchase.

Shop it here: Gray Bed

Connor had a hard time putting these nightstands together and he describes them as “stupid”. But I think they are pretty cute and a decent deal! I switched out the silver knobs with gold ones I found at Target.

Shop it here: Nightstand

I fell in love with the little tassels on this bedding set! Our puppy Indie eats off at least one tassel a day but theres still a good amount left. We sized up to a King size even though we have a Queen and it fits perfectly.

Shop it here: Bedding Set

This mattress is a steal! I took a big leap ordering a cheap mattress offline and it is literally perfect. Not too hard or too soft. Connor and I are both amazed… it was only $200!!

Shop it here: BEST MATTRESS

Our walls are a puke beige color so I wanted to incorporate as much white as possible to brighten up our bedroom. This dresser from Ikea is a great size!

Shop it here: White Dresser

This lamp is probably my favorite item in the bedroom. I ordered a brighter, vintage looking bulb off amazon and I would highly recommend doing so! It’s our only light source in the room and it works great.

Shop it here: Globe Lamp

These are the basics we bought for our apartment! It is super simple but I love all the pieces and can’t wait to build off of it. I still want to get so many more plants, wall hangings, organizing items and so much more. If you have a favorite home item comment the link down below!

I hope this helps you make your new place a home. If you’re feeling a little anxious or disappointed about your move, try to stay positive! Change is always hard. Even after a month or three months of being somewhere you might still feel a little off. I always get really depressed when I move somewhere and I have learned that’s just part of the process. The thing that has helped me the most is diving right in to finding my new favorite places. Find a new nail salon, find a new hair stylist, try new lunch spots, go to a local yoga studio or gym! Don’t sit around missing your old favorites, go out and find your new go-to places. It takes time to adjust so be patient with yourself!

Stay glowing xx

Featured

Who is this chick?

Welcome to my life!

So you’ve come across my blog… and you’re probably wondering what this page is all about. What makes this blog special? Why should I follow along? Who is this chick? Well this is my first EVER blog post, so bear with me as I try to explain the dynamics of this page & my life.


Hi! This is me ↟ (not in my natural habitat)

I am

A 22 year old girl living in Huntington Beach, California. I am an esthetician (which is basically a skin therapist) & I currently work as a waxing specialist. Waxing pays the bills but what I love most about being an esthetician is using my knowledge about skincare to help my friends, family, & of course my followers/social media friends. I love the term social media friends because it makes this whole influencer/follower thing sound way less “cultish.”

I am also a student at University of California Irvine studying Psychology and Social Behavior. I plan to go to grad school and most likely get my masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. I hope to become a professional counselor who specializes in children and adolescents. This June, I will be graduating with my bachelors and taking a small break from school… more to come about what I’ll be doing later!!

I Love

ALL THINGS BEAUTY. I have a horrible obsession with trying out new skincare, makeup, haircare etc. This means I will be sharing my thoughts and helpful tips with all of you. As I mentioned above, I went to school to learn about skin! SO, if you ever have a question about what’s right for your skin type, ask me! I will try to get back to you ASAP. (Obviously I don’t know everything about skin so I cannot take the place of your medical esthetician or dermatologist)

In addition to beauty I LOVE to travel! I just finished a mini study abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark and had the opportunity to go a few other places in Europe as well. I will be posting more about that trip soon as well as other trips I have coming up this year! ( HINT: I’m going back to Europe!)

I Hope

That you guys will find my posts helpful & informative. I ESPECIALLY hope my blog will be relatable for the average young person who is just trying to figure out life while maintaining a beautiful glow. If you would like to be a Glow Getter with me, follow along!

You can also follow me on Instagram: http://instagram.com/caitlinashlie

& Subscribe on YouTube: https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCt_auv4B5sLA9vwP10zkMsg

Visiting Athens, Greece — Everything You Need To Know!

We started our two week trip to Greece by flying into Athens and exploring the ancient city! Athens is one of those cities that you really need to know where you’re going (so you don’t end up in the wrong part of town) and so you don’t miss anything worthwhile. We spent three days here before heading out to the islands and it was the perfect amount of time! In this post I will share everything I wish I knew before heading out there so you can make the most of your trip.

Getting Around Athens

THERES NO UBER IN GREECE (or in many other parts of Europe!)

Before you have a panny — it is still super easy to travel around and a lot cheaper than in the US as long as you avoid taxis.

When you land at the airport in Athens you will have two main options (besides an overpriced taxi) for getting to the city center:

Firstly, go to a ticket booth and buy a three day public transport ticket for tourists. This ticket is about 35 euros and includes roundtrip fare from the airport plus unlimited public transport rides in the city center for 3 days!

  1. Take the metro. This is the most convenient way to get almost anywhere you want to go in Athens. From the airport, you can take the blue line M3 towards Aghia Maria and exit at Syntagma to get to the center of Athens. From Syntagma Square you can switch to other metro lines or grab a short taxi ride to get to where you need to be! (Note: the metro closes between 12:30 am and 5:30 am. If you land during this time you will have to use option 2)
  2. Take the bus. We arrived in the middle of the night so the metro was not an option for us. You can take bus line X95 to Syntagma Square as well.

For more information about public transportation in Athens click here

Where To Stay

We booked through Air B n B for our entire trip and saved a ton of money. However, Greece is super popular during the summer months so I recommend booking your stay a few months in advance to get a nice spot!

If you haven’t used Air B n B before you can sign up with my link to earn $40 in travel credit: https://abnb.me/e/z7RwF78ulY

We stayed in a huge apartment with a beautiful view and it was really affordable. The host was really sweet, check it out here if you’re headed to Athens!

As I mentioned, we arrived in Athens in the middle of the night so we couldn’t check into our apartment right away. We booked a hotel for one night right around the corner and I would highly recommend it as well! It is more expensive but the staff, especially Elina, were super sweet!

The Kubic Hotel: https://www.booking.com/hotel/gr/kubic-athens-athina12345678.el.html

What To Do

Hike Lycabettus Hill and watch the sunset.

From the top of Lycabettus Hill you can see all of Athens and the Acropolis. The view at sunset is absolutely BEAUTIFUL! Plan to get there 30 minutes before the sun is scheduled to set and the lighting will be perfect for photos.

It will take you about 25 minutes to walk up the hill, theres lots of stairs and uneven ground, so make sure you wear comfortable shoes. Apparently theres a cable car you can take to get to the top but we never found it.

Have a drink on a rooftop bar and see the Acropolis at night.

We went to the top of the hotel A For Athens for a few drinks after hiking Lycabettus Hill (its just a short metro ride away). From the deck you can see a perfect view of the Acropolis and if you look down you can see another amazing relic, Ancient Agora.

The drinks are a little pricey but I think it was definitely worth it! We didn’t have a reservation and luckily got in after waiting but I would recommend calling ahead because its super popular.

Visit the Acropolis, obviously.

This is the main attraction in Athens so you absolutely have to go! That being said, its super crowded. I suggest getting there 30 minutes before it opens to wait in line (you will also be avoiding the heat that rolls in later in the day). There are tons of tours you can sign up for but I personally opted out and I am so happy I did. It seemed pretty stressful to try to stay together in the chaos. I also like to move around on my own time and soak it all in.

Ditch the city and head to the beach!

One of my favorite things we did in Athens was visiting Astir Beach. We reserved two sunbeds online and were provided with complimentary waters and towels. We ordered way too much food and drinks but thats just what you gotta do on vacation!

There are a bunch of other beaches you can visit for a cheaper price but I highly recommend spending the day at this beach club: https://www.astir.gr/beach/

PS. The easiest way to get there is to purchase a Hop On Hop Off ticket and use the tourist bus. We took the bus from the Acropolis straight out to the beach. The ticket is only 16 euros and you can use the buses for two days.

So like basically,

Athens has a lot to offer depending on what you’re looking for! Your experience there can be whatever it is you want it to be. Our first impressions of Athens wasn’t too great (the streets looked run down, graffiti etc) — BUT as we dove in deeper to the city it really grew on me. Walking on the old roads in one of the oldest major civilizations is absolutely magical.

I hope this post will help you make the most of your trip. If you have any other questions leave me a comment or send me a message!

note: nothing in this post was sponsored — just my honest opinions!

This Is 23

How I Celebrated

This birthday was one of the best ones yet because I was able to celebrate with some very special new friends of mine. If you haven’t already seen me raving about these girls on my Instagram, check out the gorgeous ladies in the Golden Girls Crew. I reached out to these girls on Instagram a few months ago and it has been such a blessing in my life to network with them and become genuine friends!

The past few years, I have celebrated my birthday at Coachella with a super small group. This year I wanted to switch it up! To celebrate my birthday we rented the CUTEST pink boat from Electric Boat Co in Newport Beach, CA. We cruised around blasting throwbacks and sipping on BABE wine, it was a literal blogger babe dream (until the sun went down, the wind picked up, and we all almost peed our pants).

  • Tips for going on a duffy boat:
    • Don’t fill the boat to capacity: the duffy boats are pretty small plus less people = more room for dancing.
    • Bring jackets and blankets! It is drastically colder on the water.
    • Go out 2 hours before sunset. The sunset is so beautiful and once the sun goes down you will want to get off the boat.
    • You are allowed to have open containers on the boats so bring your favorite drink but make sure you have a designated driver.

If you’re interested in reserving this boat you can book on their website: https://eboatsrental.com or email Jeremy at sales@eboatsrental.com. They also have a new boat coming out at the end of this month and a percent of proceeds will be donated to CHOC. PSA the boat does not come with a driver so make sure you trust someone in your group to drive the boat — we figured this out the hard way.

“Realizing Things” – Kylie Jenner

Even though I had the best day celebrating with my girls, my birthday is always an emotional time for me. I think I cry on my birthday literally every year (does anyone else do this? lol). One major reason is the fact that Connor still hasn’t gotten home from his deployment yet and I really thought he would be here for this. But I have also started to realize that my birthday makes me a little anxious about the future and nostalgic for the past. I think about what I pictured my life to be like at 23 and how I haven’t quite lived up to my own expectations. At the same time, I am also so excited about the direction I am headed in. This birthday I really tried to reflect on my life and what I want to change.

If I could describe my life at 22 in one sentence it would be “I don’t have time.” I think I tell Connor at least three times a day that I don’t have time to do half of the things that are important to me. This past year, I was filled with so much motivation and ideas but I literally did not have time to execute it all. I bought a camera and starting taking more pictures, I studied abroad, I started a blog, I started a Youtube channel, I started “influencing”, I worked a ton, I got an internship, and I just barely squeezed by in school. I did so many things but I never felt like I did any of those things well or with my full attention.

At 23, I am sick of half-assing things. I am ready to slow down and start giving full effort to the things that are most important to me. I have realized that I need to invest in myself, put some things on the back burner, and take a few risks. My new goal is to find the time (or if anyone has a time machine please contact me). STAY TUNED, BIG THINGS TO COME!

Long Distance Care Package Ideas — Military Girlfriend Newbie Tips

My boyfriend Connor is in the US Air Force and is currently deployed. Before we met, I literally did not know anything about how the military worked or what military life was like. (Dear John definitely did not prepare me for this!) I never thought I would be in a long distance relationship or that I would ever experience dating someone in the military. But I met “the one” and here we are!

I am NOT AN EXPERT but I’ve definitely learned a lot through this deployment. My biggest concerns going into this deployment were keeping my relationship strong, making time go by quickly, and figuring out WHAT THE HECK to send him. I thought I should write a post for other girlfriends/spouses out there who are new to the military life and might be a little intimidated by the whole thing.

Care Package Ideas

Items To Make Them Feel Pampered — MEN’S SKINCARE

As you probably know, I am skincare obsessed, so naturally the first things on my list are skin and body products. Since Connor spends a lot of time in the sun over there, its really important that he keeps up with a good regimen. Luckily he’s almost as obsessed with skincare as me!

Here are some good products for guys:

  • MAKE SURE that he has a moisturizer with SPF. Most guys are the worst at wearing sunscreen but this is the most important thing they need to be doing for their skin!

Ways To Keep The Connection

  • Go Old School. Print out hard copies of photos and send a few each month. Holding an old photo in your hand (rather than just seeing it on your phone) brings the memories rushing back. It’s so important to hold onto all the good times you have shared together and remind yourself “This is why I do it” … “This is all worth it”
    • Print yourself copies too! It is just as important for you to be reminded of the good times as it is for him.
    • You can also take recent photos of yourself to print out and surprise him with!
    • Before Connor left, I gave him a small photo album with a few pictures in it. Over time I slowly send him more photos to add to it.
  • Make videos of your memories. Even if your not that tech savvy, you can use a free editing app to put video clips and photos to music. This can be SUPER CHEESY, but I love cheese. I made him a series of three videos, put them on a flash drive, and snuck it into his bag before he left. You can also just send it to him later.
    • These little movies are seriously my favorite. I love to watch them especially after we have had a hard week, or have a fight, to remind myself of how strong our relationship is. It’s hard to “make up” after an argument when you’re long distance so these videos help to heal the heart and move on.
    • I never planned on releasing this but here is a little clip of something I made for Connor:
The Adventures Of C & C Behind The Scenes
  • Hand written letters. Everyone loves a nice good morning text but hand written letters are on a whole other level! I write Connor a note or a card and put it in every package. (Except once when I forgot and I received an angry phone call about it… oops!) But that just goes to show how much he loves getting my letters. The other cool part is that you can save them forever!
    • Ps. I guess I learned one thing from watching Dear John but don’t remind Connor because apparently its “very unrealistic” lol

The Rest Of The Goods

Obviously they can’t buy all their favorite food over there so add their favorite candies, snacks, or whatever else you know they like!

  • Connor loves adding Mio Flavor to his water. They have some with added caffeine so its a little bit healthier than the energy drinks he loves.

A few other gifts ideas:

  • Sunglasses that fit the dress code. I sent Connor some plain black sunglasses that were polarized but not too fancy so he could wear them to work every day.
  • Hydroflask for hot drinks. Connor grabs coffee in the mornings but it either spills everywhere or gets cold before he has a chance to finish it. I sent him a Hydroflask coffee mug and he loves it!
  • Workout clothes never fail. Connor is basically always wearing either his uniform or workout clothes on his deployment. After a while of being deployed the same few outfits can get boring (at least it would if it was me lol). I’ve sent him a new sweatshirt, Nike sweats, and some tee shirts!

Getting Through It

We have been SO blessed because Connor is in a place with decent wifi so we are able to FaceTime daily. I can’t imagine what it is like for couples that don’t get the luxury of frequent communication. Whatever situation you are in, remember that its about quality time over the quantity. We spend a lot of time talking & dreaming about the future and making plans for when he gets home, it has made the time go by a lot faster!

I was pretty scared when I had to say “see ya later” about 6 months ago. It hasn’t been easy… but putting in the effort to keep our relationship strong has made it a lot more do-able than I thought! I hope this post was comforting to you if you are a newbie dating someone in the military. If you’re already an expert then I hope this post didn’t sound dumb haha!

Stay tuned for more of The Adventures Of C & C when Connor returns… next month!!!

How I Manage Anxiety

Note: I am not a medical professional. This post is only about my personal experience. If this is a medical emergency please seek professional help.

I have always been naturally anxious. A combination of my biology mixed with stressful life experiences has, at times, made my anxiety so powerful it feels like it takes over my life.

The interesting thing is, I didn’t even realize I had anxiety issues at first. I was convinced that it was the world around me that was making my life more difficult. I thought that as soon as my circumstances changed, I would feel better. “As soon as I get a new job I will be happy” … “As soon as I graduate I’ll be happy” … But even when I got to the “light at the end of the tunnel” moment, I didn’t feel better. It wasn’t until I started studying Psychology that I realized my thoughts and feelings may be a little off. After learning more about anxiety and depressive disorders, I realized that I had the power to create a change within myself. I decided to dedicate myself to CHOOSING HAPPINESS as much as I possibly could.

I am not saying that depression or anxiety is a choice at all. I fully believe it is an illness just like any other. What I am saying is that you need to CHOOSE to get better by seeking treatment and changing your life. If you had heart pain every day, you would probably choose to go to the doctor. If the doctor recommended a medication or a diet change, or to increase exercise, you would (hopefully) listen. It’s the same with mental health, you have to put in the work to get better.

I’ve spent a lot of years trying to better myself and become that person I felt I was deep down, underneath my anxiety, but I am nowhere near anxiety free. I’m not an expert but I hope this post can be useful for you!

Tips For Decreasing Anxiety

Here are a few things that have worked for me:

  • Identify what your anxiety feels like. Everyone can experience anxiety in a different way. The first step in decreasing your anxiety is to quickly recognize when the anxiety is coming on. Realize your anxiety is only a small part of you and not all of you. By visualizing your anxiety you can stop it from taking over your whole body. Here are some ways to visualize your anxiety:
    • When you get anxious, where in you body does this feeling come from? Is it in your throat, your stomach, or near your heart?
    • Close your eyes and picture what your anxiety looks like. Does it have a shape or a color?
    • Create a detailed picture in your mind of what your anxiety is. This sounds silly but, you can also give your anxiety a name! My anxiety is egg shaped and blue. It lives in my throat and it’s name is Fred. (HEY! NO LAUGHING AT ME!) Giving your anxiety an identity makes it easier to pinpoint your emotions as soon as you start to feel anxious. Once you do this, you can try to shrink your anxiety through breathing or meditation.
  • Be in the moment! Mindfulness meditation is an amazing way to calm yourself down and bring yourself into the moment. Try not to think about things that happened in the past or things that could happen in the future. Take a few minutes to acknowledge what’s in front of you, your emotions, and thoughts. This can be as simple as hanging up the phone, turning off the radio, and acknowledging the trees while you drive by. Realize that although you may be anxious because you have so much to do and so little time, it is important to take a step back and try to clear your mind.
  •  Follow the anxious thought all the way through. Sometimes our mind gets so clouded with anxiety that we forget to think logically. A lot of the time we don’t even know what we are anxious about.
    • For example, I used to get so anxious about going to work. I would leave an hour early for work because I was so anxious that there would be traffic or something would happen that would make me late. It got to the point where my hands would sweat the whole drive to work even when I had plenty of time. I started getting stomach aches 3 hours before my shift because I would think about needing to leave soon. I had so much anxiety but I wasn’t scared of anything specific. Until one day I took the time to think through what I was anxious about. What’s the worst that could happen? If I got fired then I would have to find another job. This would be a huge inconvenience but it is not life threatening. I realized I needed to stop caring so much about things I can’t control. No one expects you to be anything more than human, we do not have to be robots.
    • I don’t recommend thinking about the worst possible scenario but ask yourself, “What am I really worried about? Do I really need to be worried about this?”
  • Make a list. If you’re feeling overwhelmed write down what you need to do. Start by completing the easiest items on the list. Getting more tasks completed will make you feel more accomplished.
  • Don’t be afraid of therapy or medication. Talking to a professional was the most life changing thing I have ever done! Forget the stigma about going to therapy or being on meds. It’s time to take charge of your health and your life!
    • If you’re a student, your school probably has FREE therapists and/or psychiatrists you can go to. Take advantage of these resources!
  • Surround yourself with a good support system. Don’t waste your time on friends who don’t support you or people that add extra stress to your life. If there is a person that makes you more anxious every time you’re around them, then distance yourself. At the end of the day, you have to put your health first. 

I know these tasks are easier said then done but I hope you got something out of it!

If you’re looking for something more straight forward — one of my favorite bloggers, Mykenna Jean, wrote a post on her tips for anxiety. They are really easy to try! Check it out HERE

How I Thrived In A Hostel – For A MONTH In Copenhagen, Denmark

Have you ever gotten so fed up with your day-to-day life that you want to do something crazy like chop off your hair, get a tattoo, drop out of school and/or quit your day job? If you have ever randomly decided to get bangs, then you probably know what I’m talking about.

In September of 2018, I was itching to do something different, it was like my soul was feigning for something but I couldn’t figure out what I needed. My responsible part of my brain convinced me to not quit my job or get any more tattoos (thankfully, because I already have 5 and most of them are silly.) One day an email popped up in my inbox “Seniors, Last Chance To Study Abroad. Short-term Programs Available”… you can guess what happened next.

A few months later I was getting dropped off by my mom at LAX, with my bags that were way over the weight limit, to study abroad for a month in Copenhagen, Denmark. I didn’t know a single person in the program and I had never lived in weather below 50 degrees Fahrenheit so clearly I had no idea what I was in for.

Watch my vlog of traveling to Europe alone! 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6eijPLIzck&t=4s

Where I Stayed

My program’s company organized for all the students to live together at a hostel in a very centralized part of Copenhagen. Everyone I told was a little worried because the term hostel has such a bad connotation in America but don’t worry, most hostels are nothing like in the movies! Luckily, I had experience staying in hostels from a past backpacking trip so I knew how to prepare.

A Girly Girl’s Tips For Staying In a Hostel:

  1. DON’T OVERPACK – I failed at this miserably and it was difficult because the rooms are small and there was literally no room for my 3 bags, 5 pairs of shoes, and plethora of clothes.
  2. Use packing cubes – I put all my undies, socks, scarves & beanies in packing cubes which helped me stay organized. Since you won’t have drawers, and will be living out of a bag, this is a life saver!
  3. Bring an extra towel for your hair – They supply you with one towel but if you’re like me then one is not enough! I got this pack on amazon and it was perfect: https://amzn.to/2DXTEw9
  4. Bring shower shoes – There’s nothing worse then feeling dirty after you just showered. In hostels you share a shower with other people so its a good idea to bring some plastic sandals.
  5. Make a shower bag – Your life will be so much easier if you have a plastic bag that can get wet with all your goodies inside. Instead of bringing your toiletry bag with all your cosmetics into the shower area, separate out your shampoo, conditioner, razor and everything else you need so you can get in and out fast!
  6. No blowdryer needed – Check ahead of time if your hostel supplies a blowdryer, it may be bad quality but packing one takes up SO much space. Also, the wattage of the plugs in other countries may make your blowdryer catch on fire. Don’t ask me how I know this.
  7. Bring a small mirror – You will be sharing a bathroom with other people so you don’t want to be in there for 20 min doing your makeup. Bring a small mirror or a pallet with a mirror so you can do your makeup while sitting on your bed.
  8. Don’t forget headphones with a mic – even if you don’t plan on listening to music or watching movies, bring headphones for talking on the phone or FaceTiming! Nothing is more awkward than strangers listening to your entire convo with your boyfriend.
  9. Buy a small lock – Most hostels have a locker to put your valuables in, bring a lock for it so you can leave your passport, camera, computer, designer bag, etc in there.
  10. Pack a travel size multi-mask set – Being away from your normal climate and routine will cause your skin to freak out in ways you can’t possibly anticipate. I packed this GLAMGLOW kit for all possible skin needs on my trip: https://seph.me/2WPqTt5

If you are going to Copenhagen and need a clean, affordable hostel check this one out! (There are also private rooms available.) https://www.steelhousecopenhagen.com

The best thing you can bring with you when staying at a hostel is your flexibility. You need to go with the flow. You have to be mentally prepared to share space and know it may take you an extra 10 minutes to get ready in the morning. But on the bright side, you are surrounded by other young people who probably love to travel as much as you do! I never felt unsafe and I thoroughly enjoyed hanging out in the laid back common areas downstairs! Of course its always nice to stay at a hotel but if thats out of your budget don’t be afraid to check out other options. When you’re traveling you should hardly be in your room anyways right?

More posts about Copenhagen coming soon. Thanks for following along friends! xx

Blackheads Are Getting Cancelled — READ HOW

One of the most common questions people ask me is how to get rid of blackheads. Blackheads are one of the most common skin concerns and can be so stubborn to get rid of! It is important to understand the underlying causes of blackheads and what treatments actually work in order to make them stay gone for good! Here are my tips for SIGNIFICANTLY reducing blackheads, along with some product recommendations (both inexpensive and some higher-end options).

Blackheads are…

Caused from excess oil, dead skin cells, and dirt that solidify in your hair follicles. I know most of you are thinking, “Huh, I thought they were in my pores?” Well technically, what most people refer to as pores are actually hair follicles that contain a tiny hair and a sebaceous gland which produces oil. But to make things easier I will just refer to the follicles as pores.

ANYWAYS, the gland produces excess oil and dead skin cells on the surface clog the pore. Blackheads are different from whiteheads because the pore is actually open. They turn black because the oil and dead skin cells oxygenate (whereas white heads are closed and not in contact with the air so they do not turn black.) Whiteheads/pimples/acne are also inflamed because they are caused by bacteria but blackheads are not.

Step 1: Wash your face twice a day!

This may seem so obvious to you but this means even if you don’t wear makeup you need to wash your face morning and night to remove dead skin cells and excess oil.

The type of cleanser you use is VERY important! If you have a lot of blackheads it is important you use something that is oil free. It is also important that you use a cleanser with exfoliating properties (once a day or every other day depending on your skin sensitivity) to get rid of that dead skin. A cleanser with glycolic acid or salicylic acid is probably your best bet! Here’s a few of my favorites:

Step 2: Kick it up a notch

If you’re reading this post then most likely you need something a little more powerful than just a cleanser. Try adding a toner to you’re regimen. One’s that have witch hazel and glycolic or salicylic acid are great for oily skin!

A few times a week you should also use an additional treatment on the areas you have blackheads. Most likely this is in your T-Zone or it may just be your chin and nose (if you’re like me ↟). I recommend using a clay mask or a charcoal mask to draw out excess oil. This will also minimize the appearance of your pores! If you have any dry areas you should avoid putting the mask there. This is my favorite charcoal mask (and pro tip just buy the travel size it will last a while!)

Step 3: Living Non-Comedogenic

It is important to make sure all the products you are using are non-comedogenic which means they don’t clog pores. Most of the time the product will advertise it is non-comedogenic but you can always ask the employee at Ulta or Sephora! Most importantly, make sure you check your moisturizer, foundation, and concealer.

If you follow these three steps, your blackheads should start to go away and the appearance of pores should minimize! But remember consistency is key and all skin reacts differently to products so pay attention to your skin’s reaction. If you are already doing all of these steps and still struggling with blackheads, seek the help of an esthetician! Getting a facial once a month can do wonders for your skin. If you have questions or ideas for my next post send me a message!

5 Misconceptions About Skin That You NEED To Know

Esthetician school opened my eyes to a lot of facts about skin. The first few weeks of the program were mainly focused on un-learning all the old wives tales I was told about skincare growing up. I have received a lot of messages from people who have been led astray just as I was when it comes to skincare, SO, its time to get a few things straightened out!

1. “If you have sensitive skin you shouldn’t exfoliate”

FIRST OF ALL, every single skin type needs to be exfoliating. Our skin looses 30,000 to 40,000 skin cells every hour which adds up to a million skin cells per day! Except the problem is that not all of these skin cells actually falls off. A lot of them sit on top of the skin making your complexion dull and slowing down the process of making new skin. When the process of making new skin slows down, thats when you’re skin starts to age & look older (I know scary stuff).

SECOND OF ALL, exfoliate doesn’t mean scrub. In fact, there are very few “scrubby” face washes that I would recommend because beads can cause micro-tears and all sorts of problems. The best way to exfoliate is to use a cleanser that has a gentle acid or enzymes. Glycolic cleansers are my favorite but cleansers with AHAs or BHAs are great too, you just have to find what works for you! If you are very sensitive, use an enzymatic cleanser. Enzymes are derived from fruit such as pineapple & papaya. They eat away at the “glue” that holds dead skin cells together allowing the dead skin to fall off (but you don’t notice it).

My mom has extremely sensitive skin with lots of redness and occasional breakouts. She needed to exfoliate but acne cleansers made her rosacea so bad! I got her this kit and she’s been using the Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel for almost two years now.

2. “If you have oily skin you don’t need to moisturize”

I am really really hoping that many of you don’t think this is true. But I remember a day… in my lost teenage years… when I thought lotion would make my acne worse and everyone was telling me to “dry it out”.

THE FACT IS, if you deprive your skin of moisture, it will make more oil to compensate and therefore lead to more oily skin & breakouts! Every. Single. Person. Needs to be using a moisturizer twice a day after cleansing their face. If you have oily skin, breakouts, or blackheads — GUESS WHAT — you can use an oil free face moisturizer that won’t clog your pores. It is also super uber important that your morning moisturizer has SPF in it (and don’t worry there will be LOTS more about SPF later). I will link some of my favorite oil free moisturizers below ↡

3. “You should never pop your pimples”

This one is complicated… I do not recommend sitting in front of the mirror for 10 minutes and picking at all the bumps on your face. This can cause scarring and the bacteria from your hands can make you break out worse. HOWEVER, sometimes you just need to get it out.

When a pimple has come to a head and is “ready”, wrap your fingers in tissue and very gently squeeze what you need to. Don’t force it. Immediately after you should apply an astringent such as witch hazel toner or tea tree oil to kill bacteria and decrease swelling. Tea tree oil is great for shrinking pimples with or without popping them but you may want to dilute it by adding a few drops to your moisturizer (avoid your eyes it will tingle!).

4. “I didn’t wear makeup today so it’s fine if I don’t wash my face tonight…”

We have ALL been there. You are already so comfy in bed and you’re trying to justify not getting up to wash your face. But the reality is that there is so much crap on your face from the day even if you didn’t wear makeup.

Did you know that because of all the pollution in the air, free radical molecules stick to our face and cause us to age faster?! They are like invisible parasites sucking out our youth. If you go to bed without washing off the day, they will continue to reek havoc on your skin all night long. So just do it. Just get up and wash your face.

5. “It’s fine if I tan as long as I wear sunscreen”

I’m not going to sit here and pretend that I don’t go tanning. This Southern California girl loves to lay out in the sun. But I promised to tell you the hard truth about skin so here it is.

There is no “safe way” to get a real tan.

Even if you don’t burn, you are damaging your skin. Burning is actually just what occurs at the surface of the skin from UVB rays (B for Burning, pretty cool I know). Tanning salons remove the UVB rays so you don’t burn but the tan you receive instead is even worse.

If your skin is getting tan, that means UVA rays are reaching the deepest layers of your skin, the dermis. UVA rays break down collagen and elastin causing your skin to sag. It will also cause pigment issues way deep down that won’t appear until up to 10 YEARS LATER. This means the sun damage you’re acquiring now will pop up to say hi in your 30s and beyond.

I know this is very depressing news but moral of the story is wear a hat & sunscreen. Make sure to protect your face & chest from the sun as much as you can because those areas are exposed all of the time!

As always let me know if you have any questions! Don’t forget to sign up to get notified about new posts. Thanks friends!