GET READY WITH ME as I head out to a bottomless brunch *typical* I do my entire makeup look, attempt winged liner again, and share my outfit details! You can find all deets below. As… More
WELCOME to today’s video which features an affordable holiday gift guide under $25 for Christmas, the upcoming holidays or any occasion for special people in your life. my gift suggestions could be for your mom, dad, friend, grandma, bae, YOURSELF… have at it!
As always, thank you for stopping by and spending time with me XOXO
THE GOOD STUFF:
Duross & Langel shower bombs – $5.00
various bath bombs under $25
Bath & Body Works Aromatherapy Rose Vanilla body wash – $13.50
Bath & Body Works Aromatherapy Lavendar Vanilla body lotion – $13.50
Bath & Body Works Aromatherapy Focus body cream – $15.50 (could only find this on Amazon)
Laneige Water Sleeping Mask – $25.00
Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask – $20.00
Coffee Mugs from various places
Amazon t-shirt (Sunnyvale from Trailer Park Boys) – $13.99
Etsy prints – less than $10.00 at most shops
Amazon frames – $11.00-15.00
Tiny Buddha’s Worry Journal – $13.45
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WHAT’S UP fam jam a lam. Today we have another GYMSHARK haul and try on of pieces from the camo, vital, and flex collections. I hope that you enjoy and this video is helpful! As always, thank you for being here and spending time with me XOXO
Weight: 150 lbs
Size: medium for everything
Whitney Simmons x Gymshark review https://youtu.be/fx9Q26F9Ywo
GYMSHARK SALE INFO https://www.gymshark.com/blogs/news/b…
THE GOOD STUFF: Camo leggings – sage https://www.gymshark.com/collections/…
Vital seamless t-shirt – pink marl https://www.gymshark.com/collections/…
Flex sports long sleeve crop – black https://www.gymshark.com/collections/…
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“J.K. Rowling is my hero.”
Scorpio season was a good time to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter because I felt the spooky, magical, mystical vibes the entire time. Not a fan of zodiacs? Fair enough – moving on.
We went to the Orlando location, located roughly 15-20 minutes away from Disney World. Universal Studios is a unique place. The park specializes in simulated animation, which may leave your motion-sick family members feeling green. There are plenty of disclaimers before each ride so you can simply read the CAUTION signs and advance at your own risk. Lol. In my opinion, this makes it a little less “family friendly.”
HOWEVER, the bread and butter of this park is 1,000% Harry Potter. No contest. Don’t even @ me. The attention to detail is outstanding and I commend J.K. Rowling for not selling her empire to Disney, which would have relinquished her vision for the masterpiece you see today.
Instead, Universal Studios offered our beloved author a true presence which the Harry Potter series clearly deserved. Essentially, it is its own entity and boosts Universal high up in the theme park ranking (for HP world alone).
To start, they bring Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade to life. You enter Diagon Alley through a brick wall consistent with the novel. Immediately to your left you’ll find the Leaky Cauldron and to your right the Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes joke shop. And it doesn’t end there.
They serve butterbeer: cold, warm, or frozen. What Harry Potter fan doesn’t want to get their hands on a cup of butterbeer?! (My favorite is frozen or warm, depending on the weather when you arrive).
Some of the rides include an escape from Gringotts, a tour of Hogwarts, and the ever popular still-semi-new Hagrid’s Motorbike rollercoaster. In Gringotts you’ll find realer-than-life goblins running the bank. The tour of Hogwarts is a mixture of simulation and movement throughout the castle – if you get motion sick I think you can still ride it and cover your eyes during the simulated portion (that’s what I did). It’s too cool to miss and the line itself is an experience. Hagrid’s Motorbike Adventure will take up some time (in line) but is worth it for the true Harry Potter fan that can appreciate the attention to detail. I hear 12-1 pm is the best time to hit the line as most folks are heading to lunch. We waited an hour before we got on, totally worth it.
Diagon Alley sits in Universal Studios while Hogsmeade is located in Islands of Adventure. I preferred Diagon Alley to Hogsmeade, but I’m excited to visit Hogsmeade during a quieter season when the narrow “town” isn’t so packed and crowded. There were perks to each, and I’ll list them below:
- Seemed to be less crowded (definitely go right when the park opens for the most breath-taking experience – and room to walk around)
- You’ll see a lot of kids (or adults) with wands casting spells which is just too cool
- Stop by Ollivander’s to watch someone get selected for a “wand fitting”
- Send out a postcard at the Owlery for a unique and memorable experience
- Step inside the Leaky Cauldron for a snack or lunch
- Observe all the storefronts which include animated photo frames and magical demonstrations
- Entrance to Hagrid’s Motorbike Adventure
- Breathtaking view of Hogswarts castle (+ the ride!)
- Listen for Moaning Myrtle in the restrooms
- Entrance straight into Hogsmeade if you pick up the “Hogwarts Express” train from the other park – I’d recommend doing this early so you aren’t dumped into a crowded street as your first experience of Universal’s Hogsmeade
Lastly, I’d like to chat about the Hogwarts Express, which is just… BRAVO! This was a 20 min wait for us. Right before you enter the platform, pay attention to the guests ahead of you. They disappear walking onto platform 9 ¾ and you do not want to miss! I don’t know if you can capture on camera, but definitely keep an eye out. It’s low-key one of the coolest things I saw there. You feel as if you’re stepping right into the books.
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is not one to miss. Even if you’re not a fan, I think you’d enjoy it. If you are a fan, you’ll poop your pants. I teared up walking into Diagon Alley for the first time. It’s emotional! A huge round of applause to J.K. Rowling + Universal for fully immersing their guests in an experience of a lifetime. To date, it is the most impressive themed “world” I have ever encountered.
Service in Gringotts is spotty so I am signing out…
“I actually cried at the top of a mountain range.
So yeah, it was humbling.”
Denver, Colorado is such a unique travel experience. If you come from a city, Denver seems so vast. A lot of open land with emphasis on the natural beauty of the state. If you come from a small town, you feel both eagerness to explore yet comfortable touring the city and mountains.
Denver was a humbling experience for me. I traveled alone, yet spent all my time with my best friend. She has called the Centennial State her home for over three years, thus allowing me to come as a tourist and explore as a local. Talk about the ideal way to see a new place.
If I had to sum up the trip in 5 words: nature, peace, relaxation, inspiration, and ice cream (I’ll explain the last one later)
Let’s start with the highlight of the trip – the nature
Let me just say this… I traveled from Philadelphia. I am a city dweller, if you will. Fast walker, subway rider, quick thinker, and overall fast-paced lmao – I’m not used to slowing down. Or hiking mountains. Taking in the scenery. But let me just tell you about the SCENERY.
PRO TIP: don’t forget to put off your hiking for a day or so. It’s important to get acclimated to the higher elevation, especially if you come from a place close to sea level.
Our first hike was Devil’s Head Fire Lookout trail near Sedalia, CO.
- 2.8 miles round trip, roughly 2+ hours
- Difficulty: moderate
- Elevation gain: +940 ft
- Drive from Denver: 1 hr 15 min
Facts cited from: Day Hikes Near Denver
This was the perfect hike for a newbee like myself. Like I said, I’ve hardly ever stepped foot up a mountain (they makes PA mountains look like hills). I felt like I conquered this one, tho of course I stopped as necessary to catch my breath – and take photos, obvi.
There were many spots along the way to stop and take photos with breathtaking views. As you reach the top, you’ll spot a small cabin where the seasonal fire lookout rests from dusk to dawn. There are a multitude of fun facts in case you are interested in where they get their food, how often they come down the mountain, etc.
The view is outstanding, like nothing I have ever seen before. Snow-capped mountains in the distance look more like paintings. Loads of greenery and tops of trees. Natural rock fixtures and a bright blue, clear sky.
additional nature sights:
Lake Dillon centered by a vast body of still water and mountain scenery for a
Loveland Pass (where I cried lol) we drove up this mountain with nonstop views until the very top where I naively presumed all to be seen was out my passenger side window. Wrong. So wrong.
360 views that resulted in me feeling so small, so grateful, and full of tears.
Next up, let’s discuss – brews and food
What better way to spend my first day getting acclimated than to tour a few breweries + a winery? Kidding, I don’t recommend getting wasted in your first 24 hours lol the elevation is like a generous bartender and will get you drunk. Fast.
Alas, if you are being careful (preferably with friends) and drinking a water in between beverages, it is a blast exploring the relaxing nature of breweries and rooftop bars in RiNo (River North Art District).
A few to name:
American Bonded an adorable rooftop bar (indoor seating also available) with a kickass bartender the day we were there – s/o to him. If you want a quick snack, this is your jam. We ordered cheese curds and the ranch was out of this world
Bigsby Folly winery with an industrial, retro, artsy vibe to it. Grab yourself a glass of wine. I’ll be the first to tell you that you deserve it!
Stem Ciders was probably my favorite location, as I’m a cider connoisseur. Loads of cider at this place, and a lot that are Denver specific
Onto food, as you’ll need some substance after dabbling in the brews:
This town is a GEM. One of my favorite spots. Quaint and nestled between the mountains, this town offers a happy stroll along their main street for loads of window shopping and lunch options
Bangkok Happy Bowl Thai Bistro and Sushi Bar delicious and quick service during lunch. 10/10 would recommend the shrimp tempura roll and the crab Rangoon appetizer
TBar one of the food/drink options along the gondola ride to the top (PS – the gondola is free, just a small fee to park). Grab a drink and enjoy the view! Tons of food options here as well
Park & Co. solid choice for a downtown dinner. A+ on my turkey burger and fries and again, the ranch slays
Coperta this Italian restaurant had me drooling the moment I laid eyes on its menu. I’m always good for a solid food recommendation and I’m telling you right now to get the spaghetti cacio e pepe (see below) or the rigatoni carbonara
Lowry Beer Garden okay, besides Coperta (who doesn’t adore pasta?) this was my FAVORITE meal. Low-key beer garden with quick service and high quality food, grab yourself a cider and a fish sandwich… or really anything else. This place won’t disappoint
I’ll never skip a cold brew & bagel:
Woodgrain Bagels your bagel heaven. Don’t skip this if you are nearby! Plain, everything, salt + pepper, onion, and the list goes on
Copper Door after your bagel, stop by this friendly quaint coffee shop where the barista ran out of cold brew but offered to hand brew a different batch of iced Americana (or something like that) – solid customer service
I told you I’d get back to the ice cream:
High Point Creamery the first night I was there we grabbed ice cream from here after dinner, and it’s the perfect way to end an evening! Delicious, creamy, and at least 10 flavors I’d never heard of before. Think: lavender… or French toast *drooling*
Rocket Ice Cream sitting right outside the Lowry Beer Garden (see above ^) the ice cream here is..
1. Conveniently located after you finish dinner in the beer garden
2. Offering unique flavors that make a delicious treat post-dinner
Lastly, I’d like to mention – miscellaneous things
If you’re a city dweller and want to explore the “busier” side of Denver, LoDo (lower downtown) is very walkable with the free MallRide and MetroRide. Union Station is very cool to see (not to mention clean!) and contains misc. shops/food options inside
If, by some chance, you are traveling from Lake Dillon to Breckenridge (you could make this a trip btw), please drive along Swan Mountain Road. I couldn’t stop sticking my head out the window and snapping photos – which even looked gorgeous from a moving car. This scenic route showcases houses on hills, bodies of water, and mountains in the background. This is best if you have a friend to drive so you can peek out the window 😉
My final tip is simply to keep in mind the airport is located about 45 mins from the city, give or take based on traffic. Not the worst, but be prepared for a long-ish Uber/Lyft ride depending on where you are staying. If you happen to have a friend in the city, you’re one lucky SOB.
My wrap-up thoughts? I’m in love! I think everyone should plan a trip here, hike at least once, treat yourself to some authentic breweries, and enjoy the peace. It is no wonder everyone in Colorado hikes on weekends, the mountains do wonders for a clear mind.
And so goes the ongoing story of a girl in her mid-twenties who just can’t get her f*#king skin to cooperate. Listen, it’s an uphill battle. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. We will get there and we will prevail eventually. But it’s going to take time. That’s the harsh reality of conquering hormonal acne. It creeps up on you quickly, but takes time to mend.
There are a multitude of reasons why you could have developed hormonal acne: hormone imbalance, gut issues, stress, food intolerance, and the list goes on. Thus being so, there is a varying list of remedies to help improve your skin. On the long list are some prescription options – two of them being Tretinoin and Clindamycin (which I have been prescribed now for 10 months).
Another item on the list of prescriptions that has been proven (in small dosage) to control acne: spironolactone.
Spironolactone is a medicine typically used to treat high blood pressure. Ironically, in lower doses, it can block the male hormones in our bodies which are known to cause oily skin and clogged pores. It is also a diuretic, which means it will make you pee a lot, so it’s important to consult your dermatologist and primary care doctor if you are interested in seeing if this is the right medication for you. Pro tip: drink a shit ton of water to ensure you are maintaining your hydration properly.
With all of this being said, here is a history of my skin issues and how Clindamycin and Tretinoin have come in to save the day. If you’re more of a video person, you’ll enjoy this version. They are nothing short of miracle workers.
HOWEVER, my skin is still not in check. Though exceedingly less than before, I still suffer from under-the-skin painful bumps. My skin is still blotchy and red, and my acne still gets rather enflamed. Essentially, I haven’t rid of it yet. This leads me to my new prescription (recommended by my dermatologist): spironolactone.
Disclaimer: I have read in several blog posts/articles that major changes on spironolactone aren’t seen until month 3 and on. However, I wanna give y’all the tea on how it’s affecting my skin in the first month. Enjoy!
Here is my 30 day skin diary after starting spironolactone.
After 1 week on spironolactone:
I have noticed an increase in breakouts and the intensity of them. Prior to starting this medication, my acne was maintainable with the occasional painful hormonal blemish. When it did flare up, it was concentrated. This week I have spots in new locations. Less than ideal, obviously. Also v painful. Alas, I read that this was happen so I am gritting my teeth and baring through it.
After 2 weeks on spironolactone:
This week I’m having the same issue, just trying to stick it out. Beauty is pain and beauty takes time, so I need to be patient. If I can achieve crystal clear skin in the long-term, I’ll suffer in the short-term. I have a couple new spots that are large and painful. Otherwise, I don’t notice much difference in my skin (as far as oil production).
*Interesting to note that I got a blemish on my back this week, which is very rare for me. I wonder if there is a purging stage to this and that’s what brought it to the surface.
After 3 weeks on spironolactone:
Not much has changed in my skin this week. MAYBE, if anything, I notice I am a little more on the dry side (typically, I am v oily and have a shiny t-zone by noon). No more large breakouts, but my skin isn’t calm. I have some redness and small blemishes, more than typically. I shall check in next week!
After 4 weeks on spironolactone:
Wowwwww my skin is fucked HAHAHAHA – all we can do is laugh really, am I right? Listen, we will prevail. It’s all trial and error and if I didn’t document this then I’d be suffering ALONE. I just stole a peek at my skin in the bathroom at work, and let me tell you, it ain’t pretty. It’s patchy, flaky, dry skin season bitchessss.
Again, obviously not happy about it.
However, I can see it through for the long run gain. Here’s hoping my 3 month progress report shows a bit more clarity (in my skin & goals for this medication).
My final wrap up
So that’s THAT. Fun stuff. Not gonna lie, I’m ending this a little bitter. It’s a bummer to not see results after a month on a new medication, which is seemingly making my skin worse. But I will say, everything I’ve read said things start to improve around that 3 month marker. I am hanging in there and believing in that 3 month revolutionary morning I wake up with crystal clear skin. Lol. Okay, a little over-dramatic as far as expectations are concerned, but that’s what I’m known for.
Signing off with dry, flaky skin. Cheers to the 3 month check-in which will *hopefully* bring more positivity. Here’s an adorable photo of myself to boost morale. Cheers.
WASSUP. I usually do my empties posts in video form nowadays, but my channel is turning into an empties post every other video lmao – I’m not having any of that. I want variety over there, so I’m bringing the empties post HERE. Why? Because I know we all love a good empties review blog post.
Below you’ll find TEN products I have completely emptied and are going into the trash as we speak. That means I’ve tried the entire packaging. I have full reviews, some of which I’ll rave about… others, meh. Let’s dive in.
Let’s start with mascaras, because I have a fuck ton of ’em.
- Essence Volume Stylist 18 hr Lash Extension
Of the two drugstore mascaras, this one is going to be my favorite. I’d highly recommend this over the lash princess (see below), as you can achieve feathery spread lashes that will last throughout the day.
The best part? It costs $4.99
- Essence Lash Princess Volume
This mascara I could pass on. I likely won’t repurchase. It was very liquid-y, which more often than not led to goopy, chunky lashes that didn’t spread nicely. If you’re looking for thicker lashes, you might like this. I prefer mine spread evenly and full of volume.
- Lancome Monsieur Big
YOOOOOOOOOOOO this mascara is FIRE. I love it so much. Like, false lashes worthy. Use a lash curler before going in with this mascara and you will boost your look x 100 – I swear.
Better yet, the travel size is $12.00 and it’ll last you awhile. Run!
- Clinique High Impact
I wasn’t a fan of this. Just didn’t impress me. The formula is very lightweight; if you’re into super natural (barely there) mascara, you may like this! For me, it wasn’t enough volume.
Moving on, shall we? Next up, powders…
- Coty Airspun loose setting powder
THE GOAT. My favorite. Hands down. The best powder to *blot* the earth. Lol. ALSO – it’s $5.97 on Amazon. SO like, hello. It sets makeup incredibly, does not move foundation underneath. Keeps me matte throughout the day. HIDES my pores entirely. Banging product.
The only con: you’ll smell like your grandma’s perfume from 1954.
- IT Cosmetics bye bye pores pressed powder
This was not a favorite for me. I’d say hard pass on this one. There was nothing special about it and I don’t feel a need to spend $29.00 on a powder that didn’t “wow” me. If anything, the Coty airspun blurs my pores + stays matte WAY more efficiently.
Two more makeup-related products.
- Tonya Crooks TheBrowGal instatint brow gel
I actually really loved this product. It made it SO easy to define my brows. Quick swipe swipe, and you had some pigment (for a badass brow), plus it was easy and not messy! I’m not good with pencils or pomades so this is a bomb product for me. I’d use it daily. I also don’t think $22 is unreasonable for this product. 10/10 recommend!
- Soho buffing powder brush
This is my ALL TIME favorite bronzer brush. I picked it up on a whim at Marshall’s or TJ Maxx years ago. It was time to retire it. Lol. It’s a solid brush, but it’ll definitely shed as you wash. Doesn’t phase me as it’s the PERFECT bronzing brush lmao. I’ll keep an eye in the future at TJ Maxx’s bc I’d love to snag it again. Otherwise, it’s available on Amazon. Distributes products well and made it look like I was a bronzing PROFESSIONAL. Super easy to use.
- Origins energy boosting gel moisturizer
This was a SUPER fresh and hydrating moisturizer. I am a big fan. I’d consider buying this (if I want to spend a little extra ca$h money) because I do find the quality is THERE with this product. Origins does skincare right and ever since my friend got me started on them, I’m hooked.
- Alba Botanica hawaiian oil-free moisturizer
I am a MEGA fan of this moisturizer. If you are ballin’ on a budget and want a super rich and lush moisturizer (daytime or nighttime), this is your option. My esthetician recommended this to me when my skin was going through it, and I’ve never looked back since. It’s an affordable option with skin benefits and hydration that sinks into your skin. I’ve purchased around 5 of these at this point. When I run out… I notice a difference in my skin! It’s parched without it. Big fan.
So those are all of my recent empties – I live for a good empties post! I hope you enjoyed and found a review of something you were interested in. Let me know your thoughts. Have you tried any of the above? I’m v curious to hear from you.
Affiliate Disclaimer: all Amazon links are affiliate links which means I earn a very small commission on a purchase through the link. You are not obligated to use my links, but of course it helps support me running this blog and finding the gems to share! 🙂
I want to talk about something. Something along the lines of self care. Today’s topic will be how to slow down time on vacation.
Sounds tricky, right? How often do you get so excited while packing, arrive at your destination, have the time of your life, and have to start packing up way too early? All too often, am I right?
Hang with me here.
I want to encourage you to think about your next vacation and how you can slow it down, enjoy the sights, and take in your experience. Vacation can be a time of self-reflection and relaxation. A chance to reset from the daily grind of work or school. A time to put yourself first and to check in with yourself: How are you feeling? has your mind been racing? Has work been stressing you out? You get the gist.
Here are five tips to slowing down time on vacation:
Bring a book
This is so important. I like to bring two: one fiction and one non-fiction/self help. I love getting lost in a good story while I’m sitting by the ocean, not to mention it’s the most soothing place to focus and smash a few chapters. Reading provides a chance to escape reality and let the worries melt away.
If you’re into self-help books, this brings you the opportunity to self-reflect. There are no distractions when you sit down with a good book on the beach (well, besides someone handing you a beer) and this provides a great chance to check in with yourself. Take a moment to reset, and find a book that will help bring you peace of mind. It’s important that we do this every so often or it becomes harder to track our feelings.
Wake up early & grab a cup of coffee with a view
THIS. Omg. This. You need to get up early (at least two of the days, c’mon I know you have it in you). Spend some solo time with a cup of coffee – or tea, I’m not here to judge. Once you do it, simply be alone with yourself. I promise it’s not as intimidating as it sounds. By waking up early, you are quite literally creating more time for yourself on vacation. Proud of you.
Grab your chair and sit near the waves
Next up, I’ma need you to grab your beach chair and sit close enough so that the ocean washes up over your toes. This, of course, applies to those at the beach. Or idk, maybe you are hiking and pass a creek or lazy river. Put your toes in the water. Slow down, listen, pay attention to the feeling of cool water on your toes. This gives you another chance to slow time down a little and practice some mindfulness. Focus on feelings: sights, sounds, smells, sensations.
Don’t ignore your family (actually sit and chat with them, catch up, have real conversations instead of walking by)
I’m guilty of walking past my mom or dad, even my brother and just saying “Morning,” and walking away without having any real conversation. I challenge you to relish the time you have with family on vacation, because my guess is you don’t see them that often! A lot of us work 9-5 for five days a week, and live hours, if not thousands of miles, from our family. Take this time and relish in it. How often do you get to spend a set amount of time together? Use this time to catch up and check in on one another; I’m sure you’ll feel fulfilled by the end of your trip.
Take a walk or go for a bike ride
This is so important! Get yourself some exercise. Again, I’m going to bring this back to mindfulness. If you create the opportunity to walk/bike and clear your mind, you can focus on actual feelings in your body. Think: sights, sounds, smells, sensations. Not to mention, biking for a couple miles will tire you and the minutes literally tick by slowly when all you want to do is stop. Lmao.
Remember: any act of mindfulness will help time slow down. Life doesn’t need to feel rushed 24/7. Check in with yourself. Ask the following:
- How am I feeling?
- Have I experienced stress/anxiety lately?
- What comes to mind when I think of lingering stress? Follow-up: how can I rid of said stress?
All of this being said, I hope it helps you maintain a sense of balance in your mind. When we are not rushing through our thoughts and feelings, we don’t rush through life. Thus, creating more time and slowing time down.
Thank you for hanging out with me today! Lmk any and all thoughts you have below.
“Take a peek inside my SEPHORA checkout basket.”
It’s that time of year! Well, there are two times a year Sephora has major insider sales like this one. Here’s the breakdown of member level and the discount you will receive.
will get 10% off their purchase
members (this is where I fall into for the first time EVER – shocker lmao),
will get 15% off
- VIB Rouge (where we wish we could be, or maybe it’s good if we don’t qualify as that HAHA) it’s a whopping 20% off
From May 2nd-6th, both VIB and Insider level status can shop and use their discounts. It’s a pretty bangin’ deal because only twice a year you can get DISCOUNTS on high end brands (think: Tarte, IT Cosmetics, Too Faced, etc.) – fucking baller.
FIRST UP, and the most exciting purchase for me, I just want to talk about it first because I am SO HYPE for this one and it has been a long time coming. The one… the only…
IT Cosmetics CC+ Cream with SPF 50 – $39.00 ($33.15 with VIB discount)
OH BABY. Oh baby. We are getting into the summer months folks. The weather is spicing up (spicing, is that a term?) – well it is now. It’s getting hot and ya girl wants less CAKE on her FACE. Leading me to finally try, for the first time ever, the IT Cosmetics CC cream. This CC cream has been raved about for years and years now.
Here are the bold claims I’ve heard:
- Great coverage, without losing the look of ‘skin’ underneath
- Long-wearing and great for the summer months
- SPF 50 – which we all need to be slathering on!
- Less than $40 for over 1 fl. oz. of product
So I’m going to test it out… FINALLY. I am so pumped. I’ve never tried a CC cream and I wonder if this will be a mood for the entire summer. Not to mention, my Twitter peeps weighed in on the topic:
Sticking with the theme of makeup, I have purchased another legendary product.
BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector *mini* in Champagne Pop – $22.00 ($18.70 with VIB discount)
This has been hyped for yearssss since one of my favorite YouTubers Jaclyn Hill collab’d with Becca Cosmetics. The name definitely rings a bell – is this Jaclyn’s collab still? I am unsure. REGARDLESS, this is a big-time highlighter with 3,000 reviews and almost 5 stars. Wild. I can’t wait to rock this white gold glam all summer long. Are we noticing a summer theme? Yeah I’m goin’ nuts. Lmao.
Here are the claims I’ve heard:
- Soft glam w/ natural shimmer
- Sits beautifully on the skin
- Universal for all skintones
I am #blessed there was a mini version of the last makeup purchase I made…
Tatcha Silk Canvas Protective Primer *mini* – $22.00 ($18.70 with VIB discount)
Oh baby oh baby, word on the street is this is another fire product. Kathleen Lights, Casey Holmes, and more of my favorite YouTube beauty gurus admit that this primer is one of a kind. They still will tell you the full-size cost is a bit much, but you can’t deny quality when it’s there. Since I could snag a smaller size for less than $20, I went for it. Why the heck not, you know?
Here are the claims I’ve heard:
- Works great for dry or oily skin
- Creates a FLAWLESS base for under foundation/concealer + other face products
- Nourishes the skin and hides pores
ONTO SKINCARE, which we all know is my kryptonite…
Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask – $20.00 ($17.00 with VIB discount)
This is apparently a holy grail for everyone AND THEIR MOTHERS. And fathers. Siblings. Kin. All that good stuff (lol). People RAVE about this shit and I’m hype to see what all the fuss is about. From what I’ve heard this will transform your lips overnight and I need all the help I can get with chapped lips. Does anyone else have chapped lips year round now? It’s not just a winter thing for me…
Here are the claims I’ve heard:
- Overnight your lips are intensely hydrated
- Essentially works miracles while you sleep
- Helps reduce flakiness and fine lines
Lastly, I’m brought to my last product (sigh), this was fun…
Laneige Water Sleeping Mask – $25.00 ($21.25 with VIB discount)
I tossed this into the basket mainly because I want something to transform my skin, do the laundry, clean my dishes and make me breakfast overnight. LOOOOLLLL. Essentially I am looking for magic. I actually tried this in a sample size once and it was lushhh, honey. I’m excited to have a full size of it and use it weekly. Will report back how the hydration lasts and if it makes a difference in my skin. For 2.3 oz. of product I also don’t think this is a terrible price.
Here are the claims:
- Intense hydration overnight
- Gel mask that will absorb quickly into the skin (think: no mess on your pillow)
- Brings radiance and a refreshed look to your skin
For the heck of it, I claimed my FREE SAMPLES (don’t ever forget to do this!)
JOUER Essential High Coverage Foundation – v excited to try this, but am worried it could be heavy. Best to start with a sample!
Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil body butter – yuuuuummy! There were no better picks, tbh, so I went with something I knew I would use up.
Another thing I don’t want you to forget if you are purchasing during the sale, redeem this!
500 FREE POINTS that you can use towards redeeming something later this year! Sometimes there are big skincare sample bags, trial sized makeup bags, etc. Big big item, don’t forget to click it.
TOTAL SAVINGS: $19.20
I am so happy with this! Considering we never get Sephora discounts, it’s a nice chunk off the bill. It’s worth noting I also had a few gift cards to redeem so that helps slice the bill as well.
So what do we think? Have you tried any of these? Are they staples for you? Did YOU pick up anything during the sale or do you plan on it? Lmk… I’m nosey.
“Why spend $50/piece when you can get a whole swimsuit for half the price?”
WAZZUP, fam jam! Hi, hello, and welcome to my review of AMAZON swimwear under $25. Yes, you heard (read) me right, under twenty-five dollars. I have four swimsuits to review for you, and I’m hype about it. I hope you are too.
If you’re looking to save some ca$h money on swimwear, you’re in the right place. I know y’all know wassup with bikini pieces costing $40+ EACH. I’m not down to fuck with that. No thanks, sis. I want quality and style and I don’t want to spend half a paycheck.
TO DISCLAIM: I am 5’4” and 150 lbs. Personal, but I know it helps when peeps are buying swimsuits to know body measurements.
PS – read the Amazon reviews!!! I can’t preach this enough. Check photos. See if a suit runs small or large. Look at how it fits on consumers. This is how I nailed this so well and minimized my returns.
Let’s start with the TWO PIECE I bought – this lil’ red number which made me feel super sexy on my honeymoon.
This suit cuts at the right spots and sits perfectly on my body. I am definitely on the curvy side, with a large caboose to fit in the back, if you know what I’m sayin’. Not gonna lie, for my honeymoon I was looking for some cheeky pieces, and this fits the number. But hear me out, it’s not TOO cheeky. I think I’ll actually take this swimsuit on my family vacation.This suit is not too tight and the bottoms cover up the lower part of my tummy, which I highly appreciate.
PERKS – high-waisted, fits snug but not too tight, doesn’t show too much booty, padding included
COST – $19.99
SIZE – medium
ONTO THE NEXT, a spicy one-piece which makes for GREAT photos. And is flattering to wear.
Who doesn’t love a black bathing suit? Flatters, smoothes, and looks great on everyone. This suit is also high-waisted but I did have to pull it up just a bit to cover my belly button a few times. Not that this suit should cover your belly button (lol), but that’s to give you a reference of how far up my stomach it came. I like this suit a lot, and felt smokinnnn in it. It’s more cheeky than the last suit (I wouldn’t wear this on a family vacay), so it’s perfect for some one-on-one time with your S.O. *insert fire emoji, which is my fav cause it means spicy and HOT*
This suit does have adjustable straps for your comfort, as well as a tie-front to the top that let’s you adjust your bosom. Lol. Okay I need to move on before I start coming up with other weird descriptors of this one.
PERKS – high-waisted and straps are customizable, sexy cut-outs, staple piece swimsuit, padding included
COST – $18.99
SIZE – large (size up for this one)
Okay this is a recent addition of mine, this one-piece minty blue lemon swimsuit. How freaking adorable.
I love the fun that is captured in this one-piece. It’s stylish, cute, can be worn with some denim shorts to a pool party. I just… am in love. Again with this piece I read reviews and looked at photos of actual consumers before purchasing. Everything I read said it ran true to size and I would agree! Straps are adjustable which makes for a comfy fit.
I’d say this is “family beach trip” approved. It’s not meant to be cheeky but when you have junk in the trunk like me it tends to happen J but I wouldn’t call this “too cheeky” to be inappropriate. I love this suit!
PERKS – adjustable straps, cute print and vibrant colors, fits true-to-size, padding included
SIZE – medium
Psssst, I have ONE MORE for you as I thought it wasn’t going to arrive for another two weeks – yay! My final swimsuit is a two-piece with a fun print and vibrant colors.
THIS suit. Is. Mother fucking EVERYTHING. Not tight, gorgeous print, great quality, and so damn flattering. It hides most of your tummy (if that’s what you’re looking for) with high-waisted bottoms and a ruffled top. The print is adorable (I’m even ordering it in another color LMAO) and it fits like a glove.
It is completely family vacation approved with little cheek action in the back. Luckily it does fit me around the waist but I will say it does seem kind of snug in the waistband and leave little room to “fluctuate.” Lol. Ladies, I know you feel me on this. Nevertheless I’m very comfortable in it and I love the way it flatters my tummy anyways!
PERKS – can wear with/without the straps, cute print and vibrant colors, fits true-to-size, padding included, covers the belly
SIZE – mediumSoooo what are your thoughts?! Have you ordered swimwear/fashion items from Amazon before? How is the quality? Thanks so much for stopping by!
Affiliate Disclaimer: all Amazon links are affiliate links which means I earn a very small commission on a purchase through the link. You are not obligated to use my links, but of course it helps support me running this blog and finding the gems to share! 🙂
“It’s about time I get my ass in shape.”
HEYOOOO – interested in toning up? I suppose it is about that time as you know they all say, “bikini bods are made in the winter,” LMAO. I know, it’s spring, chill.
Okay so bikini bodies can also be made in the spring. Don’t freak out. And as a disclaimer: ALL BODIES ARE BIKINI BODIES. CAPICHE? Ain’t nobody who should be hiding behind a one-piece or a cover-up. OWN IT – you are built the way you are and you don’t need to change that.
However, with that being said, I’ve been on a bit of a fitness journey since the start of 2019 (hello, New Year’s resolution that’s actually stuck). Along with this fitness journey I’ve tried to clean up my eating and TONE TF UP. I’m tired of wasting my 20s feeling sluggish with bad exercise habits.
Next time I’m at the doctor and they ask, “How often do you exercise?” I wanna say “3-5 times a week, mothafuckaaaa.” LMAO JK – obviously I won’t respond like that. But maybe.
Okay okay, on with the routine.
Since starting my fitness journey, I’ve made it a habit to exercise weekly. I’ve picked up fitness classes at the gym as well as outdoor running (weather permitting). I’ve started to incorporate strength training and not just cardio.
Two important pieces here:
- Notice I used the word habit. Same as building a routine. If you push yourself to just get up and DO IT, it will become a routine. If it’s a routine, it will feel more natural and like less of a “ah fuck, I have to go workout again?” Trust me. Put in the work for 2 weeks and see how you feel.
- Incorporate strength training! It’s so important! Sure, you can practice cardio 2-3 times a week to slim down or maintain your weight, but you’re missing out on toning your muscles. Me personally, I want to feel STRONG, and not just workout to maintain my body weight.
HERE’S HOW MY ROUTINE GOES:
Monday – some sort of cardio/strength/yoga. Depending on how I start my week here is how I base the rest of it. Recently, I’ve been attending a yoga class or doing some at-home strength training.
at-home video: Kalyn Nicholson strength training
Tuesday – OPPOSITE of yesterday. I’ve made it a habit of attending HIIT Cardio classes at my gym on Tuesday’s right after work.
*Not to mention I have a workout buddy and it’s SO HELPFUL. Holy shit. If there’s anything I can recommend – find a friend and drag their ass to the gym with you! There is power in numbers.
at-home video: 30 min full body HIIT
Wednesday – take a rest day. You don’t need to be moving every day of the week and you gotta give your muscles a day to recover. Don’t waste all that hard work you’re putting in by throwing your body into overdrive.
Thursday – I’ll usually repeat what I did on Monday.
Friday – get some cardio in and go for a run. Take in the fresh air, get your blood pumping. It feels so good to work up a longer running distance week to week. Push yourself .5 miles further than your previous run.
Saturday & Sunday – these are sort of toss-up days. If for some reason I ran on a Thurs, I’ll get up early Saturday and run a few miles. It’s so nice to be up (not hungover) and enjoying the crisp morning air. Sometimes I’ll attend a yoga class on Sunday nights to clear my head for the week to come.
at-home video: Yoga with Adriene for anxiety & stress
- Switch it up! Don’t repeat the same exercise 4x a week. It’s important to work new muscles so your body doesn’t get used to the same routine. It’s easier to make progress when you incorporate new exercises.
- Grab a buddy! Having someone there to attend a gym class or hit the running path with not only holds you accountable but pushes you to perform better.
- Make it a routine! Don’t give up on yourself, this is the one body you have. Put energy in, get the results out. Push yourself to commit to a routine for 2 weeks and see if at the end of it, you feel compelled to continue.
I hope this was helpful or at the very least, you enjoyed reading J it’s been so motivating to see results since starting this and I wanted to share the joy! Do you have a workout routine? If not, are you planning to start?