The Best Products of 2019 That I’m Bringing into 2020

As excited as I am for this new year, 2019 was such a great year for me! For a little life update: a few months ago, my long-term boyfriend and I moved to California together, I finished working on my first feature length film for Netflix, I spent amazing time with family for the holidays and much more!

2019 was great for movies, shows and the reason why we’re here, products! This was the year that I really took my skincare, wellness, sustainability and beauty seriously! With that being said, I wanted to share the products that I will continue to use this new year – even after my product clean out!

Let’s start with my favorite makeup product of the entire year. Physician’s Formula Butter Bronzer. Guys, this stuff this my absolute favorite! I consider myself really not great at makeup. For some reason, I just can’t figure it out. But this bronzer is so easy and ends up looking flawless when you just need an extra boost on the face. I will continue to purchase this bronzer until I find something better – but that hasn’t happened yet!

image via Hey Dewy

For skincare, I still am holding onto my favorite products from Mario Badescu, Drunk Elephant, Dr. Dennis Gross, etc. that I’ve raved about in past posts – so I won’t repeat myself! But, I will let you know about my Hey Dewy Portable Facial Humidifier. This was a Christmas gift that I have been using ever since I unwrapped it – I absolutely love it. It is not a facial steamer, it actually is more of a cold mist. I use it after a workout or a warm day, but I also love having it run in the bathroom when I’m doing my skincare routine or my makeup. It just adds an extra boost of hydration to your skin and is so cute & small & portable.

image via Baggu

If you guys haven’t read my post about my favorite sustainability products – check it out! I purposefully left out this product because I wanted to shine a bigger light on it. My Baggu bags are my very favorite. First off, they are adorable and second, we’re reducing our plastic use – yay! Baggu has such a range of designs for their reusable bags that I use for grocery store and farmer’s market trips! They are so spacious and have been my favorite for years now! Go get some to keep in your car – you won’t regret it!

image via Kush Queen

Now let’s dive into a couple wellness products that have helped me this past year. Some of you know that I work on a film set for sometimes 16 hours a day. My body pretty much constantly aches and nothing seemed to help. My boyfriend stopped at a wellness store after work one day and picked up a CBD bath bomb for me – and oh my goodness, perfect. It was from Kush Queen and not only smelled amazing, but really relieved the pain I was experiencing in my joints. I highly recommend checking it out if you have any sort of joint or muscle pain.

Last, but certainly not least, I became obsessed with another wellness product this past month actually that I can no longer picture my life without! I splurged and got a Theragun, you guys… This year, my boyfriend and I skipped Christmas presents and decided to take the leap and get a G3 Theragun to share (he has major back pain from corporate America life). If you’re not familiar, a Theragun is a high-powered massage gun that truly gets into any tight muscles or aches that come up. After sitting at my computer for hours, I get that little kink in my lower back – 2 minutes with this thing gets it right out! It definitely is pricey, but invest in yourself! We truly will get our money’s worth out of this thing!

Well, there you have it! I wanted to share some of the products that I loved during 2019. I of course have so many more skincare and wellness products that I fell in love with – but I tried to avoid repeating myself and wanted to talk about some things that I never have before! I hope this was helpful and that you learned about some new products to possibly try out this year! What were your cult-faves of 2019? Let me know in the comments down below!

Simple Eco-Friendly Changes You Can Make In Your Day-to-Day Life

As someone who has spent quite some time in Los Angeles, I’ve always been aware of how we should be living more eco-friendly day-to-day lives, and we should try to save the turtles, etc. Seeing how bad our ecosystems are currently, especially our oceans, it’s officially the last straw – literally.

I bring up Los Angeles because it’s one of the major cities that is trying to eliminate straw use and drastically reduce our plastic waste. It’s borderline frowned upon if you’re still using a straw at a restaurant or drinking out of a single-use Dasani water bottle. As dramatic as that may sound, and trust me – I despise using paper straws, the plastic issue is truly out of control!

I am by no means an expert on this topic, obviously. But I feel as though I could give some tips on how to help, in anyway that we can, in a more grounded and relatable manner. It’s very difficult to think that just one person is going to make a difference in this already out of control situation, but we gotta start somewhere!

Disclaimer: Nobody’s perfect. I’m not saying to completely switch to a waste-free lifestyle or anything completely drastic. These are just some tips on simple and easy things you can try to implement, everything helps!

First, I’ll explain a little bit about what “problem” I’m even referring to. Any piece of trash that you throw into a garbage can is going into the landfills. But trash flies into storm drains, rivers, oceans, you name it – and trillions of pieces of trash are currently in our oceans. While no trash is good, a lot of that is plastic. Plastic silverware, sandwich bags, grocery bags, straws, etc. are all floating around and polluting our waters. Sea turtles are ingesting plastic straws and dying, dolphins are thinking that grocery bags are jellyfish and eating them. ugh.

Even though the problem seems long gone, there are simple things you can do to stop the tap of trash that is flowing into the water everyday.

Reusable Produce Bags, $6.99

image via Target

I just picked some of these up today from Target! When going grocery shopping, I do most of my damage in the produce section. I’m always picking up fruits and veggies to stock my fridge for the week. But in doing so, we use those thin plastic produce bags to wrap everything up. On a big shopping day, I might use up to five of those. Yes, they are recyclable, but if they get gross and sticky from fruit or dirty from unwashed vegetables, not all recycling centers will accept those, so they end up in the landfills anyway. SO, picking up some of these reusable produce bags can be major! This pack has 5 separate bags, so I have more than enough. The produce can also breathe in these bags and they are machine washable. Love it.

Reusable Sandwich/Ziploc Bags, $8.99

Image via Target

Like I mentioned above, one-use sandwich bags ending up in the ocean can be detrimental, and have been detrimental, to sea animals! Buying a few of these for your lunch box or meal prep is extremely simple and all you have to do is throw them in the dishwasher or rinse them out, easy as that. No excuses, people!

Reusable Straws

I don’t even need to link these because you can get reusable straws anywhere! The easiest place to pick some up are at your grocery store or just on Amazon. If you’re always eating out or grabbing a quick coffee, the amount of plastic straws you go through is crazy! These straws are ending up in the ocean and are a main killer of sea turtles and other marine life. Keeping a reusable straw in your car/purse for your daily iced coffees or your Friday night margarita can make a small difference! Most times these straws are coming in cute carrying cases too, so they aren’t getting dirty in your purse! If you absolutely need to use a plastic straw, or are ever in a pinch, people recommend to cut the straw into shreds before disposing.

Say no to plastic silverware

I’m guilty of this. When ordering off Postmates or Uber Eats, I always end up getting a plastic silverware set in the bag, naturally. But most times I’m ordering to-go food, I’m going to eat it at my house or a friend’s house, where there is plenty of real silverware right in the kitchen. I’m sure it’s obvious why we wouldn’t want plastic forks and knives in the ocean, so I’ll spare you the details. But on the “delivery instructions” or “more” section, you can request to not have silverware included! If you are on-the-go or eating at your desk at work, I recommend just picking up a bamboo silverware set that you can wash and keep in your cubicle or bag for when you’re at a food truck, etc.

Know how to properly Recycle!

It wasn’t until recently that I really learned how to properly recycle. As silly as it sounds, I just thought I could throw my yogurt cup in the the recycling bin, or a used pizza box was fair game. That might be an obviously no-no to you, but in the Midwest, where I grew up, recycling education isn’t necessarily a priority. I now know that we need to wash out our plastic yogurt cups and sticky Gatorade bottles and Starbucks plastic cups when we’re ready to recycle them. It’s a weird concept to “wash your trash,” but if it ends up dripping on and soiling the rest of the bin, recycling centers sometimes just consider that trash, and end up throwing it in the landfill anyway. It’s like you never recycled at all!

Second point to make is that recycling isn’t necessarily helping anymore. So, all the plastic we’ve been recycling for years and years has been being bought by China, who then deals with it for us. This year, China stopped buying our plastics, because they are becoming way too polluted and congested with our trash, which is so upsetting. So now, all these things that we are recycling and thinking that we are making a change, no longer have an infrastructure to deal with it. Although I’m not educated enough on the topic to know what is currently being done with our bottles and plastic straws, I know that we personally can try and reduce the amount of waste that we are creating as an individual!

Alrighty then, I know this topic is far from what I usually talk about. But I can’t sit back and see dying sea turtles anymore on Twitter! Making these simple changes in my life, makes me feel that I’m doing the best that I can. Let me know if you are doing any of these things already or have some new tips to share with me!

Cryotherapy: What To Expect

This year, I’ve been really into shopping around for different & fun health and fitness experiences, to see what works for me. Recently, I tried out a new procedure that I’m officially obsessed with. I’m sure you read the title and know exactly what I’m talking about: Cryotherapy.

First of all, I’ll explain why I wanted to give this a try in the first place. Cryotherapy is amazing for sore muscles & joints; which I’ve been dealing with due to exercise, stress, and being on my feet all day. I wanted to give it a try to see if it helped at all with the pain I’ve been experiencing.

If you’re not sure what exactly whole body cryotherapy is, prepare yourself: it’s cold! To be frank, you get in a -250 degree tube for 3 minutes. As crazy as that sounds, it’s not unbearable. Your body acts as though it is literally freezing, so your blood starts to pool in the center of your body. Once you step out after 3 minutes, your blood rushes back into the rest of your body and sends adrenaline and endorphins to your brain.

I want to explain my experience with you guys, in case you’re interested in giving it a go yourself! First of all, price. Prices obviously differ depending on where you live and what facility you go to, so browse around for the one that works best for you! Most places will/should give you discount for your first session. A typical session in the Indianapolis area is around $45, especially at a professional sports medicine clinic. I went to Cryotherapy Indy.

Now, what to expect once you arrive for your first session. After signing a waiver, you’ll be brought back to your Cryotherapy room by one of their specialists. Make sure you mention it’s your first time, just so you make sure to make all the proper precautions! You then will strip down and slip on one of their provided robes. It is up to you whether you wear undergarments, I was told it didn’t matter either way! You then need to wear gloves, socks and sandals to protect yourself from the extreme temperatures. Even if there’s a tiny bit of moisture on your socks from the start of your day, make sure to change into ones they have provided for you. I’m sure you can guess what happens to any sort of moisture at -250 degrees!

Once I was changed and ready, the specialist stepped back into the room and had me step into the machine.

I’m not sure if this is the case at all places, but the specialist stayed in the room with me the entire session, in order to run the machine.

Once you step in, you lose the robe and the session begins! The platform that you stand on raises up the perfect height so that your neck and face are coming out the top of all the liquid nitrogen. From then on, the temperature is obviously extremely cold but to be honest, it’s not that bad! I think the adrenaline, and having the woman to talk to and distract me, made the time fly by!

After the 3 minutes is up, you get your robe back and step out. I kid you not, all the pain in my knees, shins & wrist vanished. Cryotherapy reduces inflammation and accelerates healing in your muscles. I truly felt the effects instantly and the pain stayed away until the next time I trained, of course.

Another reason why I want to continue to go to cryotherapy is that it has amazing beauty & anti-aging benefits! It increases your metabolism and is estimated that you burn 500-800 calories in one single, 3 minute, session. It also detoxifies, accelerates your skin’s rejuvenation process, firms your skin & increases collagen production. Sign me up!

Have you ever tried Cryotherapy before? I’m officially hooked!

What Was In My Spring FabFitFun Box?

It’s like Christmas 4 times a year.

If you have a FabFitFun subscription, you know how insane the excitement is every season when the perfect present shows up on your doorstep. I’ve had a FFF subscription for a few years now & I can honestly say I have never had a bad box! The value of the products I receive blows away the $50 price tag. It’s insane!

This month, in particular, was no exception. I got some pretty amazing products & I’m here to share them with you. Every season, I get to try so many new products which I fall in love with. The spring box contained a couple of my all-time favorite brands, so that made me very happy. Here are the killer products that I received this month…

Robe from Show Me Your Mumu, $84

You can imagine how pumped I was when this beautiful robe was included in my box. It’s lightweight, comfortable & perfect for springtime. I can imagine using this robe when I’m a little chilly in the morning and want to go downstairs to have my breakfast or even bring on a vacation. I cannot believe an $84 robe came in my $50 subscription box… I’ll always be grateful for amazing surprises like this!

Leave In Conditioner by OUAI, $26

I let out another little squeal when I saw a OUAI product in my box. I love other products from this brand but had never tried the Leave In Conditioner. I have been using this ever since it arrived in the mail & I love it. It smells amazing, leaves my hair feeling super moisturized & has basically eliminated the frizz in my hair! If you’ve been wanting to try this product out, I recommend you do! Definitely making it in to my shower routine!

Daily Detox Brush by Daily Concepts, $18

If you’ve never heard of Dry Brushing, I’m going to do a blog post all about it soon – so have no fear! This brush is considered a “detox brush” so it can be used dry or wet, which is great if you want to ease your way into it! You guys know I’m a huge fan of exfoliating, which this brush is great for, but the way dry brushing drains your lymphatic system is a whole other story. I use a dry brush before I jump in the shower to exfoliate away dead skin & stimulate circulation all over my body. If your skin isn’t used to the brush yet, you can always use it in the shower with your favorite body wash!

Vivienne Sunglasses by Quay Australia, $60

Quay Sunglasses? Are you kidding?! If you read my March Favorites post, you know I am currently obsessed with my Quay Blue Light glasses. So when I got home from California to see that I have yet another pair from this brand to add to the collection, I was stoked! Once again, an item that is worth more than the box itself is crazy. Super happy about this one.

Champagne Charcoal Body Scrub by Manna Kadar, $24

Alright, I just got to say this – this is probably the only product I wasn’t super excited about. Then again, I haven’t had the chance to try this out yet, so I could be completely wrong. You know I’m big on exfoliating, but I just feel like I have SO many scrubs – I have too much! But with that being said, the reviews on this product are great, I love most charcoal products & I shouldn’t knock it ’til I try it! Have you tried this before?

Palm Print Beach Towel by Summer and Rose, $50

This is different! With spring vacations & summer coming up, I love that they included a product that I always forget when heading to the beach or pool – a towel. Not to mention, this bright print is amazing. My favorite part of this towel, by far, is the fact that it’s made out of microfiber – meaning water and sand won’t stick. This is exactly what I needed.

Quartz Necklace by The2Bandits, $30

There’s nothing I love more than a simple white/silver necklace against my tan skin. Once I achieve that tan (hopefully soon), this will be my favorite spring and summer accessory. I’ve actually been eyeing this brand, The2Bandits, for a while now; their jewelry is amazing. So, I’m super excited to own one of their pieces now!

No More Baggage Eye De-Puffing Gel by Dr. Brandt Skincare, $42

Last, but certainly not least, my favorite product of the whole season! Dr. Brandt is one of my all-time favorite skincare brands, so anytime I see something from them, I’m excited. But I’ve truly been searching for a eye product that actually worked for my morning eyes. This is it. Once I received this in the mail, I started using it that day. Within minutes of using it, my undereyes smoothed out & my bags vanished. I’m so confused how well this worked, but it did for me. If you have been in need of a solution to your undereye bags, you should give this one a try. Obsessed!

If this post hasn’t convinced you how amazing FabFitFun is, I don’t know what will! Just this box alone had products totaling over $300 in value. This is in no way sponsored, but if you’re inclined to sign up, you can use my link for 20% off your first box! Thanks for reading yet another post & I’ll see you in a few days!

✩ March Favorites ✩

Better late than never!

Hey ladies! So as you might’ve noticed, I’ve been gone for a couple weeks. I have been in Los Angeles working on a new TV show so I’ve been working 16 hour days. Now we’re back & better than ever and ready to deliver some of my favorite products from this past month! Let’s get right into it…

Quay Blue Light Glasses, $65

Alright, first up is probably my favorite product of this entire post. I finally caved and got some blue light glasses – I’m literally wearing them as I type this! If you’re not sure what they are, they block the blue light from our phones and computers from creating negative effects on our eyes. Extended exposure to blue light can disrupt your sleep cycle and create strain on your eyes. Nobody wants that! I’ve always seen the glasses on Amazon but when I saw this pair in the Quay store, I just had to. Not only are they stylish, they’re helping my eyes at the same time. Win, win!

Vermont Village Vinegar Shots, $16 per pack

None of us like to take the god awful apple cider vinegar shots, but the benefits have us drinking them through the pain. If you’ve ever had ACV, you know how acidic it is – meaning it’s not great for your teeth. I found these vinegar shots from Vermont Village that have a little more tolerable flavor and are meant to dilute in your water. This way, my teeth can be spared & I don’t mind consuming ACV everyday!

Kopari Coconut Deodorant, $14

This deodorant has been a lifesaver for me this month. As I mentioned earlier, I’ve been working in LA in the heat. I’ve been using natural deodorant for some time now, but this one from Kopari truly, truly works for me. This deo is aluminum-free which means you won’t have clogged pores in your armpits and prevents a harmful ingredient from getting into your bloodstream through those pores! I used to believe I would never find a natural deodorant that actually worked for me, until this one. It smells amazing, doesn’t leave white residue & is safe for your lymphatic system. If you’re wanting to make the switch, this is the #1 one I’d recommend!

Vital Proteins Collagen Shot – Glow

Speaking of wellness shots, here’s another one I’ve been loving! Vital Proteins is known for their collagen powders, but late last year they started selling individual liquid shots & I’m obsessed. I’ve been loving the “Glow” one because in just one little shot it has 7g collagen peptides, 60mg of hyaluronic acid, vitamin C and biotin. To put that in clearer terms, it’s amazing for your skin! I find mine in Whole Foods so I don’t have to buy an expensive bulk pack. Tequila shots on the weekends, collagen shots during the week!

Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Lotion, $6

Back in my January Favorites, I showed you guys my holy grail lip balm from Palmer’s. I discovered their Cocoa Butter Lotion this past month and my life was forever changed. This is the best naturally smelling & hydrating lotion I have ever used. I am pretty bad about regularly applying lotion, but I get excited about applying this stuff! It’s also super affordable and doesn’t contain drying fragrances. I’m obsessed.

There you have it – the products I’ve been obsessed with over the past month! These Favorites posts are always my favorite to write & I hope you were introduced to some new things! This month was all about wellness for me, so go ahead and get started with your self-care!

The Best Skincare Packing Checklist For Your Next Trip/Vacation

Spring has sprung & if you’re lucky, you might be jet-setting off on a vacation soon! In my case, I’m headed to California for some work so I need to make sure I don’t forget a thing.

Before anything, I start packing my skincare because it’s the most easily forgettable for me! Whether you’re flying or driving, going to a warm climate or cold, you have to be prepared for how your skin is going to react when you get yourself in a new environment. You could have beautiful & clear skin at home, but it may go a little crazy after traveling. Make sure you’re ready!

I put together a packing checklist that I use when traveling and I thought I’d share just in case you need to get more organized! When flying or driving for hours on end, its important to hydrate and protect your skin! I’ll start with the products I need in my carry-on or car bag and move on to the list of things I bring for daily use on a trip!

Travel Essentials

Alright, so you’re boarding a 5 hour flight or preparing for a 10 hour car ride, what do you need? First off, it’s important to know that it is important to take care of your skin during that time. Being in a confined space with other people and low air quality can attack that skin that you’ve worked so hard to get.

Airplane cabin air truly sucks all the moisture out of your skin. Make sure to pack your favorite moisturizing mask or creme. The most iconic mask for traveling is of course the Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask. It’s definitely pricey at $50, but it you travel a lot, it’s a great investment! Once you board your flight, slap this baby on and prevent your skin from drying out so you look glowy on that vacation! Speaking of hydration, I don’t go anywhere without my Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask. A true essential for any flight.

Usually when I’m traveling, I get started very early in the morning. With early mornings, comes those not-so-cute eye bags. I always, always, always pack eye masks/gels when traveling to make sure I look fresh upon arrival. You don’t want anyone to know how tired you are, trust me. I love these Activated Charcoal Eye Gels from Blaq! Don’t be afraid to look a little different on a plane, skin is important!

While the first two products are the main things I always pack, I often forget the smaller items. Two more things you need for your next flight or long car ride are sanitizing wipes & a facial spray. Once you get in your seat, be that person and wipe down your seat and tray & whatever else you will be touching during your travels. Touching a dirty seatbelt and then touching your face is skincare suicide – don’t do it! I also always throw in a travel size facial spray to refresh and hydrate throughout the hours. Must have!

VACAY/Trip Essentials

Alright, you’ve made it to your destination and you’re ready to spend a short or long duration there. When packing, I could bring an entire checked bag of all the products I feel like I would need. But in reality, a few good essentials will get you through. Here are the products I always need on my trips, no matter where I’m going:

When I’m traveling to a hot or cold climate, I always find the need to hydrate. Sunburn or below zero temperatures can desperately dry out your skin. My favorite go-to creme is my First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream. I know I’ve talked about it so much, but it’s my most universal product for any climate I find myself in.

Peach and Lily

There’s nothing better than a little “me-time” in your hotel room or Airbnb after a long day. That’s why I always pack sheet masks to indulge a little on a trip. I work in film which means I usually work 16 hour days of chaos. Having a hydrating or plumping sheet mask to throw on and relax at night gives my skin back some life after a crazy day. When packing for your next trip, throw in some masks for a little treat every once in a while.

This one is obvious, but make sure to pack your essential cleanser, moisturizing & exfoliator. Whatever your faves are, don’t switch it up. Keep your skincare routine as regular as possible so your skin doesn’t freak out! When you’re going through your routine the night or morning before travel, throw the products in your bag after use! It makes it way easier to not forget something that your skin is used to!

Last, but certainly not least: sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen! If you’re not technically heading to the beach, sunscreen is something that I always forget about. In cold or hot climates, the sun can always damage your skin. Bouncing off the snow or beating down from the sky, those UV rays are after you. Find a sunscreen that works for you and layers well with your other skincare and makeup. I love the Supergoop! Unseen Sunscreen. It has 40 SPF and works well with my skin type!

There you have it, my travel essentials for all my trips and vacations! The next time you’re heading out on a flight or a road trip, take some of my suggestions into consideration. When I’m packing for my upcoming work trip, I’ll be referencing my list because I still always forget! Happy travels!

The Skincare Organizer You Need In Your Life

With the copious amount of skincare that you guys know I have, it would be a disaster if I didn’t properly organize all of it. Today, I’m sharing the product that truly made me feel less overwhelmed when it came to my skincare.

I have a one-sink bathroom with minimal counter space. You can imagine that that conflicts with being able to display all of my products and have them easily accessible. I was cramming cremes and cleansers into a tiny space which looked awful & simultaneously stressed me out to have to look at.

Anyway, let’s get to the point: I got a rotating, customizable beauty organizer off of Amazon and my life, and counter, was forever changed. It’s called the sanipoe 360 Rotating Makeup Organizer & I’m obsessed! The shelving on it is customizable so you can move them up and down to different heights for different sized products.

I now can display over 30 products in a 12 inch space!

As for the actual organization of my products goes, I like to group together similar products. Up top houses my moisturizers and larger tubs of product, since the shelving works best for smaller items. My cleansers go together, as well as my eye products, oils, etc. It sounds self-explanatory, but I know exactly where to spin when looking for a certain product at each step of my routine.

There are many great organizers out there, find the one that works best for you! I recommend using one with adjustable shelving like mine, so you can ensure that you’ll be able to accommodate for future products you plan to add to your collection!

I know this one was short but sweet, but I wanted to share a simple product that truly helped me declutter my life. If anyone has watched Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, you’ll appreciate that a simple fix can change an entire room! If you have a cluttered countertop full of makeup, haircare and skincare, I highly recommend finding an organizer that works for your space!