Beauty and the…Sun?

 

Now that we have officially entered Spring (and hoping the Midwest weather gets the memo), I thought I would share some of my beauty secrets!

As you know, I love to run! I also love being outdoors as much as I can when the weather permits, whether working out or playing with the little man. All that time in the sun means I need to take extra care of my skin to avoid sunburn, possible wrinkles, or skin damage. I thought it would be easiest to just share my daily routine. I hope you enjoy!

I start my mornings by using my toner on my face. I find that it clears away anything that was missed or left over from the night before. I feel like it helps to make sure I am not starting my day with clogged pores. I use my ProActive toner(step 2) for that….I was using this $26 toner before I ran out and really liked it. I simple put it on a cotton ball or pad and wipe it all over my face. You would be surprised to see what you can miss the night before sometimes!

After my toner I am ready for my workout! When I am able to run outside with Dalton I want to use a sweat proof sunscreen that is strong enough for me, but also safe enough for him and isn’t going to clog our pores. I know I could always get two different sun screens, but honestly that is just a pain to bring along two different sunscreens, especially since I found this  Think Baby sun screen that is amazing! It lasts on my long runs and keeps us both sun burn free! It also has some of the best ratings available for baby sunscreen (you can read about it in the link!). Just as a side note, Dalton and I were the only ones who didn’t get burnt in Fiji using this sun screen to where we started sharing it with over half of our group!

Depending on weather, I go to the gym to do a resistance workout or do an at home workout, or if I am just running for the day, will determine on when I wash my face. Once I am done working out I use all three steps of my ProActive. (When it is a rest day I use my ProActive three step system first thing in the morning). As a little disclaimer, when first starting proactive, as with any acne treatment, it will pull everything out before it can start preventing future break outs, but it does work! As a long distance runner, as well as my other workouts, I am a sweater! Take one look at my instagram and you can see that 😉 and ProActive has kept me down to maybe a couple of black heads once in a while verse a hairline of pimples or hormonal breakouts! Because it can be drying, once my third step in the system has dried, I like to use my Dilo Oil. This stuff is amazing! It feels like a dose of hydration on your skin (a serious winter must have too!).

When it comes to my bedtime routine, I have a couple of different cleansers that I use, but this Lush Ultrabland is definitely my favorite! I love Lush products because they are natural and either vegetarian or vegan! This cleanser is also a makeup remover so perfect for night time and super simple to use! You rub it all over your face and then use a damp cloth to wipe away..that’s it! I love that it leaves my skin feeling super clean but not dried out!

After my cleanser, twice a week I use my Exfolikate(you can get the travel size for $24!!) or Gentle Exfolikate depending on whether my skin has been dry or sensitive lately. (Thursday and Sundays are my days because I want a super fresh face going into my weekend and end my weekend taking away any of the extra pollutants or dirt that may have gotten on my face from being out and about…I know, it sounds weird, but that’s what I do). I cannot stress my love for this product enough! I have given both my mom and sister this exfoliator because it is that great! When I first read the reviews on it, I was such a skeptic. How can reviewers actually say a product works in one use?! Well.. try it once and you will see how it does! As an added tip, if I can, I like to use this in the shower so my pores are nice and open from the steam to get that deep exfoliation! To use, cover your face to look like the wicked green witch, rub it in for 30 seconds, leave on up to 2 minutes, then rinse. Your face will get a little red after, but it goes away quickly!

After either my cleanser or exfoliator, depending on the day of the week, I use my Dermal Quench Lift with Retinol. This product use is recommended based on age, if you are in your 30s use 3 times a week, 40s use 4 times a week, 50s use 5 times a week, etc. I typically use it Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday since two of those days are my exfoliating days and these also tend to be my long run days. There is also a regular dermal quench, but honestly, the retinol is the key! That is what is going to target and keep away those fine lines and wrinkles!

Depending on how my skin feels, if I need a little extra moisture boost, I will use my Dilo Oil and then once it dries use my Age Arrest wrinkle cream. I recently started using the Age Arrest Wrinkle and I do like it, but think my favorite is still the nourish moisturizer (which I just ordered this week). The age arrest is thicker so it can be nice for the winter, but the nourish moisturizer is so light and works amazingly with the dilo oil and just has that fresh feeling and smell!

Last but not least, I use my Honey Trap Lip Balm! It is a little thicker when you first put it on but melts into your lips! It will leave your lips hydrated throughout the night so you don’t have to worry about annoying chapped lips!

I hope you enjoyed my routine and let me know if you have any questions on the products! I recommend trying the Exfolikate and Dermal Quench Mini Duo because it is much cheaper than the full size and enough product to see if you will really like both products! Trust me, once you are introduced to Kate Somerville and Lush products you will see why they are over half the products I use! What’s even better?! All of these companies are against animal testing!

And finally… my biiiiiiggest beauty secret, WATER! I can always tell when I haven’t had enough water the night before by how my skin looks. I try to aim for at least a gallon of water a day, add lemon to change it up and get that metabolism revving for the day!

Have a great Friday and thank you for all the support.

 

 

*This is not a sponsored post

 

 

 

 

Grandma’s Sweater

 

I am hands down a hoodie girl. I have always loved a comfy zip up hoodie ever since my sister got this black one when we were younger. I will never forget when she handed it down to me, I was so excited I didn’t care there was already a hole forming by the pocket! I love zip up hoodies, you can dress them up or down and they are so freaking comfortable, but lately there has been such a draw for me to cardigans. The way you can drown yourself in a piece of knitted fabric to feel so cozy and warm…amazing, nostalgic in way.

It wasn’t until my most recent cardigan purchase that I really understood why I randomly go on cardigan splurges, even though I know I probably own enough (just kidding…there are more colors to find!), and that is when I realized..it wasn’t just the cardigan I was after, but my grandma’s sweater.

Growing up my grandma always wore this oversized cardigan sweater. It was a staple to her grandma style. When she wasn’t wearing it, it was hanging on her recliner rocking chair. I don’t know what made this cardigan so special, but on the occassion she would let one of us grandchildren wear it, it was hard to not beam from cheek to cheek.

My sister is the person in our family who is always cold so she often got to wear the sweater more than me, so when my grandma decided to give her the cardigan, I wasn’t too upset. It seemed right that my sister would have it. Don’t get me wrong, every time my sister wore it around the house the slightest bit of envy tried to crawl its way out, but I contained it…for the most part.

I always had a close relationship with my grandma. I found her to be incredibly fascinating and so nonsensical yet she always loved my whimsical spirit. We often traded her stories for my poems.

When she moved to a different state we started writing letters to each other. She was one of the few people who knew my passion for writing and always said she couldn’t wait to see the poems or stories I would write when I was older(which she unfortunately never would).

When my grandma passed I was heart broken. I literally could barely stand at her funeral. It seemed unreal to me that I would never see her again or receive another letter after we had been writing back and forth for nearly a decade.

So how does this relate to my obsession with cardigan sweaters? I realized they are my new connection to her and our memories. When I curl into a soft cardigan, I feel like I am back with her again. It is so strange how we can subconsciously attach ourselves to things so simple, but that is how she lives on with me. This is how I never let her memory die. It amazes me that it took so long to fully comprehend why years ago I suddenly became cardigan obsessed, because that is how I am able to still feel close to her even after she was gone. I find it beautiful that our relationship carries on in a new way long after our physical relationship had to end.

 

 

 

What I’m wearing:

cardigan- similar (under $50), similar knit (under $100), one I’m wearing (size down!!)

bralette-Free People Huge Sale (check sizing recommendations)

shirt-anthropologie www.anthropologie.com (they have great sale items! check sizing, I normally size down)

jeans-Express.com (previous season, true to size)

White Wall in Milwaukee

   

After dropping my mother in law off at the airport last week, the husband had some work to do in Milwaukee so I of course compromised  a  photoshoot out of it. With the baby fast asleep in the back of the truck our locations quickly became limited. When we were driving through the historic ward and I saw this brick wall and told my husband to stop, he actually thought I was kidding. His expression when I was trying to explain to him that people actually use brick walls as back drops was pretty hilarious.

I don’t know what it is, but I find Milwaukee to be such a beautiful city. From a distance it doesn’t look too exciting because it is so small in comparison to other larger or more populated cities, but there is something so romantic about it. The old buildings with the arrange of architect perfectly blending the old with the new. There aren’t a ton of buildings so tall that the sun is hidden for blocks. It has an open feel for being a city. Maybe I find it romantic in a nostalgic sense because it is also a place I have no bad memories associated with it from child to adulthood. To have a place with only good memories, no negative, no hard times, just happiness is so rare. Think about that..only good memories. Can you think of a city that has only ever provided you with happy memories every time you have been there? It is hard not to hold a place so fondly in your heart when you can only smile when thinking of it. When I think Milwaukee I think of the first time my family drove up from Illinois to go to the state fair and having just as much fun going to the fair as an adult. I am reminded of the the time I drove my car out of the state without family for the first time when I went to Warped Tour in Milwaukee. I think of the many times I watched Wayne’s World and thought the city looked so fun (and how badly I wanted a licorice dispenser in my car one day), and when watching the old reruns of Laverne and Shirley thinking Milwaukee looked like a blast!

While other people may not see the beauty I see or have the same perspective as I do regarding Milwaukee, I will always hold the memories I have close and smile at how special it is to have a place like that.

 

What I am wearing:

Michael Kors sunnies similar here

This cardigan I got from Anthropologie last year but these are a few cardigans that are similar herehere, splurge here.

I couldn’t find a link but this thermal is similar.

Under I am wearing my Free People barrette. I love this bralette! I have it in black and the light pink. Definitely read the sizing recommendations to get the best fit here.

My jeans aren’t currently available but these Top Shop jeans are high rise like mine and very similar and currently price matched now here! I always have Paige jeans on my wishlist waiting for them to go on sale and when finding similar skinny jeans to what I am wearing I came across these Paige jeans at 40% off right now here!

I am probably most excited about my boots in these pics! I have literally been stalking these Uggs for years! They are so incredibly soft and cute! I love that I can fold them down or roll them up for a looser tall fit if I want! Find them here. Like any Uggs, they are an investment piece and though they cost a bit more, they last so long(my other pair I wear all the time I have had since 2010)!

 

I hope everyone is officially recovered from the holiday craziness and well into having a great New Year! Have a great weekend and thank you for reading!!!