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Friday, June 23, 2017

The Best Way to Exfoliate and Brighten Skin

I can remember back to a few years ago, watching The Real Housewives of New Jersey. Caroline Manzo mentioned that she 'shaves her face'. When I heard that I was like what on earth?!

Well flash forward a few years and I got curious. So many articles were coming out online about this new craze. Instead of shaving your face, they are calling it 'dermaplaning'... which is really just a fancier word. 

You can go a dermatologist for a dermaplaning appointment or you can do it yourself at home. In my opinion, it would be nice to have someone else do it, but for the higher cost, it's just not worth it because it's so quick and easy to do yourself. 

The difference between going to the dermatologist and doing it yourself is that the blade you use at home is a lot duller than the one that they use at the dermatologist. Your dermatologist will use a surgical blade and the one I recommend is much duller so you're less likely to accidentally cut yourself. 

Here is my usual disclaimer: I am not a dermatologist, all of the information I am presenting is based on my experience and research. As always, you should consult with your doctor and do your own research to decide what is best for you.

So why do this?! Here's a quick list of some of the top benefits:
  • It's anti-aging in that you are removing the top layer of dead skin on your face which gives way to brighter, clearer skin. It also helps with reducing acne scarring or dark spots/age spots. 
  • It's also beneficial because you are removing the peach fuzz on your face which is one of the top reasons that make up can become 'cakey' looking... models and celebrities have been doing this for years and is one of the reasons their makeup always looks so smooth and flawless. 
  • The hair on your face is also an aid to acne forming since the hair can trap dirt and oil on your face.
  • Your skincare products will absorb into your skin better once you have removed that top layer that can get in the way. 
  • It's chemical free. You aren't using any new products with this, so it's good for you and the environment. 
  • The hair does not grow back any thicker or darker. The hair is called vellus hair and is a different type of hair than what grows on your head, it grows back exactly the same as you see it now (and I can vouch for this!). 
  • It's totally painless. It feels so much more pleasant compared to things like chemical peels and microdermabrasion. 
  • You can do it as often or as little as you choose. So you don't need to keep up with it if you do it once and end up hating it. 
  • There's no downtime. You could shave/dermaplane and walk out the door 5 minutes later. 
Ok so you want to try this, what do you need?

To start, you are going to want to have very clean, fresh skin to work with. I swear by the Olay Daily Facials Daily Clean 4-in-1 Water Activated Cleansing Cloths (great for all skin types). They are water activated cleansing cloths that are textured and lather (but are soap-free!) when wet for a total clean. It has the cleansing power of a scrub, toner, mask, and cleanser all-in-one cloth. The Olay Daily Facials will ensure the total removal of your makeup as well as cleanse your face in one step. So using these is quick, easy, and also makes sure my skin is super clean and ready to go! 

Rubbing Alcohol 
This doesn't play a big part, but I suggest having it on hand to clean the blade before you start (just to be on the safe side). In most articles online, they don't suggest this or mention it at all, but I just do it to be overly safe! 

I use these blades, but there are a ton of different brands/models to choose from. I suggest doing your own research to decide which is best for you. I like this blade because they aren't super sharp. They get the job done but they don't make me nervous that I am going to cut myself.
So now you have everything you need, what's next? First, I highly suggest watching this video by Carli Byble. She's a beauty guru on YouTube and really does a great job of illustrating how to do this properly. I will say, in her video, she says she re-uses her blades and doesn't really talk about disinfecting, so that's where I will come in and say I use the blade once and toss it. They're really inexpensive, there's no reason to keep one around after you have used it once.  

I also suggest doing this at night before bed because your skin could be slightly irritated and red afterward. I also don't love the idea of applying makeup right afterward since your skin is so fresh. I like to give it a night to 'heal' before applying makeup. I also suggest testing a small patch of skin to make sure your skin has no weird reactions, especially if you have super sensitive skin. 

So here's what you'll need to do to begin:
  • Make sure your face is completely dry with no product on it. 
  • Pull your skin taught
  • Take the razor at a small angle and do short passes on your skin downward
  • Once you've done your entire face, take a cotton round with lukewarm water and gently pat your skin to remove any straggling dead skin or hair. 
  • Apply moisturizer- this makes my skin feel super dry afterward, so I like to apply a ton of moisturizer.
If dermaplaning isn't for you, I totally get it...it's an acquired 'taste' if you will. But I love it and am so glad I have started doing it!!
To safely and easily exfoliate without dermaplaning, I use the Olay Daily Facials Daily Clean 4-in-1 Water Activated Cleansing Cloths every night before bed since they are textured to gently exfoliate skin. They are non-irritating and make my skin really bright and fresh. So much so, I go makeup free during the week because my skin feels and looks so great! This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Olay. The opinions and text are all mine.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Lately 6/22/2017

What a week, what a week! Our flight from Boston to Pittsburgh got cancelled, so I have had a much shorter week than anticipated. I've tried to fit in as much as I can to get caught up, but I'm still working on my e-mails... hopefully I'll be back up to speed by the weekend. 

I have no set plans, except I am being interviewed for a podcast on Saturday evening. That should be fun and something new and exciting! I'm headed to a concert tomorrow night.... we are going to pack a picnic to tailgate, and then it is looking like warm weather and sun all weekend so I plan on getting my tan on at the club! 

Wearing/Drinking: I wore this gorgeous dress to dinner at Galley Beach on Nantucket and it was just the absolute perfect thing! I also ordered a new-to-me drink: the last word, which is a Hendrick's gin based drink that was delicious! It's gin, green Chartreuse, maraschino liqueur, and freshly pressed lime juice. Delicious!

Reading: This article about Amazon's purchase of Whole Foods. Lower prices, anyone? YES! It's also interesting because it makes a good point: you don't think of tech innovations in relation to supermarkets, but it seems like Amazon will be changing that! 

Traveling: I have Nantucket and Boston recaps coming soon, so keep an eye out for those! 

Watching: You guys, I've been waiting for this day for FOREVER. Father of the Bride is FINALLY on Amazon Video. It's my #1 favorite movie of all time. I have it on DVD, but don't have a DVD player, so I've haven't seen it in a while. But I finally was able to buy it on Amazon to have in my cloud forever and I am SO EXCITED. 

Watching II: This iPhone commercial is so cute and very well done!

Watching III: Excited to watch this new Netflix series, Friends From College premiering in July! 

Wanting: It's no secret I have a thing for sweaters... this is very expensive sweater but I am obsessed. Wouldn't it be so dreamy to lounge in?! I'm also loving these super affordable pearl embellished slides. They're slightly trendy so not sure they are something I'd spend a ton of money on! My favorite affordable denim brand came out with a distressed boyfriend-style jean and I am really anxious to try them out! Also really interested in this illuminator and this blush- they look like the perfect colors to go with sun-kissed skin!

Loving: New emojis just released-update your phones! There aren't any super super fun ones in my opinion, but it's always fun to get a few new ones to use! 

Loving II: I bought these loafers as a gift and they are so sharp looking. Great quality for the price, too! 

Listening: You guys, I've been in a total music rut. I realize I never shared my June playlist with you all because it's about as lame as it gets: 5 songs. I'll do better next month, I promise! In the meantime, I've been listening to a ton of Van Morrison. I can't get enough. This is a great playlist if you love Van Morrison, too. 

Quoting: 'All of the love in the world doesn't seem to matter, if it isn't the kind you want from the person you need.'- Jessica Katoff// See more of my favorites, here. 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

National Wear Your Lilly Day #NWYLD

National Wear Your Lilly Day2017
Happy happy National Wear Your Lilly Day, First Day of Summer, and Longest Day of the Year! WOO! To say I'm a Lilly Pulitzer fan is an understatement... talk about a brand that screams FUN and summer.

I thought in honor of National Wear Your Lilly Day (#NWYLD if your posting your outfit on social media!), I'd go back in the Summer Wind archives and roundup my favorite Lilly looks. Also, if you're looking to celebrate with local Lilly lovers, they are having a party in store if you have one close by (hint: there will be champagne and gifts with purchase). I wore the maxi dress above in Martha's Vineyard last summer and remember getting so many compliments on it. The easy, wrinkle-free fabrics makes it one of my favorites for travel.

lilly pulitzer piper pants
White Tank (just $30)// Pants// Clutch (under $40) 
Sunglasses// Sandals// Cable Cuff// Signet Ring (similarsimilar)
I wore these pants in the Bahamas and they are SO comfortable. I've also worn them countless times here in Pittsburgh. They look cute dressed down like you see above, but I've also dressed them up with a wedge shoe and a small clutch, too!

lilly pulitzer pajama pants
I got these pajama pants during the wintertime and waking up with a dose of Lilly brought me so much happiness. Cold and gray mornings made a little better with this great pop of color. 

lilly pulitzer callahan shorts
Talk about a major throwback photo!! These are the classic Callahan shorts in a fun 4th of July print that Lilly released 4 years ago. The style is always available. They are a classic, flat-front chino-style short and come in fun patterns each year. I have so many pairs, they're so easy to just throw on! 

lilly pulitzer marquette shift
Earrings (similarsimilar)
This is the dress I wore for Christmas this past year. I love love love the metallic prints that Lilly releases. They are so chic and always lots of fun. I love that this was a piece I could wear in the summertime, but also wonderful to wear for right now, too! They have released their Marquette shift in a great blue color as well as a pink color for summer!

Also, be sure to check out my instagram around noon because I'll be sharing a favorite Lilly outfit that I wore on Nantucket (hint: I brought this dress, these pants, these shorts, these pants). And check out their pop up print, Lobstah Roll. One of my favorites- because who doesn't love lobsters? PS, Apple, we need a lobster emoji! Are you wearing your Lilly today?!

More Lilly Favorites:

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

4th of July Outfit Inspiration

4th of July Outfit Inspiration

breton striped shirt

lands end canvas tote

4th of july outfit inspiration

ralph lauren cable sweater

classica americana outfit

4th of july style
Cable Sweater (under $100)// Striped Tee
Boyfriend Denim Shorts (similar, similar)

Can you believe we are just two weeks away from the 4th of July?! It's definitely one of my favorite holidays. Who doesn't love sunny, warm weather, cookouts with friends and family and spending time near water (whether it's a pool, lake or, ocean!).

I'm 100% one of 'those people' who gets in the spirit with dressing in red, white, and blue. Supporting our country is important and red, white, and blue is one of my favorite color trios ever. I have a ton to choose from in my closet, so I just pulled out all of these pieces one day as I was headed to my parent's for dinner one night.

The best part about these pieces is that they are timeless. I've had everything for years and most of it is still available today! The only thing that is not available in this outfit are the Rag and Bone boyfriend shorts I am wearing. I bought them a few seasons ago and they are my favorite, but I have linked to a similar pair here and here.

What are your plans for the 4th of July? Typically, we go to a family friends to watch a parade and have lunch, then we walk over to our country club for a day at the pool and then a cookout. Then, we head back to our neighborhood for the fireworks. I can't decide if I will watch my neighborhood's fireworks or head back downtown to watch them. I've done both before and I can't decide which I like better! We'll see!

If you are looking for more red, white, and blue inspiration, check out this Saturday Shopping I did a few weeks ago that has a ton of really great pieces. Also, if you are looking for insanely fun earrings, KEP Designs can make custom red, white, and blue pom pom earrings (you can contact, here). SO fun.