Mini-Facial at Sephora inside JCPenney

7.18.2018

A few weeks back I had the pleasure of visiting the Sephora inside JCPenney at the Gateway Center in Brooklyn. I had an appointment for a (free!) mini-facial with a SiJCP Education Manager. This is a totally complimentary service offered at Sephora inside JCPenney! This summer, they are focusing on feel-good ingredients to nurture healthy skin for all ages. I chose to test out products formulated with antioxidant-rich tea which helps protect against environmental damage. I’m going to take you through each step of my fabulous mini-facial and share tips and tricks I learned from the experts at Sephora inside JCPenney!


The first step is, of course, cleansing. Nicole used the Youth to the People Green Tea Cleanser. This cleanser comes in a gorgeous glass bottle with a pump (hello major vanity points) and is formulated with antioxidant-rich green tea to help protect skin against environmental damage while removing makeup, dirt, oil and debris.




Step two is a high-powered mask! Nicole applied the Boscia Matcha Magic Mask with a brush for an even, mess-free application. The mask penetrates deep into the skin to reveal healthy, radiant skin thanks to the Matcha tea. Don’t I look stunning in green?!


After gently removing the mask after it had fully dried, Nicole moved on to the Fresh Black Tea Kombucha Facial Treatment Essence. I didn’t know what an essence was! Nicole explained that a toner helps clean the skin further after cleansing and rebalance your skin’s PH balance while an essence is a skin treatment which helps to hydrate the skin after cleansing and help the products applied afterwards to penetrate deeper into the skin. The Fresh Black Tea Kombucha Facial Treatment Essence softens the skin and prepares it for the next steps! Instead of applying with a cotton round as you would toner, Nicole recommends gently patting an essence into the skin so it can absorb with the heat of the hands.


After applying the essence, we moved on to a moisturizer. Nicole used one of my OG favorites, Origins A Perfect World. I fell in love with the A Perfect World back when I worked on the Origins brand in my early twenties. This range is made with white tea so it’s full of antioxidants to help prevent aging and environmental damage from pollution. The moisturizer is lightweight and smells incredible.





So fresh and clean! I highly recommend y’all check out this free service available at Sephora inside JCPenney. No appointment necessary! This post was written in collaboration with Sephora inside JCPenney. #SephoraInJCP

Noosa Brekkie

7.11.2018

I love having my friends over for cocktails, dinner parties, hangs in the backyard. Recently we’ve been adding home brunches to the mix! It’s a great way to get together and avoid the lines and expense of brunch in the city. Last Sunday I hosted a little brekkie for  noosa yoghurt. I’ve personally been a fan of noosa for the past few years - I love the taste that’s rich with hints of natural honey.We had originally planned to have the outing it in our backyard but the rain had different ideas so we set up shop in our kitchen. noosa has recently launched a new line of yoghurts with two flavors in one tub! We decided to put the couples to the test to see which flavors were their favorites and how they liked to enjoy the two flavors under one lid. 

I invited Harmony and Mattieu, our friends from Belgium, for a morning of fun chez nous. To compliment the yoghurts, we bought all of the ingredients from the yoghurts themselves like apples, strawberries, blueberries and caramel. We also picked up some fresh granola, croissants and fresh flowers for an Instagram-worthy spread. Gerry made some pour over coffee as he poured over the New York Times Sunday edition and I dressed the table. 
Everyone arrived around 11am and we taste-tested all 5 delicious duos. Personally, my favorite was the caramel & apple for my sweet tooth and the blueberry & lemon for my passion for  tartness. I love to mix the flavors together and add a touch of granola. Gerry was a fan of the strawberry & banana and in his typical style he preferred eating the flavors separately one after the other (strawberry first, according to him!) Harmony and Mattieu both loved the raspberry & blueberry. Blueberry is not very common in Europe – especially wild blueberries - and they told me they’ve loved anything blueberry ever since moving to the states almost two years ago! It was a perfect morning that went on into the late afternoon with lots of yoghurt, coffee and mimosas (I actually squeezed the orange juice myself!). The rain cleared so we headed into the backyard and did some hoola-hooping and chatted. Such a great way to spend the day. Special thanks to noosa for sponsoring this brunch & blog post! 

Would love to hear from fans what you think about these flavor combos and how you enjoy them (mix? double dip? swirl? )  Here’s a finder so you can find noosa near you.

Fun hairstyle for summer

7.05.2018

I’ve been wearing this fun pigtail style throughout the summer and so many of y’all have messaged me asking for a tutorial! I partnered with Wella Professionals to show I create this easy summer hairstyle using products from their EIMI Styling Collection. For this style you’ll need: clear elastic bands. See below for the step by step on how I create the look! 
Step 1: I prefer to start this look with wavy hair – this way the hair has a bit more texture and hold. To add even more texture and volume I use the Wella Professionals EIMI Ocean Spritz. I apply it mostly to the midlegths and massage it into the hair. 

Step 2: To smooth the ends of the hair I used the Wella Professionals EIMI Perfect Me– this helps keep the ends soft and sealed. I use two pumps and apply to the bottom third of my hair. 

Step 3: Start by separating the hair into two parts. You can create the part in the middle or on either side, depending on your preference. I personally like to use my everyday part which is a deep left part. I measure out my part to the arch of my eyebrow – a trick I learned years ago from a hairstylist and makeup artist on set! 
Step 4: I take several of the plastic elastics and put them directly on my thumb – this way I can access them quickly and easily while I’m creating the ponytails. I start on one side with the first ponytail just under my jawline. Make sure the elastic is secure and gently pull tighter to add volume to the section. To add even more volume I rub the hair between my fingers for more texture. 
 
Step 5: Continue with the second elastic and repeat the process making sure the elastic is tight and then gently pulling the section apart to add volume. 

Step 6: Because my hair is quite long I space the section quite a bit so you can change depending on your hair length and texture. I decide to do three sections. Because the hair is thinner towards the end I make sure to make the least section bigger by pulling apart and texturizing between my fingers. 

Repeat the process exactly the same on the other side being sure to match the elastic on both sides.




To create hold and prevent against frizz, I used the Wella Professionals EIMI Stay Essential Light Crafting Spray on the mid lengths and ends. 



Et voila! Here’s the final hairstyle. I hope you guys enjoyed this quick tutorial! Special thanks to Wella Professionals for sponsoring this post! 

My Highlights for Summer with Wella Professionals

6.29.2018

I’ve been a blonde my whole life. As a kid, I had really light almost white blonde hair. When I was about 15 or 16 I started coloring my hair with highlights. My natural hair is now a darker blonde that I highlight about every 3 months. In the summer, I love going really bright with my color so I partnered with Wella Professionals to showcase their WELLAPLEX bond repair system and hair color that helps keep hair strong and healthy with every color treatment. It’s a three-step process that rebuilds bonds that are weakened during hair color application– No 1 and No 2 are applied during the hair appointment by a color professional and the third is a take home treatment for the client. WELLAPLEX leaves your hair looking and feeling soft and healthy, which allows the color to last longer. When I went in for my appointment I was about 10 weeks after my last color which was a full head of highlights so I only needed a partial. My stylist, Rachel Bodt was incredible and took time to talk through what I wanted. We decided on some brighter, whiter pieces around the face to highlight my eyes. 
Here’s my ‘before’ photo. My hair was a bit more of a natural, dirty blonde with lighter pieces on the bottom. Rachel used the Blondor, to lift the color, with WELLAPLEX and painted on highlights around my face using 20 volume at the hairline and 30 volume around the face. The WELLAPLEX No 1 Bond Maker ensures the color penetrates into the hair to make it last while the No2 Bond Stabilizer balanced the pH level in the hair shaft and seal in the color. 
The color processed for about 15 minutes before she added the Color Touch Gloss to tone the hair. After the gloss Rachel used the FUSIONPLEXIntense Repair Shampooand Conditionerthat has SIlksteel technology to keep strands strong from the inside out.. She gave me the WELLAPLEX No 3 Hair Stabilizer to use at home to keep my hair healthy and strong! For the styling, she blow dried my hair for lots of volume and then used a 1 ¼” curling iron to create soft, beautiful waves. I’m in love with the final look! What do you guys think? Comment below! 

Paris in the Springtime // Outfits & Locations

6.05.2018

Paris is always a good idea. I hadn't been back to my favorite city on earth since September of last year {coincidentally Noelle's engagement - more about that here } and I was itching to go back. This time I traveled with Noelle & Steffy two of my blogger besties along with Jess, Noelle's fabulous assistant and we had such a blast! We decided to stay in an apartment since there were four of us and we chose a place in the Marais through One Fine Stay {link here} Personally I love staying in apartments over hotels in Paris because you really feel like you're living there and can stock the fridge with wine and breakfast items! It's also often less expensive so that's also a bonus. We stayed for 6 days wandering around Paris enjoying the sights, eating (and drinking) all the things, shopping and of course taking lots of photos! A lot of you guys had questions about my outfits and the locations where we shot so I've included everything in this blog post.

my look // dress & shoes (similar)
location: jardin des tuileries near the arc de triomphe de carousel 

sweater (less than $20!), skirt (similar), bag & shoes (similar)
location: Quai Branly near Post d'Alma 

top & jeans 
location: Le Marais neighborhood near "La Mangerie" 

dress & shoes
location: Trocadero gardens 

top, jeansbag & shoes
location: Port d'Arcole 

my look // dress
location: champ de mars 

dress &  shoes
location: champ de mars

top (similar), jeans (under $20), shoes & belt bag
location: le marais, rue de sevigne 

dress & shoes (similar)
location: arc de triomphe 

dressshoes
location: le carousel de la Tour Eiffel in Trocadero Gardens 

top (similar), pants, shoes & bag (similar)
location: Grand Boulevards Metro Stop

Flawless Skin Foundation Routine with bareMinerals

5.15.2018

before
after: wearing BAREPRO concealer in Fair/Light Neutral 03 & BAREPRO Foundation in Light Natural 09
Before
after: wearing BAREPRO concealer in Fair/Light Neutral 03 & BAREPRO Foundation in Light Natural 09
I’ve always had a love hate relationship with foundation. I love having a full coverage canvas for makeup but I was always concerned about how the formula might be negatively affecting my skin. Hallelujah I found the bareMinerals BAREPRO Concealer & BAREPRO Liquid Foundation. I personally prefer a liquid foundation over a powder foundation so I was so excited when bare Minerals launched the BAREPRO Liquid Foundation which has a full matte coverage and natural ingredients that are actually good for your skin. I found the perfect color match in both the concealer and foundation – for the concealer I’m wearing the Fair/Light – Neutral 03 and Light Natural 09 for the foundation. I was very impressed with the color range for the collection and these shades fit me perfectly! For my foundation routine, I start with a hydrating primer – currently I’ve been using the Good Hydrations Silky Face Primer which I apply all over the face as a base. Next I apply the BAREPRO concealer which is full of great ingredients like botanical antioxidants and bamboo extract. The formulation is non-acnegenic and hypoallergenic! I apply the concealer straight from the tube to my under eyes, my eyelids and to any imperfections on my skin and blend with my ring finger. Next I apply the BAREPRO Foundation using the Perfecting Foundation Brush. I generally use about 3-4 pumps to cover my whole face. The BAREPRO foundation is water & humidity resistance and really wears great all day long! It’s formulated with papaya enzymes and bamboo extracts which help smooth and improve skin texture. See the full routine on my YouTube video here. I’d love to do more beauty posts here on the blog comment below with any beauty related requests!

Special thanks to bareMinerals & Shop Style Collective for sponsoring this post.


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