Thursday, October 27, 2011

beat winter blues- part 2

If you missed my first post about how to beat the winter hair blues, check it out here. I have mentioned numerous times that I have incredibly sensitive skin, so you can only imagine it does not react well to the harsh winter air. These are my tried and true remedies and preventions to keeping my skin cool, calm, and collected. 

Just like in the first post about skin, my fish oil vitamins do a lot for my skin. The Omega-3's reduce inflammation, add essential oils that the wind strips from the skin, and gives my skin an over-all healthy glow. 

While skin does need cleansed as usual in the winter, it also needs a little more love. Try switching to a more gentler cleanser or one for sensitive skin. My Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser has never let me down and doesn't have a ton of irritating ingredients like many others do. Never shower or wash your face in hot water. Always keep it luke-warm so you don't strip your skin of it's natural oils and stress it out.

Yes you definitely do want to exfoliate in the winter. While your instinct might be to hold off of the exfoliating until the warm weather returns, I urge you to keep up the routine. It is important to get rid of dry skin and get deep in your pores. I use the trusty stand-by St. Ives Apricot Scrub for sensitive skin about 3 times a week. 

I love this body exfoliator! Its gentle yet strong, and so simple. It has a great simple brown sugar and vanilla scent and it's blended with vitamin E. I just love anything from the Mark Fair Trade product line but this one is definitely in my top 2 favorites. 

I love baths! And this Aveeno Soothing Oatmeal Bath is so good to my skin. Just empty one of the packets into a warm (never hot) bath and soak for 15 minutes. When you get out and dry off your skin, I promise you will see a difference right away! So nourishing and calming on winter skin.

Some rinky-dink lotion isn't going to cut it here in Ohio during the winter. My skin needs serious moisture and Olay Ultra Moisture Lotion does the trick perfectly. It is heavy duty enough to do its job, but light enough that I don't feel like I am wearing an extra layer of skin on top of mine. I love this lotion!

I really love this Mark Calm + Composed Soothing Moisturizer. I rotate it every other night with my L'Oreal RevitaLift Night Cream (since the L'Oreal is for anti-aging and the Mark is for soothing and healing) that I talked about in this post. The Mark moisturizer is so super lightweight and non-irritaing, it really calms my stressed skin down.

In the day I use Aveeno Smart Essentioals Daily Moistuizer with SPF 30. If you take anything away from this post take this: use a daily moisturizer with SPF 30 please. So many people forget about the sun when winter rolls around, and that is when most sun damage to the skin occurs. I tried quite a few moisturizers with SPF before I found this Aveeno moisturizer. It feels so natural on my skin. I can put it on under my make-up and not feel cake-y.

I first got Mac Fix+  from a friend and immediatley fell in love with it. It doesn't have a heavy scent like lots of other face mists and its packed with all kinds of vitamins and minerals to help heal the skin. I spray my face and neck with this multiple times a day. I always spray it before my moisturizer and make-up goes on. My skin and this liquid have a very serious relationship going on. 

A couple of years ago when I got sick in the winter I was sleeping with a Vicks Vaporizor on at night, and while I felt quite awful my usual winter skin looked great! I didn't even make the connection until I put the vaporizer away and my skin started getting dried out again. Ever since then I sleep with my vaporizer on in the winter. I don't put any medicine in it, but just let the warm steam work it's magic. You can also use a humidifier which puts cool mist into the air. Either way change the water every night you use it. I use mine every other night.

I love anything Soap + Glory, but this product is out of this world. I used to get this for my mom and then I started buying it for myself once I realized how amazing it was. Lather this all over your feet before bed, pull on some cotton socks, get some beauty rest, and when you wake up you will fall in love with your feet. Yes I did just say that. This stuff is literally a miracle in a tube.

Meet my number 1 favorite Mark product ever, The Big Fix. (Which I have talked about here) This might be a little over- dramatic but I don't know if I could live without it. This little stick can do practically anything you need. It is perfect to use on elbows, knees, and feet. I also use it for my lips (no not the same stick silly), cuticles, brows, the list could go on forever. Anything it touches becomes so soft.

Lips need extra special love in the winter. One of the best tips I ever heard was to take a warm washcloth, that has been wrung out and gently exfoliate your lips with it. It is the perfect amount of exfoliation. After that simply apply a generous amount of your favorite chap stick or lip balm. I love my EOS lip balm. In fact I dedicated an entire post to EOS because I love it so much! This little lip sphere is everything a balm should be; hydrating, smoothing, clear, and not oily, greasy, or waxy. I have gotten so many of my friends hooked on it because it really is the best. 

Hopefully this isn't news to you, but your skin needs water- a lot of it. Especially in the winter. You should be drinking at least 8 glasses of water daily if not more. Mixing some lemon in your water not only adds some flavor but is awesome for your skin! Lemon helps clear the toxins from your body and can help with acne.

A cup a Green Tea in the evening, it became a habit long before I even knew its benefits. Green tea is high in antioxidants which gives your skin extra protection in the harsh winter months. I especially like Lipton Green Tea with Lemon Ginsing, because I know the lemon makes it extra good for my skin. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

the world needs more love letters

I almost titled this post a "lovely little obesssion" because honestly I am obsessed! I tried so hard to remember how I stumbled upon this site and can't remember for the life of me (although I'm 99% sure it was through another blog). As your liaison of all things lovely I knew I had to share this beautiful mission and the lovely lady behind it. 

Meet Hannah, the creator + founder of "The World Needs More Love Letters". I picked her brain about this mission, where it came from, how to get involved, and it's significance to the world.

-What exactly is "More Love Letters"?

Hannah: More Love Letters is actually short for "The World Needs More Love Letters," It is an organization fueled by a community of individuals writing and leaving love letters all over the world while also reaching out to one another to script messages of love to those in need. 

Really, it is an offline practice fueled by social media. We use social media to drive people into writing these love letters, leaving them or mailing them to our PO Box, and documenting the experience along the way.  

-Where did you get this idea?

Hannah: The whole act of leaving love letters actually happened by accident. I moved to New York City in October of 2010 and, try as I might, I could not shake the loneliness. I began writing love letters to people who looked like they needed them and started leaving them all over Manhattan. It became a hobby of mine and I used the internet to document the letter writing. 

After scripting just over 400 love letters, I turned the project outward to the world and challenged others to do the same. The results have been beautiful and breathtaking and it is amazing to think that it is all only 2 months old. There is so much ahead.  

-Who do the love letters go to?

Hannah: gives individuals the opportunity to request a love letter for someone in their life who might need it. It is an awesome way to think outside of yourself and really ask the question, "Who in my life needs a love letter, a "just because" letter, a "thank you for being alive" kind of letter. The letter requests are then passed out to love letter writers who snail mail a letter to the unsuspecting recipient. 

I've seen love letters go all over the world--from Texas to Japan and Brazil to California-- and to all kinds of people. Letters have been requested based on loss, grief, eating disorders, near suicides, divorces... the list keeps growing longer but treat each request the same: A lot of love, no matter who you are or what you are going through. 

-Have you ever heard from the recipients of the love letters?

Hannah: We have a section on the site devoted to Letters Lost and Found. We've had a few people send us emails, thanking us for the letters. I am sure there will be more people contacting us as the letters continue to grow. 

-How does one get involved?

Hannah: People can get involved in a number of ways. They can start leaving their own love letters  and taking pictures so we can post them on the site. They can sign up for the email subscriber list and each month they will have a chance to write a love letter for an individual in need and send it to our PO Box. We then bundle up the letters and send them over. Or they can simply request a letter for someone in their life who could benefit from one. 

-What makes up a good love letter?

Hannah: Ah, the golden question. I always say that there is never a bad love letter... as long as you write it from the heart, it will come out beautifully. We are really redefining what it means to write a love letter... People hear love letter and they think mushy gushy romance. In this case, a love letter is daring to step outside of your comfort zone to write something for someone you will probably never meet. I always tell people to write the letter they would want to find somewhere today. What are the things your own heart needs to hear? Write those down. It will come out perfectly, I have no doubt.  

-How many letters have you written?

Hannah: To date, we have written 576 love letters! 

-Whats the best thing to have happened due to this mission?

Hannah: I think the greatest blessing in all of this is people realizing that they can get started right away. They don't need a kit, they don't need to be perfect, they just need to have a desire to put something good in the world. I think that in itself makes people feel capable, needed, important. The mission of More Love Letters has actually nested a mission into the hearts of others through these letters and it has been awesome to watch.  

-Have any great stories involving the letters that have to deal with this mission?

Hannah: I have dozens and dozens of stories from just the past few weeks! One of my favorites, the one that really clicked the whole thing into place, was an email I got the other day from a woman who lost her mother in January. She has been dealing with grief and a lot of sadness and she just recently came across Now she is an avid love letter writer, sprinkling letters all over the place, but even better, she feels like her mother is with her in this project. She is sowing her sorrow and her tears into these love letters and while she helps others heal, she is learning to heal herself. 

I (Lyndsey) have officially signed up for the email subscriber list. I am excited to get my first request next month, but who knows maybe I will write one before then. I really love what Hannah is doing and all the love and positivity she is putting out into the universe.

Thank you Hannah for creating such a loving and beautiful mission, and allowing us to be part of it. If any

Sunday, October 23, 2011

little loves

As usual this week flew by. The winter is starting to creep up on us here in Ohio, and I am dreading it. I did manage to get it some good quality time with a friend, have a date night staying in with a movie, go out with my work friends, and to my boyfriends gig this week. All in all I would say it was a pretty successful week!

Remember the "lovely little find" post I did HERE? Well meet the lovely lady behind all that awesome jewelry, Barbara. Isn't she the cutest girl you've ever seen? She just recently started outfit posts on her blog, No. 1990 and I love her style. It is so effortless and classy.

I am obsessed with this top from my favorite little boutique Noto. I really need to stop in there this week and get at least one of these. Perfect blousy top to tuck into a high waisted skirt.

I started red light therapy this week at Sinfully Good Body + Soul (though don't be fooled, there is no UV light in red light therapy). I will have a full blog post coming soon, with before and after pictures but I am already seeing a huge difference. I love it!

My sweet loving kitty Simba always makes my week more lovely. 
He is such a cuddle bug. I love him.

Got this clutch a while ago at the thrift store and finally used it for the first time this weekend. I love it, such a great find. I carry it folded over like in the first picture.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

beat winter blues- part 1

 If you are anything like me, winter is the most dreaded time of year. From packing on pounds, to frizzy-fried hair, to stressed out skin, and everything in between, the only thing good about winter are the holidays and cute coats. Once I feel that crisp fall air hit my skin I know it's time to take all the extra necessary steps to protect it, my hair, and body + soul from freaking out.

This will be a three-part post on how to beat those winter blues, starting with hair. 

It goes without being said that Fish Oil is one of the best vitamins you can take, especially as a woman. Yes it does promote heart health, boost weight loss, clear acne, fight off sickness, improve vision, combat depression, and more, but it is also amazing for hair! The Omega 3 in fish oil prevents hair loss, and adds shine among other things. Your hair will love you for taking this especially throughout the winter months. I buy the Up + Up brand from Target.

Throughout the winter your scalp will inevitably get a little (or a lot) dried out. Do yourself a favor and grab a bottle of Head + Shoulders (nobody at the store will judge you, I promise) and rotate it in with your regular shampoo every other day. Trust me your scalp and hair will thank you. Or try this at-home remedy from The Beauty Department that I love. And as tempting as it is to take a steaming hot shower, wash your hair with lukewarm water. Hot water will damage it and break the cuticles. 

Use a conditioner that has something to do with moisture or hydration. Or at least rotate one in every other day with your regular conditioner. When the winter air strips all of the moisture from your hair, it needs a little extra help to stay hydrated and healthy. Stay away from products that list alcohol in their ingredients. Hello Hydration by Herbal Essences is a great, budget friendly choice. When you are rinsing your conditioner out, use cool water (it just takes a second) to seal the cuticle and add shine!

Once or twice a week treat your hair to a deep conditioning treatment. 
I have always loved Aussie's 3-minute Miracle. Great price too!

More than ever, in the winter months hair needs tons of protection. You don't want to overload your hair with a 100 products that weigh it down and make it greasy, but 2 after shower (before drying time) products are perfect. Pick 2 that do opposite things. I have trouble with split ends so I always use my Nexxus treatment and I have just recently become completely obsessed with the It's a Ten line. If you can stomach the price the It's a Ten- Miracle Leave-in Product or Moroccan Oil are totally worth it! If you need something more budget friendly try TRESemme Heat Tamer spray. 

Wooden brushes reduce static, so switch it up if you are using plastic. 
Try something like this Hana K brush from Ulta. 

I know this is going to sound strange but it is one of the best tips I have ever learned. Carry dryer sheets with you to swipe over hair when static won't give in. Works like a miracle every time. It took me a while to find a scent that didn't remind me of laundry. I love these Rice Milk + Mallow ones from Method (which I also love). I usually can find them at Lowe's, Babies'R'Us, and other really random places. Just keep a pack in your car for static emergencies.

I have mentioned before I try as often as possible not to blow-dry my hair (especially if I am curling it), but sometimes there is just no getting around it, especially in the winter. If you don't have an ionic hair dryer invest in one. They speed up drying time, so your hair spends less time getting damaged, and increases shine. There are so many options at Ulta for every budget. 

Last but not least get a cute loose-fitting beret, or two and pull all your hair into it when outside. It will protect your hair from breaking in the harsh cold. Or use a scarf.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

little loves

It was a great week for me! I just love these "little loves" posts so much! I got to have a double date with my favorite double date couple, made it to Target TWICE this week, had a girls night in with my mom, best friends, and new friends, made it through my third week of kick-boxing, and today I am walking a Making Strides event with my grandma and cousin. Not to mention the weather has been somewhat tolerable here in Ohio.

Not sure why Essie's website isn't promoting the new winter collection yet, but I did see an ad for it in my Glamour and got one of the colors "Brooch the Subject" from Target this week. I didn't think anything could out-do my love for "Sand Tropez" but this might be it.  I also really love the new "Size Matters" red color. And how about this website I stumbled upon that sells Essie for half the price?! Yes please!!

A friend of my moms (and mine) handed me down her suede high-waisted skirts in both blue and camel. I had to lose 2 pounds to fit into them, but it was totally worth it. I am in love with them!! 

Love the pattern and button detail on this silky blouse my mom got me from Figleaf

I had to temporarily move and have been literally losing my mind over the clutter in my new bathroom. It is lacking any storage at all but for some reason has 2 towel racks?! I finally solved the problem with this $5 basket from Target and some $1 shower curtain hooks. Yay for counter space!!

After 3 weeks of it sitting in the lost and found at work I have officially claimed this vintage Coach clutch as mine! Needs a good once-over, but will be the perfect rustic clutch! 

Friday, October 14, 2011

hollywood waves tutorial

So I finally did my first vlog tutorial! I will definitely have to find a better location to shoot them because the lighting is pretty bad! But I didn't want to scrap the whole thing so I decided to edit and upload it anyway. If you have any questions please ask!! I hope you enjoy! 

 Shop my Sedu clipless iron here. Which I highly recommend!

...oh and if you need a demonstration on how to "whip your hair back and forth" click here!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

7 acts for men to endear all girlkind

When I opened this months issue of Glamour and flipped to the article "Why you need a man, not a boy" featuring the hilarious Mindy Kaling I was laughing due to how spot on her "7 acts for men to endear all girlkind" was. It was as if I had written it myself! Thank you Mindy and Glamour for such an easy (and amusing) breakdown on how incredibly simple it is for men to endear us ladies. 

MEN, follow these 7 simple rules and you will be a keeper for any lady.
(not that you aren't already of course!)

Have a signature grown-up drink like James Bond. But if it has a ton of fancy ingredients like pureed blueberries, you'll look like a high-maintenance weirdo, so don't do that. 

Buy a well fitting peacoat. Black looks good on everyone.

Have one great cologne that's not from the drugstore. Wear very little of it, all the time.

Bring wine or chocolate to everything. People love when guys do that.

Guys need only two pairs of shoes: a nice pair of black shoes and a pair of Chuck Taylor's, which should be replaced every year. (Otherwise they'll start to stink like hell!)

Kiehl's for your skin, Bumble and Bumble for your hair. Maybe a comb. That's all you need.

Own several pairs of dark-wash straight leg jeans. Not boot-cut, not skinny- just a nice pair of Levi's, without any embellishments on the pockets. NONE! 

Remember these are Mindy Kaling's words, taken from Glamour. Not to be mistaken for mine. Although I do 100% agree with each and every last one of them!