My first What I’m Loving Giveaway was a success! Congrats to the winner on her new Aerin Rose Lip Conditioner and Jo Malone Vitamin E Lip Conditioner. Stay tuned for my next giveaway and your chance to win, announced here on my blog and on my Instagram.
Nude lip colors have become a staple in every makeup wardrobe. Pinky and peachy beige versions look alluring on all skin tones. If you haven’t yet experimented with this sultry shade, now’s the time! The look is sexy, yet understated. When using liner, I prefer to apply the lip color first and then pencil in the liner after – a trusty trick I learned from several celebrity makeup artists. Here are five hitmakers…
- L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Extraordinaire in Nude Ballet ($7.99): The perfect pinky-beige with a smooth texture that feels ultra luxe and has a lovely scent. Definitely department store worthy (but at a downright delightful price!)
- Tarte Quench Lip Rescue in Nude ($19): Deeply moisturizing and leaves the loveliest of sheens, all wrapped up in a charming seashell designed tube.
- Dolce & Gabbana Miss Sicily Lipstick in Anna ($36): A light and dewy pinky beige, this one’s a triple threat: the wear of a lipstick combined with the soothing qualities of a balm and shine of a gloss.
- Nude Envie Lipstick in Mesmerize ($30): This is a new elevated collection of seven nude lip colors. Mesmerize is universally flattering (feel free to experiment with the six other shades), and how sleek is the silver bullet packaging?!
- Maybelline Color Sensational Color Elixir Creamy Lip Lacquer in Nude Illusion ($8.99): Another super luxurious formula that smells dreamy and could be right at home in the department store (but you’ll find this wonder at the drug store).
With those long, leisurely, sunshine-y days officially here, time to load up on the SPF. Of course, sunscreen is a year-round necessity and now more than ever (don’t forget behind the ears, tops of the hands and feet too!). I stick with the more natural brands and they’ve all been successfully road-tested by our family. I have fair skin and not a sunburn in sight! Here are my top picks…
- Alba Botanica Kids Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 ($7.15 at Walmart): Sinks right into skin, loaded with Zinc Oxide, fragrance-free, and an ultra reasonable price point.
- Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen SPF 50 ($64): This clever application is a slam dunk, especially after makeup – simply dust it on. I keep one in my purse and another in the car for protection touchups all throughout the day, including on the tops of my hands while driving. Gluten and fragrance-free, it has 24% Zinc Oxide and a higher price point but it works and lasts a long time. In other words, worth the splurge!
- Raw Elements Eco Formula 30 + Lotion Tin ($18.99): Ultra water-resistant, doesn’t sting eyes (a must with the kiddos), and packed with antioxidants and vitamins. This wonder screen also glides on without leaving a sticky residue or white splotches.
- Soleil TouJours Mineral Based Sunscreen Continuous Mist Broad Spectrum SPF 30 ($36): Mist on the all-out luxury with this hypoallergenic, vegan and gluten-free protection including Zinc Oxide and an array of moisturizing/anti-aging delights like Green Tea Leaf extracts and Vitamins E and C. Also comes in SPF 50.
- Manda Organic Sun Paste SPF 50 ($28): The star ingredient is Thanaka, which is ground tree bark from Myanmar in Southeast Asia, and has been reportedly used for 2000 years as a natural alternative to sun protection. It smells like cocoa butter, and just like the name says, this stuff is a thick paste so it doesn’t rub off easily. I use it on the nose, cheeks and under eyes since those are sensitive areas that are prone to burn – another winner for the kids too. You’ll notice it leaves a very light beige residue but I personally like it — looks cool!
These summery tops for girls are so darn cute you’ll wish they made them in adult sizes! And, almost all of them are under $12. Time to stock up…
- Cat & Jack Ruffle Tee: Who doesn’t appreciate a little ruffle?!
- The Children’s Place Sleeveless Tassel Neck Top: The sweet tassel trend shows no signs of slowing down.
- Zara Striped and Embroidered Top: Gingham… forever a classic.
- Forever 21 Scalloped Lace Top: The perfect touch of lace.
- Old Navy Smocked Slub-Knit Cami: Perfect color combo + spaghetti straps = Bingo!
Maintaining silky soft skin year-round can be a battle, but these creams make it a breeze. And, half of them are priced around $10 or less…
- Lubriderm Daily Moisturizer with SPF 15 ($5.99): I keep a bottle (it has sunscreen!) close to the front door for everyone in the family; the pump makes it easy to quickly apply before heading outdoors.
- Burt’s Bees Ultimate Care Body Lotion ($10): When skin feels extra dry, this is my go-to.
- Lather Mangosteen Green Tea Moisturizer ($18): Light texture, lovely scent, and gets rid of pesky rough patches.
- Aerin Rose Hand & Body Cream ($40): Sinks right in with an alluring subtle rose scent, and a tube this pretty is meant to be out on the countertop.
- Yes To Coconut Ultra Light Spray Body Lotion ($9.99): Fun to apply (kids love spritzing it), and you can feel good about the ingredients.
As those warm-weather days begin to roll in, kick your look into high gear with these dreamy must-haves…
- Mossimo Slides ($27.99): These babies scream summer fun. And they’ll jazz up any look. They look fancy boutique pricey too, but they’re under $30. Win-win!
- Mer Sea Coconut and Seawater Mist ($32): I’m in love with this entire line of candles, bath and body products and luxurious wraps. A few sprays of this goodness on the face and body is the perfect anytime pick-me-up.
- Coolibar Packable Hat ($48): I’ve had this kick-butt hat for five years now and it still looks new. It’s a total triple threat – super comfy, stylish and you can crush the heck out of it (have packed it for dozens of trips), yet it doesn’t lose its shape.
- Sunnylife Pineapple Sipper ($14): Summer sips taste even better in this playful pineapple. Kids love it too!
- Neutrogena Pure and Free Baby Sunscreen ($11.99): Don’t be hindered by “Baby” on the label; everyone in our family uses it. The main ingredient is Zinc, a mineral sunscreen (rather than chemical ones).
- Aerie Fringe Tote Bag ($24.46): How cute is this fringed tote?! Big time score. They’re on sale too, so grab one while you can.
Do you love scents and fragrances? I do, and in a really big way. Fragrance is definitely a thing for me. And I never tire of discovering new ones, especially when they’re off the beaten path, a bit more rare, and ultra special. Here are five that always cast a spell (in other words, prepare for endless compliments)…
- Milk by K. Hall Designs: An intoxicating mix of cream, vanilla and coconut. What more can I say!?
- Island Vanilla by Pacifica: Who doesn’t appreciate a vanilla fragrance? This one kicks it up a few major notches with nuances of fruits, tea and honey-jasmine – a delightful spin on a classic.
- Georges et Moi by Sabe Masson: A mesmerizing floral-woody scent with bergamot, rose and vetiver from a perfumery in France. You’ll fall in love with the portable design… it looks like a lip balm and is made with natural, skin moisturizing ingredients like mango butter. Easily dab some on; especially ideal when you’re on the go. (The link I included takes you to the French based company website. The U.S. price is around $25).
- Relax by Lollia: This soft, magical blend of lavender and honey is irresistible.
- One Evening by Bamford: Unisex fragrances are hotter than ever and this one’s a slam dunk with notes of vetiver, cedar and amberwood, from the UK based body, skincare and clothing company. (It’s referred to as a body splash but I can attest… it has great staying power).https://www.franks.com.mt/product-category/brands/paco-rabanne/
Confession: I’m a complete sucker for snacks. Whenever I hit the market (at least three times per week), I giddily glide down the aisles looking for foods I haven’t yet tried. Discovering something new, healthy and wildly tasty for the entire family is a huge treat for me (often times it’s all about the little things). Below are five faves – they’re all gluten-free, low-fat, non-GMO (meaning no genetically modified organisms), and big time kid/grown-up approved — perfect additions to the lunchbox, desktop drawer and ideal any time of day. Dive in…
- Bare Snacks Banana Chips: Love the ingredient list – just baked ’til crispy bananas, that’s all. Also not to be missed are the Apple Chips, next on my list…
- Bare Snacks Apple Chips: Available in three lip-smacking flavors – Fuji Apple, Granny Smith, and Cinnamon Apple.
- Imlakesh Organics Macambo Beans: Packed with protein and fiber, these crunchy little numbers from the Amazon Rainforest will knock your socks off!
- Flora Baobites Superfruit Snacks: As a hardcore gummy-candy lover, these are a delicious, much healthier alternative. Made with Baobab (a wild-harvested superfruit), they’re loaded with electrolytes, antioxidants and Vitamin C.
- Pop Corners Popped Corn Chips: Every single one of their gluten-free flavors are a delight! I’m particularly fond of Smokin’ Jalapeño White Cheddar, Cheddar Feel Good and Carnival Kettle.
- World Peas Fava Crisps: Another grab-n-go, crispity-crunchity hit with 4 grams of protein per serving; the Vinegar & Sea Salt are a hit in our home.