New Year’s Resolutions That Don’t Involve Losing Weight

Call Home More Often
I am not someone who misses people. Maybe my dog from time to time but even he slips my mind most of the time. It’s so easy to get caught up in life and forget it’s normal to check in on people. I’m one of those people who believes relationships can stay the same even without daily communication. Maintaining relationships with high school friends through text is definitely not my strong suit but even worse, calling home almost never happens. I am an only child and my hard working mom is home alone with the dog for almost a year now. It’s time I become an adult and learn to pick up the phone. How often do you call home?

Leave Work On Time
This is a big one. Our generation has shown a significant increase in the importance work has in our lives. I have experienced extreme work overload on behalf of pressure from management but mainly from myself. Yes, work is important. It is what puts food in our mouth and it takes up the majority of our time which is why it is so hard to disassociate work from life. Working is not your life, but a part of it. Learning to maintain a challenging work environment and a fulfilling life after 5pm will be this year’s challenge. Try to stay organized and prioritize important deadlines so you don’t feel obligated to work overtime allowing you to tend to hobbies and extracurriculars.

Stop Buying Cheap Alcohol
Face it, we are not in college anymore. sigh The days of buying the cheapest handle of vodka should be over. Traveler’s Club Vodka, this is directed towards you – and also peach Xclusive (dry heaves). I live a block away from a Trader Joe’s Wine store which has sales on bottles of wine as low as $3! Yeah, that’s an amazing deal but realistically, how good is that wine going to taste? Frat parties are a thing of the past so let’s leave binging on cheap beers there too. Try to make your alcohol purchases meaningful. Stock up your bar cart with spirits you can easily incorporate into multiple cocktails but are a great staple on their own as well. Although the point is to elevate your palette, don’t feel the need to spend ridiculous $$. Here are a few cost-efficient, high-quality spirits to fill your cart with – Espolon Tequila Blanco, Ketel One Cucumber & Mint, Maker’s Mark Whiskey

Finish Your Beauty Products Before Buying New Ones
I am 100% guilty of the mentality that more is better. We waste so much money on buying the new it cream or the new it dry shampoo. The industry tricks us into thinking we need newer, better all the time by repackaging, releasing limited edition products or adding free gifts with your purchase. As a hoarder, I understand the appeal of fully stocked drawers of beauty products only tested once or twice. I recently threw out hundreds of dollars worth of makeup and skincare I have accumulated throughout the last three years of internships and jobs because everything had expired. I have been using the same eyeshadow and contour palettes for almost two years now and repurchase the same liquid eyeliner every time it runs dry, so why do I need all that other sh*t? 2019 will be a year of minimalistic beauty habits.

Start Caring About the Environment
Piggybacking off the last resolution, 2019 should be the year you really take a good look around. Instead of adding to the problem, become a solution. I never really thought it was important to recycle or support green initiatives until I moved to the city and saw everyone doing their part. And not in that, “I am giving food to the homeless so I can post about it on Facebook or make a YouTube video about it” way. Every time I go to the grocery store I see people with reusable bags. More and more I am seeing people bring their own reusable travel mugs to Starbucks and the list goes on. Small actions like these may seem like they do nothing but as a whole, we are helping the environment one reusable bag at a time. Just under 25% of plastic is recycled a year. In order to contribute to the solution, my goal for this year is to begin using metal straws (as I drink absolutely everything through a plastic straw). What can you do or have been doing to become part of the solution? Share tips with me so I can incorporate into my lifestyle too!

I Had No Friends – So I Turned To A Dating App

Roughly six months ago, I finally took the plunge and followed my dreams across the river and moved to New York City. Although I have been working in the city almost three years now, my group of friends (acquaintances) was almost non-existance. High School friends either stayed local or moved cross country and between 10 hour work days and two-hour commutes, time certainly didn’t permit for extensive friend search parties. Everyone I met was always a one-night bar crawl type of friend who loves to text back “we should hang out again soon!” never to make concrete plans. Well, I have had enough and desperate times call for desperate measures.

On October 22nd, I joined Bumble BFF. You may be more familiar with Bumble as a dating app where women make the first move – a concept I was never really behind but luckily I’ve been in a loving relationship for four years now and don’t have to worry about openers, or so I thought. The whole idea of choosing your friends feels a bit deranged. When looking for suitable partners, of course, it’s easy to choose based on looks. I know I like brown hair and won’t settle for someone with poor dental hygiene but would that matter in a friend? I wouldn’t be kissing my friend so who cares if her teeth aren’t perfectly straight or white, right?

Before I began exercising my thumbs, a profile upgrade was in order. Anxiety washed over me. Women are far more judgmental than men so the pictures I choose really have to tell a story. Do I emphasize my love of frozen margaritas or do I underline the importance of culture? Disclaimer: throughout my time on the app, I adjusted my photos and bio multiple times. Here’s my current profile.

I opted for pictures that showed my interest in fashion.. and alcohol since I can never pass up a good cocktail. I also connected my Instagram for easy stalking and Spotify for music comparability. While I love all music, a girl who can get down to Korean rap as much as Migos is okay in my book.

Now for the swiping. I blindly began skimming through girls in my area. I set my preferences of age for 23-28 since I’d love to find girls my age because, well, relatability? I quickly realized a common thread among the majority of the profiles – brunch, wine, soulcycle, and the Bachelor. No hate towards any of those but how can I pick between 10 profiles who are basically the same person. I knew I had to dive deeper, find meaning in their pictures, harness my inner Nicholas Cage in National Treasure.

Profiles with solely bikini pics and snapchat filter edited photos i.e. puppy ears were a quick swipe left. That is not my personality and I know we wouldn’t mesh well in person. I tended to always swipe right on profiles with careers similar to mine since we would have common ground to talk about. In terms of looks, I have to say my choices surprised me. 80% of my matches looked exactly like me. Who knew I loved myself so much? But it’s true – who better to get along with than yourself? That doesn’t mean every girl was a 5’11 blonde-haired, blue-eyed polish girl but a majority of the time they were Caucasian, with natural-looking makeup, trendy clothing with a well thought out bio.

In the beginning, my matches were quite frequent because I spent a good deal of time on the app. Unfortunately, the more matches I had, the worse the conversations were. Let’s be honest, it’s awkward finding friends through an app, there’s no doubt about that, but what’s even more awkward is trying to pick up a girl to hang out with you.. on an app. What do you even say, hi? How original. Every conversation would start the same – “hey, hi, how are you, great, where are you from, how long have you been in the city, where do you live, cool” – like clockwork.

Eventually, I got fed up with one-liners and struggling to think of openers to catch the other person’s attention so I changed my bio to be direct and it worked! Girls started messaging me their numbers and we made plans to meet up before even sharing any information about ourselves. This is what worked, this method made me two new friends.

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Date One: Victoria

We went to the Polynesian, a bar I had been DYING to go to. These “dates” were the perfect excuse to try out new bars and restaurants that had been on my radar. Disclaimer: drinks at this place are very overpriced but definitely delicious! Victoria works at Conde Nast so we definitely had things to talk about work-wise. The conversation was great but I wasn’t sure we would ever hang out again. Before parting ways, we made indefinite plans to hang out again but I thought of it as a polite goodbye rather than a genuine attempt at friendship. Roughly two weeks went by with no communication until I received a text asking to hang out again. I was definitely caught off guard and nicely surprised. Since then, we have hung out twice and even text every now and then. 

Date Two: Mallory

Mallory and I really hit it off. We went to Fonda which was cozy and quaint, almost romantic which made us laugh. She too works in public relations so our work experiences were extremely similar giving us a great topic to start out with. We ended up chatting for hours about work, music, hobbies, family, relationships and just about everything. For the first time, I felt as though I found someone I could truly see myself becoming close with. When ordering drinks, we even ordered the same thing without consulting each other – Love me a spicy margarita sister! She even offered to pay for half my uber ride since my apartment was a bit away from the restaurant. I would have never expected that from friends I’ve had for years, let alone someone I met three hours prior. Before parting ways, we made concrete plans to hang out again – and sure enough, we did! 

What I learned: Making friends is hard. Really hard. Just like dating, it may take a few people for you to find someone you really get along with. I was naive to think friends would simply find me. Life isn’t a scripted movie and as much as we’d like to think best friends just happen, sometimes they don’t. In fact, for most people they don’t. I was ashamed for not having many friends and decided to do something about it. My initial perception of the app was that it would be filled with girls who are a bit shy and maybe struggle to fit in but I was completely wrong. There are people just like you looking for friends either because they moved or their friends moved or they simply don’t have the time to put themselves out there. The internet is a beautiful thing. Put yourself out there because only good can come out of it.

Trust me.

I Stopped Shaving My Legs and You Can Too

I have always hated shaving my legs. It always ended the same, a bath tub full of blood dripping from my ankles. One day I decided to let my leg hair grow a little..and then a little more. Since then, shaving has never been a priority to me.

The act of shaving originated in the 1920’s and progressed more as fashion evolved and hemlines began rising. Porn had also contributed to not only shaving legs, but the pubic region as well.

I first began shaving my legs in the 5th grade when I noticed my legs started looking a little prickly. Having blonde hair, it was not as noticeable allowing me to hold off on shaving a little longer than my friends who had darker hair. To this day, I remember how nervous I was to ask my mom for the first time if we could buy razors to shave my legs. From then on, I was quite anal about having smooth legs. About two years ago, my laziness had finally overpowered my desire for silky skin and I decided to just let my hair grow until I felt like shaving. That’s pretty much how I live my life now, “I’ll shave it when I want to“. Of course, it’s winter now which makes not shaving a big easier. In all honesty, I probably shave once a month in winter and every two weeks in every other season.

That being said, my pubic hair is a different story. I have to admit, I still do associate negative feelings with an unshaven nether region. I feel pressure to look a certain way from society, from magazines and especially the adult industry.  I find that I really only feel sexy whilst on a Kim Possible naked mole rat level. My boyfriend and I have had discussions revolving our feelings on pubic hair and we agreed, either is great! It doesn’t matter if I am clean shaven or not, what matters is how I feel. But even he feels pressure to ‘trim’ certain body parts because of the societal norms we grew up with.

We see pressure to shave in books, movies and television. One example that to this day sticks out to me is the episode of As Told By Ginger when word of Ginger’s “Frizzy Lizzies” gets out to Miranda and she shaves her legs to spare herself the embarrassment at school. Isn’t that really why we shave our legs? To spare ourselves the embarrassment?

When I catch someone looking at my legs, I do feel a bit uneasy. I tend to exaggerate the thoughts they might be having. Questioning why a woman would freely put her legs on display like that but then I remember, it doesn’t matter. Whether I chose not to shave or whether I simply didn’t have time, it doesn’t matter. 

Women all across society are becoming pioneers to create acceptance of body hair. Harnaam Kaur, has allowed her beard to grow, accepting that even with facial hair, she can be beautiful. In a social post she writes, “I am openly, knowingly and unashamedly rebelling without a care! I’m rebelling against everything this world thinks I ‘should’ be! I am rebelling against the type of person society expects me to be. I am rebelling against the man made rules and regulations of beauty standards that are expected of me to abide by”. Many other women have followed suit in embracing their PCOS (Polycistic Ovary Syndrom) like Nova Galaxia . Even women without medical reasoning have embraced body hair. YouTuber, Ingrid Nilsen recently posted a photo showing off her hairy armpits with a caption diving into the real reasoning she felt she had to shave and how her reasoning has since evolved.


My purpose for exposing what some may call a secret? I simply want to help start these conversations. 2018 was the year we finally began seeing size inclusivity, body positivity and gender acceptance. Let’s continue the movement and include body hair positivity. Let’s make all bodies beautiful.

7 Weird Ingredient Face Masks for Spending Halloween at Home

If you are at the same critical stage in life as I am, where you value coziness and unlimited free snacks rather than paying $12 per drink on top of a cover charge, then it sounds like you’re kickin’ it at home this year. To help you get in the Halloween spirit, I rounded up a few face masks with some not-so-ordinary ingredients for you to sit in while you consume copious amounts of mini-sized candy bars you bought for trick-or-treaters.

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Snail Jelly Mask – Snail secretion has been used for centuries, especially in countries like South Korea, where culture views youthfulness as extremely important. While this ingredient may not sound as an appealing ingredient to slather on your face, it is said to drastically help with anti-aging, tissue repair, acne, rosacea and scarring. Using the power of snail secretion to repair skin and lock in moisture, it also contains powerful ingredients including hyaluronic acid, glycolic acid, collagen, elastin and other vitamins and nutrient such as vitamin A, C and E which are great for balancing skin tone and texture.

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Rodial Dragon’s Hyaluronic Mask – You might be asking yourself, what the hell is Dragon’s blood because I am too. No, it’s not the blood of a mythical creature slayed by knights in shining armor, it’s actually sap taken from an Amazonian tree that helps regenerate and alleviate redness while boosting blood circulation. Packed with hyaluronic acid, this mask brightens and firms for a younger looking complexion providing a plumping effect to fill in deep wrinkles, creases and lines. This mask is recommended for more mature skin however, Kim Kardashian-West swears by this ingredient to help plump her lips.

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Miss Spa Bee Venom Face Mask – Bee venom is actually known as a natural alternative to botox. The venom stimulates facial muscles for a natural anti-aging effect by smoothing out fine lines and wrinkles. Infused with powerful ingredients straight from the hive, this natural silk mask targets loss of skin firmness using royal jelly protein and bee venom to improve skin texture and bring liveliness back to a dull complexion.

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Rodial Glamoxy Snake Serum Mask – While this mask does not contain actual snake venom, it does have dipeptides that were inspired by the potent effects of the venom from a Temple Viper, a venomous species native to South East Asia. This innovative black “peel-off” formula also includes amino acids and licorice to brighten skin tone, deep cleanse and purify pores of excess dirt and oil.

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Imselene Donkey Milk Holic Sleeping Mask – It seems like in today’s age everyone is lactose intolerant or against animal milks. I personally have switched to Almond milk for the health benefits and my boyfriend happens to be lactose intolerant but who would think to include donkey milk in skincare? The brand, Imselene sure has. It seems like this mask is no longer sold in the US, only through certain subscription boxes like Memebox but I thought this mask was so unique, I had to include it! The historical use of donkey milk is to use it fermented because the fermentation process produces lactic acid which is a proven exfoliant with skin renewing properties. I have seen some negative reviews about the texture and consistency of this mask being stringy and more gel-like than a mask should be but if I could get my hands on a container, I would definitely try this one  out.

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Seoul Mamas Revitalizing Mask – When caviar comes to mind, most think of a luxurious meal served in 5 star restaurants most of us couldn’t even dream of being able to afford. While we may not have the money or desire to eat fish eggs, putting it in our skincare is a whole other story. Seoul Mamas has created a mask containing caviar extract, high in vitamins and minerals proven to prevent dullness without drying out the skin. Apple and wild cherry extracts help this super star ingredient to reduce dark spots and retain moisture.

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Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins Mega-Mushroom Relief & Resilience Soothing Face Mask – Mushrooms are considered super foods for their richness in nutrients. They have been used in skincare for centuries originating from traditional Chinese medicine. This mask combines the nutrients of a red kidney-shaped fungi known as the Reishi mushroom with Sea Buckthorn and fermented Chaga to restore the skin’s resilience and alleviate redness. It’s creamy consistency helps calm and soothe irritated skin for a healthy-looking glow.

Let me know in the comments what your Halloween plans are and if you’re staying in, which mask would you want to try and which one sounds a bit too out there to put on your face.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fall Trends for Cheap 2018

As you know, we’re always on a budget here, so all the below pieces are from Nastygal.com where there’s always a 50% off sale. Not only do I have your #ootd game in mind, but I’m thinking of your wallet too.

Animal print by far, has taken over the fashion scene this fall. I have never really been a fan of leopard print because I felt it looked cheap. But my new found adventurous fashion self has come to truly appreciate the trend and incorporate it into everyday wear (see my latest post on realisation par skirt dupes). And while leopard print is hot on the scene, you don’t have to wear it head to toe. Let’s be mindful of how we style our spots. And let’s not forget, leopard is not the only animal print out there. The highly disregarded, and my personal favorite, the snake skin is also a great option when trying to achieve this trend. I have pieced together a few chic (and affordable) options for you to play with this fall including leopard, snake and dalmatian!

Riley Leopard Tee $15, Let’s Snake Up Jacket $40, On The Spot Dalmatian Jeans $25

Another trend I have been noticing at just about every store is the use of primary colors. The reds, blues and yellows really take me back to the finger painting days. Primary colors make me think of basics but these bold hues can really make an outfit pop. Try finding pieces with texture or added details like buttons to elevate the look and really make it a stand out piece.

I’m Busy Cord Blazer Dress $45, Take The Fall Knit Cardigan $18, In Re-Corduroy Time Longline Jacket $40

Finally, I saved the best for last. My all-time favorite article of clothing, the trouser. I like to think my style is best defined as “business casual meets street” which most often means I’m wearing a pair of cool trousers and sneakers. And i’m not just talking about any trouser, but of course, the tapered leg trouser. The ultimate article of clothing that’s flattering on almost every body type. Whether we’re talking paperbag waist, high waisted or as I like to call them, slouchy crotch, they are the must-have pant in everyone’s wardrobe.

Get In Linen Paperbag Pant $30, Come Round My Way Polka Dot Pant $25, Strike a Corduroy Pant $25

Leave me a comment and let me know which trend you like the most and which you’ll be adding to your fall wardrobe.

xo