This Journey

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There is a lot of packing going on at my house right now.  Packing for a wedding weekend in Athens, Georgia.  Packing for vacation next week.  Packing up our house, so we can move 3 days after vacation.  Phew!  You won’t hear me complaining though, because these are all GOOD things …but oh, how quickly I can forget that when certain aspects are trying!

One of my favorite quotes is something Sandra Bullock once said – she is talking about all of the hard moments in life.  She says ‘And in between those moments- you savor, savor, savor.’

I love that and I always try to remind myself to savor and be present.  When I actually stop to consider more than what’s directly in front of me, that’s when I find gratitude and beauty.

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My companions that will most certainly be re-packed along my next few stops are these necessities from One Love Organics.  As if the blush packaging and name itself weren’t enough reasons for me to love this brand – we are also neighbors!  You guys, One Love is located in Georgia!  That makes my heart beat a little faster!  They are living the good life in the beautiful + quaint beach town of St. Simon’s Island and I couldn’t love them more.  Easy Does It Cleanser is my every day face cleanser.  It is incredibly gentle and doesn’t leave my face dry.  It also suds slightly and I feel like it removes everything my makeup remover left behind.  I love it.  A tiny bit, lathered on my face morning and night.

Both of the products shown here are travel size.  I am always a big fan of travel size.  Besides the obvious reason (easy to transport), it provides a great way to try out new products.  I especially wanted to start small with the Skin Savior Multi-Tasking Wonder Balm.  I just wasn’t sure what to think about a ‘balm.’  I didn’t know if I needed it.  What exactly is it for?  Well, that’s kind of the point.  It’s for everything.  And it really is a wonder.  I put this balm just about everywhere.  Namely,  I use it for extra dry patches on my face and body.  It’s super glowy; it kind of melts into an oil-like consistency when you apply it.  Which is very different from what I expected- I thought it was going to be like applying lip balm everywhere. But it’s not.  It’s great for dry hands + cuticles and I also put it on my lips at night.  The small size is perfect for travel because you never know how your skin will react when traveling.

This Sugarboo Designs Canvas Bag is always in my handbag.  I keep my makeup in it, but it’s also a great reminder of who I am.  I want to find beauty and cultivate beauty where I can in life.

Ok, back to packing!  And savoring!

xoxo, Lauren

Shop this post:  Sugarboo Designs Canvas Bag, One Love Organics Skin Savior Multi-Tasking Wonder BalmOne Love Organics Easy Does It Foaming CleanserFree People Maxi Dress

Skin Essentials

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One of the main reasons I started the blog was because I am constantly getting questions from friends about my skincare routine and the beauty products that I love.  Once I decided to edit my makeup bag with natural products, I wanted an outlet to help others discover quality products that have high performance- and leave out harsh ingredients.  Makeup and beauty products are a fun outlet to express creativity + personal style.  I personally do not believe that products are necessary to be beautiful, nor does any of it add to a woman’s worth.  I do, however, believe that we should take care of our skin + our bodies.  Just as we should be conscious of what foods we are putting IN our bodies, we need to have an awareness and intentionality with what we put ON our bodies.  My approach with beauty is to focus on skin health + longevity.  When the focus is shifted from covering-up, altering, and being anti-everything – that’s when we can learn to love ourselves better. Instead, I like to take this approach to skincare + beauty:  accentuate, enhance + nourish.

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Coconut oil.  It lives up to the hype.  I have not tried all of the hundreds of ways that the internet seems to think you can use it, but I do swear by slathering it on my face + lips + neck every morning and night.  Typically, my combo skin (dry sometimes, oily sometimes) is prone to breakouts and needs a lot of attention.  I will talk about additional skincare that I love on this blog in the future, but coconut oil is my numero uno-hands down favorite product.  Most days, it is my moisturizer and skin serum all in one.  I prefer it to a pore-clogging lotion or greasy oil.  You only need a tiny amount and it gives you the glowy complexion you need as a base for your foundation and/or just SPF!

Coconut oil has antibacterial agents that have really helped to clear my skin and doesn’t clog my pores.  It also contains fatty acids, proteins, Vitamin E and is believed to offer some sun protection (in addition to your SPF, of course!).  To all of this, I just say YES. Coconut oil from the grocery store works, but I prefer this RMS Beauty Coconut Cream. It is 100% pure + raw.  The packaging is also perfect for traveling (as opposed to a huge jar from the grocery)!

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My other skin (and overall health) care that I do every day is to start my morning with lemon water.  I keep sliced lemons in mason jars with tight lids in  my fridge, so that it is super easy to just dump a few in a glass and fill with water.  It is so refreshing after a night’s sleep, that I drink it pretty quickly.  Not only does it jumpstart your body and your brain with hydration, the lemon and it’s Vitamin C offer multiple benefits to your body and skin.  I drink mine with room temperature water (never cold), though a lot of people drink theirs warm.  We keep our water filter pitcher on the counter- cold water is not optimal for your body and sitting the pitcher out also serves as a great reminder to hydrate!  I will also occasionally add other fruits and vegetables (cucumber is my favorite) to add some variety and to carry with me throughout my day.

I have heard for so long that drinking lemon water first thing was really good for you, but I never bought into it until I tried it myself!  Earlier this year, we took a snowboarding trip to Lake Tahoe with a few friends and one of the girls would make a lemon water for me every morning.  For no particular reason, I decided to adopt the practice when we got home and I very quickly saw a difference!  I am definitely much better about hydrating, because I am typically starting my day with two glasses of water and as a result- less coffee!  The greatest difference I have seen with this new practice is the appearance of my skin.  My skin appears much more radiant and all of my creases that have started showing up from my facial expressions (ie. forehead lines) have very noticeably diminished!  I swear.  I can literally see a difference in the tone of my skin.  What a simple way to improve the health of your skin and entire body!

Shop this post:  RMS Beauty Coconut Cream

xoxo, Lauren

Expressionist

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If you have been following clean beauty at all, you have certainly heard of the W3LL People Expressionist Mascara.  I particularly love the name, being an expressive girl myself!  The mascara has quickly picked up a cult following- and for good reason.  The formula is excellent.  The brush is very well designed.  And the best news yet- it’s gone mainstream!!  Target now carries the entire line, including this travel size mascara! I am a HUGE fan of travel size products- not only does it help with an over-packing situation, travel sizes also give you a chance to try it before you buy it.  This is a great strategy for your clean makeup bag edit, if you are just starting to dip your toes in the water.  Once you have decided you love it, Costco members can get a two-pack at a great price!

W3LL People Expressionist Mascara is made with jojoba oil, beeswax and other goodness to nourish your lashes and promote growth.  It is certainly a clean beauty lover staple!

Shop here:  W3LL People Expressionist Mascara, Rosegold eyelash curler

xoxo, Lauren

Summer Glow

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As I am clinging more and more to my SPF (about time!), I really rely on getting my suntan from a bottle.  Of course, I love spending countless hours by a pool or on the shore – and soaking up that Vitamin D.  I am SUCH a summer girl.  The hotter, the better.  But, it’s simply not worth the cost of my skin.  You will learn that skin is a huge focus for my routine and while lobster-red is never a good look, it’s more important to care for the health of your largest organ!

Enter sunless tanner.

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I apply True Natural Tropical Self Tan every few days and it is on par with all of the conventional tanners.  Its scent ranks far better than most others and is very light.  I also opt for the Dark shade, as I am impatient with my tanner and I do not want to have to apply it too often!  I have fairly light skin and it is not too intense.

I typically apply my tanner in the morning, after a shower.  I do not like to apply it too close to bedtime, as there’s an increased risk of streaking on your body and staining your bedding.  I apply the tanner after drying off from my shower and let it dry at least 20 minutes before getting dressed.  I haven’t had an issue with staining my clothes, but I will be more careful on days that I feel I might perspire.

I also love sunless tanner on my face.  I feel like it evens out my skin tone and I am much more likely to leave the house with less makeup on..or no makeup at all!

Happy Safe Sunning!

xoxo, Lauren

Shop these products here:  True Natural Tropical Self TannerNanette Lepore Swim TopNanette Lepore Swim TopNanette Lepore Swim TopRuffle Hem DressTarget Beach BagTarget Beach Bag