Saturday, October 29, 2011

Clarisonic, Neutrogena, Revlon and more...

So I bought a few things this month and some stood out more than others. So, I thought I would share.

First up: Neutrogena Make up Remover Cleansing Towelettes (CVS $7.99)

I love the clean scent and it removes make up without leaving a sticky residue. One sheet usually does the trick, depending on how much make up you're wearing.

Second: Burt's Bees Soap Bark and Chamomile Deep Cleansing Cream (CVS $8.99)

I've been a fan of Burt's Bees for a long time. After two years of trying different products, I came right back. I have combination skin and this cleansing cream removes dirt and make up while leaving my face feeling cool and refreshed. No seriously, there's a cool tingling feeling on my face after I've finished washing. Chamomile. Gotta love it.

I also like that it is 97.99% organic. I am not a fan of cleaning my face with cleansers that contain ingredients I can't, no don't want to, pronounce and include chemicals that have many uses such as making plastic, sealing pipes...ect.

Third: Revlon ColorBurst Lipstick (CVS $8.99)

The first one I bought was Fuschia and I immediately fell in love. I didn't wait to get home to try it. As so as I got in the car I cracked it open and put it on. The color payoff is beautiful. It's called ColorBurst for a reason. Fuschia was soon followed by Raspberry and Rosy Nude. Each color is as beautiful as the last.

Fourth and Final: The Clarisonic Mia (Sephora $119)

I have heard wonderful things about the Clarisonic Facial Cleansing system. I thought it was too expensive, so I decided to pass on it (although I secretly wanted to try it.) As luck would have it, I came into possession of a gift card. The Clarisonic Mia is the smaller, "travel size" version of the products. It rotates at one speed and has an automatic timer that turns off after the recommended one minute of use.

I've been using this at night before bedtime for the last week and I love it. For me it is one of the products I wish I purchased a long time ago. My skin is noticeably smoother and my face has a nice glow.

October was a good month.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Weight Loss Journey

Last year I reached the heaviest weight of my life. According to some people, I was "thick". I never planned on being thick. I was always a thin person. But a little thing called complacency set in when I started to gain weight. A few pounds here and there weren't that bad because I didn't start off heavy and I kinda liked finally having some meat on my bones. I was always small and wanted to gain weight. I didn't know that once I started gaining, it wasn't going to stop. The weight kept coming because I wasn't paying attention.

When I started gaining weight, it really did sneak up on me. I liked to blame it on being happy, being sad, good food, blah blah blah. The excuses were endless. But really, I had nothing and no one to blame but myself. At some point I stopped paying attention and became complacent.

One day, I had a moment. That all defining moment that has to happen in order for someone to take weight loss seriously. I saw a picture of myself in what I thought was my favorite yellow dress. When I looked at the picture I thought this can't be me! How did I let myself get to this point? Why didn't anyone tell me? My cheeks were starting to eat my face.

No one is going to tell you you're fat. Either the people around you haven't noticed or they don't want to hurt your feelings.

I decided to do something about it. I mean really. I joined a gym that has exercise classes pertaining to my fitness goals and interests. I've tried losing weight before. I joined a regular gym and worked with a trainer. I know, I know, everyone either joins a gym or gets a trainer. I did both. But um..why did I gain even more weight with the trainer? It was during a time when I still wasn't paying attention and apparently, neither was my trainer. Either that, or he was paying attention and thought as long as I was heavy, he would always have a client. But I digress.

Here's my before and after, followed by what I did to lose weight.

1. I figured out why I wanted to lose weight and decided fitness is going to be a way of life and not a temporary solution.

2. I found workouts that pertained to my interests and fitness goals.

3. I didn't go on a diet. I changed my diet.

4. I found THE BEST fitness friend in the whole world. It's a great idea to find one if you can. My friend and I do not belong to the same gym, we have never worked out together and we don't live near each other. We just keep each other accountable.

5. I made exercise a part of my life.

6. I stopped making excuses.

I took about four months to lose 30 pounds and I've kept it off for the last six months. I have a few more to go and I believe I will accomplish my goal before 2012.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Benefits of Rosemary Oil

Ok, so I thought rosemary and rosemary oil was only good for cooking. But as I continue my journey to learn how to take care of my hair and body naturally, I am discovering more and more that God was serious when He said He is the supplier of ALL of your needs.

Have blemishes? Try a little lemon juice and honey. Need to exfoliate? Cut a tomato in half, dip it in sugar and scrub away (gently of course). We'll talk about all of this at another time.

Right now, I'm focusing on rosemary oil. Utilizing the benefits of rosemary oil is a great way to give your hair a little assistance in the hair growth department. Here are three reasons why rosemary oil is beneficial for hair growth:

1. Stimulates blood circulation for hair growth
2. Cleans the scalp and removes dandruff
3. Covers gray hair

I apply a rosemary and olive oil mix to my hair an hour before I wash my hair. Of course there are other essential oils that mix well with rosemary oil; but I like to use olive oil. Rosemary oil should not be used alone and should be mixed with another oil such as olive oil, jojoba oil, or tea tree oil.

There are two ways to create the mix I use: The Quick and Dirty Way or The Long Way.

The Quick and Dirty Way

You will need:

An air tight container (preferably glass)
1 1/2 cups of olive oil
Rosemary oil

Pour the olive oil into the container. Add about 20 drops of rosemary oil to the olive oil and store in a dark place for about an hour. After storing for an hour, massage the oil into your scalp and leave it in until you wash your hair. I leave it in for an hour; however it's ok to leave it in overnight. Just don't forget to wash it out.

The Long way

You will need:

Air tight container (preferably glass)
1 1/2 cup of olive oil
Two tablespoons of dried rosemary (fresh rosemary will spoil)

Place the rosemary in container and pour the olive oil into the container. Store the mixture in a dark place for about 4 to 5 days. After storing, drain the rosemary and place the oil back into the container. Use as directed above.

You may experience a tingling sensation while using rosemary oil. I can definitely feel the stimulation of my scalp.

If you try this method, let me know what you think after about 30 days.