September Beauty Talk

Its kind of like monthly favorites. Its kind of like hits and misses. Its kind of product review. Some will be new products. Some will be products I’ve had forever. Its my Beauty Talk and starting now, I’ll be doing one every month. I’m back tracking a little and starting with September. Ready, go.

SEPTEMBER BEAUTY TALK

SOAP & GLORY – BODY WASH AND BODY LOTION (CRUSH SCENT): This stuff! I’m obsessed. The body wash is so refreshing, gentle and makes your entire bath/shower smell like limes and the scent lasts! Use the body lotion afterwards and you will be in heaven. This lotion is really creamy and very moisturizing. I’m an incredibly dry person but I really haven’t had the issue since using this lotion. And I cannot stress enough just how phenomenal the scent is. Soap and Glory has several different scents, but Crush is by far my favorite.

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RCMA NO-COLOR POWDER: I have been using this powder for quite a while now and I have no plans of ever using a different powder to set my make up. It also works awesome for baking your face (on the rare occasion that I do that..) Its a loose powder that goes on without any color and it really holds your liquid products (foundation, concealer, etc) in place. My one huge complaint however is the packaging. Loose powder in a big container like this gets so messy. Every single time I use it I have powder all over my shirt, hands and counter. Its easy to clean up, but its still a pain you know?

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CREST 3D WHITE TOOTHPASTE: This isn’t technically a beauty product, but a clean, white smile helps make you beautiful! I’ve been obsessed over the idea of whitening my smile lately so I grabbed this toothpaste on a whim a while ago and I’m never going back. It works! And its minty fresh ::thumbs up emoji::

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COLOR POP – SCULPTING STIX AND HIGHLIGHT: Mixed reviews here. I got the highlight in shade, Monster and I love it. It isn’t the easiest to blend and sometimes I feel like it takes the makeup thats underneath it off, so thats a bummer – but when it goes on nicely it is an incredible highlight and you will be beaming! Its definitely not subtle and sometimes thats just how I like it. The Sculpting Stix I had high hopes for. I got a couple really light shades for highlight and a darker shade for contour. The colors are nice, but they are soooooo hard to blend. I have to work them for a while with my beauty blender before they finally start looking decent. I’m bound and determined to make these things work for me – its just going to take a bit of effort.

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BROW PENCIL – ANASTASIA BEVERLY HILLS BROW WIZ: I don’t think I’ll ever use another product on my brows. I’ve used this pencil for several months now and I’m committed. Its incredible and you need it in your life.

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MASCARA – MILK MAKEUP: This is a newer product for me. I was weirded out by it at first because it comes in a squishy tube and the applicator is insane, but I gave it a try and now its the only mascara I use. Its a deep, dark black that doesn’t transfer and it fans my lashes out nicely and elongates them. Love this stuff.

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MAYBELLINE – FIT ME CONCEALER: I love when you find a drugstore product that works just as nicely as higher end makeup. I use these concealers for my under eye, setting my eyelids, highlight and contour and I love them. They blend effortlessly, they don’t crease or cake up and they have a nice, flawless finish. And they’re cheap so I’m all about these.

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REAL TECHNIQUES – SETTING BRUSH: I use this brush for my powder highlights and its the best. I have used so many brushes and tried to get them to apply my highlight the exact way I wanted and this is the only one that does so. It fans the product out so I don’t have to blend too much and its soft and easy to use.

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BE A BOMBSHELL COSMETICS NAIL POLISH IN HOLY FUCHSIA: I love this color and this brand. It stays on nicely (with a bottom/top coat) and the color is so fun because its still a bright, happy color but its deep enough that it works as a perfect Fall nail color. I’m all about this.

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KAT VON D – TATTOO LINER: People have raved about this forever and I never felt the need to purchase it. I have been in an eyeliner rut recently so I finally caved and got it. I get it now. This is a staple makeup product everyone needs in their makeup bag. You can get blunt, thick lines or precise, thin lines. Its perfect for any look.

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LIPSENSE: I was hesitant to mention Lipsense because I know there are very strong opinions about this. But then I remembered this is my blog and my opinion and I am free to share that here. I love Lipsense. I searched forever for a lipstick I could wear and still kiss my husband and baby without leaving lip marks on them and this is it. It really doesn’t transfer, the color payoff is awesome and there are so many colors to choose from! You guys…I even sell this stuff. (don’t worry, i have vowed not to be a pushy salesman. i won’t force you to join any groups or make you endure endless posts on social media about the product – my pages are there but you have to join them by your own free will to see the content)

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xoxo

ceeceesparkles

 

Get Ready Challenge

Maybe this is just me, but my day almost always goes better and feels better on the days I get ready. You would think this would make me get ready, right? Wrong. I still wear yoga pants and a sweatshirt or a t-shirt of Wild Man’s 90% of the time. For no real reason I decided t0 issue a challenge to myself to get all the way ready for a full week. This entails getting dressed in actual clothes/wearing a bra, doing my hair, wearing make up AND getting sweet baby H ready too (putting him in clothes instead of comfy clothes to match my own). To really take this up a notch I am going to try new make up techniques/product every day and I am going to do my hair different every day. I am writing this paragraph on Day One and will be updating this post every day but actually posting it on the seventh day.

DAY ONE

What I Wore: I could be wrong but the shirt I wore is called something along the lines of ‘the boyfriend….shirt?’ I can’t remember. But I do know its comfy and I do know its from Old Navy. I wore an old reliable pair of super skinny jeans form American Eagle and when I went out I wore a pair of black pointed toe flats.

My Hair: I got bangs two days ago. They’re cuter than they look in the picture below – I’m still figuring out how to pose with them I guess. Also I’m getting them thickened here soon. Anyway my hair frustrated me today. I used a large barreled curling iron on it and approximately ten seconds later the curl was gone, leaving my hair looking messy and like I just rolled out of bed. Whatever. It’ll look better tomorrow. Maybe.

My Make Up: My favorite part of any day I get ready is the make up. I did a full face but I kept it fairly simple. I used some warm oranges and golds from my favorite shadow palette (Morphe 35O) and paired it with a fairly bold lip (Bella from Lipsense – yes I wear/love it). I didn’t really challenge myself today with the look but I’m hoping to have time tomorrow to get more creative.

What H Wore: This cute boy wore this new long sleeved t shirt from Target and some jeans from Baby Gap and darling Mickey Mouse socks from H&M. No matter what he wears he looks like a million bucks and I can’t take my eyes off him.

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DAY TWO

What I Wore: My parents recently returned back from Disney World (right before the hurricane hits, thank goodness) and they brought us back some fun shirts that I knew I wanted to wear this week. Today was the day. I wore this WDW top thats sort of the feel of a light hoodie with no hood. What are those called? Seriously I know nada when it comes to fashion terms. I also wore some dark wash jeans from Target and wore some silver sparkly Sperry’s.

My Hair: I pulled the top of my hair back and twisted it around. Of course you can’t tell because I failed to take a picture. But hey at least I did my hair.

My Make Up: I didn’t have a lot of time for make up today but I still wanted to do something a little different than yesterdays look so I decided to go with a pretty thick winged eyeliner. It wasn’t very long or dramatic but it was a fun way to bring the focus to my eyes. I wore a soft mauve blush and opted for no lip color today. I also tried out a new highlighter from ColourPop today and I really like it – this one may knock out my current highlight fav for the time being.

What H Wore: How cute is he, seriously? Sweet Baby H wore a Mickey Mouse hoodie from Disney World and when he saw himself in it with the hood on the first time he was so excited! Underneath he just has a little black t-shirt from Target and wore some simple grey comfy pants from Carters and some more of those Mickey Mouse H&M socks.

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DAY THREE

What I Wore: I knew the day would come during this challenge where I had no desire to get ready. BUT I still did (with a kind of crappy attitude). Today I wore an old shirt from Gap that I always feel grown up in. For an unknown reason I feel ‘ready’ in this shirt. Its also a little bit thicker material so it was nice and warm for this chillier day. I have a relaxed style of jeans on from Gap and paired this outfit with some mustard flats.

My Hair: Yeah, I didn’t do my hair. Well I did it, it just is in some weird messy bun type thing. I showered this morning and my hair was still wet while H was taking his nap and I was getting ready and I wasn’t about to turn the hair dryer on and ruin his nap. So the wet hair was stacked on top of my head. At least I did my bangs, thats got to count for something.

My Make Up: I used all different face products today. A new primer, foundation, concealer, setting powder and a new under eye concealer. I also used browns and dark purples on my eyelids and tight lined my eyes. I have a nude, barely-there lip and kept everything pretty easy. Also, I didn’t capture it very well in the picture (dang) but my eyeshadow looked killer today.

What H Wore: We kept H comfy and cozy today in a red long sleeve onesie (Walmart – so cheap!!) and cute comfy pants from Target. He had a pair just like them but in red last Fall/Winter and they were my favorite! Then some Disney Story Mickey Mouse socks (i promise he has socks other than Disney…)

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DAY FOUR

What I Wore: So this day just really didn’t go how we planned it to. Its a Saturday and Wild Man went mountain biking with his brother earlier this morning. At around 11:45 I got a call from him and he told me he crashed – bad. (there will be a story on this later with more detail) We spent the whole day in the ER and I literally left the house the second after I got ready so no pictures were taken. Luckily I somehow snuck into a picture my mother in law took, so thats my outfit picture for the day. Anyway. We are BYU fans in this family and today was game day so I wore blue. This is a loose 3/4 sleeve shirt from Gap and I wore a pair of jeans, also from Gap and some grey fake converse from Target.

My Hair: Wavy curls that died a while later – that is the story of my hair whenever I try to do anything ‘fancy’ with it. Someone teach me how to make curl last. My hair is thick and heavy and I’m starting to believe I’m destined to be curl-less.

My Make Up: It was a basic full face of make up. I warmed my eyelids up by sticking some bronzer in my crease, I wore a brighter pink/peach blush and some tinted chapstick. Nothing fancy or high maintenance. Which was good since I spent my whole day at the hospital.

What H Wore: I so wish I would have got a better picture of The Captain but I had to rush out of the house and leave H with my mom. He wore a BYU jersey top and some jeans from Target and some little BYU socks. He looked SO cute I could hardly stand it. While Wild Man was still biking and I was hanging out at home with H, I took the picture below because I thought it was funny that he figured out how to pull his arm out of his sleeve – and thats his outfit picture for the day.

What a day…

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DAY FIVE

What I Wore: I love Sundays and getting ready for them is half the fun. Today I wore a full length dress from LuLaRoe. This is my one item from them and I really don’t hate it. Its pretty, its stretchy (makes for easy nursing) and the pattern hides the leftover pooch I have from being pregnant so I really like it. I wore a pair of sandals that matched the little bit of blue in the dress.

My Hair: I got real exciting today and just straightened my hair. But I hadn’t done it yet this week and honestly the days I straighten my hair are the days I feel prettiest. Probably because my hair doesn’t ‘fall out’ of being straight like it does with curls, so I feel put together all day long.

My Make Up: I did a full coverage face and used all my go-to products today. I let the focus fall on my lips that were a nice berry color. My eyelids had some golds and browns blended together and a little bit of glitter because thats never a bad idea. I finally jumped on the band wagon and bought the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner and today was the first day I used it and I’m already a big fan! I did a simple line but I’m looking forward to seeing what other kinds of looks I can create with this. I also used a new highlight that I can’t even remember the name of and I don’t care because I wasn’t a fan..

What H Wore: My baby in church clothes = CUTEST EVER EVER EVER. He is so stinkin’ handsome my heart can’t handle it. Today H wore a button up collared white onesie from Baby Gap, some Chicos (my fav church pants for him) from H&M and some cute little shoes from Target. And he melted everyones heart at church. He seriously got so many compliments and I agreed fully with all of them.

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DAY SIX

What I Wore: You know when you’re looking through your closet and find a shirt you bought forever ago and never wore? This great event happened for me the other day and I couldn’t wait to finally wear the blouse from Old Navy – today was the day. I wore them with black jeggings (my jam) from Target and black flats.

My Hair: I was undecided on hair today. It started off straight like yesterday, but then it went into a high pony tail to stay the rest of the day.

My Make Up: Once Fall hits all I want to do is wear warm oranges, reds, browns and golds. Today I mainly wore orange and gold and I la-la-loved it. I wore Caramel Apple (from Lipsense) on my lips and did a soft all over face look.

What H Wore: This cute baby wore another long sleeve T from Target, some Target jeans and socks and later wore the cutest little baby tennis shoes (also from Target). If you haven’t been able to figure out already, Target is my favorite place to shop.

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DAY SEVEN

What I Wore: Finally the last day! I can’t wait to wear leggings, yoga pants and wrinkly t-shirts again tomorrow! Anyway. Today I wore a short sleeve sweater from Gap, the Always Skinny jeans from Gap and gold flats (either from Target or Old Navy, I can’t remember).

My Hair: Can you tell I sort of gave up on my hair today? Top knot for the win. It is messy and boring, but it worked and believe it or not I got two compliments on it and Wild Man told me he likes when my hair looks like this. So I’m not sorry for being lazy in the hair department.

My Make Up: Ok, I was kind of lazy with my make up too. I look so tired in the picture – it makes me glad not too many people saw me today. H has been fighting his naps so hard lately and in result is easily cranky so I didn’t have a whole lot of time to dedicate to my face. Plus I did a face mask today so I had even less time. I wore BB Cream, translucent face powder, blush, highlight, brows and mascara.

What H Wore: Today this cute boy wore a Storm Trooper T from Target and these adorable washed Joggers from H&M. They are so long and require a few rolls, but they’re still so dang cute and he gets compliments on these all the time.

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FINALL THOUGHTS

  • I buy a lot of stuff from Target (this isn’t shocking news or anything – just a statement)
  • Its awkward to take pictures of your face/make up and I feel like those pictures made my head look massive. Thats a bummer.
  • I need someone to tell me how to make my hair cute. I have so little motivation to do much with it and it never looks how I wished it did. If I put lots of time and effort into it I can make it look good, but I don’t always have the time sooooooooo I just need help.
  • I love make up and I love trying new products. I wish I would have been more out of the box this week though.
  • Getting ready every day is fun and makes me feel fancier than I am, but I also missed the days where I could just throw my hair up, go sans make up and wear super comfy clothes. I’m definitely not going to give those days up, but I will also try to get for real ready more than I normally do.
  • Jeans are cute and nice to wear sometimes but they’re also overrated. Leggings count as perfectly fine pants and I’ll stand by that forever. (oh my heck i am so lazy you guys)
  • H is always cute no matter what he wears. I especially love him in jeans. He’s just the best and the cutest, guys. Love that little dude.
  • I think I’ll do this again in a month or two.

xoxo

ceeceesparkles

Fresh Face

Being a Master Esthetician, I get this question a LOT: What can I do to make my skin look better? Unless they have mentioned specific skin needs to me, 99% of the time I give the same answer. Its what I do (or try to do) and it works for me! A lot of it is common knowledge and you’ve surely been hearing it since you were a little kid – but thats because it really does work! So in case you needed a refresher on those frequently repeated facts, here is a simple guide on how to keep your skin looking and feeling fresh, beautiful and youthful.

Drink Water: This is good for you for a plethora of reasons, but one of those reasons is that it keeps your skin so youthful, soft, healthy and clean. My husband is the most perfect example of this. He is older than anyone ever guesses he is. If people are guessing his age they are always guessing he is 5+ (no joke) years younger than he actually is and thats not just because he is still a kid at heart. It is because that man guzzles water like its going out of style every single day. He never has acne, his skin isn’t oily and it isn’t dry, its smooth, soft and so healthy and I know its because of the water he drinks (and that he’s awesome and washes, moisturizes, sunscreens and cares for his face).

Get Enough Sleep: Beauty sleep is a real thing, people. While you sleep your skin is being repaired and cared for by your own body. The more sleep you get, the more TLC your skin gets. The less sleep…you get the picture.

Wear Sunscreen: I could write a 600 page novel on this topic. Wear. Your. Sunscreen!! I don’t care if you tan and never burn. I don’t care if its cloudy outside. I don’t care if its October and you burn more in the Summer. Wear your sunscreen!! The simple truth is, if the sun is out, hidden by clouds or not, it is shining and its rays are touching you – yes you – no one is immune from this. Unless you want to look like an old, wrinkly piece of leather when you’re older then you should be doing everything in your power to protect your precious skin from the harmful rays of the sun.

Take Your Make Up Off: Your skin needs a chance to breathe, free of any heavy products (such as make up). Sleeping with a clean face is helping aid in your quest to look younger for longer. I had an instructor tell me in Esthetic school once that sleeping with your make up on is giving your skin permission to speed up the aging process. Why would anyone want that, you know? So although you may be tired or lazy, I promise the extra step will be worth it. Your future, older self will thank you for this.

Wear Moisturizer: Your skin needs this. Just like everything else I’ve talked about, it is another vital step in keeping your skin healthy, strong, smooth and clear. I am particularly fond of moisturizers with SPF in them during the day and really love a good, thick moisturizer for night time.

See? How easy is that!! Of course there are other, more in-depth tips and tricks (that I’d be happy to post about if thats something you’d like..) but these are the basics and I promise if you use them there will be a difference in your pretty little faces.

xoxo

ceeceesparkles

Go-To Shadows

Its easy for me to get comfortable with products when it comes to make up. If I find something I love, like really love, I am totally fine with jumping into a long term relationship and committing to the product. I love branching out, too, but I feel like more often than not I find myself back with my originals favs.

This morning while I was getting ready I was realizing that I’m a lot more open to trying new shadows frequently, however I’m becoming more and more attached to my Z-palette I put together containing 10 of my favorite shadows. (I also super love my BareMinerals powder shadows and The Blushed Nudes from Maybelline).

I wanted to share my Z-palette shadows. They’re all individual pans from MakeUp Geek. I love their products – so pigmented and easy to apply. Do you use MakeUp Geek shadows? What are your favorite eye shadows?

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  1. Sorbet
  2. MaiTai
  3. Petal Pusher
  4. Vintage
  5. Drama Queen
  6. Gold Digger
  7. Preppy
  8. Barcelona Beach
  9. Moondust
  10. Dirty Martini

Of all of these I think Petal Pusher and Vintage are my favorites. They’re such pretty shades and they can be dressed up or warn by themselves and look just as pretty. Also, Sorbet is the queen of all transition colors. Drama Queen and Dirty Martini are pretty dramatic, but such fun colors and bring lots of attention to the eyes. Love, love.

Also, I think the coolest job in the world would be to be the person who names eye shadows and/or nail polish.

xoxo

ceeceesparkles

November Favorites

Another month has passed and I’ve found some more favorites!

NickaK New York Eye Shadow Pallet

Who doesn’t love a good eyeshadow pallet where all the colors look good on your eyelids?? I have hazel eyes and really wish I had straight green eyes. I love the copper/rosey shades that play up the green in my eyes and thats exactly what these shades do for me. They’re also deep earthy colors, which to me screams Fall.

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Bath and Body Works Candle in Pecan Pumpkin Waffles

The perfect smell for Fall and it is oh my yum. A little goes a long way, too. I only have to have these heavenly candle lit for a few minutes before most of my house smells like it. Another plus for me is the cute design on the outside of it – for whatever reason it is super pleasing to me.

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Cocoa Butter Lip Therapy Vaseline (teeny size)

My lips have been so dry the last several weeks. Chapstick is good, but sometimes I need a little extra oomph to get my lips back into gear. I’m feeling extra motivation to keep them soft, too, so when I smother my son with my kisses I’m not scratching him up with my chapped lips! Vaseline is always a good idea and makes my lips feel so good, plus the Cocoa Butter vaseline has a yummy, light smell to it, as well.

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Chobani Yogurt

Especially raspberry, peach, strawberry and blueberry. While I was still pregnant the list of things I seemed to be able to eat and keep down got smaller and smaller every day. Yogurt was one, that with the exception of a few weeks in my second trimester, that was able to almost always agree with me. I tried lots of different brands but I always went back to this one.

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Lanolin

So I’m a nursing mother. Of course I love this stuff. Unfortunately it doesn’t stop the pain of nursing (like these first few sucks – OUCH) but it really helps the feeling of being chapped after nursing. It is soothing and calming. I’m all for it.

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Wubbanub

When I first saw these binkies I thought they were so ugly and I didn’t understand the purpose behind them. Then I watched some mommy bloggers continue to use them so decided they couldn’t have been as bad as I thought – so my momma and I ordered two (the giraffe and reindeer) and I’m hooked. I hope Santa will bring Captain another for Christmas. Having the small animal on the end of the binky helps keep the binky  in place which is especially helpful for Captain’s age.

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Swaddles

I love these. Everyone told me I would and they were right. They are huge and there is plenty of fabric to wrap my little guy in or just to loosely bunch over him. I have a pack of white swaddles with different blue accents on them (polka-dots, birds, stars, etc) and I love them and how they’re totally a boy-looking item, but still soft and snuggly looking. This particular brand is, Swaddle Designs.

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The Little Captain

This one is by far my favorite of all the favorites. Pretty sure he’ll top the list of my favorites every month for the rest of my life. I’m having SO much fun with this handsome little dude. He is my best buddy, he’s such a good, well-behaved baby and he sleeps and eats like a champ. Wild Man and I are so very fortunate to have such an angel. I loooooove him!

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xoxo

ceeceesparkles

Winter Skincare

Ah, the havoc that cold weather can wreak upon our poor, unsuspecting skin, am I right? We finally get our skin looking all nice, moisturized and pretty, then BAM! the cold weather comes along and messes everything up. Oh, the joys…

I am still working on finding the perfect remedy to combat what cold weather does to our precious skin, but in the last little while, I have had a few people ask for any tips and tricks, because they, too, are suffering the woes of cold weather.

I’ve acquired some tips and tricks along the way. Though they are few, they’ve worked for me. Without further ado, here are CeeCee’s tricks, tips and advice.

  • Use a richer, extra hydrating facial moisturizer. I feel like this is the most obvious answer, but it works. Ultra hydrating  moisturizers are going to obviously help your skin absorb extra hydration – exactly what it needs with all this cold weather.
  • Exfoliate your face (3-5 times a week). This will help slough off dry, shedding skin and help new skin surface.
  • Use hydrating serums and masks. I’m not going to recommend a specific brand or type because everyone has different budgets, likes, etc. But they really do work! Every night and morning I use a hylauronic acid serum (provides lots of hydration) and at night I use a hydrating mask and my skin has really been reaping the benefits of this habit.
  • Exfoliate your lips and coat them in a good, moisturizing lip balm or vaseline. Just like on your face, it sloughs off dead skin and allows your new, fresh, pretty skin to surface. Then with lip balm or vaseline you lock in moisture that your lips so badly need.
  • Add facial oils into your moisturizer. Its just a little extra hydration for your skin to soak up. Lovely.
  • Olive Oil. I dump a small amount of Extra Virgin Olive Oil onto a cotton ball every night and rub it onto my face and neck. Again, another extra step to add in moisture to your skin.
  • Don’t neglect the rest of your body! Use a hydrating lotion/moisturizer on your entire body because its not just your face thats going to be feeling the negative effects of cold, dry weather. I also like using Coconut Oil. The oily feeling helps me feel extra hydrated and my skin feels soft and smooth a little extra longer. (just my opinion)
  • Use honey. Honey leaves your skin soft, smooth and happy. It always leaves me a little more moisturized and dewey, as well. And it smells divine!
  • Gloves and socks. For dry hands and feet I like to put several heavy coats of moisturizer, foot or hand cream on my feet/hands then put on socks or gloves to really lock in the moisture. I love the way my hands and feet feel afterwards, too. Its incredible.
  • Get a facial! 1. Because they’re amazing and feel like heaven. 2. They’re so beneficial for your faces skin and your esthetician will cater to your specific skin needs. Tell your esthetician you’re dry and winter air is wacking your skin out – she’ll hook you up.

xoxo

ceeceesparkles

“The best foundation you can wear is glowing, healthy skin.”

OOTD: Channeling Fall (& staying comfy, duh)

When I woke up this morning I could hear rain out the window, there was a general chill in the air and I knew tonight Wild Man and I were going to my families house to paint pumpkins (best halloween tradition, ever, btw) and I was instantly filled with this desire to just fully immerse myself in all things FALL.

I started with my make up. Using earthy tones I created a warm look that I think can qualify as a simple, attainable Fall look. I used a mauve blush, a burnt orange eye shadow all over my entire lid and a lip color slightly darker than my natural lip color.

For my outfit I wanted to pull in some Fall colors but also stay comfortable. “Comfort is the main priority” is kind of my maternity fashion motto as of late. My belly feels SO heavy and all my joints hurt so sometimes getting all dolled up just seems like too much effort and too much ouch. Ultimately, I’d love to just stay in my pajamas or robe all day, but since thats not always an option (dangit), I just have to be sure that my outfit is still comfortable, not restricting and if its cute – or even just kind of cute – then bonus.

Leggings are a no brainer. I wear these black leggings from Gap (find similar: here) multiple times a week because of how comfy, stretchy and versatile they are. To those of you who believe leggings are not pants – good for you, I respect your opinion, but I personally believe they are totally pants. I paired my leggings with an old blouse from Target (i searched for something similar, but with no luck) that is white and ombre’s into a peach then into a darker orange. Orange = Halloween color, so I was all about that. Plus its flowy and fit over Baby Boy. Score. Because this blouse is pretty sheer and it was semi-chilly outside, I threw on a olive green (ish) cardigan also from Target (find similar: here).

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I think its important to state that I had grand intentions of doing something really cute with my hair. But then I started to get hungry so I opted for a quicker option. Whenever I do my hair like this, for whatever reason I remind myself of a teacher. Maybe I had a teacher who did their hair like this? I don’t know.. But I like it, its easy to style and it takes just a couple minutes. Clearly, I didn’t spend a lot of quality time making sure it all looked 100%, but oh well. I did my hair, when I just as easily could have thrown it up in a top knot on top of my head. So we’re good. If you’re at all interested in a tutorial on how I did this hairdo, let me know and I’ll put one together.

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Now I have to talk about these shoes. So. For those of you kind, sweet people who tell me I am only pregnant in my belly (bless you, i love you, may all the good luck in the world come to you for making me feel so confident in this funny shaped body), what you may not know is that I am also very pregnant in my lower legs, ankles and feet. We are talking swollen-city. I have tree stump calves 90% of the time and my feet are so fat its actually caused me a great deal of pain. Side Note: Can feet explode? I think mine might, soon… Anyway, unfortunately all my regular shoes I’ve been wearing, including several pairs of flats that I adore with all my heart, don’t really fit anymore. I can squish my foot in there but its instant misery. No thanks. A couple days ago my cute momma-dear took me to Target (in case you haven’t caught on, Target is my favorite store and I will never change that) and we looked for ‘fat-feet-shoes’. We found these loafers (find them: here) and my worlds never been the same. 1) They look like shoes my grandpa wears and while that may sound like a negative point to you, its totally a selling point for me. 2) They have squishy soles and pad my feet. 3) They are loose enough that even my feet at their most swollen state can fit into them – and not squish into them, but still slide right in! These help me feel less tree-trunky and more human-leggy. Its wonderful.

Also, the fact that I’m sharing a picture of my swollen legs, ankles and feet with you should make you feel very special that I trust you enough to look at them without too much judgement.

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xoxo

CeeCeeSparkles

“Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree.” -Emily Bronte

My Pregnancy Skin Care Routine

I have always heard about the coveted ‘pregnancy glow‘ and I have always hoped that I would be one of the lucky gals who obtained that pretty, light, glowing skin. Now I don’t mean to toot my own horn but I very, very rarely miss a morning or night washing my face. I enjoy taking care of my skin and seeing the benefits that good skincare provides. I guess I just sort of assumed that of course I’d get the pregnancy glow.

Welllllll, I haven’t. I’ve got a lot of compliments during my pregnancy (thank you, everyone, iloveyou), but no one has ever said I have the ‘glow’. Shoot.

However, I haven’t necessarily had bad, problem skin, either. Its kind of just been…normal? I get hormonal breakouts (acne along my jawline and chin) from time to time, but never anything to write home about. When I want it, I have to work for my ‘glow’ which essentially means I wear make up if I want to get flawless skin – post on that in the future. If my skin is bare, its fine – just not glowy, darn it. But hey, I still have a month and a half (give or take) until Little Man gets here — maybe its not too late for that glow to come on. Never stop believing, right?

Ok, now onto what this post is really about.

My Pregnancy Skin Care Routine:

At night time, before I do anything else, I take my make up off. I have experimented with a lot of different make up removers and wipes, but right now the one I’m loving is the Up&Up Refreshing Wet Cleansing Towelettes from Target (www.target.com). This product is super affordable and surely not the best quality or face wipe I could spend my money on, but I’m glued to it right now. It takes my make up off quickly and…the SMELL of these wipes is currently one of my very favorite smells I’ve ever smelled (pregnancy does weird things to you). Maybe once I’m past being addicted to the smell I’ll try something else. (Also, I have false lashes on right now and oil-free is a MUST around your eyes when you have lashes on. So if I wear make up on my eyes (liner or shadow) I use a liquid, oil free remover that is also the Up&Up brand from Target – so far, no complaints).

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Next, (or first, if its morning) I cleanse my face. If I am in the shower, I’ll use my Clarisonic (get one for yourself, you’ll LOVE it at: www.clarisonic.com) with my cleanser on it. I used to use my Clarisonic a lot more often (3-4 times a week), but my skins a lot more sensitive since being pregnant, so I can’t use it as frequently without feeling like I’ve torn up my face.  (FYI: If you use the Clarisonic or any other kind of machine like it, this also acts as your exfoliant – so don’t exfoliate, afterwards or you’ll overdo it and hurt your skins protective barrier.) I’m very paranoid about what I put on my skin since becoming pregnant. Some ingredients (salicylic acid, for example) are harmless on non-prego skin, but are NOT recommended for prego-skin. So I decided early on to stick with organic products for my skin while Little Man is cooking. I was introduced to the organic skin care line, Tao (www.taoskincare.com), while at Esthetics school and have always really liked it and its relatively affordable. It is a professional line that has awesome benefits and provides the comfort of knowing you’re using organic material on your precious skin. I use two cleansers. My very favorite, and the cleanser I use first is Tao’s, Organic Green Tea Cleanser. This product is good for sensitive skin, mature skin, along with oily, dry or combination skin so you really can’t go wrong with it. I love it because while its on your skin it feels soapy and so clean, but it doesn’t leave any residue on my skin. The second cleanser I use is Tao’s Alpha Hydroxy Cleanser. I don’t use this one every single day – sometimes it tends to sting my skin and I’m not always about that life. But regardless, its a good product I still recommend. This product is good for breakout prone skin (I like to really focus it on my hormonal breakout areas), aging/mature skin and dehydrated skin. Tip: The longer you rub cleansers into your skin, the deeper penetration you’ll have from the product – giving you a better treatment.

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After cleansing, if I haven’t used my Clarisonic, I exfoliate my face. For this, I have strictly been using Tao’s Radiant Face Scrub. I highly recommend this. This is a physical exfoliant so you can feel the beads in the product as they gently scratch away the dead skin and leave your skin so soft! I’m seriously in love with this stuff.

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This next step is sort of optional and probably random, but I feel like it really helps when I want my skin to regain some softness and moisture. With either a cotton ball or an esthetic wipe of some type, I put a little bit of 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil on my face (not too much or I’m oily for quite a while).

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This step is also optional and I do it about every 3-5 days. I use facial masques for a little extra TLC. My very favorite face masque right now is from Murad (www.murad.com) (a medical line). The masque is from their Resurgence Line (the green line) and its called the Hydrating Gel Mask – unfortunately I can’t find it on their site right now. I don’t even have to rinse this masque off because I soak it up so quickly. I have very dry skin and it just eats this stuff up and leaves my skin looking a little more dewy and plump (a good kind of plump, promise). Another masque I use, if I’m up to a little bit of stinging on my skin is Tao’s Pineapple Papaya Enzyme Mask – and I can’t find it on their website either!! (bad luck, today!) This mask is an enzyme masque, so it is an exfoliant that breaks down the yucky stuff on your skin you don’t want. It is good for sensitive, dry, oily, mature or damaged skin. Both masques are gels that can soak into your skin if you leave them long enough (however I typically rinse the Tao Masque just so I can get the majority of the sting over with). If I used a masque, I reapply toner afterwards.

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Next is Toner. Toner is overlooked but so, so important. It balances your skins PH levels, shrinks pores, it moisturizes, protects and is refreshing. I use Tao’s Organic Calming Toner. As it says in the title, this product is calming and doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin in the very least. This product is also good for any skin type, so again, can’t go wrong with this. My preferred way to apply is to dump the product into a small spray bottle, then I spray (3-4 sprays) onto a cotton ball or esthetic wipe and run it over my face making sure I get it everywhere.

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Next I use a serum. I like Tao’s Hyaluronic Acid Serum. Its a little pricy for the size you get, but its very worth it. Hyaluronic acid holds more than 1,000 ml of water per gram. Thats a lot of hydration you’re putting onto your face! To apply I squirt one pump onto my finger tips, rub it together and pat it onto my face.

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Now I use eye cream. I hate how expensive eye creams are. I hate spending money in general (ugh), especially on something that doesn’t last long. So I have searched for eye creams that are affordable but still do a good job. I’ve found two that have met my demands. At night I use L’Oreal’s Revitalift and in the mornings I use YesTo’s Age Refresh Eye Firming Treatment in blueberry. Both are lightweight, easy to apply and keep my eyes fresh and happy.

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The last step is moisturizer. If its night time I use a moisturizer without SPF, if its morning, you better bet my moisturizer has SPF in it! I’m a sunscreen-aholic. I have two moisturizers I switch off using at night. Both Murad. Both are from the Age Reform Line (the grey line), the first is Skin Perfecting Lotion, the second is, Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture. Both are lightweight, easy to apply and feel very moisturizing. I can’t go to bed without a good coat of either of these on my skin. In the morning, I also have two moisturizers I switch off between. One is Murad’s, also from the Age Reform Line called Perfecting Day Cream (SPF 30), the other is from Glymed (www.glymedplus.com) (LOVE this line) and is called Photo-Age Environmental Protection Gelp (SPF 15). One time my sister in law told me this stuff smelled like Disneyland, so now I love it even more. Both of these also go on light weight and absorb quickly.

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Bonus step: Chapstick. Because life is heaven with Chapstick. Extra bonus if its a yummy smell.

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Also, in case you wondered what I use on the rest of my body (even for stretch marks), I use Coconut Oil all. the. time. La-la-loooove coconut oil. Also, I will sometimes use Cetaphil. Coconut Oil is obviously very oily, but holy cow it makes my skin feel ahhhmazing and Cetaphil is slightly oily, too, but feels good, very moisturizing and goes on/absorbs easily. I’m also convinced these products are golden because guess who has NO stretch marks? (so far…knock on wood).

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If you have any questions, shoot them my way! I’m always happy to talk skin care. Also I’m curious to hear how YOU care for your skin – feel free to share.

xoxo

ceeceesparkles

“The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.”

-The Emperor (from Mulan)