Fresh, Neutral Makeup Tutorial for Spring

Spring is officially here in Texas and we are enjoying the very rare weeks of 70-degree weather, cool breezes and sunshine. This is my favorite time of the year in Texas; everything comes to life again and the colors are so vibrant and fun. This may be why I always enjoy a bright, bold lip in the Spring and Summer months. Something about a fun pink or loud coral on my lips just seems to fit to the weather and my mood. With that in mind, I wanted to share a simple makeup look that will pair nicely with any bold lip.

Another plus to this look is that all the products I'm using are made with the safest ingredients. You don't have to compromise beauty for your health ladies! Find products that are free of the toxic chemicals that 99% of the beauty industry uses and tests on you everyday!


Products Used:
  • Beautycounter Tint Skin Foundation in Linen
  • Beautycounter Concealer Pen in Fair
  • Beautycounter Bronzer #1
  • Beautycounter Blush Duo in Tawney/Whisper 
  • Beautycounter Brow Pencil in Light
  • Beautycounter Ultimate Nudes Pallet
    • Entire Lid: Mix Cashmere and Eggshell
    • Inner Corner & Under Brow:Cashmere
    • Crease & Lid from Middle to Outer Corner: Canyon
    • Outer Corner: Mix Rich Bronze and Gilded
  • Beautycounter Lengthening Mascara in Black
  • Beautycounter Color Intense Lipstick in First Date 

Please let me know if you have any questions on this look or would like more information on how to make the switch to safer personal care products! You can also learn more here!


A Safer Switch: Laundry Essentials

I've been testing a few safer alternatives to the chemical-filled laundry products we use every week. I was looking for an easy, DIY laundry detergent along with a good store-bought option; I'm happy to report I've found great options for both!

Before we jump in, I wanted to share a little on why we decided to switch over our laundry products. Researchers from the University of Washington studied top-selling laundry and air-freshening products and found that they emitted dozens of different chemicals. All of them gave off at least one chemical identified as toxic or hazardous under federal laws, none of which were included on the label.

Morning and night we put clothes on our bodies and on our children, which means we are constantly absorbing the chemicals on these fabrics and submitting ourselves to the side affects they can bring.

For these reasons, I've been on the hunt over the last two months for a safer alternatives and can't wait to share my favorite DIY recipe and store-bought option! Let me know if you have any questions!

I double this recipe, which creates enough to last our family 1 1/2 to 2 months. The rating of this recipe on EWG.org is also an 'A', which I love, and the fact that it take me 10 minute to make is a total win in my book.

However if making your own detergent is not your thing, check out these three options below. They are all rated an 'A' on EWG.org as well:
  1. Moll's Suds Laundry Powder
  2. The Honest Co. 4 in 1 Laundry Pods, Free & Clear
  3. Whole Foods 365 Everyday Value 2X Concentrated Powder Laundry Detergent, Unscented
ALSO, THROW OUT YOUR DRYER SHEETS! We have replaced our dryer sheets with wool dryer balls and essential oil. You can find a ton of great options of these on Amazon and I used the same essential oil I use for our laundry detergent.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out! 


Healthy Grain-free Granola

Happy Friday! We are getting ready for the weekend over here and part of our plans include this yummy, grain-free granola that has been on repeat the last few weeks. I should be a little embarrassed about how many batches of this I've had to make but it's so good I don't even care! Full recipe below friends, ENJOY!

2 Cups Slivered Raw Almonds
2 Cups Raw Cashews 
3 Tbsp Flaxseed Meal
1/2 Cup Roasted Pumpkin Seed
1/2 Cup Unsweetened coconut flakes 
1/4 Cup Raisins (no added sugar)
1/4 Tsp Pink Salt
1 Medium Very Ripe Banana 
3 Tbsp Coconut Oil
1/4 Cup Maple Syrup
3 Tbsp Manuka Honey
3 Tsp Ground Cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and coconut oil.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine first six ingredients.
3. In separate glass bowl mash banana and then add honey, coconut oil, maple syrup. Heat in microwave until coconut oil is melted and mixture is warm (about 30 seconds).
4. Combine with vanilla and cinnamon then pour liquid mixture over dry mix and fully incorporate. 5. Spread evenly on baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.
6. Remove from oven and add raisins. Use wooden spoon to incorporate fruit and break a part current mix. Then increase temp to 345 degrees F.
7. Bake for another 10ish minutes or until granola becomes crispy. It normally takes me around 35 minutes. Then remove from oven and cool completely. As it cools it will also dry out a bit (if it still feels sticky, don’t worry)
8. Store in mason jar or air-tight container and ENJOY over fruit, yogurt, salads or with a nut milk!

I’m honestly not sure how long it will keep because we eat it SO FAST!! This isn't a super sweet granola but you can increase the sweetness by adding 3 Tbsp of coconut sugar or honey. I hope you and yours enjoy this as much as we have!


And Then There Were Four...

Our sweet family will be growing by one this May! We couldn’t be more thankful for God’s blessings and faithfulness over our family. We are already so in love with this precious child and are overjoyed to see Lincoln become a big brother! 

As you can tell, Lincoln was all about copying the Pinterest pose I saved for this photo shoot. He was so excited he added his own personal touches, like chewing the sonogram picture and trying to make it disappear in the wind. But I feel like his true excitement really showed in the last one- he’s going to rock this big brother thing!
We are just a few week shy of entering the third trimester and I'm already feeling like he is going the be a big boy, just like his big brother, and the pulls of nesting are coming on strong! I'll be sharing a post on the first trimester and second over the next few weeks but until then, take a look at this video to see what we are having!



Valentine's Date Night Look

I recently polled my Instagram readers to see who celebrates Valentine's at home vs going out and 85% stated they stay in for V-day. Most followed it up by saying they cook a nice dinner, and get a little dressed up, which is totally what Tanner and I do! 
In the spirit of V-day, I wanted to share this very easy look, using minimal products with a big bang. This is perfect for going out or staying in and BEST OF ALL, everything used is safe!! 

Enjoy this look!


A Safer Switch: Tampons & Pads

Welcome to week two of, A SAFER SWITCH!

If you are new to this series let me give you the run-down. Each week I will share ideas on how to switch over specific products to safer, non-toxic but still effective options. We will walk through information on what ingredients you should avoid, safer brands and/or alternatives!

Last week we kicked-off the series with DEODORANT & TOOTHPASTE; you can dive into the full post here!

Today we are diving into FEMININE PRODUCTS.

Did you know that the average woman will use over 16,000 tampons or pads during her lifetime? That is almost 300 pounds of products being added to the environment, and 16,000 exposure points to harmful chemicals per woman! 

As I dived into this topic I quickly saw two points to consider: the environmental element and the ingredient element. While I think both elements are important to consider, only you can decide where you stand on the matter. Personally, while our family makes efforts every day to help our environment, this is one area of life where I opt for connivence. This article helped me come to this decision. Personal decisions aside, I've included options that are not only safer from an ingredient stand point, but also environmentally mindful! Below is a high level list of the top ingredients you should avoid when picking tampons or pads as well as a few great options for the next time Aunt Flow arrives!

  • Rayon: There are four synthetic ingredients commonly associated with increasing the likelihood of Toxic Shock Syndrome; rayon, polyester, carboxymethylcellulose and plolyacrylate rayon. While the last three listed have been taken off the market, rayon is still found in most tampons on the market today.  
  • Dioxion: This is a result of chlorine processing and is linked to hormone and immune system disruption. According the the EPA, there is NO SAFE LEVEL OF EXPOSURE TO DIOXIN. 
  • Non-organic Cotton: Most cotton is treated with pesticides and herbicides to protect it's growth. The issue here is that most of the cotton used in our tampons and pads still contain these chemicals! This is why it is SO VERY IMPORTANT to use products with 100% organic cotton!
  • Fragrance: Anytime I see "fragrance" listed in any product, I run! One fragrance can include hundreds of chemicals and companies are under no requirement to share what ingredients are included under the umbrella of "fragrance".
  • Chlorine: Chlorine is used in the bleaching processes and does produce trace amounts of dioxins in the process.
  • BPA: BPA is a hormone-disrupting chemical that comes from producing plastic, and it has been linked to cancer. When searching with tampons, make sure the applicator is BPA-free. 
SAFER Options
There are many great, safe feminine hygiene products on the market today. Below are two standard tampon and pad options, along with one reusable and environmentally sound option. I hope this is helpful!

  1. LOLA: Lola is a monthly subscription service offering tampon, pads and liners to their customers. Their products contain one ingredient, 100% organic cotton, and are shipped directly to your door each month which is incredible. Right now they are offering 15% off your first subscription order! MORE INFORMATION HERE.
  2. NatraCare: NatraCare is a middle ground when it comes to safer ingrediants that are also better for the environment. Their products are made from renewable, natural materials including organic cotton, bioplastics (made from plant startch) and wood pulp. The can be found at some stores and on Amazon for a few dollars less than Lola products. MORE INFORMATION HERE.
  3. The Diva Cup: The Diva Cup is a sustainable, easy-to-use, cost effective and eco-friendly menstrual cup. You can see a full run-down on this product here, but many uses (including my sister) noted that while there was a learning curve on how to use and care for the product, it was extremely effective and met their monthly needs. MORE INFORMATION HERE.
Alright friends, I hope week two was helpful and informative! Make sure to come back next week for a full run-down on your laundry essentials! 

4 Steps to Create a Summer Glow in the Winter

I become such a ghost in the Winter months and it can be so hard to fake a summer glow without looking too orange or overdone. I can be done though, and I wanted to quickly share how I create a natural summer glow in four easy steps. This is a very simple look with minimal makeup used, (it takes me about three minutes to create this whole look) which is another plus since we are all back into our normal, busy routines!

 All the details on what I used are below:

 ☀️ When I started the video I had on Tint Skin Foundation in Linen and the touchup concealer pen in Fair.
 ☀️ Color Pinch Cream Blusher - I used Hibiscus but Umber is very similar with a rosy tint instead of pink, and Caramel is just the perfect neutral glow. I LOVE this formula. 
☀️#1 Matte Bronzer: I used this under my cheek bones to my hair line and up my forehead. I love the subtle depth and color it adds. I was pretty light with my application here so you can absolutely use more and create a deeper contour.
☀️ Ocean & Pacific Palette: As I mentioned, you could skip the #1 Bronzer and use the one from this palette that I used on my eyes. I just wanted to show you both bronzer options since they are on sale! I love the eyeshadows in this palette but the blush, bronzer and highlight are my favorites!

What are you tips for creating a Summer Glow in January?

Please let me know if you have any questions! All the products I used can be shopped here!

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