What do you do when your heart says one thing but your mind says the other? I’ve been contemplating that question a lot recently. You see I’ve been waiting for a pretty good job for almost six months now, and I know that eventually when the job comes to fruition many doors will be opened to me in the future. The only thing is I don’t know be when that will be. I could even be waiting for it into next year! That is where my dilemma lies because I’ve also been offered a job back in Japan. Two jobs to decide between, how do I decide?! It’s literally been stressing me out to the point that I’m not sleeping well. Continue reading
Recently, in my bout of sadness, I’ve subconsciously craved things that called out to my soul. I tried to surround myself with things that made me feel good, and things that made my heart feel happy. I went outside of my normal go tos and tried new experiences and read new texts that previously I would have never even touched. By doing that I have found many new “things” that literally just bring a smile to my face by just thinking of them, and today I would like to share those things with you. These things have brightened my days, and given me a more balanced mindset throughout the week. I hope that maybe they can do the same for you. Continue reading
In the previous years, I’ve always felt hyper-motivated and filled with abundant passion. However, before and after the start of the new year, I had a few weeks where I struggled to remain inspired. I felt like there was not enough positive stimulation day to day, and it definitely dampened my mood and my productivity. That’s the main reason I haven’t uploaded a post in forever. I get these great ideas for content, but then I can never seem to bring all the bits and pieces together. I will write the post and be happy with the way it turned out, but then I go to produce the visual content and no matter what I do I just can’t be happy with the way it turns out. Or, it will be the other way around and I will absolutely adore my graphics but I can’t English well enough to support them. It’s a conundrum. So, to get out of my slump I’ve decided to work on bringing more positive stimulation into my everyday life. In this post, I’ll share with you two ways I’ve done this. Continue reading
Man, it has been a hot minute since I’ve written a “tip” post. I started my blog off with the intention of it being a place to nurture a more beautiful and confident you. While I still intend to do that I’ve also expanded my overall focus into a wider, more personalized space.
Tip #3 is probably one of my all-time favorites,
I think one of the most important tips I can give is one must Take Care of Yourself. I’ve mentioned how women are these beautiful goddesses that walk the earth, right? We are, and we should be treating our bodies like they deserve to be treated. That means you need to make time for bae #1, yourself. You need to take the time out of the day, week, month to sit down and relax. To do the things you enjoy and your body enjoys.
This marks the time to unwind. Tie up your hair, pick a couple candles, and take some time for your body and mind to relax. [Please don’t put the candles anywhere near flammable items…aka your hair] Studies have shown that taking a bath can actually calm your nervous system. This reduces the feelings of stress and anxiety that has built up throughout the day, week, month. While this won’t be the answer to your problems, it is a way to calm your mind long enough to figure them out. Furthermore, bathing in warm water, surrounded by steam, improves breathing ability and is even known to aid in improving heart health.
If the health benefits weren’t enough to entice you into taking more baths, the cosmetic pros might. Bathing is a mild form of detoxification. Not only internally, but externally.The steam from a bath is great for naturally opening your pores and cleansing away toxins without the need for harsh chemicals. Furthermore, baths are proven to reduce inflammation, and Epsom salt baths may reduce bloating in some cases.
Finally, in today’s day and age, our baths can be a beautiful experience. With brands like LUSH and Bath and Body Works, the sky is the limit on what your bath time experience can be. I mean who wouldn’t want to relax in a steaming pool of pink glitter, I know I would.
I’ve recently been reading a beauty style book called My Style by Akemi Darenogare. The book has many different parts including, but not limited to, Diet, Hair Style, Makeup, and Relaxing Beauty. My favorite part so far has been a few of her personal exercise picks and her self-massage routine. Would I like to go get a massage every week in a beautifully decorated, ambient lighted salon, HELL YES. Can I afford to get a massage every week in the same salon, HELL NO! So what is the next best thing? Self-massages.
Unfortunately, if you don’t have the ability to read Japanese this book probably won’t do you much good. However, for my Japanese speaking audience, it is linked HERE. You can find many websites that give you massage techniques or just do what feels the best for you and your skin.
I know they always say that even though a product is expensive doesn’t mean it will be good, but when it comes to skincare I might have to argue here. While you don’t want to break the bank on skincare, you definitely don’t want to pay bottom dollar.
Washes/ Serums / Moisturizers
Up until recently, I’ve always used the basic Neutrogena skin care, and I loved it. After moving to Japan however that brand has become close to impossible to access, so I had to find a new skincare regimen. I started off with products that were in similar price range to the Neutrogena products I had grown so fond of. Nothing seemed to work. The products either caused my skin to break out or just look dull and lifeless. So, I stepped up my game and went for products in the $30-$50 dollar range. They worked alright, however, on my skin, I just felt like they weren’t a perfect fit.
Now, I’m using Kiels and I absolutely love it. If you’re looking to try out a mid-range skincare brand I recommend you try them out! I have a relatively small face, therefore I don’t need a lot of product. I purchase their trial kit for about $60 dollars and it has lasted me a good two months. Rather than forking out the money for a full sized product, for now, I think I will continue to just buy the trial size pack that comes with all you need. Making it a little easier on the budget, and it makes it a lot easier to bring my skincare along when I’m traveling, be it flying or a quick weekend trip to a new prefecture.
My favorite mask of all time is the Freeman Apple Cider Clay Mask. If you’re in the states or somewhere where you can access Ulta find this product here. I could use this mask daily and my skin will still feel rejuvenated and fresh, not overly processed. It is probably my holy grail mask. HOWEVER, I cannot find this mask for the life of me in Japan and to order it online would be ridiculous! So once again, after running out, I’ve had to find other alternatives. There haven’t been many I’ve enjoyed. Japan is the land of sheet masks, so for a clay mask lover like myself, I’ve almost given up on masks altogether. The mask I find myself reaching for when I absolutely feel like I need one is X. I don’t know if you can get this mask outside of Japan so I haven’t included a link. It has a nice citrus scent and doesn’t leave my skin feeling slimy or oily which is a plus. I don’t use it often as I typically just go for applying some of the SKii serum on a cotton square and letting it soak into my skin.
Now, this is the fun part. Some relaxing fun. Read a book, play a video game, paint your nails, watch 100 YouTube videos, … Do something that makes you happy, but isn’t strenuous. An activity that brings you joy, but lets your body relax like it needs to. I am a fan of reading. Currently, I am working on some Japanese novels, but the most recent novel I’ve read in English was The Butterfly Garden by Dot Hutchison. It was an amazing read and I enjoyed it thoroughly. If you like suspense and psychological fiction I definitely recommend it. Another good read is The Hangman’s Daughter by Oliver Potzsch. This is a pretty long read, but an enjoyable one. It might’ve been because I was reading for hours at a time on my IPAD or the wording used in the text, but sometimes I did find the sentences would blend together and I would have to backtrack a little bit to understand what was going on.
An Alternative to reading is coloring. There is just something so peaceful about coloring. My current obsession is my Parisian Street Style coloring book. The illustrations are just beautiful and I enjoy using a color pallet that I enjoy rather than wanting to use a color pallet subconsciously chosen for a character styled coloring book.
My biggest advice is to take care of your body, and your mind in a way that makes you happy and brings you stress relief. My form of self-care might be different from everyone else’s. While I’ve provided many options on what you can do for self-care, you also need to take some time and decide what works best for you.
Thank you for reading ❤
What are some of your self-care tips and tricks?
[Disclaimer: some pictures taken from Pinterest… I don’t have a cute bathtub!]
Winter is now in full swing, so that means every day is a coat kind of day! We’ve remained in the negatives for the past three weeks, and I cannot imagine leaving my apartment without a coat. No way José! However, wearing the same coat can be very boring and monotonous. As I typically wear black, grey, or white cords to work, I enjoy wearing colorful jackets that look a little higher fashion or stylish. This keeps me looking sleek and trendy, but I can easily take them off if they are too much for my fellow teachers. I work in Japanese public school which doesn’t really embrace creative or fashion-forward energies. (At least in my small town they don’t.) I remember I once wore a gorgeous pencil skirt that had silver beadwork along the sides, it was modest yet very chic. I was told that the skirt was too much and that they would like me to tone down my outfits so that the other teachers don’t get jealous. Which frustrated me for two reasons. Reason one, these are grown-a** adults getting jealous of a 23-year-old because of her clothing, really!? Reason two was that I had this beautiful piece and now I had nowhere to wear it! Such a waste! Anyway, rant aside, I’ve found that I can get away with wearing coats that are considered fashionable. Today I would like to share with you a couple of my favorite styles that can be dressed up for business or worn casually every day!
Long line dusters are probably my favorite style of coat. I currently only have one, but my electronic shopping carts are filled with so many different options that I can’t seem to decide on which one i like best. Long line duster coats are so nice because A. They keep you warm, and B. they look stylish with almost anything you wear. Be it business or casual long line dusters can instantly glam up an outfit. The exquisite coat pictured is a piece offered on Misguided and its currently on sale for $51.00! You can find it here. If I didn’t already spend all my fun money on stickers and food, I would’ve bought this steal in a heartbeat.
I just think that long line dusters give the wearer an air of composure. Anytime I see a gorgeous woman walking by in one I think “That woman has got her life together!” I want to look like I have my life together just by walking down the street! So, that’s probably why they are my favorite.
The next coat is also in the duster family and it is a waterfall duster. If you can’t tell by the color and name, I may have certain obsessions to certain colors and styles, and as it turns out also brands. The piece pictured is also found on Misguided. As of February 1st its on sale for $21.00! You can find it here.
I like waterfall dusters because they look so effortless. They are the perfect for those moments when you know what you’re wearing is gorgeous, but you just want to vamp up the presentation a bit more without having to work very hard to do so. I think that everyone should try out a waterfall duster, and see what they think. The only negative is I’ve found that these are not good coats for those frigid days. They’re the kind of coat you chuck on when its not too chilly out, but you need more than just a shirt. So, they are probably better for fall or places that don’t have harsh winters.
The final coat for this post is the Duffle Coat. I feel like a coat like this can be found at almost any retailer that sells outerwear. These coats are cute and cozy making them perfect for winter time. The double breasted clasps gives the coat more personality and flair. While these coats are popular and common, by looking online and at various boutiques you can always find a version that suits your style and personality.
I definitely hope to find my perfect Duffle Coat one day! The coat pictured is from ASOS and it is stunning, but a little pricey at $103.00. You can find it here.
What is your favorite style and color of coat?
Thank you for reading ❤
Holy cow! January passed by in an instant. I swear it was yesterday that I was visiting my parents and siblings in Colorado, but no it was over 20 days ago! January has been a month of travel. During the holidays, I traveled back to the states and went around to all of my favorite Colorado hangs. Then, I made the journey back to Japan, which really isn’t the hard part. The hardest part is from the Narita Airport back to Miyako. It’s an hour train ride, to another twenty-minute train ride, finished with a nine-hour bus ride! Killer. Due to all my travel throughout January, I started a few new rituals that have brought along quite a few new favorite items for me and I would like to share them with you.
The first item on my list is the Mario Badescu rosewater facial spray, I’ve gotten this once before and liked it, but now that I’m consistently using it I must say I actually freaking love it! I use it as a mist and also to wet my beauty blender. I don’t like the thought of wetting down my sponge with water, so using a mist that is going to tone and hydrate sounds like a win-win to me! Now, this might not be everyone’s cup of tea but I’ve been doing this for a month and while I still have a few scars I’ve yet to have any new blemishes, so I don’t think it’s negatively impacting my skin. The best part of this product is how affordable it is! An 8 oz. bottle is only $12 at Ulta. If this sounds like something you might like I say give it a try.
Next item on my list is my Lush Celestial moisturizer. It is currently winter in Japan, and it is crazy dry! My skin has definitely been feeling the effects of it. So, I had to increase the strength of my moisturizer. Normally the Neutrogena sensitive skin is moisturizing enough, but this month I still felt like my skin was dry and tight even after using that. So, I spent the $30 bucks for the Celestial moisturizer and personally I think it is really worth it. If you need a thicker moisturizer than what you’re using, but you want something that won’t have a lot of chemicals or additives, I think that this moisturizer is a good option. I also like using it on my hands and any overly dry areas. It’s a bit pricey in my opinion but I will definitely repurchase once I finish my current tub. Furthermore, Lush is a company that has the same products available in many countries, unlike some companies that only cater to each country individually. I enjoy the fact that when I leave Japan I can continue to purchase this product in the states.
Product number three is also a Lush product and it’s their Aqua Marina face and body cleanser. Now, I bought this product a little while back and wasn’t a huge fan. I felt like it wasn’t really doing anything for my skin. However, recently my skin has been very irritated, I blame it on all the sweets I ate in the states. So, I went back to using this product with my Duvolle Spin Brush, and my skin has never felt better. I feel like this might just have to be a repurchase when I run out in a few weeks.
The next product is actually probably my favorite! I bought myself a little Christmas gift last year! I purchased the Duvolle Spin Brush set. I used the coupon code provided by Gabi Demartino for 75% off and it took the total to $28 for purchase and shipping. Prior to using this brush, I was always paranoid about getting my skin as clean as I could. I always felt that there was still something hiding within my pores. Some makeup or oil that I missed. With this system, when I clean my face I know my face is thoroughly cleansed. For $27 bucks, I cannot be more grateful! I really recommend anyone who has been looking into getting a facial cleansing brush system check out this one! Also, here is the link to the YouTube video where Gabi mentions her code!
The final two products are both from Kiehl’s. The first is the Midnight Recovery Botanical Cleansing Oil. I used to be terrified of anything with the word oil coming near my face. It just made me think of bad breakouts and looking like I’m sweating and I wanted to avoid that at all costs. When I purchased this product, I had bought a sample package and thought I was getting the concentrate but was surprised to find the oil cleanser instead. I decided to give it a go since I’ve heard nothing but good reviews about Kiehl’s. I’m so glad I did. This cleansing oil removes my makeup so easily but doesn’t feel disgusting on my skin. I might even go as far as saying that you really don’t need to wash your face afterward, but I always do. Its texture is like, butter in liquid form. (If you asked me if I would put a product that was like liquid butter on my face one year ago I would have laughed in your face!) This cleansing oil is so soft and gentle. The essential oil blend found within aims to create brighter and more radiant looking skin. Also, a little bit goes a long way! I got a travel size container and I’ve been using it almost every day for two months, and I’m only about 2/3 finished with it. I know I will immediately repurchase this item when I start to run out.
The final item is the Kiehl’s Micro-blur Skin Protector. I adore the way my skin looks after using this product. It’s the perfect thing to throw on when you want your skin to look youthful and radiant but you don’t want to bother with a “no makeup”makeup look. The key ingredients are Bark Extract, Lentil Extract, and Lip Hydroxy Acid. All three of these ingredients aim to help improve overall skin quality and texture while smoothing the surface of the skin and tightening your pores.
What is one or two of your January Favorites?
Please share them in the comments below ❤