Thursday, January 28, 2016

Natural Beauty Beginner's Kit

Don't you love when people surprise you?

I recently met someone from middle-of-nowhere Wisconsin—she wears just a whisper of mascara, knits on weekends, owns a three-chamber slow cooker from which she serves hearty Midwestern meals, and drives a manual transmission Ford. She knows where to find the best pho in Uptown and is currently planning a Thai getaway complete with cooking lessons so she can really learn the culture.

As we walked home from our monthly dinner club under softly falling snow on Monday night, stomachs full of drunken noodles and spicy curry, I learned she used Aveda hair products exclusively for three years straight. I had pegged her a Head & Shoulders girl for sure (to be clear, there's no shame in drugstore shampoo—my shower's stocking $6 Tresemmé), and was surprised by her allegiance to such a luxe brand. But I realized: beyond the intoxicating aromas and relaxing sensations that are truly universal (crockpot in the kitchen or not), Aveda's commitment to using pure flower and plant essences perfectly aligns with my friend's natural beauty inclinations, savvy disposition and worldly spirit.

Immediately, I wanted to get back aboard the Aveda train.

The brand, so much more than haircare, is the perfect supplement to the natural remedies I've recently started adding to my beauty arsenal (apple cider vinegar to clarify hair, peppermint to invigorate the senses, coconut oil to moisturize, rosewater to tame razor burn). I feel like an old-world herbalist in the best way with those jars and bottles lining my medicine cabinet—plus, they're cheap and effective. But I also love convenience and am not crafty; so piecing together an aloe-kelp-jojoba-buckwheat wax concoction, Albert Einstein-style, on a weeknight when my complexion's lacking luster isn't realistic. For those nights, I look to my Aveda lineup—complex masques and cremes ready to go in pretty packages, saving me from bumbling DIY disasters, but still so natural and so indulgent.

apple cider vinegar rinse | peppermint oil | coconut oil | rosewater | image via

Shop my hot-off-the-press natural beauty winter survival system below, focusing on treating dryness & dullness and including some of Aveda's signature wellness products—because it takes more than a fancy face cream to get through this cold, gray weather with a smile.

Hope you have a fun weekend ahead. After a busy week and bit of sickness, I'm simply looking forward to a fresh haircut and lots of rest!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Valentine's Day Gift Guide

With the dead space following the Halloween to New Year's Eve holiday streak, is anyone else reaching for a reason to celebrate? Well, chill the Champs because Valentine's Day is just three weeks away! Sharing a hot plate of pappardelle with your S.O. or getting buzzed with your buddies are perfect ways to celebrate, but we all secretly want some STUFF, too, right?!

I think it's fun to play into a theme for holidays, and gifts in a red or pink palette can give something commercial a cute and fun spin. And if you really don't want to be restricted that way, just garnish whatever you bestow on your number-one with a spicy red salsa (hey, hottie!) or a bottle of rosé.

While gifts for girls are arguably easier (Perfume or a pretty bracelet? Cake.), guys shouldn't get the shaft! I have a main hang for February 14 for the first time in forever and a pretty legit list of things I want to get him—when you have someone specific in mind, know what they like, and have things you like to do together, it's not hard to pick a meaningful or personalized present. But if you're in a brand-spankin'-new situation or are just stuck, get inspired with some Valentine's Day standbys at a range of retails below! xo.

*contains my new favorite beauty ingredient (rose water) and works while you sleep to hydrate and brighten. hello indulgence! 
*for the music man! or whatever he's into. 
**whip up new recipes together. add some sriracha or pink peppercorns to give the gift some kick!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Winter Lip Exfoliators

Following the Packers' Saturday night loss, I'm begrudgingly shifting my attention from football to film. The Oscars airs in a few weeks and I'm seeing as many of the nominations as I can before the Feb. 28 show. On tap tonight: The Revenant. While the storyline is dramatic in itself, Leo's cracked and bleeding lips in the trailer (whoa) left as much of an impression on me as his harrowing quest to survive winter and seek revenge. I'm in a solid routine of exfoliating my face twice a week, but forget that same technique should be used to nourish lips (and make color last longer). Mine aren't QUITE as ravaged as Leo's (wink), but they could still use some TLC—especially in these sub-zero Minnesota temps. Sara Happ's peony formula is my current favorite, gently sloughing away deadness and leaving the kisser as soft and fresh as a spring bouquet. I'm also a big fan of bliss® after waking up to a couple of the brand's moisture creams in my Christmas stocking, so I have high hopes for fabulips.

photos via: one | two | three | four
Shop the best exfoliators below and get those lips lookin' more Angie, less Leo. You can also find the peony lip scrub on my new SHOP page! It features the products I'm using and loving IRL—stuff for the guys, too!—updated on a rotating basis, so bookmark it and be sure to stop back. Have a great Tuesday!