Friday, September 25, 2015

21 Days of Beauty...and my best buy

I love when ULTA has their 21 Days of Beauty...I've been trying to watch my budget lately so I didn't indulge myself too much. However, when they had Clarisonic brush heads for buy one get one free...well I could not pass that up.  (Total $27 for two!)

Image result for clarisonic mia
My Clarisonic Mia was probably one of my best purchases when I was a Macy's (employee discount woot woot).  It's been a few years now and I still love it.  Plug in to charge it every once in a while and change out the brush head every few months. Done. I've never tried the other brushes on the market because I've never needed to.  

You can use any type of cleanser you'd like with this brush, lately I've been using it with Murad's Essential-C Cleanser and Dermalogica's Daily Microfoliant.  Exfoliating with the brush is really nice, it leaves your skin so soft and smooth.  Bonus being that when you give your skin a nice exfoliation your follow up (serums and moisturizers) will go on more smoothly and penetrate deeper into your skin.   

What has been your best beauty purchase?  

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Meatless Monday (on a Tuesday)...a Lentil Chili recipe

Yesterday (Monday) I was in Long Beach at the Esthetics trade show so when I got home I wasn't exactly in the mood to cook dinner.  Thanks to frozen pizza and premixed salads I was good to go.  Today though I cooked.  

I have a turkey chili recipe that I pulled from a Shape magazine a couple years ago...I always tweak it a bit based on what I have on hand because I always seem to leave something at the grocery store.  This time I switched out the turkey for lentils.  See below for a little cut and paste of the original recipe with my tweaks are highlighted (or click here for the recipe directly from Shape).  It came out really well and looked nice and colorful with the spinach/cilantro/tomatoes.  

Firehouse Turkey Chili from Shape Magazine minus the turkey
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large clove garlic, smashed  (I just used garlic powder)
  • 1/2 cup chopped scallions, divided (I chopped up cilantro, very fresh and tasty)
  • 1/2 pound ground turkey (subbed for Trader Joes' refrigerated lentils, 16oz)
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (15 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained 
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, diced (skipped, didn't pick it up at store)
  • 1 cup carrot, diced (also forgotten at store...but I did use a couple of handfuls of chopped spinach that I wilted a bit in the pan first)
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
  • Salt to taste


1. In a large saucepan heat oil over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Toss in garlic and all but 2 tablespoons of the scallions and cook, stirring frequently, for 1 minute.
2. Add turkey and continue to cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until browned, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in chili powder and cook for 1 more minute. Add tomatoes, kidney beans, bell pepper, carrot, brown sugar, and salt to taste. Bring to a boil over high heat.
3. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Divide among 4 bowls and garnish with the remaining 2 tablespoons of scallions.  (Cut the cooking time to 10mins because of the lentils and sprinkled some cilantro on top)

What's cooking with you this week? Man, I crack myself up sometimes.  Really though, I love Pinterest for recipes and the occasional health magazine (some of those recipes seem like a lot of work though); where do you get your recipes from? Anything you'd like to share?

Monday, September 21, 2015

Long Beach Trade Show

Boldijarre Koronczay winner of the 2015 Visionary Award presented by the International SPA Association (CNW Group/Éminence Organic Skin Care)
Boldijarre Koronczay (he's from Hungary) President
of Eminence Organics
How do I love a trade show? Let me count the ways...
1. Shopping and samples
2. Classes and demos

Yeah, technically it's not a lot list wise but multiply it into a convention center and you've really got something there.  Bonus: I won a raffle in one of the classes (a book, a shirt, and a box of detox tea), additional bonus: I got to test drive a treatment with The Contour Light (a magical machine that breaks down your fat cells and helps you to lose inches...a $100 value).

I watched some awesome demos of which I would love to continue my education in a little further down the road.  The first of which is a bamboo facial massage using warm bamboo.  The woman doing this demo had a lovely french accent and was so relaxing that I almost fell asleep watching the massage (in a nice way).  Today I watched a demo using Kansa wand as part of a facial massage and I sat there thinking "Man, I want to do this too!!".

Example of a Kansa Wand
 from Diamond Way Ayurveda

Which leads into the shopping...I gave myself a very small budget, but I splurged and bought some Eminence products anyway.  They just smell so lovely and work so hard to make their booth amazing.  They have demos at their booth all day and they give so much info.  I also picked up some can't beat wholesale (I'm guessing) prices.

After visiting this year I was realizing that somewhere down the line I would like to teach Esthetics. I love taking classes and learning more and more about the skin care industry.  There is always something new, unfortunately in school the focus is mainly state board.  Don't get me wrong students need the state board stuff but there is so much more that I wish that I had been exposed to.

Links from the stuff I liked in Long Beach:
Diamond Way Ayurveda (Kansa Wand Face Massage)
Eminence Organics (Official Website)
Ageless Health / Dr. Rhonda Donahue (Healthy Living/Supplements/Contour Light)
M'lis (Detoxing and Body Wraps...I'll have a certification class in October)

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

A tasty dish: Corn Salad

The LA County Fair is in town, which I love...and there is so much that I love:
Ok, this wasn't at the Fair, you can't pet them there.
  • Farm animals and their BABIES
  • Budweiser Clydesdale Horses 
  • The Garden Railroad
  • The Table Settings competition 
  • Browsing the shopping areas
  • FOOD.  
Now I've been going to the fair ever since before I can remember.  I have some vague memories of a stroller and the Giant Slide.  In all the years that I've been going though I've never been to a BBQ Competition.  My friend's fiance entered a very tasty tri-tip sandwich with a spicy spread on a glazed donut, bacon chips, and a corn salad (he took home a Second Place Ribbon).

I'm not a BBQ-er myself.  I enjoy the taste, but I'm just more of an indoor cook.  So of his menu I decided that I needed to come home and make some corn salad of my own.  I'm not one to make up a recipe from scratch either...but I can tweak a recipe like nobodies business, which is what I did with this recipe from Six Sisters' Stuff. My changes included adding spinach to the corn at the end of heating (because I have WAY too much spinach on hand right now).  Instead of mayonnaise I used some Vegenaise and plain Greek yogurt. I omit the jalapeno but doubled up on the cilantro.  I also went with fat free Feta crumbles.  Lastly, I used onion and garlic powder--because I'm lazy like that.  It came out fantastic!  I would never have even looked for a recipe like this if it weren't for the LA County Fair.  

Any county fair memories you'd like to share?  What's your favorite part?

Monday, September 14, 2015

Multi-masking on a Monday

It has been brought to my attention (whilst continuing my education in skin care) that my skin is dry. In an effort to boost my moisture content I'm giving myself a little masking session.
Korres "Beauty Shots"

I received this set as a gift (it's by Korres and was from Sephora...but it doesn't look like the set is available anymore; the individual masks are about $18/per 1.7oz) Click here for the Korres Nectarine mask at Sephora.  I'm currently using the Nectarine (Moisturizing) and Watermelon (Hydrating) masks.  The other two masks in this set are Cranberry (Lifting) and Grapefruit (Brightening)...but as I'm focusing on my dry skin these didn't really seem to blend into my treatment for tonight. That and if I were to layer all four of these I may begin to feel like a fruit cocktail.

My main areas of dryness are my cheeks and forehead (thank you to some skin analysis from my fellow post grad skin therapists). The minimum time is about 15 minutes for these (and most) masks. As I find myself watching reruns on TV and figure I'll be up for a while, my face will be here for a while.  To really up the "pro" factor I did apply these with a fan brush.

Ps: Nectarines are probably my favorite fruit...this mask is delightful.

Other masks I like:
Lush's Oatfix (keep it refrigerated) $6.95/2.1 oz: for dry skin (and people who like bananas)
Lush's BB Seaweed (also refrigerated) also $6.95/2.1 oz for most skin types and good for sensitive skin as it is soothing.
The Body Shop's Drops of Youth Bouncy Sleep Mask $30.00/3.1 oz which you can totally sleep in...just try to start on your back so you don't rub too much off on a pillowcase, I myself happen to be a tosser and turner (see my previous entry on this gem here).

Any masks out there you want to throw into the mix?? Let me know!

Cheers to you and a happy week all!

Monday, September 7, 2015

Nighttime napping...or how I've been sleeping soundly

I've downloaded a couple of apps to my Kindle for bedtime recently and am kind of digging how well they work together.

Relax Melodies (free), upgrade with more sounds for $2.99.
Lose Weight Now Lite by Glenn (free version)

I turn the weight loss app on first then go to the melodies.  I get the voice guidance from Glenn who speaks for about a half hour and the melodies play in the background (I set the timer for 2 hours, but that's me).

I don't know that the weight loss app has really done much, but I will give it credit for getting me to sleep quickly.  I don't even think that I've ever actually listened to the whole thing becuase it knocks me out.  I do know there is some visualizing yourself at your best weight and making healthy choices.  It may be working I feel like I am taking a little more time to consider my choices and being more aware of what I've eaten throughout the day (without tracking and logging).
The melodies are nice, you can play with the mix of nature sounds and music and adjust the volumes individually and create your own little nighttime lullaby mix.  It's really kind of cool.  I've been satisfied with the free version.

If you are having trouble falling asleep, try starting one of these apps (or something like them) this week...tell me how you're feeling by Friday.  :)

Ps: If you haven't visited the Facebook page, maybe check it out...bonus articles and humor and such :)  Prettypalooza on FB

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Rise and shine!

Friday, September 4, 2015

why you need an acupressure facial

This week I took a Chinese Acupressure class at the International Dermal Institute...while it was only a two day look into a massive subject it was AWESOME.  We learned a technique that focuses on 21 points of the face and neck area and I am hooked.'ve always had the basic European massage in facials before (it's the standard that most of us learn for state board testing).  It's all fine and dandy, I mean it feels nice and relaxes you but sometimes you want something a little different...enter acupressure.

It is also very relaxing, which I wasn't sure it would be at first (being so used to the European style).  Turns out that it is relaxing but somehow in a different way.  Maybe because the focus is on breathing and overall wellness so the relaxation comes secondary.  Based off of this class I'm super excited to attend the IDI Reflexology course and the Chinese Diagnosis: Face and Body Reading.

If you have the option of trying it, I would highly recommend it! 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Clean up your act...with brush cleaner

I am a sometimes slacker when it comes to cleaning my makeup brushes.  I don't mean to be...BUT somehow it just doesn't pop up in my head on my to do list.  I did pick up a brush cleaner from E.L.F. (available at Target for $3).

I have to say that I used it this weekend, and I loved the light citrusy scent.  I could get used to it, it may even be enough to get me on a set brush cleaning sched.  You really can't beat the price either.  E.L.F. also has a brush shampoo (also 3 bucks) for your more stubborn brushes (the ones you use for foundation and creams).  I'll have to check that one out and get back to you.

My technique is super simple, brush cleaner and paper towels, rub ~gently~ until clean! I do however let them dry laying flat though.  When I do clean my brushes I do let them dry overnight, so obviously do your cleaning when you're in for the night...or you know you could get a Ryan Gosling.

How about you, do you keep your brushes super clean or do you need a reminder every now and then?