Kiehl’s Partners With Autism Speaks

We love it when a brand we revere teams up with an organization we respect. We’ve raved about the way our favorite Kiehl’s products makes our skin glow for years now. So when we learned that one of the leading names in skincare launched a partnership with Autism Speaks this year, we were more than happy to spread the word. And, BTW, you should too! For every share of this Kiehl’s video, starring Matthew McConaughey, Kiehl’s will donate $1 to the cause.

Autism affects an estimated 70 million people worldwide, with a staggering statistic of 1 in 68 children in the United States diagnosed on the spectrum. Kiehl’s is committed to raising $200,000 in this ambitious campaign, educating more parents, and inspiring people to learn more and talk more about this important cause.

In collaboration with Matthew McConaughey, actor, advocate, and father, Kiehl’s has created a limited edition Ultra Facial Cream with a bright, bold, and vibrant design. It features uplifting colors and geometric shapes, including interlocking puzzle pieces, as a nod to the iconic Autism Speaks blue puzzle logo.

Every purchase of this $48 cream will help support the cause to create more resources for children with autism spectrum disorder around the world and their families.

Of course, as good as we feel about a charity-driven purchase (and we do!), we also want our products to be effective and useful. (That shouldn’t be too much to ask for!)

Made with the active key ingredients of Antarcticine, a glacial glycolprotein extract; Imperta Cylindra, a desert plant extract; and Squalane, a signature botanical lipid found in many of Kiehl’s most beloved products, this Ultra Facial Cream deeply hydrates skin depleted of its moisture, and gives us the smooth and radiant complexion we want and love.

As we transition from the summer to fall, we want to make sure our skin stays soft and supple, and this daily cream is a staple in our routine… A skincare product that helps us look good, feel good, and DOES good for children around the world? Sign us up!

This is not a sponsored post. We received a sample for review.

 

 

 

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Reclaim Your Me-Time

My son just finished his third full day of Kindergarten–so far, he’s loving it… and you know what? Mama is too! For the first time in five years, he’s out of the house from 8:30 till 2:30, and that gives me a giant chunk of time to crack down on my to-do list, knock out some work, clean the house, and enjoy a little bit of mommy me-time. Hoorah!

Of course, I still have Little Lady home with me, but she starts preschool next week, and then I’m going to have even more solo time. I car barely contain myself.

If you’re like me and the concept of “me time” has been missing in your life for the last few years, allow me to reintroduce you. You’re going to looooove each other… Here are a few ideas to help get yourselves acquainted.

Primp Yourself: DIY Spa and Beauty Session

My skincare routine is in a serious rut. Maybe it’s the lack of sleep (hashtag mom-life), maybe it’s the change of season, or maybe it’s the fact that I’ve officially hit my mid-thirties. Whatever the reason, it seems that my usual cleanser and moisturizer alone aren’t cutting it. While a nice spa facial would do my complexion some good, it’s not always feasible or affordable. That’s why I’ve been experimenting with some at-home spa alternatives.

My favorite find so far? These super indulgent hydrogel masks from Musely. The masks are specially designed to slowly and evenly deliver nutrient-rich botanical extracts to smooth fine lines and brighten the complexion over the span of 8 hours. That’s right, EIGHT hours.

Using only clean ingredients, like sea buckthorn seed extract, prickly pear seed oil, cucumber fruit extract, green tea extract, pomegranate and starflower, they restore a youthful glow to skin. Better yet, they are available in a variety of shapes and sizes to treat the most common areas of concern for women—face, forehead, under eyes and neck.

This full set is $48—so  it definitely won’t be a daily indulgence for me, but  the supple results are certainly worth a weekly or monthly splurge.

Note: For maximum results, the Musely mask products can be kept on OVERNIGHT. I, personally, can’t sleep with these on, but I can commit to an hour or two while I’m home alone relaxing—and I definitely still see the benefits.

Educate Yourself: Pick Up a Book

I was an avid reader before I had kids. Chick-lit, suspense novels, biographies—you name it, I’d happily devour it in a few short sittings. But once I had my babies, I was no longer able to read for hours on end. For one reason or another, getting sucked into a book no longer was an option. I’d pick it up, and put it down minutes or sometimes even seconds later to go burp or feed or tend to a crying baby. Somewhere and somehow, I lost my attention span and stopped reading with infants and toddlers at home.

Meanwhile, here I am trying to encourage my kids to be avid readers, and my passion for literature has waned… Well, no more! It’s time to rekindle that love affair with the written word. And all I need to re-spark the romance is a library card. Join me, moms. We can have a virtual book club!

Challenge Yourself: Take a Fitness Class

No more excuses, Mama! The kids are out of the house, and that means you can finally get back to the gym. (At least, this is what I’m telling myself!) Find your fitness niche and commit to making it a habit. Spinning, boxing, stretching… It doesn’t need to be a daily occurrence. My goal: go to a yoga class one a week after drop-off!

Find Yourself: Embrace a New Hobby

We’re so focused on filling out our children’s calendars with activities, sports, classes, and extra-curriculars that we often forget to make time for our own likes. Or maybe after years of putting your personal priorities on the back burner you’ve lost sight of what you enjoy outside of your kids. Explore your independent passions and experiment with new hobbies and pastimes—get this—FOR YOURSELF. Finally buy those acrylic paints you’ve been eyeing, take up needlework, try new recipes for homemade dinners (everyone will benefit), or start a social group with some other community moms. You never know what you might like or who you might meed. (Mom tribe!)

Treat Yourself: Nextflix and Chill… for Real!

Reverse dress (that means, put your pajamas BACK on), make a cup of tea, and plan a few consecutive hours of blissful nothingness. Seriously, feet up, dishes ignored, and laundry neglected. Every once in a while (or, you know, weekly), you deserve to Netflix and chill. Literally. You may have forgotten that programs exist outside of Disney Junior, but they do. Binge watch Game of Thrones (you’re only a few seasons behind) guilt free. You deserve this me-time, Mama… Now reclaim it!

P.S. We, of course, know that a lot of moms out there work outside the home, and that the school day doesn’t necessarily quality as me-time. We encourage all moms to find #metime—whatever that means for you and your situation! Hire a sitter once a week, take a nap with Baby, or put the kids in your gym’s daycare for an hour… Let’s reclaim the me time!

This is not a sponsored post.

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Skincare Secrets: Products That Changed My Skin

Have you ever tried a skincare product that wowed you? A product so knock-your-socks-off good that you weren’t sure whether to shout it from the rooftop or keep it a secret?! Or maybe you’ve seen someone with great skin and wondered what they use? Today I’m sharing two skincare secrets that changed my skin – AND I asked over 100 other ladies to share theirs too! Read on for some fabulous skincare secret finds – and then share yours below too!

I’ll go first and start with one of my latest skincare find. It started with a Groupon for a facial. I’m not loyal to any particular esthetician, but a good Groupon deal inspires me to make the time to get my skin deep cleaned. But the facial I got from Sandi at The Skin Genie was skin-changing. She introduced me to the Environ product line – a skincare line I had heard of, but hadn’t tried. What impressed me the most was after a 90-minute facial of cleaning and steaming, rubbing and scrubbing, masking and even a peel, my skin wasn’t the least bit red or irritated. There was no indication that my skin had just gotten a complete workout – instead I just had a glow.

I went on to use the Environ products that Sandi had recommended for my skin for the next two months – the Sebuwash cleanser, Clarifying Lotion, Alpha Toner Forte, and Enhanced A, C, E oil (an oil designed for the body, but Sandi told me works great on the face!). These products have seriously changed my skin. Smoother, brighter, tighter pores, better tone, better texture – and these products have done it without making my skin red or irritated along the way!

My second skincare secret was a change I made a few years back and undeniably had a HUGE impact on my skin: cutting dairy. Dairy didn’t bother my digestion system, but it sure had an impact on my breakouts. Cutting back significantly (I still have the occasional cheese or scoop of ice cream) dramatically reduced any breakouts I have.

On to a few others! I reached out to more than 100 other women for their skin-changing secrets – here’s what they shared.

ZO Obagi

“ZO Obaji completely changed the texture, cleared my hyper pigmentation, and controlled hormonal blemishes better than any product I have ever used and I’ve used everything you can possibly imagine. This is the Bentley of skincare! I highly recommend this is if your skin rejuvenation is something you are willing to invest in. Beauty results do not come cheap.” – 47yo

Brightside Skincare

“I love Brightside products !  The serum has normalized my very oily skin and has transformed the tone and texture.  It has been a god send to me and I couldn’t be without it.  The products are the best I’ve ever found and are a real value.” – NH

“Brightside Skincare is simply amazing! I use the foaming cleanser for acne prone skin, toner, and alternate facial serum and moisturizer. The cleanser contains charcoal which is very unique. It cleans my skin but definitely does not dry it out like most acne products! I love it!” – 44yo

 

Osmia Organics Black Clay Soap

“Osmia Organics Black Clay soap is unbelievable. Got rid of my adult acne, and as long as I use it 2X daily , no problems. It’s phenomenal.” – M.

Philosophy “Take a Deep Breath” line

“I struggled with acne through my early 20’s and no matter how many facials or dermatologist recommended products I tried, nothing worked. Every since I started using Philosophy’s “Take a Deep Breath” line, I am acne free and have much more confidence while wearing much less makeup.” – 27yo

Beauty Counter

“I switched from Amore Pacific to Beauty Counter about a year ago. Amore Pacific has been my favorite line of treatments for over a decade but it is insanely expensive. I was introduced to Beauty Counter by a friend and I love it.  Here’s what I notice – skin more supple, glowing complexion, wrinkles remain at bay, more even skin tone. Cheaper, better, and I swear I look prettier. Basically I’m 55 and every day I look in the mirror I feel like I look better than I did in my 30s. The products I use that I think are helping most are the Cleansing Balm and the Hydrating Oil.” – 55yo

CLn Body Wash

“CLn Body Wash completely transformed the skin on my chest and back. I used to suffer from “back acne” and bumps on my chest–the dreaded folliculitis caused by sports bras. I started using CLn Body Wash after workouts, and now my skin is smooth, soft and bump free. I swear it looks younger, too! I am back to wearing off-the-shoulder shirts, v-necks, you name it. I have my confidence and my wardrobe back!” – 36yo

Avalon Vitamin C Cream

“I live in Arizona and I’m suffering of skin dryness. I wake up with the snake’s skin, so flaky and cracked and I am only 30! I tried Avalon Vitamin C cream and OH MY GOSH! I loved it. SOOOO moisturizing!” – 30yo

Mario Badescu Glycolic Acid Toner

“For me, my skin changing product was the Glycolic Acid Toner by Mario Badescu. Previously when I’ve tried using toners, I’ve had really bad reactions involving cystic acne. Not only have I had no reaction with this toner, but my skin tone is evening out and my pores are less noticeable. My skin just also looks healthier. This isn’t related to my actual skin, but I also love that their line is cruelty-free.” – 22yo

“I know I’m not a woman, but my girlfriend is 🙂 I saw your call and thought I’d share what I believe is the best treatment for skin. [My girlfriend] gets eczema and I get a very dry face, especially in winter. BUT since rubbing coconut oil on our sore and dry spots we’ve seen a HUGE difference. I know coconut oil was last years trend, but we are still sure anyone with any skin problems can benefit from this great ingredient.” – E.
“You cannot go wrong with pure coconut oil, any brand but the virgin is better quality. It moisturizes skin, makes it glow, heals any problems and it makes you look younger. It can also be used on the hair, just a couple of drops is plenty for skin or hair. I am 61 and people are always remarking on my skin and how young I look!” – J.

Rodan and Fields Microdermabrasion Paste

“A year ago I was fed up with what I saw when I looked in the mirror; my face looked old, wrinkly, and dull. A friend introduced me to Rodan & Fields products, and within a couple weeks my skin had a healthy, clear, dewy glow, shedding years. This paste is really powerful for scrubbing away dead cells and leaving it really soft and fresh.” – 40ish

HUM Nutrition Gut Instinct probiotic

“I noticed a change after about two weeks of taking these pills, on an empty stomach, first thing in the morning. My skin looks brighter and healthier than I could’ve imagined! Hello gorgeous, glowy skin!” – 24yo

Kiehl’s Facial Oil

 
 “Facial oil has changed my life. I can add a few drops to my day and my complexion instantly looks healthier, rosier and, most importantly, younger! I love OLAY Regenerist Luminous Facial Oil as an affordable choice and Kiehl’s Daily Reviving Concentrate for a splurge.” – KS

 

Dermaplaning

“I have battled sun spots and hyper pigmentation from birth control pills in the past. I’ve tried every bleaching cream out there, acid peels, micro dermabrasion, scrubs etc…never really worked and felt bad on my skin. I started going to the Korean spa – Natura – a couple years ago and got a facial there about 1.5 years ago, mid treatment the gal asked if she could shave my face, barely understanding what she said until it started…I said Yes! When done, I was so impressed with the even tone of my skin!!! I had heard about derma-planing before, many makeup artist friends says all celebs shave their face but I was of the mindset – no way am I shaving my face like a man!!! Weird, and no. I asked the gal to see what she used on my face…you can buy at beauty stores, 3 pack for about $10…after a few months I got a lot of comments on how good my skin looked. You basically just wash your face like normal, after it’s dry (maybe 5 mins) you can gently shave off dead skin cells and “peach fuzz”…no harsh chemicals, no irritating scrubs, no need to use anything on your face to shave (I’ve NEVER used shaving cream, you want the skin dry). I shared initially w some family and friends, and of course they were like what …well fast forward 6 months and several have asked for for tips/how to’s. It’s not any every day thing, more like every 5-7 days. I’m 39 ugh, but fortunately I get a lot of comments that I don’t “look that old”.” – 39yo

Sooo…spill the beans! What skincare product has changed your skin!

Momtrends was not paid for this post.

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3 Powder Sunscreens to Make Reapplying Easy

We’ve all heard the rules – apply sunscreen each and every day and reapply every two hours. But how many of us actually do reapply throughout the day? I am pretty good about putting on sunscreen every day in the morning and even using a foundation with sunscreen as an added safety measure. But I admit that my struggle was that once I had a face of makeup on, I didn’t want to re-slather my face with sunscreen. Then I met powdered mineral sunscreen, and now reapplying sunscreen throughout the day is simple, fast, and, of course, doesn’t mess up my makeup. Here are three to try.

In addition to being easy to apply, I also love that these mineral powder sunscreens are compact so they are easy to keep in your purse or car and that they help to reduce any summer shine that may pop up throughout the day. Let’s start with my favorite….

Colorescience Sunforgettable® Loose Mineral Sunscreen Brush Broad Spectrum SPF 50

First up, my personal favorite and the one that has helped me truly build a sunscreen re-application habit. Colorescience says that their Sunforgettable delivers both “protection and perfection” since it provides SPF 50 in four different tints to choose from – fair, medium, tan and deep. The sunscreen is formulated with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide for sun protection and red algae which help protect the skin against environmental stresses. I love that this mineral powder is water-resistant, easy to apply, and provides just a hint of color to even out my skin tone and help battle summer shine without any chalkiness. I keep it in my purse for quick touch-ups throughout the summer day.

Peter Thomas Roth Instant Mineral SPF 45

This mineral powder sunscreen by Peter Thomas Roth was the first one I tried. It’s talc-free and provides a transparent matte finish over your bare face or makeup. It’s cheaper than Colorescience one, but doesn’t provide the tint. Still, it works effectively and is a good choice if you’re not so sure about mineral powder sunscreens but want to give them a try.

Supergoop! Invincible Setting Powder SPF 45

I’m a fan of Supergoop’s large pump sunscreens for making daily application easier and top-of-mind with kids, but I’m keeping their Invicinble Setting Powder sunscreen just for me. The translucent powder covers your skin with SPF 45 while helping to set your make up and reduce shine. SUpergoop’s version also includes ceramides to help smooth the skin texture and best of all, is refillable to cut down on waste. Refills are just $14.

One more to try….

While this isn’t a mineral powder sunscreen, my latest trip to Sephora had me eyeing Kate Somerville UncompliKated SPF 50 Soft Focus Makeup Setting Spray. This is a combination sunscreen and finishing spray that gives UVA and UVB protection in a fine-mist aerosol spray. Just like the mineral powders, it can be applied directly on top of your makeup and dries quickly to set makeup, reduce shine, and provide a matte finish. In addition to the sun protection, the spray also contains hyaluronic acid which adds lightweight hydration to the skin and light-diffusing silicone powder to soften the appearance of lines and wrinkles. While I’m tempted to try it, the bottle is definitely bigger than the mineral powders, so it’s harder to stash in my purse and, also, since it’s a spray, a bit more awkward to whip out at after-school school pick-up or the soccer game.

Have you tried a mineral powder sunscreen?

Momtrends was not paid for this post. Affiliate links included.

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Add a Pinch of Pink to Your Summer Beauty Routine

Summer is (un)officially here! We’ve updated our closets, swapped out our beloved red wine for rosé, and added a higher SPF to our daily routine. Now it’s time to have a little fun with our beauty regimen.

I like to lighten the load in the summer months, and go with a natural look. (Hopefully by next month, I’ll have a slight bronzed glow that will help compensate for the lack of foundation–because, I just can’t do layers of lotion and potions and powders in the heat!)

While I generally go with a less is more makeup mentality, I am excited to add a pop of pink to my palette.

If you didn’t get the memo (or didn’t read my nail trends story!) then you might not know about “millennial pink.” It’s the hot hue of the season, and we’re embracing our love for all things Barbie and cupcake-inpsired and adding the happy hue in simple and subtle ways. Not sure how to naturally add pink to beauty booty? Here’s a few simple and subtle ideas!

Pink Polish for Your Digits (and Your Pedicure-Ready Toes!): If you’re not feeling confident in your pink potential, dip your toes in the water with a pretty pink pedi… or mani! It’s an easy way to feel girlie without feeling self conscious.

A Pop of Pink on the Lips: L’oreal sent us this pretty-in-pink package of goodies a few weeks ago, and I was instantly smitten with the rich lipstick and bright glossies. I usually opt for a sheer gloss, so I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about the intensity of the color. But layered under a balm or gloss, these lippies give a sweet hint of the hue that I love.

Embrace the Blush: A little bit of a pink cheek over a natural tan is so pretty. Just a dab on the cheekbones will give you the look of a natural flush to complete your simplified summer beauty routine.

This is not a sponsored post. We received samples for review. All opinions are our own.

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4 Ways to Avoid Lice at Summer Camp

Do you remember the first time you went away to summer sleepaway camp? I can still picture it. I was 10, maybe 11 and it was one of the first times – and definitely the longest time! – I’d be sleeping away from my parents – a whole week. According to the American Camp Association, there are more than 14,000 camps in the U.S. with an estimated 8,400 overnight camps. These summer camps offer kids a host of amazing opportunities from making new friends to travel, trying new sports and activities to gaining self-confidence doing things on their own. But summer camps can also come with their own challenges like homesickness and of course, everyone’s favorite school-year friend, LICE. Ugh.

I hesitate to even say this aloud lest I jinx myself, but….my three boys have never had lice. I don’t know how we’ve managed to make it through a majority of elementary school without dealing with those little buggers, but somehow – knock on wood – we have. But here’s the rub – merely surviving the school year without lice doesn’t make it time to celebrate. Each year more than 12 million kids, age 3 to 11, get lice – and no, unlike your carpool and lunch-making duties, lice don’t take the summers off. So as the kids are heading off to your city’s local day camp, an adventurous sleep-away camp, or even a week away camping out in the great outdoors, how can a parent keep their child lice-free all summer long?

lice prevention

With camp season just around the corner, we’re sharing four important tips for avoiding lice this summer. But first, let’s start off with a few head lice facts:

  1. Head lice cannot hop or fly. They are spread by direct contact with the hair of an infested person.
  2. Head-to-head contact with someone who already has head lice is the biggest risk. Spreading lice via infected items such as hats, brushes or sweatshirts is actually relatively uncommon.
  3. Personal hygiene or cleanliness in the home or school has nothing to do with getting head lice.

Summer camp is one of the most important times to be vigilant about head lice and take measures to protect kids. While many camps now perform head checks at registration to help prevent lice transmission at camp, the goal is to avoid lice infestation altogether! Here are four tips to try to keep your kids lice-free at camp this summer.

Tip #1: Make weekly head checks a part of your summer schedule. 

Here’s a no-so-fun fact: Lice can be present before there are any symptoms such as itching. In fact the itching is usually a reaction to the lice biting the scalp and can show up 2 to 4 weeks after you’re infested. Yes, weeks. So merely waiting until your child complains about itching means you’re too late to prevent the buggers. While many camps are now performing head checks on registration day to help prevent lice from spreading among campers, you can get ahead of the pack (ha ha – get it?) by making weekly head checks part of your summer schedule. The experts at Vamousse share how to do a lice head check:

  1. Work under a bright light and use a nit comb to help remove anything you find. Part your child’s hair and watch for movement as lice will quickly travel away from the light.
  2. Look for eggs stuck to the hair shaft near the scalp. About the size of a poppy seed, they often look like dandruff that can’t be easily removed
  3. Pay particular attention to the nape of the neck, behind the ears and on your child’s bangs to the crown of their head. Recently laid eggs are nearly transparent so it’s helpful to examine hair from different angles.
  4. If you find signs of lice, treat immediately with single-treatment solution like Vamousse’s Lice Treatment that even is effective on super lice.

 

Tip #2: Use a daily defense shampoo.

You don’t have to cross your fingers and hope your child doesn’t pick up lice at summer camp. Two weeks before camp and during camp, have your child switch to a daily defense shampoo such as non-toxic Vamousse Lice Defense, which has been shown to kill lice during routine hair washing. It’s designed to kill lice with repeated, routine use for 10-14 days. Plus, it’s non-toxic, pesticide-free, and safe for kids 2 and older. To avoid any raised eyebrows at camp, squeeze some of the shampoo into a clear travel bottle.

Tip #3: Promote braids and up-dos.

Warm summer weather is a great time to learn a few new techniques for getting long hair up – as an added benefit, hair that isn’t long and loose is often less susceptible to lice. If you normally do your daughter’s hair each morning, take some time in the weeks before summer camp to help her learn some braids or up-dos that she can do on her own. Try this Elsa braid tutorial or this braid within a braid hairstyle to keep hair looking good and less likely to get lice.

Tip #4: Try a repellent spray.

Since I have three boys, braids aren’t an option in my house. And – truth be told – my boys don’t shower every single day so the daily defense shampoo won’t protect my kids during the summer. Instead, I’ll be turning to a simple lice repellent spray like Vamousse Lice Repellent & Nit Defense. After they are dressed and ready for the day, you can simply spray it onto dry hair. The spray smells mildly herby (because it’s made with essential oils, not the smell you probably think of when lice products come to mind) which dissipates in a few minutes as soon as the spray dries. And get this – the spray provides eight hours of lice repellency! Plus it’s been proven to deter any lice already present from laying eggs to stop the lice cycle cold. For sleepaway camp, pack your child a mini spray bottle of the stuff and start building the habit now of putting it on each morning. It’s a simple, fast and effective way to protect my boys from lice all summer long. Now if only it could protect me from hearing, “Moooooom, I’m boooored!”

Get your family ready for summer camp lice protection with Vamousse’s entire line of lice treatment and daily use options. Here’s to kids (and adults!) enjoying summer camp, and not letting lice ruin your family’s summer fun!

Prevent summer camp lice

Find Vamousse products without a prescription nationwide at Walmart, CVS, Walgreens and online at  Amazon.com.

 This is a sponsored post.

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Korean Beauty Packaging That Speaks for Itself

I love experimenting with new skincare and beauty products as much as the next gal. But with so many different brands and products on the market, there are seemingly endless options to choose from. What Mama has time to leisurely browse the aisles of Sephora,  reading through every active ingredient in every exfoliating facial mask to determine which one she should take home and try?! Can’t you just give me the low-down basics or show me in super-basic hieroglyphic symbols? Give me beauty product shopping for dummies–as simple as it gets.

Suffice to say, simplicity is just one of the reasons I’m digging the Korean beauty trend. The products and packaging speak for themselves. I knew that this kitschy-cute product contained egg extract the second I snagged it, just by looking at it.

Korea is ahead of the curve and at the forefront of beauty, expanding the market, setting trends, and producing some really cool products to boot. And while the results are always of the utmost importance, the packaging is pretty darn awesome too–from the cute and campy and cartoonish to the wacky and weird. I’ve rounded up a few must-try Korean beauty products that require no explanation. Just check out the packaging, and you’ll know what it’s for or what it does or what ingredient is at its core… Because, beauty really is a universal language.

  1. Magic Stone Cleansing Soap, $30 / 2. Neogen Dermatology Knit Mask, $10/ 3. TonyMoly Mini Cherry Lip Balm, $10/ 4. Holika Holika Lazy & Easy Peeling Gel Mask, $11/ 5. Holika Holika Aloe Gel, $12/ 6. Too Cool For School Egg Cream Mask, $24/ 7. Panda’s Dream So Cool Eye Stick, $12

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are our own.

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The Box I Can’t Live Without: FabFitFun

Hi, my name is Kristin and I’m full on addicted to subscription boxes. Nothing beats the thrill of opening up a package that consists of complete and total surprises. Am I right? Now, typically the subscriptions boxes that I enjoy are either beauty OR fashion focused, but there is one that I love that is BOTH! FabFitFun is a subscription box service that includes FULL SIZE fashion, beauty, fitness and general all-around lifestyle products. That’s right I said full size. I know we’re all used to the trial size stuff, but this box gives you the real thing!

And they come out with a new box each season that’s filled with goodies to help you give the season at hand, in this case spring, a proper welcome. You deserve a little treat at least once every season don’t you think? Hey, us moms work hard. Between our spouses, our kids, our jobs and everything else that demands our time, we need to remember to reward ourselves. Every mama does, in my opinion, and FabFitFun is full of treats that will do the trick!

FabFitFun

fabfitfun subscription box

cuff

Just take a look at all the treats that I found in my spring box…

Gypsy 05 Roundie
RealHer Lip Kit
Milly Zip Pouch (bikini bag)
Briogeo Rosarco Milk Reparative Leave-In Conditioning Spray
Luv AJ Crawler Earring Set -or- Emerald Duv Cuff (you’ll get one of these!)
Deborah Lippmann Nail Polish Set
Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion Skin Exfoliant
Karuna Hydrating Face Mask
Nature’s Bounty Hair, Skin and Nails Gummies

Did I mention that you can score a FabFitFun box for only $49.99, yet you get over $200.00 worth of products?! I mean the Gypsy 05 Roundie alone is with the price tag. I’m already planning all the picnics I can bring it on. Bwah! And if the spring box is sold out when you go to grab your own, never fear! You can use our special code to order the next box which is sure to be just as fabulous!

Simply use our coupon code “MOMTRENDS” to get $10 off your first box over at fabfitfun.com

box

This is a sponsored post.

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How (and Why) to Dry Brush

Have you tried dry brushing? While an ancient practice, this skincare ritual has gained popularity in recent years touting a wide range of benefits from smoother skin to moving toxins through the body. Here’s how – and why – to dry brush.

Dry brushing is exactly what it sounds like – using a natural bristle brush to brush across dry skin. It’s best done in the morning and pre-shower. I started my dry brushing experience with this Belula Care Dry Brush Set that includes a set of exfoliating gloves, a small facial brush, a full-size brush, and a detachable handle. The gloves are gentler than the brushes which can help your skin slowly become accustomed to dry brushing. The gloves can also be used wet in the shower unlike the brushes.

[Mother’s Day Special! Use this link and the code “MOMTREND” (no S) to get 30% off a Belula Care Dry Brush Set for yourself or someone you love! Code good through Monday 5/15 11:59 PM]

Benefits of Dry Brushing

So why should you dry brush? There are a number of benefits both for your skin and your body as a whole.

  • Skin exfoliation: Dry brushing is great way to gently exfoliate your body from head to toe. By brushing off dead, dry skin, you’ll help your skin look brighter and fresher and absorb moisturizers and oils better.
  • Support for the lymphatic system: The main role of the lymphatic system is to transport lymph, a fluid that contains infection-fighting white blood cells, throughout the body. It also works to filter out bacteria and absorbs and transports fatty acids and fats. According to one source, the gentle sweeping strokes of dry brushing “encourages the discharge of metabolic wastes along with the removal of the toxic influences from soaps, skin creams, antiperspirants and promotes healthy skin.”
  • Circulation booster: As you help encourage movement in the lymphatic system, you are also waking up your skin, nerve endings, and blood flow from head to toe. It’s also invigorating which makes it a great ritual to add to your morning and why many experts recommend avoiding it before bed.
  • And then there’s cellulite….There are a number of claims about dry brushing helping cellulite, but there isn’t much science to back it up. Last week we shared some some treatments – from DIY to the doctor’s office – that can help you deal with cellulite.

How to Dry Brush

Dry brushing isn’t difficult but there is a central principle – brush towards the heart in order to best aid the lymphatic system.

  • Start at your feet and move in long sweeping motions up the body towards the heart.
  • Brush up the front and back of the arms towards the heart.
  • Brush down from the neck, upper shoulders and chest towards the heart.

I’ve only been trying dry brushing for two weeks and so far, only using the gloves to get used to the process, and here’s what I’ve found:

  • I love how smooth it makes my skin and wakes me up in the morning.
  • It’s great to do before self-tanning, but trickier once you’ve already used self-tanner (since dry brushing would make my faux tan fade faster)
  • My skin absorbed much more of my post-shower oil when I dry brush before.
  • I loved the morning mini spa session and beginning-of-the-day reminder of the importance of self-care.
  • It’s hard to add another to-do to the morning to-do list.

So I reached out to Christina, the co-founder of Belula Care for dry brushing tips for newbies. Here’s what she shared:

  1. Start a ritual!

Many newbies drop out on dry brushing or forget to do it regularly. The benefits of dry brushing can be seen quickly, but for them to last, you have to brush regularly. So start a ritual! Something that will be about you and your skin. I’m doing mine in the morning, before shower three-four times a week. I always start on Monday morning to get that fresh start of the week feeling and I always leave the house with a smile and energetic.

  1. Find your rhythm!

Every body has a different tolerance to dry brushing, with some areas being more sensitive than others. Be patient. Start with gentle strokes. In time, your body will get used to it and demand stiffer brushes or more strokes over the same area. We’ve also included  in our package a pair of exfoliation gloves, for those who are just starting for the very first time. Use that for one week or until you adapt to it. You’ll also find tips on how to soften the bristles.

  1. Keep your brush clean and sanitary.

It’s better to have your own individual brushes and not share it, even if it is family. Clean it once or twice a month, depending on how often you use it .

Have you tried dry brushing? What benefits do you see? And more importantly – how do you fit it into your morning routine?!

Pick up your own dry brushing set and get your skin ready for summer!

[Mother’s Day Special! Use this link and the code “MOMTREND” (no S) to get 30% off a Belula Care Dry Brush Set for yourself or someone you love! Code good through Monday 5/15 11:59 PM]

Momtrends was not paid for this post. We were provided with a sample. Affiliate links included.

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5 Ways to Deal with Cellulite

It’s everyone’s favorite dimpled friend! Well, maybe not favorite, but I do mean practically everyone. According to one source, 95% of ALL women get cellulite. And it usually starts showing up in your late 20s to 30s. That means with perhaps the exception of that 18-year-old rocking the itty-bitty bikini at the beach, nearly every other woman—whatever her size, shape or weight—is dealing with a pucker here or there….or everywhere! Here are five ways to deal.

5 ways to deal with celluliteWe aren’t going to get too deep into the science of cellulite here, but here are the basics. According to Wikipedia, cellulite is the “herniation of subcutaneous fat within fibrous connective tissue that manifests topographically as skin dimpling and nodularity”—which translates to mean pockets of fat get stuck under the fibers of your skin which creates a cottage cheese texture. Women are more susceptible than men, and it can impact women regardless of weight or body size.

Let’s be clear – cellulite is not a problem you need to deal with (see tip #5). But you may not like it. You may want to do things to minimize it. But it’s not something horrific, worthy of avoiding shorts seasons or not donning a swimsuit at that pool party. It’s like having a booger. On your thighs. That said, if it bothers you, here are some options to consider.

Deal with cellulite: Hide it with self-tanner
Hide It: Here’s the simple truth: cellulite causes dimpling and dimpling causes weird shadows on your skin. And rocking a faux tan makes those shadows history. I’m currently loving self-tanners from the Australian company Bondi Sands. I love the Liquid Gold Self-Tanning Dry Oil which gives moderate color and moisturizes your skin with argan oil, or for actual, believable “I’ve been in Bermuda for the last week” color (in mere minutes, mind you), the Self-Tanning Foam in dark, as shown. Be brave with going for the dark—the light version won’t do much for you unless you’re uber-pale—and even though this dark foam pic looks pretty dramatic, I didn’t have a single person give me  “who just put on self-tanner” double-take that day. A single coat of the dark foam will give you this glorious glow, smells vaguely like coconut (not that awful self-tanner smell), and lo and behold, no one will even look at your cellulite with a tan like this. For under $2 to $3 an application. (Side note: I’ve recently found my very favorite self-tanning mit.)

Deal with Cellulite

Plump It: Love your morning cuppa joe? So will your thighs. Caffeine-infused lotions can temporarily spike circulation in the thighs and buttocks, creating a smoother skin appearance. Try Vichy CelluDestock which combines 5% caffeine (higher than many other creams) along with salicylic acid to exfoliate and smooth the area. Even better? Add a retinol cream on top of the caffeine cream which will work to boost collagen and repair cell structure. Try Philosophy Help Me Retinol Night Treatment or opt for a combined retinol/caffeine cellulite treatment like this Luxe Spa Anti-Cellulite Cream. Remember, these are just temporary and will provide moderate results at best.

Deal with Cellulite: Ashley Black FasciaBlasterKnead It: Back to the science of cellulite: cellulite is fat stuck in pockets under your skin. If if was just loose, the fat wouldn’t look dimply, but it’s stuck in this connective tissue of your body called fascia. Simple massage can improves blood flow and get rid of excess fluid, which may make dimples less noticeable, but actually breaking down these layers of fascia under your skin can release the fat causing the look of cellulite altogether. Meet the FasciaBlaster from Ashley Black. The FasciaBlaster is a manual, at-home device that allows you to break up the fascia, smoothing out the tissue (and fat) underneath. This unique device can help with everything from the appearance of cellulite to body pain and muscle recovery for athletes.

To use, you oil up the body part you want to treat and then with moderate pressure, move the FasciaBlaster back and forth over the skin. I heard creator Ashley Black describe it with this analogy: imagine you have a massive knot in your hair. A foam roller is the equivalent of running the smooth backside of your brush over the knot. It’s not going to do much. Instead, you need to get down into the mess of the knot (or your cellulite or muscle pain, if you’re still following the analogy here) which is where the teeth of the FasciaBlaster come in. There is definitely a learning curve to using the device (there are lots of videos online to help), but I love that it’s an affordable solution to deal with both cellulite and general body pain from stress, workouts, or heredity. Check out one of the before & afters from using the FasciaBlaster for cellulite!

Deal with Cellulite: Ashley Black FasciaBlaster

Treat It: For a longer-lasting treatment, you may need to head to your local dermatologist or plastic surgeon. In-office, minimally invasive treatments like Cellfina, the most recent FDA-approved device for cellulite, lasts three years plus from just one treatment. Cellfina also focuses on the primary structural cause of cellulite—the connective bands woven throughout fat in the thighs and buttocks. The treatment involves numbing the area, suctioning the skin to even out the skin, fat cells and connective tissue, and then using a micro-needle to cut and release the connective tissue holding the fat cells in place and creating the look at cellulite. Downtime is minimal, only ONE treatment is needed and results last for years!

Deal with Cellulite

Rock It: Life is so much bigger than cellulite. Kick your worry to the curb and rock your short shorts or swimsuit with pride!

Momtrends was not paid of this post.

Affiliate links included. Opinions – and cellulite – are our own.

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