5 Essential “To-Dos” for a Flawless Face!

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As a self proclaimed makeup enthusiast, I am all about the best of beats. However, over the years I’ve learned that a flawless face begins with proper skin care, and a few basic habits to practice daily. In many instances, your makeup application is only as flawless as the skin that lies beneath. So before we talk about all the beloved potions and powders (I promise to post about that later in our Beauty Academy),  I wanted to share 5 essential “to-dos” to ensure a flawless face!

1. Cleanse your face daily.

Sounds simple, but I can’t even tell you how many women I’ve talked to who don’t wash their faces daily. This is a non-negotiable in my book.  When ever you put on makeup, it’s so important to remove it. Yes, I was once guilty of falling asleep with a full beat after a night of fun, but that soon changed as I saw the horrible effects that had on my skin. So now, no matter how tired I am, I remove my makeup and wash my face every evening. Then again in the morning.  A good makeup remover, along with a gentle cleanser, (I’m partial to Oil of Olay) will do wonders for the skin.

2. Use a deep cleansing masque/mask.

A good mask will cleanse your pores and give you a nice fresh face for application.  If you’re an oil-face like me, and you workout often, then you will find the need to deep cleanse more often than others. (I use mine once a week). I don’t want any gunk left on my face to clog my pores, which essentially leads to more break outs. Do yourself a favor, and invest in a deep cleansing mask.

3. Wash your makeup brushes.

I’m going to just say it… if you don’t wash your brushes, then washing your face is almost pointless. What some don’t realize is that on the surface of that beautiful fluffy brush are tiny little bacteria that will grow and cause breakouts if left unaddressed. And just think each time you dip that bacteria infested brush into your foundation it’s just spreading. Not to mention it can lead to very uneven, streaky application. So it’s time to get serious. Whether after you apply, or just before you go to bed, set aside some time to clean your brushes.

4. Use a daily moisturize.

I have combination/oily skin, so for years I was under the impression that facial moisturizers were only for those with dry skin. After doing my research, and speaking with the professionals, I came to understand that all skin needs moisture, and that there are actually a number of great serums and moisturizers for combination/oily skin. So regardless of the “type” of skin you may have, be sure to invest in a daily facial moisturizer, and use it.  And ladies, body lotion doesn’t count. The skin on your face is different from the skin on your body. So care for it accordingly!

5. Drink up, glow up.

Get your glow on, and drink more water. Many professionals  recommend that you drink at least 6-8 glasses of water daily to keep you hydrated,  and help rid your body and skin of toxins. Many even say that drinking the proper amount, can leave you with a beautiful glow! We all know how important water is, so now it’s time to take it to the next level  and actually drink our daily dose.  So drink up! Your skin will love you for it!

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What are some of your favorite skin care products?  Comment below!

Single Ladies, You Have a Choice

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 I hope you can feel my heart in every word, and at the end you will know just how “worth it” you are <3!

Many times in our relationships we wait for the man to make the decisions that are best for our hearts, even when the relationship is no longer adding any value.  We put ourselves on the back burner, and endure emotional exhaustion all in the name of love (let’s be real).  I know I’ve been there… more than once! Listen, when you’ve invested so much time and energy,  it’s much “easier” to ignore the signs and keep things together. Especially when you are holding onto the possibility of what could change if you stay, or feeding the fear of what may happen if you let go and move on.

Relationships have their ups and downs. We are flawed and so we do make mistakes. However, if you find yourself in an intentionally hurtful (or destructive) relationship that no longer adds value,  it’s important to remember that  you hold the key to turn things around. No, you can’t change a man’s heart (only God can do that), but you can decide what’s best for your life going forward.
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Ladies, YOU HAVE A CHOICE.
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A choice regarding what’s best for your well-being, your walk with God, emotional health, and  peace of mind. Remember, you don’t have to wait for your man to finally make up his mind about what’s best for you, especially when you already know what needs to be done.  You can make that decision for yourself. You cannot change a man’s character, so when he shows you who he is, you have to be strong enough to believe it. God is the ultimate love in your life. And as a woman of God, you have a heavenly Father who wants you to be whole… not broken, bruised and tossed to the side.
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When we as women have a firm understanding of who we are in Christ, and that we are worthy and deserving of that very intentional and certain “I only want you” type of love, we can make the decisions that are best for our hearts.
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I’ve been hurt, abused and used. And once I realized that I was worth so much more than being treated like an option, I decided to move on without turning back. I had no clue that the most wonderful man would be on the other side of that decision, waiting to love all of me and make me his one and only! God is too good!

Every story is different. Just know that drama-free love between two honest and committed individuals is a beautiful blessing, and is absolutely possible.

You don’t have to SETTLE.

You don’t have to be just an OPTION any longer!

You are destined to be someone’s one and only, and  you have every right to decide who’s efforts to entertain.  So don’t believe the lie any longer. You do have a choice, and you are worth it! You, are more than enough ❤

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-Reese

Living|Loving|Learning (3 Lessons from the Newlywed)

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Marriage is a beautiful blessing, but let’s not be naive.  A healthy marriage doesn’t just magically grow, it  requires real commitment and effort to blossom. Think of the grass on your lawn. You have to take special care of it for best results. So, you keep it trimmed and manicured,  and you handle those unwanted yet inevitable weeds with a sense of urgency. A healthy marriage requires this same type of love and care. I’m still new in the game, but I absolutely love being married! My hubby and I are building a beautiful life together, and I’m so grateful for every lesson learned.  We’ve been so blessed to see and understand some things early on, and I’m here to share the top 3 lessons we’ve learned as newlyweds! Enjoy!

1. Support one another

 It’s become somewhat of a ritual for us to talk and dream together. We talk about our future, our goals, and our aspirations. Then we take it a step further and discuss how to support each other. I’m an aspiring business owner, and as I share the goings-on in my life, my husband is right there to keep me focused, encouraged, and grounded! And I do the same for him!  This is what a partnership looks like. In marriage you have to understand there is no “I”, only “us”! Remember, you two are a team, and in many cases you will only be as good as your partner. So support, uplift, and encourage one another. It’s a win/win!

2. Share responsibilities

 In our home, we learned the importance of sharing responsibilities. We are still working on coming up with a “routine”, but we both do our fair share of stepping up and stepping in when needed.  Trust me it makes life so much easier! If my hubby gets home before I do, he will often take care of dinner. And if I’m cooking and not worried about him being in my way (lol), then he will step in and take care of the dishes. Oh and did I mention I haven’t touch a toilet brush in over a year? Yes ladies, my hubby exclusively takes care of the entire bathroom and I love it. And guess what, I’m more than happy to share that I take care of the laundry (wash/dry/fold). It’s all about balance, but it takes both parties to make it happen. Team work, makes the dream work. Find what works in your household. Be flexible and willing to pick up the slack in the name of love!

 3. Don’t hide your habits/flaws

I learned my lesson here. For the past two years I’ve been waxing my upper-lip. And for my entire married life, I’ve been able to do this without my hubby knowing.  Well, over the past few days I haven’t had a moment to myself to take care of my business.  So the other night, I waited for him to fall asleep, before I snuck into the bathroom.  Everything was going just fine. I was on my last strip, mid-pull,  when I thought I heard my husband walking to the bathroom. In a complete panic, I  quickly ripped off the wax strip and waited for him to bust through the door. I stood there for a good 30 seconds expecting the worst, but he wasn’t there. I finally peeped through the door, and to my surprise this man was still in bed, sound asleep. So there I stood, wax strip in hand…and nearly 1/13th of underlip skin missing.  OUCH!  All because I panicked and ripped it off trying to HIDE what I was doing from my hubby! And to make this all the more real, when I finally told him the truth about the scar under my nose, he was so unbothered.  He even had the nerve to say “You can tell me these things, I love you.”  What in the world? Where did he come from? The lesson here, don’t hide your habits, or the things that make you you! I’m not saying expose it all, bur remember, you two are one. No secrets, no hiding, be real and be you. It’s so freeing, and could save your skin!

Plant the seed!

Water with intimacy and support ❤

Be encouraged!

-Reese

3 Simple Steps to Order (Organize Your Life)

Have you ever found your life to be out of order? Life is good, but you feel like you’re in a constant game of catch up, trying to clean and organize! Well that is exactly how I felt for the first few months of 2016. Yes, months! The struggle was real, until I took a real look in the mirror and asked myself, “What are you going to do about it”.

So what did I do?

Well, I put these 3 simple steps to work in my life, and have had great success! So you know and I am here to share the wealth with you! Let’s win together! 

1. Get Rid of Waste: Toss/trash/shred all of the things that no longer serve a purpose in your life!  Those “things”  may be old papers, old clothes,  boxes…etc. For me, I had to bring myself to throw away old makeup containers.   (Judge me not!) I had to literally go through my entire makeup vanity, and decide what needed to go.  And then I had to actually complete the process by throwing it away (that’s key)!  I couldn’t believe the junk I was holding on to. Like seriously, did I need to keep that empty tube of ruby red lipstick from 3 years ago? A whole mess. For you it may be sorting through that pile of mail, organizing your accessories, or cleaning out your closet. For others it may be setting a cleaning schedule for your home, so that the cleaning/organizing is done on certain days.  Whatever it is, set a date with yourself, and get it done! Put on some great music, and get rid of the unnecessary things are cluttering your fabulous life! 

2. Everything in it’s Place: Once you’ve taken inventory, and trashed the clutter, assign a “place” for your belongings. This will help you keep your place organized and peaceful.  Listen, after a long day of work I’m guilty of dropping a trail of clothes around the apartment. However, I had to re-train my mind to put things back in their places. Dirty clothes in the laundry bin, coat back on the hanger IN the closet, makeup brushes in their case, and keys on the key ring. This will take a bit of time and effort at first, but the payoff will be well worth it! 

3. Organize in Doses: Make a list of what needs to be done, and tackle one room/project at a time. Don’t overwhelm yourself trying to do it all in one sitting. God forbid, that you start 5 projects and don’t finish any of them. That is not your portion! Think it through, and give yourself the time to do what’s needed. The ultimate goal is to life a life of order, and that starts with strategic changes that will eventually turn into great habits! So take it one step at a time! 

Say it with me,

“I will live a lifestyle of order”

-Reese

3 Surefire Ways to Handle the Unsolicited Opinions of Others

 As a newlywed, a lot of people have an opinion about what my husband and I “should/shouldn’t do”, especially with regards to our first married year/holidays together. Nothing malicious at all, just opinions that caused a great deal of pressure. I got caught up at first.  Then it dawned on me; this is our life and we will live it as we please!  Some of you may have experience this same pressure.  You may have certain goals and aspirations in mind, and you’re trying to handle all the uninvited opinions that other have for your life. So I’ve decided to share what I’ve learned to do, and I hope it helps you as well:

1. Hold your peace: Peace of mind is more important than the best of clap-backs!  Some opinions aren’t even worth entertaining,  especially when they come without provocation. It’s one thing to go to a trusted source, and ask them to dissect your life. When that’s the case, then I expect them to let me have it. Dig deep and help me get my life in order.  However, if I didn’t ask and it is not worth a response, I simply don’t entertain it. Especially when I know they don’t have my best interest in mind.

2. Use your words:  If you feel the need to respond, put your words to good use and create a standard response. Here are two of my favorites: “It’s unfortunate that your feelings differ from how I plan to live my life”, and  “No, I don’t plan to do it that way, but I appreciate your concern”.  Feel free to use at will, and proceed to exit stage left.

3. Don’t tell everything you know: This is probably one of the most important lessons I’ve learned! Keep your personal life, marriage,  goals and aspirations under lock and key. Yes, we all need accountability, but take a break from posting and sharing every detail of your life and hustle. Hustle in private, enlist the help of an accountability partner/mentor,  and let the results of your labor do all of the bragging. The less you share, the less access people have to your life.   If people don’t know what you’re up to, then they won’t have an opportunity to  create an opinion.

 

This is your time. This is your year! Make it count!

-Reese