Overnight oats are a life saver. On nights before morning workouts, I always prepare a batch of overnight oats, typically with oats, almond milk, a scoop of collagen and a little bit of maple syrup or honey. When I was on my sweet potato kick last week, I decided to amp up my overnight oat game by adding sweet potato into the mix. I figured 'why not? how bad could they taste?' Sweet potatoes are smooth, creamy, and slightly sweet, meaning they add a delicious consistency to oats. They also bulk up the oats a bit and make them more filling than normal. Plus, I added some extra goodies in there as usual!
Before I share the recipe, I wanted to update everyone on how RP is doing. I've been enjoying a lot of food freedom lately due to cancelled classes, snow days , and half days, meaning I spend more time at home. It's easier for me to stick with RP when I have everything packed for the day and my temptation to verge off the template isn't readily available. With that being said, I started to plateau, meaning it's time to move onto the next cut. I'm very reluctant to move forward because I'll be omitting a lot of foods I eat now, but on the other hand, I need more discipline with my eating. I've had sort of a 'refuel' and I think my body will be able to handle the challenge. We will see what awaits in the next couple of weeks!
Sweet Potato Overnight Oats
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 tbsp cocoa powder (optional....but who doesn't like chocolate...lol)
1-2 tsp coconut sugar/maple syrup or add as much as you'd like depending on level of sweetness
dash cinnamon & vanilla
1 scoop collagen or 1/2 scoop protein powder
1/3 cooked sweet potato, mashed well
3/4 cup nut milk
-Add dry ingredients into a mason jar and stir until incorporated
-Add in mashed sweet potato, nut milk, and vanilla. Stir well, leave in fridge overnight. Enjoy these cold or reheat!
I've already made this recipe a handful of times and I'm obsessed with eating this for breakfast, especially after a workout. You could easily add other toppings, like cacao nibs, hemp seeds, or shredded coconut. Enjoy!
Lately I've been dabbling with putting more and more vegetables in my smoothies. Kale, spinach, cauliflower rice, frozen zucchini.......sweet potato.
Yes...sweet potato. I don't think I will go back to putting bananas in my smoothie because....SWEET POTATO. On their own, they are so creamy, filling, and sweet. Put it in a smoothie and it's a game changer. Seriously, this was the creamiest and most satisfying smoothie I've ever made. Packed with veggies that you can't taste, it has lots of that good good (vitamins and such) and natural sweeteners. Besides the gross color, I promise this is a delicious treat!
VEGGIE PACKED SMOOTHIE
100 g sweet potato (roughly 1/2 of a medium sweet potato cooked- no skin)
1 cup cauli rice
1 cup spinach
1/4 cup blueberries
2 scoops collagen (or your favorite protein powder, I use collagen because it's unflavored and 2 scoops is about 22 grams of protein...gainz)
1 cup almond milk
1 tbsp maple syrup
-Poke holes in sweet potato and microwave for about 4 minutes until soft, scrape into blender and throw away the skin. Keep the other half for another smoothie!
-Add everything into the blender and blend for 1 minute. Consistency should be thick, but add a little more almond milk when needed!
And there you go! Like I said, you honestly cannot taste any of the veggies in here. It’s creamy, smooth and sweet but filling enough to last you until your next meal. I can’t have much fat on RP until night time, but I would have added coconut butter to make it extra good. Enjoy!
Well hello there everyone! Sorry I've been MIA for a couple of weeks, but have no fear, I'm back! (I know you all missed me).....
If you follow my Instagram, @ashleysplate, you would already know that I'm a religious meal prepper. Every Saturday or Sunday, I spend a couple hours in my kitchen preparing for the week ahead. It's been a part of my routine since college and I would probably be perpetually hangry if I didn't meal prep weekly at this point in my life.
While I understand that few people want to take on the task of spending 2-3 hours every weekend preparing food for the week (that's half a season of Black Mirror and quite a few episodes of the Office, I get it), I'm here to tell you it's worth it. I've heard the excuses and the multitude of reasons why people don't have enough time to meal prep, including 'I'd rather take a nap'- which I completely respect. But in all honesty, I think it's important to plan ahead and have some sort of track to follow each week. That's just me though. I take pride in my organization, but for others it's easy to go about the week without much planning or stressing; if you are one of those people, I envy you. My classmate told me that my life is too structured, but can you blame me? Trying to juggle work, grad school, and maintaining a consistent gym schedule and social life is a lot, I need to map out each week. Plus, RP would be an incomprehensible mess if I didn't meal prep and have everything cooked. So for the nonbelievers, I hope I can do some convincing.
It saves you time
Sometimes it feels like I'm in the kitchen for forever on a Sunday. I usually food shop on Saturday morning, workout on Sunday morning, come home and meal prep. My legs get tired, I get hungry and pick at everything I cook, but then I'm done. If I don't go to the gym in the morning during the week, I'll spend about 15 minutes making eggs and sautéed veggies, but that's the extent of my cooking everyday. I literally just grab containers out of my fridge every morning and head out. If I bulk prep, I measure out the food the night before so I have it ready to go in the morning as well. I just have to leave a little note to remind myself 'Don't forget your lunch in the fridge!'
It saves you money
Someone once told me that meal prepping is more expensive. I then asked them how much they spent on lunch everyday: "10 dollars". Well my friend, your lunches for the week cost roughly the same amount I spend on breakfast, lunch, dinner & snacks. Soooooo *insert sassy face/hand gesture*. I try to budget roughly $50 per week on groceries at Trader Joe's and as you can see, I buy lots of fresh & frozen veggies, meats, and such. Eating out is convenient, but it adds up throughout the week. If I have to pick up any food throughout the week it may be a bottle of kombucha, deli meat, or a protein bar before my classes.
You waste less food
Meal prepping pretty much forces you to eat all of your food- at least it does for me. I usually end up eating everything that I cook because I need 3 meals a day. Occasionally if I go out for dinner, I might end up with an extra meal that I don't get to finish.
It makes you stick to your goals & eat better
Honestly if you are trying to watch what you eat, having precooked meals at your convenience helps. If you have goals to hit certain macros, or to eat a cup of veggies at each meal, or simply to not skip a meal etc, prepping your meals gives you easy access to make simple changes. Repeating it each day helps with continuity and for me, it has become a habit after weeks of prepping. Plus, if you live with others who don't meal prep or eat similarly, it's a way to hold yourself accountable for the food you eat.
You'll inspire your coworkers and make them slightly envious
I can't tell you how many times my coworkers ask 'what are you eating' or 'it smells so good in here'. Granted, there are plenty of days where I want to eat the school lunch pizza or buffalo chicken. It's pretty cool that some of my coworkers have followed my Instagram and ask me for recipes and tips on how to cook things. Instagram has been a great platform for sharing my ideas and for others to have easy access.
Helps with organization
You don't necessarily have to prep breakfast, lunch, and dinner every week. If you start with small steps, like preparing either one of those meals, it will definitely help you develop a sense of organization and routine. I got used to constantly having prepared food in my fridge. Most weeks I don't prepare a breakfast, and in the past I've bulk cooked grains like rice and lentil pasta to have on hand for dinners.
You'll appear to have your life together
Who doesn't want the satisfaction of feeling put together?
Meal prepping, while the positives certainly outweigh the negatives, can be an imperfect system at times. Life throws curveballs and some weeks it's impossible to eat all of my food, or not resist getting something else for dinner/lunch. Deviating from my weekly schedule does throws me off. Whether it's unexpected plans, a class canceling, etc, these tiny motions certainly derail my mood somedays. Plus, sometimes my body truly craves foods if I'm sick or PMSing, somedays those turkey meatballs aren't satisfying enough. And let's not sugar coat things, sometimes by the end of the week I get sick of my food. It doesn't happen often, but there are weeks where redundancy gets the best of me. I'm not one of those people who are freaked out by leftovers, but I can also see that causing some issues for those of you who are hesitant to start meal prepping.
Nonetheless, this system has created normalcy in my life. It has kept me organized and focused on my goals. Eating right is so important, especially if you're looking to see changes in your body or to feel better in general.
Need some visuals? Look no further!
Hello friends and Happy February!
The stress of January is finally over and we are all settled into the new year, at least I am. As many of you know (if you've ready my posts) I always start off each month with a new set of goals or intentions.
Why make monthly intentions?
Ever since the summer, I've taken a little chunk out of my day on the first of a new month to write out 'monthly intentions.' I was completely inspired by one of my favorite accounts on Instagram, Lee From America. Lee is one of my favorites on Instagram for many reasons. Her holistic view on health, wellness & eating is refreshing and she uses her page as a platform to share her feelings about all of her life experiences. She's inspiring to women, dances in her stories, makes some amazing recipes (I'm addicted to the fat balls), and she reminds me of one of my best friends from college- shoutout to you Katie! Overall, I love her messages of positivity and self-reflection.
Needless to say, her habit of writing out monthly intentions has stuck on me for months now. As a society, we don't spend much time sitting down and reflecting upon ourselves.We get gratification for the things we do at work or on social media, but they're quite hollow. We are always in a perpetual state of wanting to 'be better,' but many people don't do much about it. Intentions are an aim or a plan that is tangible and do-able. No matter how small of grand your intention may be, it's important to write it down. I take flashcards or plain pieces of paper, use my favorite pen, and reflect on things that will make me happier and more conscious. Sometimes I like to add color to my intention list so I take out some Crayola colored pencils I've had for god knows how long, and get to work.
Most of my monthly intentions are centered around school and balance. I've been dying to do vinyasa yoga & bikram yoga so I plan on trying a couple of classes this month. I love CrossFit, but I want to incorporate more deep stretching and mindful breathing into my routine to help my body out. I also realized that my time management on weekends is a little off, so I'm making it a goal to do all/most of my homework on weekends so I'm not cramming during the week. As usual, I aim to create one blog post per week because of obvious reasons. I love this page and I love when people tell me they read it too ;). Lastly, I plan on signing out of social media on Sunday's. I've been taking baby steps away from social media (deleting snapchat, twitter, tumblr accounts, and facebook app). I spend a lot of time on Instagram, but I want to make a conscious effort to distance myself from my phone and social media. As someone who works with kids, it is sad to see them attached to their phones, sneaking it into class, clutching it in their hands to go anywhere and everywhere. I don't want to be like that, but I fall into the trap of how addicting it is to live a life that is centered around online activity. There is also a lot of negative content online and I think we've been desensitized to a lot because we are only seeing it from our screens (example: students obsessively talking about kill streaks, grenade launchers and best guns to use in video games, and laughing about it). I was talking to one of my friends in my class last week and it made me realize that there are many important things in life, social media is close to the bottom.
So.... there you have it! Like I said before, it's easy to write out your intentions for each month. It does take a little thinking, but once you create your list, add some color and place it in a visible spot, you will be reminded of ways to improve yourself.
I am sleepy today. My body is really sore. I'm also about to succumb to a 500 page book for one of my classes. The joys of higher education! I started to type this post midweek, but didn't get around to posting. Due to my error, you guys will get not one, but 2 weeks of meal prep ideas!
Last week's meal line up was nothing too special. I started my first week of cut 1, meaning my fat intake is reserved until before bed. So needless to say, I tried to stay positive and focused by prepping yummy meals! For a pre-bed time treat, I made Lee from America's coconut fat balls. Guys. If you haven't made these...YOU NEED TO MAKE THEM. Here's the link.I modified the recipe a little bit (used 1 1/4 cup almond flour instead of pepitas/sunflowers/cashews, added 1/4 cup hemp seeds, and added 8 dates to up the carbs). I can't describe how delicious they are except they melt in your mouth. If I'm going to have 25 grams of fat it's going to be something other than peanut butter.
Lunch: Beef Bolognese with Roasted Veggies
1 & 1/2 pounds of lean ground beef- 96/4
1-12 ounce can of tomato sauce
2 cloves garlic, chopped small
1 onion, chopped small
crushed red pepper, sea salt, and black pepper to taste
-Heat a skillet on medium heat with 1 tbsp of olive oil
-When oil is hot, add garlic & onion
-Cook until the onion is soft then add the seasoning
-Add ground beef and cook until no pink remains
-Add tomato sauce and reduce heat to low, let simmer for about 10-15 minutes
Roasted Broccoli & Cauliflower
1 head of broccoli chopped
1 head of cauliflower chopped
3 cloves garlic
coconut oil spray
-Preheat oven to 425
-Spread veggies evenly on a foil/parchment lined baking sheet
-Cover liberally with coconut oil spray and season
-Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until veggies start to turn brown
Dinner: Bilinski Chicken Sausage with Roasted Veggies and Lentil Pasta
1 pack of Bilinski organic wild mushroom chicken sausages
*Cut in small slices and cook until crispy in a skillet
1 pack of brussels sprouts, cut in half
2 packs sliced baby portabello mushrooms
coconut oil cooking spray
sea salt, garlic powder
*Spread veggies evenly on a baking sheet. Coat liberally in cooking oil spray, season, and pop in the oven at 425 for about 30 minutes
Cook according to package
For this week, I wanted something different. I was craving fresh veggies instead of roasted. I bought a bunch of cucumbers, tomatoes, and peppers and threw them into containers with some grilled chicken. Super easy! I also bought way too many eggs so I hard-boiled a dozen to have as snacks throughout the week. Last week was my first full week of classes and I made sure to pack plenty of food to keep my body fueled for using all of that brain power ;) After my first week of the new RP template, I realized that this template is SO much easier than the last one...I've been saving money on food because I'm not going crazy with snacking. I did give myself a 'cheat' meal today to indulge with my dad at my favorite Mexican restaurant. It was completely worth it. Chips + refried beans+ fresh tortillas + carne asada= happy happy Ashley. My body has felt so good this past week and I see results in the mirror- it's actually amazing! So I decided that one meal of indulgence is definitely good for the soul.
1/2 cup rolled oats
3/4 cup nut milk
1 tsp coconut sugar
1 scoop protein powder or collagen peptides
*Shake everything in a mason jar and leave in fridge until ready to eat
1 bag baby red potatoes
coconut oil spray
paprika, garlic powder, sea salt
*Cut potatoes up in small, even chunks. Spray liberally with coconut oil spray and season. Toss and place in oven for about 35 minutes at 425
1 red onion
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup orange juice
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 heaping tbsp dijon mustard
thyme, sea salt, onion powder
*Marinade overnight and grill/bake until cooked through
Asian-ish Ground Beef
1 1/2 pound lean ground beef
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup coconut aminos
2 cloves garlic
1/2 tbsp ground ginger
1 tbsp tapioca starch or corn starch
crushed red pepper
*Cook beef until no pink remains on medium-high heat, add in all of the ingredients except tapioca starch, reduce to simmer and add in tapioca starch, stir until it thickens
I hope this post gives you a bit of inspiration to make a new recipe!
I'm not sure why, but I always crave falafel. There's something about the combination of chickpeas, cumin, and crispiness that make it the perfect comfort food. Plus, let's be real, hummus is delicious. I think I consumed enough hummus to feed a small village my freshman year of college.. but that's what happens when you prefer pita chips and hummus for dinner over the dining hall food. Anyways, I'm currently not able to bake up a batch of Trader Joe's falafel because it doesn't fit into my templates (unless I had a serious caloric deficit or the desire to have a treat meal). Instead, I decided to whip up my own batch of 'falafel' that was pretty darn compliant with my RP template. Since I've been on a riced cauliflower kick, I decided to add some falafel themed spices to my cauliflower rice sauté for lunch yesterday. The result was magical. I knew I had to transform the mix into falafel bites. The cauli rice is the perfect texture for the filling and it gets nice and crispy if you bake it long enough. This recipe is super simple and I used lots of ingredients that I already had in my pantry. Enjoy!
BAKED CAULIFLOWER RICE FALAFEL
1 bag of frozen cauliflower rice (Trader Joe's or whichever brand you prefer)
1 cup of spinach, chopped small
1 handful of cilantro, chopped small
2 egg whites
1 tbsp hummus (I used TJ's roasted garlic hummus)
1 heaping tbsp nutritional yeast
2 tbsp almond meal
3 tbsp coconut flour
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika, garlic powder, onion powder
-Preheat oven to 375
-Pour frozen cauliflower rice into a microwavable bowl and cook for about 4-5 minutes until heated through
-In a mixing bowl, add cauliflower rice, spinach, cilantro and egg whites, mix until incorporated (should be a wet mixture)
-Add in hummus, nutritional yeast, almond meal, seasonings, and mix
-Add in the coconut flour 1 tablespoon at a time until the mixture starts to stick together, 3 tablespoons was ideal for me, but you don't want it to be too dry.
-roll into golf sized balls and flatten on a coconut oil sprayed baking sheet--parchment paper would probably work too!
-Bake at 375 for about 25 minutes, flip, broil for 5 minutes
-Enjoy with hummus, finely chopped onions, yogurt or tahini. I used plain greek yogurt and mixed it with a little sea salt and cumin to make a nice cool sauce.
I'll be honest, there were only two falafel bites left to spare. I demolished the entire batch, partly out of hanger but partly because they were absolutely delicious. A lot of people are working on eating clean this month so this is the perfect way to satisfy your cravings without feeling super guilty. Regardless of if you're being health conscious or not, falafel will make you happy.
What is "self care?" To me, self care is taking moments to reflect on or improve certain aspects your life. Everybody has their own definition and their own methods of self care. I happen to think that self care is more than just giving yourself a facial once a week. Your body and mind deserve care everyday and you can make small changes in your daily routine to help your wellbeing. No matter how busy or engulfed in your work, you should always be aware of your state of mind.
I’m typing this on a Monday, but by the time this is posted it most definitely won't be a Monday. That's how I roll. Monday’s are sucky when you have a sore upper back from shoveling. I’m actually pretty frustrated because I took a couple days to rest and nurse my 'injury' instead of going to the gym. Of course there were clean and jerks, burpees, and front squats in workouts this week. Can you tell I'm a bit salty? It' been a tough week limiting how much I go to the gym, but I don't want to tweak my back any more.
I guess I should also admit that I just finished chugging my casein shake. Not going to lie, it’s growing on me. I blend it with 2 tablespoons of nut butter (either peanut butter or TJ's mixed nut butter) in ice cold water and it’s the perfect consistency every time. I've also been making casein 'pudding,' mixing a scoop with ice cold water until it reaches a smooth consistency. I’m a total fan of having this before bed every night. I typically wouldn’t drink casein, but RP strongly recommends it ;).
I wanted to spend some time talking about RP and my experience thus far. I'm almost two weeks in and I'm still sort of skeptical. I think it's because I haven't been working out, so my body just feels super lazy. I don't like scales (food or body scales), counting anything, or portions. I've opted to eyeball out most of my food based on the pictures they use in the templates, but I do use the food scale for certain portions like carbs and fats. Truthfully, I've been eating more nutrients than before. I've also stopped mindlessly snacking, which is something I'm super guilty of doing. I eat more at every meal and eat every 3-5 hours...this week in particular, I didn't have any urge to snack. I also realized that eating before bed is freaking amazing, and I don't know why I had this idea where eating before bed would somehow make me gain weight/bloat/etc. I will be honest, fell through with a 'non-compliant' meal one weekend night. I had lots of chicken and broccoli, boneless spear ribs, chicken teriyaki, and rice (plus maybe a sweet treat). Weirdly enough, I didn't feel guilty for eating those foods because my body was literally begging me for some spear ribs. They tasted so good. I think it's a good step in the right mental direction for not being guilty about eating 'indulgent' foods. You just have to be mindful and know when to put the fork down- which is what I did and put the egg roll back onto the pu-pu platter. Lol.
It appears as though I will stick with the RP templates for the time being. I've still managed to make my mint chocolate chip smoothie on higher carb days, which makes my soul super happy. I've also been adding a tablespoon of Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips into my casein pudding at night for an extra sweet treat. This week I bulk prepped my lunch and dinner. I'm staying away from prepping breakfast for now because I find that egg whites taste much better when they are crispy and fresh out of the fry pan. For next week, I also decided to order Paleo Power Meals and bought my veggies at Trader Joe's. Since I don't really keep track of exact measurements, I'll give you guys a rough estimate on my meal prep recipes for this week! I hope you can get some ideas!
3-4 Egg whites with a handful of spinach, tablespoon of salsa, with warmed tortillas. This doesn't need a recipe. Just throw it in a pan and cook it.
Lunch: Instant Pot Soup
Mirepoix veggies (carrots, onion, celery)
2 large stalks of leeks, chopped
2 large zucchini, chopped
5 cloves fresh garlic
1 carton of lower sodium chicken broth
2 cups water
big dollop of tomato paste
eyeball seasonings: paprika, onion powder, pink salt, cracked black pepper
*Turn instant pot on sauté mode
-Add 2 tbsp olive oil
-Add mirepoix, garlic, and leeks, cook until soft
-Put in the tomato paste and seasonings, sauté for 1 more minute
-Add water and chicken broth, stir, then add zucchini
-Turn on manual setting and adjust time for 12 minutes, switch to seal and let cook.
***To add after soup is done in the Instant Pot:
-1 pound 99% lean ground turkey
-1 tbsp tomato paste
-oregano, crushed red pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, pink salt
-roll into mini meatballs and cook at 375 for 15 minutes, plop into soup when done
*1/2 pound of whole wheat pasta slightly undercooked
Dinner: Instant Pot Shredded Chicken
2 pounds chicken breasts
4 cloves garlic
1 jalapeno, remove seeds
2 tbsp coconut aminos
1/2 cup chicken broth
*Add everything to the Instant Pot, cook on manual setting for 12 minutes, sealed. Once chicken is cool, shred.
I ate this be this chicken with some steamed broccoli and brown rice for dinners this week! It's versatile and light in flavor, but a little spicy from the jalapeno.
Maybe someday I'll start writing down recipes, but for now I shall eyeball everything. I need exact directions & instructions on everything I do in life or else I panic, but I'm the total opposite in the kitchen. Cooking is fun and sometimes you don't need to live by any rules once you start creating and thinking of different food combinations. Until next time friends!
Today was the day when I perfected my smoothie. I even took a selfie with it. That's when I knew I had to share. Recently I've been absolutely obsessed with mint everything. Mint RX bars, mint smoothies, mint chocolate chip halo top, etc. Maybe it's just a winter thing? Or maybe because it's so refreshing? Anyways, I've been trying to perfect this smoothie since having it numerous times at a local coffee shop- Sol Bean Cafe. I added in a few different ingredients, but this gives them a run for their money. Just saying.
So if you love smoothies, or mint, or healthy alternatives- here's one for you! It even has some veggies hidden in it and I promise you can't taste them either. I wish I was saying more on this post, but you'll have to wait until the end of the week for another one. You're welcome.
MINT CHOCOLATE CHIP SMOOTHIE
1 frozen banana
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 handful of spinach (or kale....or half and half)
1/2 cup frozen cauliflower rice
1 tbsp melted coconut butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp mint extract
1 tbsp cacao nibs or dark chocolate chips
pinch of sea salt
*optional- 1 scoop of collagen
B L E N D & E N J O Y (if consistency is too thick to blend, add a splash of water in at a time!)
I will share the secrets to this smoothie-the frozen cauliflower rice and coconut butter. Frozen cauliflower rice tastes like nothing, but adds creaminess...and the coconut butter is so smooth and delicious. Complete power move on my end.
If you know me well, you know how important skincare is to me. I like to keep my routine simple everyday and spend the least amount of time on makeup- literally 5 minutes tops. Recently, I introduced some new products into my regiment, like CocoKind products (I use the Chia Facial Oil and Matcha stick everyday now). After using Origins products since high school, I never tried to branch out of my comfort zone. I will admit that I still use a lot Origins products, but I've also tried to incorporate more natural products into my routine. I think skincare is so important, especially in the winter time. It can be easy to forget about taking care of your skin, but I urge you to rethink your routines. Everyone's skin is different, but I listed some of my favorite everyday products below. Enjoy!
I think one of my biggest pet peeves is when people don't wash their face or wash their makeup off. Sorry not sorry. I'm a diligent face washer. Even if I've had a couple drinks...I literally never forget to wash my face before bed. This Burt's Bees Cleanser is super light and doesn't make my skin feel dry after I use it. It also removes makeup, including waterproof mascara. If you're looking for a cleanser that is foamier and offers a deeper clean, the Origins Checks and Balances face was is amazing. It smells super refreshing and goes a LONG way. You literally need a pea sized drop and that's enough.
If you're looking for a quick and easy way to remove makeup and dirt off your face, these wipes are a life saver. I keep them in my gym bag and use them to freshen my face up before I workout or after. They're also super gentle on your skin and make your skin feel SO smooth and hydrated.
I exfoliate my face twice a week, depending on the weather. Origins Modern Friction exfoliator has been my favorite for YEARS. Again, a little goes a long way with this stuff. Another perk is that it's pretty gentle but works enough to scrub off those dead skin cells without drying out your face. I've been dying to try CocoKind's Sea Moss Exfoliator so when I get my hands on that I will see which one is more effective.
I've tried a handful of toners, but this one keeps me coming back. I try to tone my face once to twice a day, again, depending on the season. It leaves my skin feeling super clean and refreshed, even after I've washed it. If you're on a budget or looking for a natural alternative to facial toner, I also suggest using apple cider vinegar and diluting with water (1:1 or 1:1 1/2). Besides the fact that you will slightly smell like salad dressing, it literally works to scrub dirt away.
I cannot describe how much I love the CocoKind Chia Seed Facial oil. It's honestly done wonders for my skin this winter. I typically get dry skin, but this winter has been completely different. I love using it at night after I wash & tone, and also in the morning before I put on makeup. It is light, but so hydrating. My favorite lightweight moisturizer is Origins Ginzing (center). It smells citrus-y and it spreads evenly with only a little dollop. It's a great year-round moisturizer. Lastly, my favorite moisturizer to use in the summer (when I actually have a tan/some sort of color) is the Origins Vitazing. I don't like to wear face makeup, but this moisturizer provides hydration and a tint of color.
I. Love. This. Product. Good job Glossier. I use this before I moisturize every morning. It glides on my skin, and I immediately feel my skin get plumper and smoother. It's amazing.
I'm sort of obsessed with chapstick. I've tried to limit my 'addiction' but my lips feel like they will fall off if I don't use it throughout the day. I drink over a gallon of water a day so I know I'm hydrated...but whatever. Anyways! I love this Badger Mocha Cocoa lip balm. I get it at Whole Foods, and I've been using it for months. I also use Burt's Bees, but this brand has great ingredients and it smells so so good.
Here's my two favorite body moisturizers. I've always used Jergens because it's worked so well on my skin. Shea Moisture is also amazing. I add the Shea Moisture oil into baths, which makes it smell heavenly and also leaves my skin super smooth after.
I wish I could bathe in this perfume scent. I mean I'm not telling you to go spend 89 euro on this, but I will when I run out. I got this perfume in Paris at Fragonard Parfumeur the first time I went to Europe. It's probably one of the most used souvenirs that I've bought, besides my Hungarian paprika or Polish rock salts...lol.
On to makeup!! If you're a makeup guru, you're not going to find anything exciting past this point. Sorry to disappoint haha. I honestly don't like to wear a lot of makeup. I hate feeling cakey, I suck at putting on eyeliner, and I don't think I've even dared with eyeshadow since freshmen year of college. I personally don't see the point in wearing a lot of makeup so I stick to the basics.
I've used BareMinerals Matte powder foundation for as long as I can remember. It's lightweight, has SPF in it, and it covers really well.
The best. I love this Anastasia Brow Wiz because of the pencil and the brush. The pencil is so thin so it's easy to control how full the brows look. Plus this pencil is so compact and it's really easy to pack along for travel.
I've tried so many mascaras over my makeup wearing years. This is by far my favorite out of all those I've tried...even the expensive mascaras at Sephora. I always curl my lashes before I put on mascara for a little extra volume and when I add this it's the finishing touch to my face!
Like I mentioned before, everyone's skin and body is different. I believe that skincare and what you put on to your skin should be as important as what you put into your body. For me, I really enjoy my daily routine and I hope that these products can also help your body feel better! Glossier says it best, "Skin first. Makeup second." I wholly agree.