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Friday, February 26, 2016

Pixi Glow || Friday Favorites

About a month ago, I fell victim to Instagram and YouTube pressuring me to buy a few Pixi Beauty products.  Left and right, Bloggers were raving about the Pixi Glow Tonic and I figured for so many people to be raving about it, it MUST be good!  Lord knows I've learned my lesson in the past from thinking this yet I continue to fall into the trap.  Fortunately, this time all the gossip and talk was actually TRUE.  Of course, once I found the Tonic at my local Target store I couldn't JUST pick that one product up.  They had one tube of the Mud Cleanser left which I concluded meant that it was so good, there was only one left.  Logical reasoning.  Then I figured I might as well complete the skin routine with some sort of serum so I grabbed the Overnight Glow Serum.

At first, the Overnight Glow Serum was packed up to go back to Target 2 days after I purchased it.  The first couple of tries, I didn't like how it left a sticky film on my face.  This is the same sticky film I had previously experienced with other "overnight" products.  Since, I like to sleep on my stomach I found this to be uncomfortable.  After forgetting to return it to Target everyday for a week, I decided to give it another go.  When I used it before, I didn't use it in conjunction with the other products.  I felt like it might be TOO much Glycolic Acid for my face.  So this time I chose to use it with the Cleanser and Toner.  OMG, the results were worth the sticky face!  My face was so bright in the morning and I could swear that spots on my face had faded "overnight".  LEGIT!

Silly Picture BUT look at that SKIN!!
How are the Cleanser and Toner?  Magical.  I like to leave the Mud Cleanser on my face for a couple of minutes after massaging it in for 30 seconds... almost like a mask.  The Toner is a great follow up to the Cleanser... doesn't burn and is quite soothing.  The texture of my face hasn't been this smooth in a very long time.  I find myself literally in awe at how even my skin is lately.  When I use the products regularly, I am finding that it keeps any breakouts at bay which is a plus if I'm not lazy and actually remember to use them regularly.  So yeah, these products are definitely MUST HAVES.  They are a little pricey but compared to skincare found at Sephora, they're actually affordable.  Again, logical reasoning.  So if you see them, GRAB THEM.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Today Marks 4 Years of Marriage: What I've Learned

As I sit here and reflect over the last 4 years of marriage, there's two words that come to mind.  Hard work.  No one else seems to believe that it's been 4 years already... except us.  Why?  Because no one else put in the work that we had to.  They weren't around during the struggles.  All everyone remembers is that beautiful wedding and poof, now it's been 4 years. LOL.  Well let me tell you, marriage is one hell of a mirror.  You will end up finding yourself, losing yourself and finding a better version of yourself over and over again.  So, let me highlight some key points that I have learned in the past 4 years.

When I married my husband, it was my second marriage and I had this idea of what I would not put up with again.  I wouldn't say my first marriage jaded me, but please believe I learned a lot of lessons.  The problem was this was my husband's first marriage and he knew nothing about married life.  He hadn't been through this before like I had.  Meanwhile, I was expecting him to be a veteran in this marriage game with all types of expectations.  It wasn't until year 2 that I realized he deserved the same opportunity I had which was being a rookie to married life.  He would make rookie mistakes like not plan a special night for our anniversary and just wing it.  My response?  "That's not what a good husband would do"!  Ugh, I cringe just remembering how many times I said that to him.  I had to back off and let him learn how to be what I considered a "good husband" and he wasn't going to do that with me putting him down.  Looking back on those times, I wasn't being a "good wife" talking to him that way!

Then there was the issue with fighting every single battle.  If he left the toilet seat up, we would fight.  If he played his video games too long, we would fight.  Lord if he made the wrong kind of bacon, we would fight.  We were fighting over EVERYTHING.  Then one day I picked up a Joyce Meyer book, Battlefield of the Mind, and it changed my life.  What I was doing, was nagging my husband to death.  He would wake up on Saturday morning, close the bedroom door quietly so I could sleep in.  Run to the supermarket then come home and start making breakfast.  I wouldn't wake up and give him an appreciative thank you but rather ask him why he didn't get the maple bacon I liked!  I'm surprised he didn't turn around and throw the bacon at me. LMAO.  I had to learn to look at the entire picture and not focus on the one minor thing I didn't like.  It also became important to our marriage that we picked the battles we fought or else we would constantly be fighting.

This past year has been one of the hardest years of our marriage actually.  We both reached goals in our life that we had been wanting forever.  Me, to Blog full time and him, to become an Executive member of his company's finance team.  Unfortunately, we weren't prepared for the strain these changes would have on the marriage.  He had to work ALL the time... like non-stop it felt like (still does).  Leaving me to take care of the home AND still meet the demands of the goals I had set for myself as a Full Time Blogger.  You can't even imagine all the arguments.  We were STRESSED.  It wasn't until late 2015, that I began to consider how tired my husband must be.  You see marriage isn't all about YOU.  It takes growth and maturity to step back, set your own feelings aside and support your spouse regardless of how you may feel.  He was getting up at 4 in the morning some days and returning home at 7 in the evening, only to come home and have more work to do.  He didn't need me at his throat.  What he needed was somebody to pour him a drink some days, and someone to ask him how he was doing.  So that's what I did.  He needed a Partner, a Wife... not an enemy at home.

Sorry, if this post became super long but sometimes when you're being honest, it's hard to give the short story.  Those of you who are married can relate to our struggles I'm sure and if you're not married yet, take note!  Learn from my mistakes.  Marriage can sometimes be a scary mirror that shows your true character.  Anyone who goes into marriage thinking they are perfect is in for a huge awakening!!  It's not all about sex on demand and breakfast in bed but rather you have two imperfect people joined together for life.  That's not always going to be a pretty picture BUT, it doesn't have to be an ugly one either.  Look at the picture your marriage is painting and make the decision to become a better artist if you don't like the way it looks.  Don't let your wedding day hold the best looking pictures of your Marriage.  Overall, this is the biggest lesson I've learned and I'm still learning everyday!  XOXOMCS
Wednesday, February 17, 2016

||My Experience|| European Wax Center- Loudoun County

Wash + Go using Eden Body Works NEW Gel!

Every year around this time I try to wrap my mind around the fact that summer will be here before we know it.  While winter just makes me want to crawl up under a blanket and drink unlimited Flat Whites, I begin to force myself to prepare for less clothes.  One of my most important areas that I begin to address is my bikini line.  Because I don't wax faithfully and I do shave my bikini line from time to time, there is hyperpigmentation from ingrown hairs and such.  Hopefully that's not too TMI but I'm sure some of you can relate.  I've seen other women with this same type of bikini line at the pool before and just cringe.  There are so many ways to get rid of the dark spots and I'm going to share MY way with you.

What I suggest is getting waxed at least once a month beginning 6 months before you need to be bikini ready.  Each time you wax, it will exfoliate the area diminishing any dark spots you may have.  The key to maintaining your new, brighter bikini line is NOT to shave the area at all once you begin waxing.  If that means, getting waxed twice a month then so be it!

Recently, a European Wax Center opened near me and I couldn't wait to go experience it for myself.  I've heard rave reviews from so many other people and my expectations were set HIGH.  Thankfully, they not only met but exceeded my expectations!  My Wax Specialist, Melissa, was incredibly informative and literally talked me through the entire process.  In fact, I had signed up for a Full Bikini Wax and after speaking with her she realized that I only wanted the Bikini Line and adjusted my bill accordingly.  She explained the wax used by all European Wax Centers is a special formulation Hard Wax that no one else has (even if they say they do).  As we were talking, she was waxing away and before I knew it we were done.  Was it painful?  Well having your HooHa waxed doesn't tickle, LOL, but it didn't make me tear up or jump off the table.  During my conversation with the Melissa, I asked about their products sold in their waiting area.  She recommended using their Ingrown Hair Serum which contains a small amount of Glycolic Acid to gently remove dead skin cells and keep that bikini line looking fresh!

Leaving the European Wax Center, I was already thinking about my next appointment because I had such a great experience.  I always say that the service you receive as a customer goes a long way and the European Wax Center didn't let me down.  If you have one in your area, check them out ladies.  If they're anything like the location I visited, you will quickly become a loyal customer.  Oh, let me not forget to mention that the prices are very reasonable ($30-$50 depending on how much you want taken off) and your first visit is either free or 50% (depending on how much you want taken off).  Can't wait to reveal bikini ready results come Summer!

Have any of you ever been to a European Wax Center?  What was your experience like?  If not, what's your go-to "Snatch" spot?!  Let us know in the comments below.  XOXOMCS

Shoppe Owner


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