{beauty tips & tricks}

Yay! I’m SO glad you’re here! I’ve put together just a few things I have learned along the way in the beauty world and industry. You may already know some of them (these will be VERY basic), and then again, there may be a few that you have not heard of yet or tried! Regardless, I use them all on a regular basis and maybe it can help you along your way! Everyone is different, so many of these tips are just my preference because they work for me. 

PLEASE NOTE: Several tips will include some very simple products that you can buy from Walmart/Target/Local Drugstore 


  • Jergans Daily Moisture Lotion  1) Use lotion before you put your make-up on if you have normal to dry type of skin. If you use primer as well, put the lotion on before your primer. Your make-up will last longer throughout the day because your make-up has something to attach to!

(Note: I wait several minutes between putting the lotion on my face and starting my make-up routine….brush your teeth or something in between!)

<—– I use this for EVERYTHING. I don’t spend extra $$ on face lotion because my face reacts to this brand/kind just fine.

  • DSCN0321  2) Speaking of brushing your teeth…. I use baking soda with my toothpaste to help my teeth stay white. Crest White Strips are expensive!! & this is just as effective….if you consistently use it.

I always dip my toothbrush with the toothpaste & water already on it in my container with baking soda in it (this is actually a soap dish [can ya tell?!?…..] from the $1 travel section at Wally World) Please let me know if you have a better idea!

Your toothpaste flavor will help the “taste” of baking soda.

  • Olive Oil 3) Use Olive Oil and cotton balls for bad cuticles/dry skin around nails

I work at a gymnastics gym…..so the combination sweat & chalk in the air and constantly spotting children on skills make my hands turn into hangnail city. No, but really.

My cuticles dry out VERY easily because of this. I put olive oil in a little shampoo container (again, $1 in the Walmart travel section) and use cotton balls to rub the oil all over my finger nails and cuticles. I let it sit for a few minutes and then I wipe off. I love it!!! Helps keep hangnails and dry skin AWAY!

  • wide tooth comb 4) Now this my friend…I beg you. Please invest in a wide-tooth comb.

I literally cringe every time I see someone using a smaller comb or brush on their wet hair. Your hair is 30%-35% MORE elastic (stretchy) when wet. When you pull on it, you are literally damaging and breaking your hair!

Pull out single hair next time you pop out of the shower. Pull on each end and see for yourself….

Be gentle. Use a wide-tooth comb. Start at the bottom and work your way up. Use a detangler if you need to.

  • argon oil   5) This is my absolute favorite product ever! Argon Oil (In Walmart @ Natural Hair product selection) It serves as a heat protectant (always a plus) and it helps moisturize those dry, porous ends. I am growing my hair out so this is huge for me. I also use a teensy weensy bit to contain stray hairs up top if I am going for a sleek, straight hair look. Mind you…a little goes a LONG way. If you get carried away, your hair will look greasy.
  • baby oil   6) BABY OIL! I use baby oil to remove my eye make-up. This is off brand for a little over $2  and it does the job AMAZINGLY. I actually saw my friend Jenny from college do this and I was hooked. If you have oily skin and are afraid of breaking out, just make sure you wipe your eyes (gently) afterwards to remove the oil (you have to do this anyway). Don’t waste money on those itty bitty amount make-up removers unless you have to have oil-free.

pads

I use these little cotton pads to help me out with removing my eye make-up.  I buy them in bulk because I use them for SO many different purposes.

  • washcloth7) Protect your clothes prior to make-up by putting a washcloth or hand towel on the edge of your sink. I can’t tell you how many times I am wiping make-up off my clothes only to find that I have smeared it all myself (especially if you use loose powders)! Just take a quick second…save yourself some time…and put a towel there.
  • mascara  8) The best mascara I have ever used. Maybeline XXL Pro. 1 Side is for length (skinnier brush to reach those small, inner lashes) & 1 side is for  thickness (bigger brush). Once I find something I love, I stick with it and I have been amazed at how my lashes have responded to this mascara. Definitely clump free.
  • re-nu   9) Eye drops (you guessed it….$1 from Walmart travel section) for making your mascara last longer. Your mascara will almost always dry out before all of it has been used. Put 1, maybe 2 drops of this in there, put the mascara brush back in, rub it around (not too harsh though) and you are free to use it like normal.
    (TIP: my first use after I put 1 or 2 drops in is always a little funky, but after that, it works great!)
  • eyelash curler  10)  Put your eyelash curler under your blow dryer for about 5 seconds (any longer will be too hot!). Your hair is always a little easier to manipulate when it is under heat. The same applies to your eyelashes. Slip it under your blow dryer than use as normal (test with your finger first to make sure it isn’t too hot). Your lashes will stay in that position longer.
  • small comb

 11) Use a small-toothed comb when going for a sleek look using your flat iron . (Invest in one that is meant for heat or else it will melt and become disfigured….right before your eyes..literally!) I always have my flat iron in one hand with my comb in the other. I flat iron and than immediately comb. Repeat. This make sure all your hair is going in the same direction & prevents creases.

  • hair clips  12) Hair clips. Regardless of what hair style you are doing…make sure you section your hair. This may seem very basic but I still see people with pretty hair in the front and then…weird stuff going on in the back. Help yourself out and section it out.

sectioning

<—- EXAMPLE:

I separate my crown area from my bottom half when flat-ironing. I pull half of my hair on either side of my shoulders, flat iron them separately from root to tip, and then pull them together in the back again to comb/blend.

  • blending 13) Blend your foundation to your neck and even your ears (don’t go crazy, but you may need to). I used to blend just below my chin around my neckline. Now I take that extra step that helps with a more natural look. If I skimp on this because I woke up late and I decide to wear make-up that day, it is the #1 thing people notice. Now, if you when you blend it like this & it is still not “natural” looking, then you may need to get a lighter shade.

14) I use these 2 products for my face. I switch on and off between them but these help my face stay clear from pimples and CLEAN. Even after I wash my face in shower, I will use one of these and my face ALWAYS feels so clean and refreshed!!

clearasil

DSCN0318

  • coconut oil 15) Coconut oil for at-home hair treatment. I use this every month or so to hydrate my hair. While argon oil has been wonderful for my ends and wispy hairs for daily use, I use coconut oil for an actual hair treatment (all natural). You can find it in the cooking section at your local store of your choosing. You need to melt it first so I always just let it soak (in the glass jar) in my sink full of warm/hot water. Liquid builds on the top and I comb it through roots to ends. I let it sit for 20 or so minutes and then I wash it out twice using shampoo. (I like to wrap it up using my clips and then put a shower cap on so oil doesn’t get on on everything). It is so shiny and soft afterwards!!
  • 16) Always do your touch ups after you have “finished” your make-up look.  By this, I mean removing make-up where it shouldn’t be. Generally, I have to……

1) Wipe off my mouth to remove any foundation that got on my lips. Any foundation is VERY noticeable for me                                          (I have naturally red lips).

DSCN0444

2) Use my finger (I have found that it works better than any brush for this!) to blend my eye-shadow where mascara has messed it up. I wait a while after my mascara has dried. Sometimes I just do this in the car before I head out somewhere. By then, my mascara has definitely dried)

DSCN0462

DSCN0454

3) Use the leftover foundation on my foundation brush to ease my blush if I put too much on. (MY right cheek: Too Much, MY left cheek: After I fixed it) I don’t want to look like a clown! And hopefully you don’t want to either 😉

DSCN0452

4) Use a Q-Tip and Baby Oil to take off  smeared mascara below my lower eye lashes

DSCN0469DSCN0471

  • (17 I take these supplements/vitamins to help me stay healthy! And don’t forget to drink water! You have to work from the inside out. If you are focusing too much on the make-up and hair but then feed yourself junk and fill up on sugary drinks, you aren’t helping yourself out!

DSCN0325

   1) Biotin helps my hair, skin, and nails grow faster and keeps them strong

    2) Just a basic Women’s Multi-Vitamin I take to keep everything balanced

    3) I’m not a huge seafood person, but the fish oils helps my joints stay strong and  healthy in the long run

  • 18) Plan NO make-up days! My fiance, Nathan loves them (And asks for them regularly!). Make-up and hair is fun, and I enjoy it- but  I have to make sure I don’t get so comfortable that I don’t like myself without make-up. Love the skin you are in and enjoy the natural look and feel (ahh, scratching your eyes without smearing ANYTHING- best feeling ever). If you are reading this and you don’t wear make-up that often or not at all, this seems silly, but if you love make-up- you understand!!!

Thanks for reading! I never thought I would ever put something like this together,and I definetely felt kind of akward taking pictures of myself for something like this but hopefully it was worth it- even if it was only 1 new tip that was helpful for you 🙂

DSCN0475

Advertisements

20 Things I’m Not Too Young For (Part II)

11)      Be content with where you are: With so many changes taking place (going to high school & graduating, going to college & graduating, getting involved in different groups, working different jobs, etc.) it can be easy to always wish you were at the “next thing.” Instead, realize that God has given you different seasons for different reasons. I have to tell myself this every day because it is very easy for me to wish I was a college graduate, married, and active in the job I have always wanted. But God is teaching me how to enjoy the process and be content until then (Philippians 4:10-13).

12)      Know Who You Are Going To Marry: Seriously. You are not too young. Nathan and I started dating when I was 17 and he was 18. However, we did not go off and do things on our own. We have had the support of our parents and families, close friends, pastors and mentors. So I am not encouraging anyone to date anyone they want while everyone who cares about you is against it. But I do believe God can bring you someone when you are young!  It’s not everyone’s story, but it does happen!

13)      Learn a Trade: I received my cosmetology license by the time I graduated high school. Although I am not working in a salon, I have never regretting my decision in going to cosmetology school. It is a hobby I enjoy and I can be a blessing to people in this way for the rest of my life. Find something you enjoy, and learn as much as you can. You never know when God will put someone in your life that needs your skill.

14)       Eat Right. Exercise Right. It’s sad how if you eat healthy food, people think you are on a diet or insecure about your weight. You are not too young to make healthy decisions. It’s harder and takes more time, but I believe in taking care of the body God gave you.  

15)       Know your spiritual gifts and use them: One of mine is the gift of Encouragement. Because of that, I want to encourage everyone I meet. I want people to leave our conversation better than before we met. (Find out more about them here: Romans 12:6-8,  1 Corinthians 12:4-11,  28-11, Ephesians 4:12)    

16)       Be comfortable with how God created you: My personality does not always lead me to be super witty and hilarious, and the center of attention. I prefer to reach out to the person that doesn’t talk that much or is truly going through a difficult time. For example, if we are in a group setting, I want to talk to the person that is quiet. I would rather forget the whole group and talk to that person. That is how God created me to be and I have learned to embrace it.  

17)       Be Bold: You are not too young to share the Gospel and be open about your relationship with the Lord with the people you are around. Don’t leave it to church leaders or people that are older. Share what God has done in your life with you friends, co-workers, random people you just happen to meet. Check back at my other post, “20 Things I’m Not Too Young For (Part I)” to find examples of young people in the Bible doing this.

18)      Expect and Experience God’s miracles: I have seen God provide money where there is none, given me joy in circumstances that were not fun, heal relationships in my life that I thought would never be okay, see people get saved that everyone said would never go to church, etc. I could literally go on and on. Pray outside the box. Expect the unexpected. Believe God to work miracles in your life. And He will (James 1:6-7).

19)      Hear God’s Voice: Prayer isn’t a 1 way conversation. God can and will speak to you when you are young. Whether it’s through His Word, people He puts in your life, or the leading from the Holy Spirit, He wants to lead you and speak to you. Yes, even when you are young .

20)   Give, Give, Give: Sometimes we assume that because we don’t make a lot of money, we can’t be a blessing to other people. So instead, we do nothing.  You can give regardless. If you don’t give with what you have now, you certainly won’t give with what you will have later. Write a card, spend time with someone, bake something sweet if money is tight. Pay for someone’s meal. And make sure they know it’s not because you are a nice, giving person. Make sure they know it’s because of God’s grace and love you are able and want to give. You are not too young to make a difference and give!

I hope these simple things have encouraged you in some way. The excuse of “I’m too young” is not valid when it involves God using you to impact other people, and for Him to move in YOUR life. Start living for Him today because His blessings are way too awesome to miss out on.

20 Things I’m Not Too Young For (Part I)

20 Things I'm Not Too Young For (Part I)

As the youngest of 8 kids, I grew up with the perspective that I just wasn’t old enough to do..that.

Oh and that too. You have to wait for that.

But then my perspective started to change. Some of the most influential leaders God used in the Bible were young people. Not characters. But people. REAL people with REAL lives. Sure, I grew up hearing the stories and I had always thought everyone was so old and grown up. But there came a point when I put it together that these real people that God used were my age.  

So here it is: Here’s to 20 years of 20 things I’m not too young for:

1) Say NO to activities: Yeah, God knew we needed rest. Save a day for no commitments. Rest, Relax, Rejuvenate (Exodus 20:8-11). Learn to say no. With me, money has been tight growing up so I used to take every opportunity to work. And I don’t like saying no to hang out with people. But then my weeks were crazy, crazy, crazy. But God has commanded me to take a day to rest- watch a movie, sleep in, take a walk & SAY NO, even to good things.

2) Put others first: It’s Simple, life isn’t about me. Or you. I don’t need to be the center of attention and the world doesn’t revolve around me. Or you. It’s about loving Jesus and it’s about loving people (Philippians 2:3, 1 John 4:20)

3) Understand and know your Identity: My job, my achievements, people’s approval of me & my many failures do not define me. Let’s talk media. The numbers of friends I have or likes on a photo on Facebook don’t define me. God does and He says I am fearfully & wonderfully made (Psalm 139, 1 Peter 2:9. Done Deal. Period. Stop trying to earn approval when you already have it.

4) Honor your parents: It’s a command (Exodus 20:12, Colossians 3:20). Even when I don’t want to, or even when I don’t feel like it and it’s not convenient, I am called to honor my parents. And God will bless you for it. And when I get married, I am still commanded to honor them. That doesn’t mean I do every single thing they ask for the rest of my life, but it does mean I honor them with both my words and actions.

5)  Lead someone in their walk with Christ: I don’t need to know every Scripture or know what everything needs to look like. The fact that I was a sinner, but now I am saved because of Jesus, is enough for me to know that God can and will use me (John 9) if I am willing . Don’t use the excuse “I don’t know enough” to stop you from encouraging someone. My testimony alone is enough for God to use. I am not too young, and neither are you.

6)  Make wise financial decisions: Graduated from High School, off to a 4 year University for my Bachelor’s Degree that my parents pay for? Nope. I went to Liberty University for my freshman year and loved it, but came back home to do LU’s Online program. I work part-time and I am now entering my 3rd year without any type of loan. Don’t do things just because other people do. Stop comparing and start living out what God has called you to do. My decisions affect my future marriage and my future kids . Save now. On a side note, I love shoes and purses, and clothes. I’ll admit it. But I don’t need them in every color, brand, etc. Learn to say no.   

7) Lead people older than you: Yes, you read that right. You can be a leader (1 Timothy 4:12). That doesn’t mean be cocky or disrespectful and then start thinking you deserved that role. If you have a leadership role, it’s because God gave it to you in the first place (James 1:17). It’s called grace. When I started reading God’s word, and I starting finally living FOR Him & IN Him in high school, God provided me with an opportunity to be a youth leader in my youth group. And then it all started from there. I saw miracles. Don’t despise your youth. Let God use it.

8) Speak Truth: God’s Truth is Truth . So it doesn’t matter how old you are when you speak it. God’s truth is forever (Isaiah 40:8). I may not be married yet, but I can still encourage others with the biblical perspective on marriage. Make sense?

9) Learn how to Dress Classy & Modest Without Lookin’ Like Grandma: Okay yeah it’s hard to find much material on anything these days. But really, when I set my mind on looking for classy and modest, I find them. Sure, it’s annoying at times. Like honestly, I’m not modest because it’s my natural desire. I prefer to wear what I like. But remember, it’s not about me. Or you. God has asked to save everything for my husband and He has asked me to not let other men stumble (1 Timothy 1:9, 1 Peter 3:3-4) . Besides, the attention that you get when you wear immodest clothes really isn’t the kind of attention you wanted to receive in the first place.

10) Gain Wisdom: Yeah, so this Christian life journey wasn’t just a “fend for yourself” and “figure it out on your own” type thing. God has given us His Word. Read it. His boundaries are for our benefit because He loves us. You may be 15 years old but God can give you wisdom that go beyond your years. Ask Him for it, and He will give it to you generously (see James 1:5).

 

Remember:It’s a process & things take time as your Maker molds you. Be patient. But no, you are not too young

See Their Lives: Ruth (the book of Ruth), Joseph of Egypt (Genesis 37-50), David (1 & 2 Samuel), Mary the Mother of Jesus (The Gospels), Timothy (Acts 16-20, 1st & 2nd Timothy) just to name a few.

Last Thoughts: Sure, there are so many more, but these are the ones that God has had to work in me specifically so far. I still struggle with all of them at times, but again, it’s a process and it’s about progress, not perfection. This can only be done through His grace.

 

“Don’t let anyone look down on you because

you are young, but set an example for the believers

in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.”

1TIMOTHY 4:12

 

                   “20 Things I’m Not Too Young For (Part II)” will be posted soon to follow.

1-2-3 Not Done

Okay, okay. Most people start with the, “Hey, my name is….”. But eh, I’ll skip all that and get down to it! I can’t believe I have actually started this. It’s been a long-term goal for…well let’s just say a long time. I’ve found that I process everything when I write about what’s going on. I try not to be that annoying person that writes page-long statuses about my life..every single day on Facebook (no offense if you do, I’m just saying, and hey, maybe you think I’m that person- oh well haha). So maybe this is more for me than it is for you. But really, I think you might like this. Really.

If you are looking for mistakes, you are going to find them. If you are looking to critique, I am sure you will have a lot to say. But if you are looking to see how God is flowing through my broken life, I think you will be moved. More than moved, I believe God will change your life in a new way. In fact, I think you will find that we may be similar. When we try to be like everyone else, or present our life as it’s “supposed to be,” rather than what it actually is, we all feel lonely and empty because you can’t truly connect with people that way and honestly, that’s not real life. It’s actually kind of ironic, and yet we still do it all the time, every day. And everyone hates the “Hi Sally, how are you? Good, how about you, Amber ?” Well, at least I do. And so it comes to this: I believe God has called us to be real. Some of you may be thinking, “Oh no, here she goes ranting about the whole “God” thing again.” Bear with me.

Life is a Process. Things take Time. In our microwave world, we don’t like the words “process” or “take time.” I mean “HEY, I ‘ve got things to do! Give me that 1-2-3 step plan so I can check it off as completed.” Sound familiar? When I first believed in Jesus Christ as my Savior that could take away my sins (past, present, future), He did. By the same grace that Saved me,  it is the same grace that is going to CHANGE me. Yes, There’s nothing that I can do to make God love me any more or any less. But, still-  becoming more like Him is a process. “But God, even though I am saved, how come sometimes I struggle with even …wanting to spend time with You? How come I still struggle with saying some of the most insensitive and hurtful things to people? How come I struggle with being so impatient with the kids I teach (I am a gymnastics teacher)?” And it could literally go on, and on…yes, and on. “God, if I was saved, why do I still have to go through this!!!!!”

Simple. It takes time. We are in a process.

When I realized this, the condemnation began to leave. Yes, I believe we still need to repent when we sin. But the whole ‘beat myself up” over when I do wrong began to leave. Yes God loves me, no matter what. Yes, He has forgiven me too. But life is a process. Seasons come and go. As I seek Him, He will continue to change me into more like Himself. What Christ started, is what Christ will finish.

“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” ~Philippians 1:6

~Anna