Archive for the ‘ Your Life ’ Category

Real Glam Moms: Aspiring Kennedy

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Lauren and her daughter, Viola

Here’s the newest installment of a brand new series from the Parents beauty department about mommy bloggers. Each installment will feature what beauty means to real moms no matter what their beauty routine is like—and how they take time to themselves after having children. 

Let’s be real: A little part of us all wishes we were Jackie O. Or maybe that’s just Lauren Bryan Knight and me.

A little part of us all should aspire to be Lauren, too! The Texas native not only runs Aspiring Kennedy and is a mom to her oh-so-cute 1-and-a-half year-old daughter, Viola, she gets to do it all while living in London. Her travel guides will fill you with wanderlust, and her food posts will make your stomach growl.

What is your beauty routine like?

My beauty routine is very casual. I have many of the same products that I’ve been using since college in my makeup bag today. After finding what works for my skin and face, it cuts out one less round of decision making. Plus my hair is really thick, so it limits the options: up or down; clean or dirty!

How has your beauty routines changed since you had your daughter?

I have definitely learned to embrace the top knot. I don’t have two hours to wash and straighten my hair like I used to. Every two weeks, I have someone that comes to my house and blows it out for me at 7:30 a.m. She only charges $40! It’s a splurge but one that keeps my hair from being permanently in a nest on the top of my head. It helps me look—and feel—a bit more professional.

What is the importance of taking time to yourself?

We all have those days where we skip getting ready completely. That’s life as a mom—someone who is self-employed or being in school. I think it’s important to be okay with that version of yourself. However, I think many moms feel a loss of self and pride when they have a baby. The time they used to spend getting ready is soaked up by a baby. Taking five minutes to pull yourself together helps maintain confidence and pushes you to remember that there is a world outside of your living room.

How do you find time to focus on yourself, your blog, and your family?

Well the truth is: I don’t! When life gets too busy, I neglect the blog. I don’t feel bad about it either. It’s supposed to serve as a complement to my life. I never want to be a slave to it. The time I used to spend meandering Pinterest and other blogs for inspiration are gone. When I sit down to blog these days, I blog and then I’m finished. It actually keeps my content more original because I’m thinking of it on the bus or in the shower. The ideas come from my thoughts, and not because of something I’ve just seen elsewhere.

What’s the best beauty advice you’ve received?

Stop washing your hair so often.

Do you have any beauty advice for moms?

Spend a little more and invest in good products. You’ll use them, you’ll look better, and you’ll feel a bit more like a grown up, too.

 ASPIRING KENNEDY’S FIVE FAVES 

1. Bioderma Crealine H2O Makeup Remover: I buy this in France, and it’s literally like water on your faceexcept all your makeup is gone! No stingy eyes or oily gunk. It’s amazing.

YSL Mascara

2. Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils: It’s expensive, but it’s worth it. Your lashes look amazing, and it smells so good. (Which is kind of weird, right?)

3.  Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua Foundation: Again, this feels like water going on, but the coverage is fantastic. Plus it has SPF, which is really important to me.

4. Susan Posnick COLORFLO mineral blush: I adore the Susan Posnick makeup line. All of the pieces are designed so smart, and the mineral foundation has amazing natural SPF. I love having the powder and brush combo. It’s one less thing to tote around and makes your face look flawless in pictures.

5. Bvlgari Eau Parfumée Au Thé Blanc Shampoo and Shower Gel: If you’re ever staying at a hotel with these bath products, raid the maid’s cart. Or buy a big bottle at Nordstrom. Your whole house will smell gorgeous.

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Real Glam Moms: Little Lights of Mine

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

Ayesha Curry

Here’s the newest installment of a brand new series from the Parents beauty department about mommy bloggers. Each installment will feature what beauty means to real moms no matter what their beauty routine is like—and how they take time to themselves after having children. 

We don’t like to play favorites, but we have to admit something. RGM was inspired by this week’s mom and her quick makeup routine video.

In February 2013, Ayesha Curry created Little Lights of Mine. Through YouTube videos on recipes and family fun with her 2-year-old daughter Riley, she shares all she is thankful for as a stay-at-home mom. I discovered Ayesha back in April when I watched her Husband Tag video. I was less focused on her basketball star hubby, Stephen Curry, and more on her flawless lilac lipstick.

What is your beauty routine like?

I only buy products that I know I could use everyday if I wanted to. They have to be easy to apply and sort of effortless.

How has your routine changed since you had your daughter?

There was a short time where my routine was nonexistentthe newborn phase. The only thing I reached for was mascara. Now that she can occupy herself for a short period of time, I can get a nice natural makeup look on my face in under five minutes. So I guess my time to apply has changed significantly since having Riley.

What is the importance of taking time to yourself?

I think you just feel better about yourself! Of course we don’t need makeup all of the time, but it’s nice to feel fabulous every now and then.

How do you find time to focus on your blog, your family, and yourself?

It’s always a work in progress. We play around with our schedules to see what works best each week. No two days are ever the same. We love to plan family outings ahead of time and always set aside time for family dinner. Nap times are usually when my best blogging is accomplished. I’ve acquired the skill of multi-tasking since becoming a mommy. Oh the perks!

What’s the best beauty advice you’ve received?

Wash your face before bedtime, and always wear sunscreen!

Do you have any beauty advice for moms?

A good vibrant lipstick goes a long way! Perfect for those days when you’re tired and don’t feel like doing much to your face.

The Honest Co. Healing Balm

LITTLE LIGHTS OF MINE’S FIVE FAVES 

1. Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil: I love a good strong brow! It’s my no. 1 go to.

2.  Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara: Hands down, the best mascara I’ve used. It’s super easy to apply, and it lengthens and volumes like no other.

3. Coconut oil: It’s so multipurpose! I use it to remove makeup before washing my face, as a moisturizer, hair mask, and of course, to cook!

4. The Honest Co. Healing Balm: This works wonders on my lips and cuticles. I also use it during diaper changes for Riley when I notice a little redness. It vanishes within hours.

5. MAC lipstick: I love a vibrant lip! Red, orange pink! They just do it the best. My favorite colors right now are : Velvet Teddy, Chili, Pink Pigeon, and Morange.

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Real Glam Moms: Pardon My French

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Real Glam Moms is a brand new series from the Parents beauty department about mommy bloggers. Each week, we will feature what beauty means to real moms no matter what their beauty routine is like—and how they take time to themselves after having children. 

Kelsey B.

Pardon My French chronicles the adventures of Kelsey B. and her family of five in Alaska. She started blogging to help keep her family up to date with the life and times of Ace, 4, Pierce, 3,and Avalon, 16 months. Kelsey’s fashion picks are always spot on, so we knew her beauty picks would be too!

How has your beauty routine changed since you had children? 

I think after each child, my beauty routine was simplified. There is just not enough time to spend getting ready in the bathroom. I usually try to shower at night after the kids go to bed, that way my hair can air dry. Then the next day, it is ready for me to style or throw up in a top knot if I am pressed on time. My make up routine has definitely been streamlined to the essentials only.

What is the importance of taking time for yourself? 

For me, I know if I take the time to take care of myself, I feel better all around. A happy me equals a happy mommy!

How do you find time to focus on yourself, your blog and your family? 

It is all a juggling act, as I am sure most moms can relate. There are some days that things just work out, and I have time to shower or the kids take a nap and I can pound out a blog post. But there are many days that the circus comes to town in the house and I am making dinner in my pajamas that I have been in all day. There was no time for make up because I was picking Play-Doh out of the carpet. On those days, you just have to go with it. Bedtime will come eventually, and tomorrow is a new day.

What’s the best beauty advice you’ve received?

The best beauty advice I have gotten was to take care of your skin. Moisturize! My mom drove home the importance of moisturizing and protecting my skin from a young age. Also drinking tons of water.

Do you have any beauty advice for moms? 

Find what works for you, but don’t put yourself last on the to-do list! You will feel so much better if you start your day with a couple swipes of mascara and a dab of lipgloss!

PARDON MY FRENCH’S FIVE FAVES

Make Up For Ever HD Blush

  1. Egyptian Magic- This is my favorite skin cream. You can use it head to toe, but I use it primarily on my body.  It is oil-based, and you can just feel a difference in your skin right away.
  2. Laura Mercier Oil- Free Tinted Moisturizer- This give just enough coverage for a day of running errands and playing at the park. Because it has SPF in it, I feel ready for anything.
  3. Arcona Eye Serum- This is like a mommy secret weapon. You can feel it cooling under your eyes like it is sucking the under-eye bags away. I use it morning and night.
  4. Lucas Papaw Ointment- This is the best lip ointment I have found. It is great for the cold winters in Alaska. I have also used it to soothe bug bites and on very dry patches on mine or my kids’ skin.
  5. Make Up For Ever HD Blush- Cream blush is such an quick and easy way to add a little life to your face. This blush lasts a while, and it is so lightweight on your face.

 

 

 

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The 6 Beauty Products That Saved Me This Summer

Friday, August 29th, 2014

With summer winding down (major sigh), I decided to take stock of the beauty products that became my seasonal staples for looking and feeling good with minimal effort. Sunscreen’s a given, but there were a few exceptional new finds, so I thought I’d share them with you.

1. Cetaphil Restoraderm Skin Restoring Body Wash and Moisturizer

I suffer from heat-induced eczema, which means I get an itchy, red rash all over (but mostly on my legs) when my skin is dehydrated. Uncomfortable, and not a cute look. I switched to this body wash and its accompanying moisturizer, and wow, what a relief.  Both are formulated with ceramides, molecules that are naturally found in skin to help it retain moisture.

2. Sonia Kashuk Dewy Luxe Lip & Cheek Balm in Enchanted 

Some days this is the only makeup I’d wear—just on my lips—and more than one co-worker commented that the bright pop of fuchsia completely woke up my face.

 

 

3. Andis Fold N Go Ionic Dryer

I first experienced the perks of this small but powerful dryer in Puerto Rico, where my hair usually becomes a frizzy mess. I think the water had something to do with it, but my hair has never dried shinier, sleeker—or faster!— in a tropical environment. I now use this dryer at home in New York City, and it’s cut down my styling time significantly. And because it’s so compact and has a retractable cord, it doesn’t take up a ton of space in my bathroom cabinet.

 

4. Gillette Venus Embrace Sensitive 

If you read #1, you already know I have sensitive skin, and this razor helped me stay stubble-free with zero irritation. Its five blades are placed closer together so there’s less pressure on your skin.

 

5. And last but not least, eyelash extensions.

Yes, they’re a splurge but totally worth it in my opinion. Especially in the summer, because it saves you from the smudgy mess of mascara. It makes you look “done” without having to do much of anything. My lash expert of choice is Marley at Damone Roberts. She gives me that natural, “I woke up like this” look. And I did!

 

Happy Labor Day Weekend!

 

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Carter Oosterhouse on Building Active Communities and Living Green

Friday, August 22nd, 2014

Parents caught up with HGTV’s reigning expert on eco-friendly living, Carter Oosterhouse. He now plays host to four TV programs including Red Hot & Green all about eco-friendly design. Having discovered carpentry at the age of 12, Oosterhouse is now an expert, which is why he teamed up with Scott Naturals to launch their new tube-free toilet paper. He shares with us his tips to go green (easily!) in your home and the inspiration behind his youth charity Carter’s Kids.

P: What motivated you to start carpentry so young?

CO: My dad was a farmer and was constantly saying “You gotta work. You can’t just sit around the house and watch TV.” So that prompted all of us kids to always be busy. Something that was easy—a summertime job where you could have fun—was building. I liked doing it. I felt like I was getting outside and being active.

Seeing kids now being so stagnant, I started a non-profit [Carter’s Kids] where we build playgrounds and that’s because you see so many kids who don’t get out. You have to provide something that’s a reason for them to get out. Plus, I’m a big kid at heart.

P: What kind of impact have you seen from these Carter’s Kids playgrounds?

CO: We build one playground a month all over the U.S. in random cities, low-income neighborhoods, schools that really need it. It’s amazing to see how kids will respond when they have something attractive to play on. It’s like you put Disney World in their backyard. You have to remember back when you were a little kid and your world is your little town. When that’s just your world and you put something big and shiny it changes the whole dynamic. This playground becomes the community center point, which makes an even bigger impact. You’re not just changing the lives of those kids who are playing on it, but also the lives of the people who live there.

P: Do all Carter’s Kids playscapes include the same basic elements or are they each unique? 

CO: We usually work with whomever we’re building it for and say “What do you guys need? Are you by the water? Do you like boats? Are you in Iowa with cornfields?” They’re all different, but all awesome. Each playground takes a lot of prep. To build it only takes two days. I love doing it. If you do build one playground for the kids you get that rush that keeps bringing you back.

Find more ways for your kids to get outside and moving with Parents’ Activity Finder. 

P: You started on Trading Spaces, and now you have these other shows including Red Hot & Green. How did you get started in the green space?

CO: My parents were big nutritionists. So I thought, Well how else does that translate into other things? And that is: the earth. How could we build without taking away so much? Slowly but surely I got in the TV shows and I thought, I wanna do a show that has to do with eco-living and eco-repurposing and remodeling. Today when people see how they can be more efficient and cut down monthly bills, it makes more economical sense to be green within your home.

P: What are some ways that the average American family can be eco-friendly in their home?

CO: There are so many. It’s cool to buy secondhand stuff and repurpose it and give it another life. Whether that’s furniture or clothes. Around the house, lighting is huge and using CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) bulbs. Composting. Recycling is one. When [my wife and I] got married, we actually only had one bag of trash because we were able to compost and recycle. Also, VOC-free paint, and using organic cleaning products. That’s good for you and your plumbing in your house. Oh! And aerators on your faucets. Living eco-friendly is sort of like preventative medicine. This is a better way to provide for your home because in the long run you’re going to pay less, your home will last longer, your bills aren’t going to be as large.

Eco-Friendly Bottles
Eco-Friendly Bottles
Eco-Friendly Bottles

Top photograph: In honor of the launch, Oosterhouse and I posed in front of this 30 foot replica of the Empire State Building made of 14,000 rolls—the amount New York City throws away in only 15 minutes. Annually Americans toss 17 billion rolls, which is enough to fill the Empire State Building twice.

 

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Wanted: Beauty Product Testers

Monday, August 18th, 2014

Calling all beauty-loving moms on the go! We need your help.

For an upcoming issue, Parents is looking for moms to test out new “speedy” beauty products. If you’re interested, send an e-mail to parentsbeautydept@gmail.com by August 22, 2014 that includes the following information:

1. Name

2. Age of your child(ren)

3. E-mail address

4. Mailing address

5. Favorite type of beauty product

Important Notes

Sorry, but you are not eligible if you:

  • Are currently pregnant or are planning to become pregnant
  • Live outside the U.S.
  • Receive mail at a P.O. Box

We’re looking forward to hearing from you!

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Shop Wendy Bellissimo’s New Maternity Line!

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Pregnant women, rejoice! Wendy Bellissimo does more than curate amazing nurseries–she’s also bringing her flair for design to Destination Maternity, with a clothing and accessories line that just launched this week.

Wendy’s California-inspired, affordable pieces will be on sale at Destination Maternity and Motherhood Maternity stores, and online. Fall always feels more fun when flannel shirts, loose sweaters, and tribal prints are involved, and Wendy’s collection offers just those options!

Check out these looks:

Flannel doesn’t have to feel masculine. The lace back of this $44 top adds a sweet, unexpected touch. 

Finally, a top that focuses on exposing your arms, not your tummy! The funky print of this $38 V-neck makes it great for day or night. 

Wondering what to wear to your baby shower? This $48 maxi dress is a great pick.

Which pieces are your faves? If you’re just beginning to build your maternity wardrobe, make sure you stock up on these must-haves:

5 Maternity Must-Haves
5 Maternity Must-Haves
5 Maternity Must-Haves

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The American Express Guide to a “Summer Well Spent”

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Do you find yourself dishing out money left and right all summer? According to the American Express Spending and Savings Tracker, summer looks to be as expensive as the holiday season (if not more!). From pool membership to family vacation and summer camp for the kiddos, your wallet is getting pulled every which way. If fact, Amex estimates parents are spending $958 per child on fun summer activities in 2014–up from $856 last year and $601 in 2012. Overall, American parents will shell out $70 billion or more for summer activities.   

“Throughout the year, we’ve seen higher spending in a number of areas, like travel, shopping and entertainment – so it’s no surprise that parents are planning to spend more to keep their kids active.  This is good news for seasonal retailers, as well as camps, theme parks and other entertainment venues,” according to David Rabkin, Senior Vice President of Consumer Lending Products at American Express.

Eventually your kids will grow old enough to actually earn money in the summer. Nearly a third of teens are currently skipping the beach to start babysitting (24 percent), work in the fast food service (24 percent), working in a grocery store (20 percent), in retail (11 percent), or landscaping (16 percent). However, 54 percent of those teens will decide to spend their earnings rather than save, unless they are saving for a vehicle (27 percent) and/or college tuition (25 percent).

Meanwhile, with the help of Amex, some of our helpful tips to keep track of your pennies include:

  • Planning vacations and summer getaways ahead of time. By doing so, you may find deals along the way. Also, it’s okay to tell the kids up front what your limits are for souvenirs, meals, and more. Never to early to make them realize that money doesn’t grow on trees!
  • Make an effort to teach your kids fun and cheap (or free) ways to enjoy the summer heat in your hometown. Lemonade stand anyone?
  • Although school is out, chores still remain a popular way to let your child earn money. Nearly 98 percent of parents report assigning summer chores to their kids, such as cleaning a room, taking out trash, caring for a pet, or helping with the dishes, and 83 percent of parents reward the kids with an allowance. Then maybe they can reach into their own wallet the next time they want to go see a movie or chase the ice-cream truck!
  • Also, ask your kids early on what they’re interested in doing during the last weeks of summer. Sports clubs, pool memberships and camps are always popular, but limit yourself to what he or she is really excited about. It takes money to participate in a lot of summer activities, but with tips and tricks from American Express, make it a summer well spent!

Want to add some DIY fun this summer? Get your kids together and make unique t-shirts they can wear all summer long.

Surf's Up Shirt
Surf's Up Shirt
Surf's Up Shirt

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