Thursday, July 26, 2012

Pretty Sweaty

   The road to pretty isn't just about powder puffs and lip gloss. Although, I sure wish it was that easy! Recently I've sort of had a fitness awakening,  and wanted to share what it was that got me here.

    I have been aware of my physical fitness since a very young age, always active with horse riding and tennis after school. Then in high school and college I took to weight training in the gym. I got bored with it and it always seemed like a chore so I gave up for a while. That lead to a quick freshman 15 and ever since I have been on a constant mission to find a routine that works for my lifestyle. I've tried just about everything from running, to spinning, yoga, pilates, gyrotonics, and even pole fitness! So as you can see I love trying new and fun ways to break a sweat and tone up.  But with all this bouncing around (so to speak) from one thing to another I never really fully committed myself to a really good balanced routine.  Whether I blame my hectic and inconsistent work schedule, the toll that the memberships were taking on my bank account, or my mild case of ADD, there was always something in the way of keeping a consistent effective routine.  That is until now....

  It all started one lazy sunday morning when a screaming voice on an infomercial woke me out of my mid morning nap, "Dig Deeper!! Come on Y'all!" Little did I realize that I would soon be hearing those words daily for the next two months.  It was the voice of Shaun T, the energizer bunny of celebrity trainers. The man behind the at home workout that has inspired 100's of thousands to dig deep and get in the best shape of their lives, "INSANITY".  

   My husband and I watched the crazy people jumping up and down, drowning in sweat and laughed... "that looks crazy... we should do it... haha.. ya right.." But then something in me said, why not? We are young and healthy and should be in the best shape of our lives. We were both thin by society's standards, and looked good enough in our clothes, so it was easy to brush it off and not care about being in shape.  But I hated being out of breath after running up stairs or struggling to lift my always over weight suitcases.  Next thing I knew I was online at and I impulsively ordered the program!

    I never really thought about at home workout videos before,  I didn't think that I would be able to stay motivated without other people around to answer to.  But I think that changing that one thing in my mind is what has made the most difference.  Fitness isn't about answering to anyone else. It's all about you, and once you have set your personal goals, you only have to answer to yourself. If you give up or don't push yourself hard, then you're only cheating yourself.

Here is a picture of my before on day 1... and then my progress after 1 month (day 30):

   I am now on DAY 53 out of the 63 days of INSANITY! I am feeling strong and motivated and it is definitely starting to show.  More than the change on my exterior, I am thrilled with the change in my mental approach to health and fitness.  I now eat to fuel my body, I crave healthy balanced meals that will make my next workout better than the last.  I am more aware and in touch with my body than ever before.  I am positive now that even when I reach day 63 and complete this program that it will not end there.  I am now addicted to feeling this way and will continue these videos along with possibly trying some other programs. It is now a part of my daily life and I hope to inspire others to make it part of theirs as well.  I decided to write about this just to share my latest ' favorite beauty trick.'  It's not a quick fix, but it is effective... and I promise you that if you commit to something like this you will be more radiant and have a glow that not even my trusty Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick can provide!!

 From here on out I will post more about my progress and fitness and diet tips and tricks, because as we all know but sometimes forget, true beauty starts from within! i said before... the road to pretty is more than powder puffs and gloss... when you're face is bright red and sweat is dripping off your nose you may feel more beautiful than ever. :) 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Long Hair Don't Care

The fact of the matter is, Long Hair needs a lot of care! I have a long history of abusing my hair in just about every way possible, yet I have always expected it to grow long and luscious.  Needless to say that wasn't going to happen without some serious tender loving care. After many trials and tribulations I have found some great tricks and tips that have my hair growing longer and healthier than ever. So I thought I'd share with all of you.

Lets start at the root of it... SCALP HEALTH:

Your scalp health is essential to grow a magnificent mane.  My suggestion is to use a Head & Shoulders shampoo for a deep clean and scalp treatment.  Even if you don't have dandruff or scalp issues, it is a fabulous way to maintain scalp health, which will help stimulate hair growth and prevent any future scalp issues.  I had the chance to speak to the actual scientists that are behind the scenes at P&G and they suggest that everyone use the shampoo and conditioner at least twice a week.  The active ingredient Pyrithione Zinc (PTZ) is the key to the effectiveness,  it is in every formula of Head & Shoulders. There are many options to chose from, some fight frizz, some volumize, but all of them will give you that great deep clean that your scalp needs to produce healthy shiny locks. An extra bonus is that they smell fantastic too, whenever I use it I get compliments on how fresh my hair smells!

If you have a very dry scalp and are looking for additional treatment to add on after you wash, try out Rene Furterer Intense Nutrition Oil for very dry scalp and hair.


Every girl with long hair or chemically treated hair must indulge their hair in a deep conditioning treatment at least once a week. Depending on how damaged your hair is will depend on how often you need to treat it.  I do a deep treatment once a week but always leave my regular conditioner on extra long while showering to get the maximum effect from it. When I do my deep conditioning I like to leave it in for as long as possible. But since time is often limited, I try to kill to birds with one stone and do it while I work out. I just slather it on, put it back in a braid then when I'm all done I just rinse it out in the shower.
Here are the treatments that I recommend.  My trusty hair color expert/ friend Shakira Silverman suggested some of these and I have come across some with my own research.

Kerastase Chronologiste Caviar Treatment 
This one comes with a hefty price tag, $145 for 10 treatments worth. But it has been known to heal even the most damaged locks; one stylist I spoke to said that if you use this on a regular basis you never have to get a trim.

Oribe Signature Moisture Masque
This one is $59 for a nice sized jar. 
 It can be used daily if you have thick hair or weekly as a treatment for everyone else.

Davines Nourishing Miracle Treatments

These Davines products are a great options for those of you that prefer something natural. The Keratin Miracle is fantastic but difficult to find for home use, it comes in a giant bottle that is meant for salons. So I suggest finding a salon near you that offers this treatment. The Vegetarian Miracle is a great one for at home, it is also the most affordable of the bunch, I found it HERE for $25.09


All this work will be for nothing if you just tear into your hair with improper brushing.  So I suggest using a detangler and quality brushes.  After you shower and towel dry your hair (blot don't rub), you will want to spritz a detangler in your hair before you comb it out. My personal favorite is:
This guy is pretty self explanatory in that it detangles your hair in 7 seconds. But it doesn't stop there, it also acts as a UV and Thermal protector. It's also great for color treated hair, it locks in your color and protects it from fading.

After you have spritzed, you should use the best comb & brush money can buy. These brushes have been around forever and are a staple in the kits of top stylists globally.

Buy Them Here At Barneys

The comb is best for detangling wet hair, the detangling brush (white one) is best for detangling dry hair, and the popular mixture brush is best for smoothing out dry hair.  It's also great for evenly distributing the oils from your scalp to your ends which is another important technique to maintaining long hair health.

Well there you go, I hope you are treat that lovely mane of yours with the respect it deserves.  Trust me it will be worth the trouble and investment and everyone will take notice of your shiny smooth tresses. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Baby You're A Firework

Baby You're A Firework

Baby You're A Firework by ashleymia 

I don't know about you, but I love any chance to get dressed up, especially for a holiday.  By dressed up I don't mean fancy necessarily, althought I love that too.... But I mean putting together a fun outfit with a purpose or theme. The trick to pulling this off is to avoid going cheezy and predictable. No oversize t shirts that say Happy 4th! with a giant flag on the back... To start it's best to choose a style that you like and will be suitable for whatever activity you'll be partaking in.  If you look at the collage above you'll see that you can be patriotic no matter what style you lean towards.  To the left is a more preppy look and to the right is more of a western or bohemian feel.  If all else fails and you like to keep things simple, just rock a white sundress or a white t and cutoffs, add some red lips and you're good to go! 

Happy 4th of July Everyone! 
Be Safe & Be Pretty ;-)  xo