Coffee Lover’s Face Mask

Happy Fall everyone! I don’t know about you but I am so ready for cooler weather, chunky scarves and as always a Pumpkin Spice Latte!! I know that might seem a little cliché but this is seriously my favorite time of year! Personally for me, this is when I feel the most inspired when it comes to getting creative and wanting to do more on my days off from work! So that means pinning everything on Pinterest! That is a gold mine for all things DIY! They have amazing face mask recipes that are 100% eco-friendly because you are using all natural food ingredients!  These are really easy to get your hands on, especially this one I’m going to talk about below! It is the coffee face mask!!

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Not only is coffee a must have drink in my life, especially working retail, when I want to get anything done!  This recipe consists of ground coffee and milk. So seriously, it is so simple!

 

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon of coffee (any type will work)

1 ½ tablespoons of milk

Mix together well and let it sit for several minutes before you apply to your face.  After about 5 minutes wipe the mixture all over your dry face, avoiding the eye area.  Let it sit on your face for about 15-20 minutes and then rinse with cool to warm water.

Not only am I loving the smell of coffee on my face but once I rinsed it off I can seriously see a difference and it ended up clearing out some of my black heads in my T-Zone as well. While I had the mask on I did feel some tingling but not any major skin irritation.  If it is too uncomfortable for your then I would advise rinsing it off right away.  Again I have oily skin so this mask really helped balance out oiliness and clear up dirt on my face as well.

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After some research, coffee has tons of antioxidants that will calm down the skin if you have acne prone skin. Which is why I am loving this mask after just one use! I mean it didn’t clear up all of my acne but it definitely left my skin feeling smooth and brighter. The lactic acid in milk is commonly known as salicylic acid which helps with clearing up blemishes and is filled with vitamins that will help with making your skin soft too.  The mixture feels like an exfoliant and really clears away any dead skin cells. To sum it up if you have oily, acne prone skin like I do then you will love this mask! Not only does it clear away dirt and blemishes but it is completely eco-friendly! Tell me how you like it down below and what other house hold facial masks you really enjoy!

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Taking Inventory Challenge: Desk Space Make Over

One of my most cluttered spaces in my apartment is the desk. This is a space that is supposed to promote efficiency, critical thinking, and creativity. As you can see, this desk seems to have only promoted a place for piled up documents, mail, and just plain random things (AKA my dusting rag does not belong here). Half of this is junk mail that I never even needed to receive. Well the other day I finally gained the energy to dig through everything and sort it.

Before

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Sort into Piles

Yes, I literally sorted through every piece of mail piled up here. Oh, and there was more mail hidden in the cabinet of the desk! Goodness, there was a lot of mail. I made 2 piles: Recycling and Filing Bin. Everything in the recycling pile, as you can guess, was just mail or so outdated I didn’t even know what it was. We also had an absurd amount of notebooks. The ones unused will go to Goodwill and the used ones will hit the recycling bin. We also have a filing bin below that we keep all important documents such as bills due, past bills we need to keep records of, tax information, etc. I recently opted out of all solicited mail so fingers crossed no more junk mail!

Decorate but Not Excessively

Those floating shelves have only supported my knick-knack addiction. I love the look of them, but I just kept piling more STUFF on them! A few pieces is okay to liven up your space. Just because you want to live minimally doesn’t mean that your house has to be super boring. As long as you keep decor to a minimum, it won’t overwhelm you. I’m still not in love with the decor up there, but it’ll do. A couple of those items have sentimental value that I want to keep but they don’t necessarily have a place. We also use the kitchen chair when at the computer, we don’t need a fancy office chair. It works for us. (We plan on refurbishing the chairs).

Utilize Drawer and Cabinet

I wanted to keep the entire top surface of the desk as clean as possible. Sam’s computer, a pen/pencil holder, and printer were the 3 pieces I wanted to keep on there. I did keep a couple of notebooks because sometimes I like to brainstorm on good old fashion paper. All paper and Sam’s video labeling necessities are in the cabinet. Our smaller desk items such as checkbooks, flash drives, stamps, etc are in the drawer.

After

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What works best for you when decluttering? Comment below!

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5 Steps to Minimalism

Minimalism is a lifestyle movement about letting go of what is not necessary. Its a movement toward freedom from fear, overwhelming stress, guilt, and depression. People may think of minimalists as those who live below the radar of typical society: owning practically nothing, a tiny house, no car, no TV, no personal items. While those things may definitely help you achieve a minimalist lifestyle, it doesn’t have to fit in a tiny box of fixed rules. If you own less and consume less, you will feel more free in your daily life. That is a fact. Everyone transitions at different speeds and that’s okay.  Here are five easy steps to get you started.

Take Inventory

First step is to just take a look around and see how much stuff you have accumulated. You can’t fix the problem until you recognize the problem. There will be some posts in the future of me living this out, I’m going to go around room by room and count the amount of items I have in there. I think this is the most important step. I’ve been attempting to live a more sustainable lifestyle for months now, I work slowly when it comes to transitioning. Its difficult to break habits, but I’m hoping by Take Inventory project will help me move along quicker.

Learn to Say No

Do I really need to purchase this? Is it necessary? This is still something I am working on. I’m a sucker for knick-knacks and especially since the holidays are approaching, I feel the need to decorate festively around the house. I already have enough stuff for that matter. If I can avoid impulsive purchases, that will eliminate the clutter from building up. Learning to say no only helps implement a mindful lifestyle.

Evaluate Your Items

After you take inventory, you need to evaluate what you need to keep, want to keep, and don’t need. Things you want to keep but don’t necessarily need should be things such as sentimental items or use often enough that its worth keeping.

Purge Non-Necessities

Anything deemed as not necessary should be on its way out of the house. Now, I don’t mean to just toss everything in the trash. After all, we are still eco-conscious people! Look at your pile: Can it be donated? Can it be sold? Can it be recycled? Anything else, you can toss.

Eliminate your Waste

You can be a minimalist without being a full-blown zero-waster. Regardless of your location, you can definitely adapt to their principles and values. If you refuse what is not need and reduce what is needed, those two alone can make a huge difference. Most likely your number one source of trash is from the kitchen. If you eliminate waste while grocery shopping, that will also substantially reduce your trash. Other quick tips for eliminating waste is to put yourself on the do not mail list so you stop receiving junk mail, refusing all plastic bags, using a reusable water bottle, and recycling instead of tossing it all in the trash.

 

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A Quick and Easy Way to Clean Your Makeup Brushes

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Cleaning your makeup brushes and applicators is extremely important.  If you use your brushes every day or at least on a weekly basis, it is good to clean them once a week or more to help your complexion stay clear and clean.  Unclean makeup brushes can hold a lot of bacteria and leave your skin prone to acne breakouts. And who wants that?!  Below I will walk you through the types of brushes and beauty blending sponge I use and how I clean them!

 

When I start doing my every day makeup I start with a primer, I will just use my hands to rub it into my skin, then I will use my foundation brush to stipple in my foundation to my face so it doesn’t leave any streaks.  I like to use a short hair synthetic brush so the product doesn’t get trapped in the bristles.  I like to clean this brush once a week.

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After my foundation is applied I will go in with my concealer. Normally the concealer I used will have a sponge wand already attached to the product and I will use that to apply it to my face.  After I have my concealer on I will use a beauty blending sponge to blend the concealer into the areas I applied it.  I love the beauty blender for this because it does a beautiful job at blending out liquid concealer.  I will tend to wash my beauty sponge every 2 days to prolong the life of it.

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Once my foundation and concealer are applied, I will go in with a translucent setting powder to set my face.  Since I have oily skin I like to set my face with a powder to make my base makeup last as long as possible.  I will use a large fluffy brush for this since I will take it all over my face.  I will wash this brush once a week since the loose powder doesn’t 100% stay in the brush.

 

I will go to bronzing my face after my translucent powder has set.  I will again take a synthetic haired brush that has bristles on the shorter side but not as short as the foundation brush.  I will use the brush to sweep the bronzing powder under my cheek bones, at the hair line on my forehead, and under my jaw line to define my face.  I will wash this brush once a week as well.

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Next I will go in with applying blush using an angled tapered synthetic haired brush.  I will apply this on the apples of my cheeks and drag it above the line where I applied my bronzer on my cheeks. Since I use more of a neutral color in my blush I will wash my blush brush once a week since there isn’t a lot of product that I use with that particular brush.

I will use a couple of eye shadow brushes to apply my eye shadow look. For my crease I like to use a tapered brush to get the shadow in a precise place and then blend out the harsh lines. I also like to use a fluffier brush to apply and blend out the color I use on my eyelid.  I will also clean these brushes once a week.

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For cleaning, I like to use the Eco Tools Makeup Brush Shampoo.  I will lather my brush under warm water and then lather the shampoo into the bristles.  I normally use a dime size amount for my bigger brushes and then a pea size amount for my smaller brushes.  After I rinse the brushes from the shampoo, I lay them flat to dry.  Typically, I will do this at night time so they dry overnight. Comment down below if you have another way to clean your brushes that works or if you have a ride or die DIY formula that you use!

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Traveling with Less

Traveling with less isn’t as difficult as it once was for me. As many of you know, Sam and I recently traveled to Florida. I don’t travel much via plane, so this was a great way for me to test my limits to see what exactly I packed was actually necessary and what was not. Sam and I shared a suitcase. He brought a backpack for his carry on that carried important electronics such as our nice camera. I only brought my small backpack to carry my essentials like my wallet, a layering piece, and a book for the plane ride. Here is a list of helpful hints to use when traveling:
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Essential Denim

First thing I can definitely recommend, you want to bring denim. I had a pair of denim shorts and jeans. I wore this almost everyday. Jeans were necessary for the evenings when we went out to dinner. Denim is the easiest thing to match everything with.

Simple Tops

This is something I am still working on. I really only wore this shirt in the picture multiple times. I had another tank top I wore maybe once. Learning to live a minimalist lifestyle is not something that happens overnight. This trip taught me to stop purchasing pieces that are ‘trendy’. The reason I wore this top repeatedly is because I like the way it fits and its a timeless piece. Stripes can never really go out of style. The one thing I forgot to bring was a light jacket or long-sleeved top for the evenings once it got colder.

 

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Little to No Make Up

I’m constantly learning how to be okay with myself without any make up. I think most women can relate – its easy to find imperfections and think negatively of yourself. I’m not going to lie – I brought almost all my make up with. I barely used it. Part of going on vacation is to worry less and just relax.

Book a Room with a Kitchenette

When traveling, its difficult to limit your waste because you don’t know the areas all that well. We booked through Air B&B, I knew we needed a room with a small kitchenette. We found the local grocery store called Publix (Similar to Jewel Osco in Chicago area). Candidly speaking, we couldn’t completely zero waste grocery shop. I mean, I am still working on that even in Chicago. We did our best. One thing I forgot to pack was produce bags for shopping (fail). I would highly recommend bringing those along with your reusable totes. Having the kitchenette did help us save money while we were down there because we didn’t have to go out to eat for every meal. When you do go out to eat, bring a reusable napkin and avoid all straws.

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What other tips to do have for traveling with less?  Comment below!

 

Photography by Sam Meinders
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