• I Tried An Online Dermatologist and Here’s What Happened

    So, I got suckered into trying out Curology through video ads on Facebook. Have you seen them? Girls in their young 20s rave about this new thing for acne: just answer a series of questions about your skin online, send them pics of your zits, have a quick chat with a dermatologist (or an nurse practitioner – that’s who I got), and then a few weeks later they send you a little bottle of potion mixed up just for you.

    Seems too good to be true, right? Well, in some ways it is. The website is not totally user friendly, it’s hard to find your shipping and payment information, and a lot of the user’s posts on the homepage aren’t positive about the product. It also took ages (I did mention weeks, right?) to actually get the bottle in my hands and an email or two to figure out what was happening.

    As a business owner I understand the hiccups in user experience and customer service that can happen along the way, especially in a start-up situation – so they’re forgiven for the small things I wish I could change about the service. My nurse practitioner Emily seems to be a real nice lady who is well-informed about skincare and I dig the overall concept of creating custom solutions for each individual.

    The goals I discussed with Emily were to reduce overall pore clogging (black-heads, ew), reduce redness, and soften fine lines. I don’t get a lot of monster zits anymore now that I’m 30 (gasp), but in general I felt like my face could use some fine-tuning. I appreciate the face that Curology is open to addressing more than just acne – it was definitely the selling point for me that they’d also dive into my other concerns. 

    The formula Emily put together for me is as follows: Tretinoin (.009%), Clindamycin (1%), and Azelaic Acid (9%). Each element addresses my concerns and combines redness reducing acid with anti-bacterial elements and ingredients that help to shed skin cells (to help with disgusting black-heads and things of that nature).

    And what’s my verdict after using the product (at night only, per their recommendation) for a month? Honestly, I love it. I wasn’t expecting to, but I do. I didn’t get a single outbreak during my most recent period. The skin around my nose and chin is getting less red, and I think I look younger and more fresh. It’s also cheap AF ($19.95/month with a subscription service) compared to going to the real-life dermatologist and then the pharmacy.

     Turns out its sometimes okay to go down the Facebook advertising rabbit hole. You may just find clear, younger looking skin on the other side.

  • Why Doing Good Things Makes You Beautiful

    So I got tuned in to a new campaign from Alba Botanica this week that I’m really digging – a beauty brand committed not only to reducing their environmental footprint, using only 100% vegetarian ingredients, and never testing on animals – but one that is also supporting women in a MAJOR WAY right now. I’m just majorly feeling the lady vibes lately so I wanted to throw my support behind the #DoGoodDoBeautiful campaign.

    Here’s the scoop: the brand is featuring intimate, doc-style vids that journey through the day in the life of fave powerful women who are making a true difference in their communities. These 5 women featured protect animal rights, push for women’s empowerment, protect the environment, and demonstrate their commitment to community through social activism and service. Giving back has a way of touching your soul in a really beautiful and calming way, creating positive energy vibes that penetrate through your skin and out into the universe. At least that’s how I’ve always felt about activism. When that happens, your skin calms down, your eyes sparkle, and your entire aura just glows.

    The #DoGoodDoBeautiful Campaign is one I’m behind because I’m a true fan of Alba Botanica – the products very much align with my lifestyle. They contain 100% vegetarian ingredients and are made with vitamins, plant emollients, and therapeutic botanicals for fabulous beauty benefits. I’ve personally made a conscious decision in the past year or so to use natural products whenever possible, and the Alba Botanica ones totally fit the bill.

    I’d love to introduce you to the 5 incredible women featured in the #DoGoodDoBeautiful campaign now – please lend your support and leave comments on this post, on their YouTube videos and on Instagram! Much love!

     

  • How Often Do You Really Need To Wash Your Hair?

    It’s the age-old argument we constantly have with our girlfriends: how often should we be washing our hair? The answer, by the way, varies widely depending on your hair type, texture, color, and length—not to mention a bajillion other factors like weather, humidity, and daily activities. I’ve talked to a few of my brutally honest friends, each with different hair types, to get to the bottom of the mystery, and researched some expert opinion on what is and isn’t good for your beautiful strands.

    Calling All Curly Girls

    Let’s start with moi! My hair is very thin but I have a lot of it and the curl is REAL. I typically wash my hair twice a week, or when I find it to be unmanageable. I tend to stay away from shampoos or conditioners that contain sulfates—bubbles are no good on this head of hair! My hair holds product well, meaning I can put a lot into it without it instantly looking crunchy or oily. The oil that my skin produces doesn’t actually funk up my hair until the day I decide to wash it. If I change my regimen (wash my hair more frequently), my hair would become brittle and limp—a curly girl’s worst nightmare.

    Take a look at some of my favorite products:

    Amazing Au Natural

    One of my girlfriends has beautiful natural African American hair. When I asked her about her hair routine, nothing was off limits! She washes her hair 4 times a week because “anything more than that just strips my hair of the oils it needs and it gets really dry.” When looking for products to wash her hair, she tends to look for shampoos, conditioners, and oils that moisturize, strengthen, and prevent breakage because her hair needs to stay hydrated at all times. Coconut products are her savior unless they add buildup to her hair, so she says to find one that doesn’t sit on your hair and look for something that will essentially “feed nutrients” to your hair! Her last step in her hair care routine? Wrap up your hair when you sleep—it prevents the strands from breaking when you’re tossing and turning!

    Here are some of Natasha’s favorite products:

    Fine, Finer, Finest

    Another friend probably has the thinnest hair you will ever see. She washes her hair every day as soon as she wakes up due to the oils that build up when she’s sleeping. She’s so concerned about the oils in her hair that she’s even afraid to use new products because she doesn’t know how the product will build up in her roots. If she lets her hair dry naturally, it becomes a little bit wavy with a lot of frizz, so heat is a friend of hers. Dry shampoo is a godsend for her during the day if she feels the oil getting out of control, but she’s known to wash her hair twice a day if she needs to.

    Check out Elizabeth’s favorite products:

    Silky & Straight

    Finally, my roommate has super straight hair with an average thickness—not too thin and not too thick. She tries to wash her hair every day, but sometimes when the hustle and bustle of the day doesn’t allow her to, she’ll stick to her trusty dry shampoo. She’s got the type of hair that will work with any hair product but heat tool? She better hope luck is on her side! If she wants to add heat to her hair to curl it, she HAS to let her hair be “dirty” from the day before for her curls to hold. She uses moisturizing products to keep her hair from becoming brittle from washing it so much, but she feels the need to wash her hair often!

    Here are Kayla’s go-to products for her hair:

    Let’s get to the facts: Your skin produces oil, you have skin on your head, and your hair is attached to your head. Your hair gets oily in order to keep it from drying out and it essentially gives your hair the nutrients it needs to grow. While you may feel the need to wash your hair every day, you could be stripping your hair of its oils which actually causing your pores to produce MORE oil! Experts say washing your hair every other day is the most beneficial and it is possible to “train” your hair to make this possible. If your hair is really craving that wash, grab your dry shampoo until you absolutely have to later up!

    x

    Eliza

  • The Truth About Shaving Your Face (No, It's Not Taboo)

    To shave or not to shave? Well, isn’t that a question!

    In the latest saga of shaving trends, we’re “faced”—quite literally—with a dilemma. Should we or shouldn’t we? Yes or nahh?

    It’s no secret women have taken razors to unconventional places on their bodies. The cool thing is more and more women are actually going public with their grooming habits. Still, the task itself is daunting. The idea of doing the unthinkable can scare the very best lady away. I’m, however, here to shine some light on why shaving your face might just be the grooming habit you need to get into!

    The Myths

    The first thing you think of when you hear the phrase, “shaving your face,” might be the shaving cream and razor set your dad uses to get rid of his 5 o’clock shadow. That’s not how we do it. In most cases, women shave their face with a single blade razor or an eyebrow shaper on dry skin! The process takes less than 5 minutes to complete and the chances of you nicking yourself during it are very slim.

    Of course, after telling people I shave my face, I always get asked “but doesn’t your hair grow back faster/darker/thicker?” The answer is always no! If the hair on your face is typically dark or thick, that’s how it’ll grow back. But if it’s only peach fuzz and light, that’s the type of hair you’ll see. The hair on your face is growing constantly whether you notice it or not! It’s up to you to keep it or get rid of it!

    The Benefits

    If you’ve ever noticed your foundation or concealer appearing—well—hairy, you’ll experience a much smoother application after shaving your face! You’re essentially getting rid of all the little hairs and any dead skin when you shave so your foundation ultimately sticks to a smoother surface. Can you say flawless?

    Best of all, shaving is a cheap way to exfoliate! Think about it. In addition to removing hairs, you’re also removing a layer of dead skin that would have otherwise built up on your face. Removing dead skin cells speeds up the healing process, allowing serums or creams to penetrate better!

    How I Do It

    Everyone has their own techniques but for teaching purposes, I’ll just call mine the “Post Shower 30-Second Shave.” After I get out of the shower and before I do anything else (literally, fresh out of the shower, in a towel, not doing anything) I take the time to shave my face. I only do this once or twice a week and it takes no time at all, so it really isn’t a huge task. I take my eyebrow shaper, pull my skin tautly upwards, and use small, quick strokes going downwards in any area I deem shave-worthy. I typically only do my cheek/chin/lip area, but women have found shaving their forehead and around their ears beneficial! And, that’s literally it. Done!

    Immediately afterwards, I moisturize my skin and continue with the rest of my post-shower regimen. My skin usually craves a moisturizer of some sort (because I did just remove a layer of skin), but there’s no pain or discomfort once I give it what it wants!

    If you’re finding your face to be a bit fuzzier than you’d like or you want a smoother foundation application, take a go at shaving your face—I promise more women do it than you think!

    x

    Eliza

  • The Beauty Product that Saved My Mornings!

    Is it skincare or makeup?

    Ladies and gentlemen, let’s give a round of applause to Philosophy’s Renewed Hope in a Jar Skin Tint! 👏 I’ve been an avid fan of Philosophy’s original Renewed Hope in a Jar, a lightweight moisturizer with a whipped formula, but this skin tint officially takes the cake! 

    I’ve always liked their lightweight moisturizer because it hydrates, minimizes my pores, and gives me that natural glow that’s PERFECT under some simple makeup. When I discovered their “2.0” version with color, I knew I needed to get my hands on them ASAP.

    On my effortless days, I usually just slap on some moisturizer, light coverage foundation, and top my beauty look off with some decent brows. Then, I’m pretty much good to go. I love multi-tasking beauty products that save me time when I get ready. Quite frankly, this one is bae. What more can you ask from a 2-in-1 product that works like skincare and looks like makeup? 

    The whipped, water-gel formula is to die for, especially because it feels like nothing on your skin!

    These Skin Tints come in five blendable shades—3.5 Sand, 5.5 Beige, 6.5 Tan, 7.5 Honey, and 9.5 Cocoa. To be honest, the colors on the Sephora website are not accurate at all. The ones photographed here are a better representation, just saying! I mix shades 3.5 and 5.5 to get the perfect color for my complexion. Since the skin tint is super buildable, you can get a good amount of coverage by using more of the product. To kick things up a notch, you can also use the darker colors to contour and give your face dimension. Did I mention they have an SPF of 20?

    This is my highly-recommended product of the month! It’s perfect for all skin types, provides hydration all day long, and gives you the cover you need for under $40.

    If you have any multi-tasking beauty favorites, please let me know in the comments below. Would love to try anything that will save me some sleep!

    xx,
    Courtney Xu
    Image result for instagram icon@courtneyxu

  • How I Left My Dairy Life Behind (And How Doing So Did Wonders for My Skin)

    Hi, everyone. I’m Eliza and I used to be a self-proclaimed dairy addict. In fact, I always took my coffee, extra light, with cream. Whenever I could, I would season my meals with an overabundance of cheese. And, truth be told, I had this special bond with full-fat dairy yogurt. But, one day, I decided to leave that life behind in pursuit of a dairy-free diet. This is my story.

    Read More

  • 4 Steam Room Etiquette Tips You Must Know

    Like many of you, I really love a good steam room. I find steaming to be an almost meditative practice, one that allows me to slow down the rapid-fire train of thoughts whirring through the Penn Station situated in my head. It also grabs the toxins sitting underneath my skin out, and allows any excess water weight and bloating to pour out of my skin. A good sweat is life-changing, a way to break through a nasty hangover or simply change your outlook on your day. If you’re not steaming, add it to your beauty routine STAT. You will look and feel better because of it.

    Read More

  • Everything You Need to Know About Glycolic Acid!

    A little late in the game, I recently discovered the beauty of glycolic acid pads (or peels). I’ve seen them around, but always had the misconception that my skin was going to literally peel off if I used them, so I’ve always stayed away. Ya feel?

    After a friend explained to me what glycolic acid pads are really all about, I decided to give them a try. The glycolic acid ingredient is an active compound that contains many benefits for the skin. It can treat everything from dullness to dry skin! While some products have a higher percentage of glycolic acid, I tend to go for ones that have a lower percentage, so that I can use them consistently for better results. After using glycolic pads, I find that my skin is  more smooth and bright! These products are great for all skin types from sensitive (me) to acne-prone skin.

    Keep reading to check out some of the products I recommend—all are great anti-aging products!

    MALIN + GOETZ RESURFACING GLYCOLIC PADS

    The Malin + Goetz glycolic pads come pre-moistened in a jar, which is great for the home. Swipe your face with these in the evening, and you’ll take up with a radiant glow—trust me!

    MURAD RAPID RESURFACING PEEL

    I love that these glycolic pads are individually packaged. These are great for travel, a time when skin tends to act up—with glycolic acid and vitamin C ingredients, the dullness in the skin will instantly go bye-bye!

    PHILOSOPHY THE MICRODELIVERY TRIPLE-ACID BRIGHTENING PEEL

    These are individually packaged as well! These Philosophy peels contain three acids and are great for brightening, tackling the appearance of dark spots, no matter what your skin type or skin tone.

    Let me know what you think of glycolic pads. Which ones do you use and do they work for you?  

    xx,
    Courtney Xu

  • Beauty Essentials for Valentine’s Day

    Hello there!

    Here are some of my beauty essentials for Valentine’s Day. Whether you’re looking to achieve that extra “going out” glow or staying home and indulging in some tub time, I hope these products tickle your fancy!

     

    BRING OUT YOUR NATURAL GLOW

    To achieve a natural glow, apply Volition Beauty’s Thanakha Radiant Bronzer with a Beautyblender to conceal and correct blemishes. I personally like to blend the bronzer fluid with my moisturizer before applying it to my skin for a non-shimmery sun-kissed look.

     

    SPRITZ ON A LOVE-INSPIRED FRAGRANCE

    I still remember purchasing Tory Burch’s first signature scent. I was at the Bloomingdale’s on Lexington Avenue when an associate introduced me to the fragrance. I immediately purchased the full size. In fact, I am probably on my second or third bottle of that scent! Tory Burch launched a few fragrances since, but they smelled nothing like the first. Recently, however, she introduced “Love Relentlessly,” a mix of warm florals. The fragrance is inspired by her parents’ love story and how they loved relentlessly. I don’t think there’s a better way to celebrate the romantic holiday than by spritzing this scent everywhere!

    GIVE YOURSELF A MANICURE

    I don’t know about you, but when my nails are painted, I’m always in a better mood. Give yourself a manicure (or #treatyourself at a salon) with your favorite pink-“ish” color. Here are some of my current favorites: Designated DJ, B’aha Moment, Backseat Besties, and Excuse Me, Sur. Which color do you like best?

     

    INDULGE IN A ROSY BATH

    I don’t normally try new things at Lush (I’m usually set on the Dragon’s Egg bath bomb), but when I do, I make sure I experiment during their Valentine’s Day season! They have such a beautiful array of love-themed products, and I’m glad an associate showed me how some of these products work. I loved how the Prince Charming shower cream felt on my skin. When the associate washed it off my hands, my skin was butter-smooth! That was first on my list of things to get, along with a couple of bath bombs, and a pink lip scrub! I’m especially excited for the Rose Bombshell bath bomb because there are real yellow rose petals inside! Check out your local Lush this weekend because you won’t regret it.

     

    Let me know in the comments below what you end up purchasing! Don’t forget to read up on How to Spend Valentine’s Day in New York City as well!

    xx,
    Courtney Xu

  • Take a Look at My Recent Beauty Favorites!

    Happy February, Fam!

    I can’t believe the first month of the new year has already come and gone! Doesn’t January 1st feel like just yesterday?

    Today, I’ll be sharing some of beauty favorites from the past month—everything from hair to skincare goodies. Let’s get started!

     

    AMIKA POLISHED PERFECTION STRAIGHTENING BRUSH

    Straightening brushes have been “in trend” for quite a while now so I decided to one a whirl. Let me tell you, this one by Amika is a total lifesaver! This brush is easy to use and really helps me achieve that straight sleek look that I want! If you constantly wake up with hair strands pointing in weird directions, this tool will help tame all the stray flyaways! Plus, it gets the job done way quicker than your average hair straightener!

     

    KOPARI COCONUT SKINCARE SYSTEM

    A lover of all coconut-flavored delicacies, I figured why not give the ingredient a try on my body as well? 

    Coconut oil is great for everything, right?

    I’ve been a fan of Kopari’s coconut body products (Body Oil, Body Milk, and Coconut Crush Scrub) for quite some time so I was super excited to learn that they came out with a four-product skincare line. Aesthetically speaking, their pink ombre packing is informative—you use the products in order from light pink to dark pink. The line itself includes a Coconut Cleansing Oil, Coconut Rose Toner, Coconut Face Cream, and a Coconut Lip Love lip balm. All of these products are super hydrating, which is perfect for this cold winter.

     

    MURAD CITY SKIN OVERNIGHT DETOX MOISTURIZER

    I’ve been using Murad’s City Skin Overnight Detox Moisturizer in the evening, especially on sick nights. When I’m sick, my skin tends to get really dry (to the point of flaking), mainly because I’m constantly creating friction when blowing my nose. This overnight moisturizer “heals” my skin when I’m sleeping. I ALWAYS wake up with super soft skin whenever I use it.

     

    NARS PRIMER TRIOSOFT MATTE COMPLETE CONCEALER

    I’ve been using NARS’ Smooth & Protect Primer after moisturizing and pairing it with the new Soft Matte Complete Concealer in Macadamia to create my simple everyday look. If you love NARS’ Radiant Creamy Concealer (I can’t imagine anyone hating this product), I recommend checking out the new Soft Matte Complete Concealer as well—especially if you’re a matte-finish type of gal!

     

    PHILOSOPHY – BODY MOUSSE & DRY SHAMPOO

    *Gasp!* When browsing through Sephora’s website the other week, I knew I needed to get my hands on these new launches. Philosophy came out with Body Mousses and Dry Shampoos in both Pure Grace and Amazing Grace scents. Pure Grace is on the cleaner side while Amazing Grace leans on the more floral end (my favorite)! The Body Mousse has a cool and fizzy sensation upon application. I really think it adds a fun element when moisturizing the body! All in all, the Dry Shampoo is my hands-down favorite beauty product for the start of 2017. Not only do both scents smell exactly like the perfume, but they also work really well!

    If you have any new beauty favorites you would like to see me try, let me know in the comments down below! 

  • Why Organic Skincare is Good for Your Skin ...and Your Soul

    The skin is our largest organ and in order for it to function at its best, we must feed it with truly wholesome ingredients. My philosophy: If I refuse to put something in my body, I don’t want to put it on my body either.” —Rachel Winard, Soapwalla Chef.

    I don’t know about you, but that statement hit home for me. That being said, I indulged in a #TreatYourself moment where I decided to feed my skin with wholesome ingredients. Organic skincare lines smell and feel so natural. I can tell that a whole lot of heart and love went into creating these skincare gems. After testing them out, I can honestly say that I feel better about my skin when slathering it with organic ingredients. 

    Here are three organic skincare brands I definitely recommend:

    FIG + YARROW

    Fig + Yarrow has the most unique and interesting line up of products. Handcrafted and organic, they’ll give your skin much pleasure. I’m a fan of multi-tasking products like their Hair + Scalp Tonic which acts as a deep-conditioning treatment, moisture enhancement, smoothing serum, and aftershave oil. Their Complexion Water is great for hydrating  and soothing dry skin. It also acts as a light fragrance for both your hair and your body. Their Clay Masks are great for combining. I love using the Rose one for just the cheeks when they’re feeling a little dehydrated!

    MEOW MEOW TWEET

    I love cats, which translates to me loving this brand. I first heard about the brand through YouTuber, Ingrid Nilsen. She was raving about Meow Meow Tweet’s Deodorant Cream. I remember trying their Deodorant Cream exactly a year ago—it was quite the experience—my pits smelled very botanical. I’m glad they finally came out with a Stick version because it’s obviously more convenient! Their deodorants are made for the most sensitive pits ever, rest assured you’ll never suffer from irritation. And of course, ya girl needs to buy Lip Balm from everywhere. This will be right up your alley if you’re vegan!

    SOAPWALLA

    Soapwalla started in a Brooklyn kitchen (high five, New York City!), and has since made its way around the world. When looking for a skincare brand, trust is important. I mean, skincare really makes or breaks the skin, amirite? Well, Soapwalla knows how to build a trustworthy relationship. The company cares for both yours and our planet’s respective well-beings. Their Citrus Deodorant Cream, Restorative Face Serum, and The Spray, are among some of my favorite products. I mean, the Spray…who wouldn’t want a magical spray that does it all? Literally a hand sanitize, refresher for clothing and shoes, and insect repellent all in one! Love!

    What are your thoughts about going organic? 

  • What’s In My Bag?

    Here is my beloved Strathberry Midi Tote bag.

    I came across the bag on Instagram and instantly fell in love with its structure, handle, and overall look. Instead of traditional zippers and flaps, the Strathberry has a gold bar closure that simply “locks” the bag’s handles together. Super stylish, it has complemented a ton of my everyday looks. I’ve received a lot of compliments while using it too!

    Keep on reading for the contents inside!

    Let’s start off with what I consider my necessities—phone, earphones, wallet and water bottle. I never leave my house without my small 9 oz Swell bottle (because it fits most of my bags and is a eye-catcher every time I drink my water), my wallet and iPhone (I mean just look at my cute peacock phone case from Rifle Paper Co) and my Master & Dynamic earphones (they make my daily commutes to and from work a lot more bearable)!

    Even though everyone is pretty much all for Google Calendars, I’m still old school—forever flipping through my physical planner. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been on the planner train and, quite frankly, I’m staying loyal. There’s something about being able to write things down, something about having it be tangible in front of me that makes the old school method so appealing. To each their own, right? Say hello to my new 2017 planner from Rifle Paper Co. and some Muji stationery, of course!

    Need some hand cream on-the-go? I’m that girl who’s always whipping out a tube and sharing its hydrating love with everyone. I’ve been using Mario Badescu’s Hand Cream and Lip Wax. Next up, are Love Wellness Co.’s Do It All Wipes… because you gotta #TakeCareDownThere. These pH balancing wipes make me feel fresh (down there, duh!) whenever I need them. And how can I not carry around Kleenex tissues? I don’t know about you, but I need a tissue everyday of my life—there’s always seems to be a reason for needing one!

    Finally, my everyday makeup essentials! Do I need to say more? These are some of my favorite makeup products and they’re all travel-friendly, especially in this Glossier pink pouch. If I had to choose one makeup product to take with me on-the-go, it’d probably be the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz. Can’t leave the house without my brows!

    What is one thing you can’t leave the house without? Let me know in the comments below!

  • The Detox Drink A Minimalist Smoothie for the Minimalist in You

    Day 5 of the Detox is here.

    Can I just say I woke up feeling GREAT today? I’m like, high on life, man. Also, my boyfriend gets home in a mere 5 hours so that probably helps the situation. I’m so in love, you guys. So. In. Love. Last night I spent the evening face-masking and putting Olaplex in my hair so that I’m at peak gorgina status today when he comes home. Just like Cher in Clueless I’ll even have something in the oven for his arrival (it’s a roast and it’s going to be bangin’ and it’s on the Detox Diet).

    But you’re here for this smoothie recipe, aren’tcha? My ramblings about love don’t belong on the le blog today. Alright, I’ll give you what you came for. And if you’re reading today, as in Friday, January 13th, there is a video of me making the Detox Drink on my Instagram Story….

    I’ve grown to love smoothies over the years after being strictly ANTI-smoothie in my adolescence. One of the original Jamba Juices was in Laguna Beach (my hometown) and I never bought into the extremely sweet, kinda (?) tasty, but full of shit smoothies they were peddling. I don’t have a sweet-tooth, plain and simple. Alas, I’m 30 now and I acknowledge that a smoothie is a great way to get some nutrition and good calories into my body quickly and that it does not have to resemble sugar plum fairies in whipped up form. For the purpose of the Detox Diet, a paired-down smoothie is a must as we’re saying goodbye to gluten, dairy, sugar (some fruit is ok), and processed foods. I like thinking of it as a “minimalist smoothie” for the minimalist girl in me. So even though it’s not full of agave, and yogurt, and other things we’re saying “NO” to right now, I swear on my Mother that the Detox Drink is REALLY good, and tastes super clean.

    Let’s get to the recipe…

    The Detox Drink

    3/4 cup cold, filtered water

    1/2 cup frozen, organic kale leaves

    1/2 cup frozen, organic blend of antioxidant berries and seeds (blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, cherries, pomegranate seeds, strawberries)

    1 tablespoon chia seeds – protein source

    1 tablespoon collagen hydrolysate (kosher) – pure protein and good for bouncy skin 

    1. In a VitaMix or other high speed blender add all the ingredients together and blend for a minimum of one minute.
    2. Pour into a beautiful glass, because it’s important to truly enjoy yourself while drinking your breakfast. Add a straw if you’re so inclined.
    3. Snap a pic and put it on Instagram and tag me @lobosworth and #DetoxDrink so I can see your masterful work.

     

    Interested in some of the items I’ve mentioned in this post? They’re right down here for you to peruse.

     

  • My Detox Diet Diary An Update de Moi

    So how are your detoxes going, ladies?

    Mine is well…well, it’s going. I cannot tell you how many cravings I’m having – food, for my boyfriend who is in Asia, for baths, for expensive face creams. I almost ordered a quesadilla on Seamless last night at 930pm when I couldn’t sleep (I’m back home in New York but stuck on west coast time after a 12 day respite out there). I need my lover to come home soon to stop me from going off the rails and totally blowing it. He is almost en-route home from China and he can’t come quickly enough. Hopefully by the weekend that feeling of wanting to go open the refrigerator door and consume all the things in it will pass. In fact, I’ve read that after 3 to 4 days of cutting out gluten and dairy that those manic cravings DO indeed subside.  So, I’m waiting for that to happen. In the meantime, standing there with the door open, the cool air and bright lights shining on my face makes it almost feel like I’m eating delicious things.

    In the meantime, I’ve really been enjoying eating a very clean diet.  I’ve been sleeping well once I actually get to sleep, I’ve been

    waking up with more energy and motivation,

    and my poops haven’t been bad either. I’ve always had a weird digestive system and dare I say it COULD BE finding a rhythm? I think it’s also because I’ve been taking my Love Wellness probiotics and vitamin diligently, and that’s helping tremendously.

    Deciding what to eat is quite easy now, where as before it would take me an hour at times to pick through my unlimited dining options. My choices are limited and I’ve stocked the fridge with only nice things and so sipping on a cup of bone broth for breakfast is easy-peasy. Yea, bone broth for bfast is really good. You should try it! My fave is Kettle & Fire and EPIC makes a really nice chicken broth as well.  Both of these brands are guaranteed organic, anti-biotic free, and the cows are grass-fed which should make you feel safe to consume these.

    Outside of bone broths, I’ve been drinking a lot of paired-down smoothies in the a.m. and also as snacks throughout the day. I’ve eliminated yogurt (yum), agave (yum), and other fillers that pack on the calories and take aim at the good bacteria in your gut in an effort to recreate some good life parties in my tum-tum. I’ve been adding tons of frozen kale together with anti-oxidant berries (some fruit is okay), ice cubes, raw almonds, and water. Whipped together in the VitaMix, I’ve been very happy with the results. I’m calling it the “Detox Drink” and it’s my go-to for when I get peckish.

    On a totally unrelated food-note, I love baths. My boyfriend thinks I’m crazy, as do other non-bath takers, but they are totally healing and meditative for me. Stay with me as I’m getting to the point. I add

    2 cups of epsom salts

    along with some baking soda to my evening tub, and it’s a really nice way to end my day/congratulate myself/do something nice for me alone after a long day of work and minimalist eating. Epsom salts ALSO contain a TON of magnesium which can be absorbed a bit through the skin in a bath, and since magnesium is one of the better minerals that soothes nerves and helps sleep come quickly, taking a bath in a ton of it is really quite nice. The water gets silky smooth and it feels like a spa treatment at home that costs almost nothing (me likey). Sometimes I even start my day with a bath too.

    That’s my detox diet update for now. I’ve made some FANTASTIC tacos that are diet-friendly that will be coming up on the blog soon. I make the tortillas from scratch using

    cauliflower and eggs.

    They’re so delicious I may never go back to reg tortillas again.

    XO, LO

  • TheLoDown