My November Ipsy Glam Bag

Hey everyone! I am so happy to be back with a new blog post today! It’s the end of the month, which means that it is time to share and review what I received in my November Ipsy glam bag! I’ve always loved experimenting with new beauty products, and I was looking forward to this month’s bag!

This month, Ipsy reminded their members that it’s ok to indulge this holiday season, and to treat themselves with some new beauty! I really liked the #BePresent theme, and I absolutely loved the bag! I love the three different shades as well as the pop of color on the zipper! I felt that it was the perfect bag for November! I rated my overall bag 4/5 stars because I was very happy with the products I received.

Inside the bag:

  • 111SKIN – Y Theorem Day Cream NAC Y2 (my pick)

This is the product I chose to receive this month, and I am sad to say that it was not my favorite. When I tried this day cream, I first noticed how strong the scent was. I think it is probably best to avoid overpowering scents in facial products because it can irritate sensitive skin. I also have acne prone skin, so I try to be careful with this. The cream felt a little bit thick on the skin. The product includes anti-aging ingredients, vitamins, and antioxidants. I may need to try it again, but for now, I am not sure what I would rate this product.

  • Avette – Fresh Clean Coconut Mild Foam Cleanser

I was in need of a new cleanser, so I was happy to see that this was in my bag! I’ve used it a few times, and I have to say, I really enjoy foam cleansers! This one felt light, and I felt like it truly was cleansing my skin. It did have a somewhat strong scent, but this one smelled more fresh than the day cream. I plan to continue using this product, especially after wearing makeup or after long days. I rated this cleanser 4/5 stars.

  • Bobbi Brown Cosmetics – Vitamin Enriched Face Base

I haven’t had too much of a chance to try this out, but I was able to use it a couple times. I was really excited because I had never tried any Bobbi Brown products before! This primer made my skin soft, and it made applying foundation a smooth and easy process. I was able to blend out my foundation beautifully! This product doubles as a moisturizer, and my skin did feel hydrated after applying it. The ingredients are very beneficial for the skin as well (it includes: shea butter and vitamins B, C, and E). I rated this product 4/5 stars.

  • CONTEXT SKIN – Matte Lipstick in Sweet Emotion

I was thrilled to see that I would be able to try out a new lipstick! What can I say? I am a lover of lipsticks! The shade is something I normally would not go for, but it is absolutely perfect for fall! It is more of a rusty nude color, and it can be worn with a variety of makeup looks. It is creamy and applies easily as well, but I wouldn’t say that this is a matte shade! For me personally, I would recommend keeping the eyes very simple and natural and adding some color with this lipstick! I rated this 5/5 stars.

  • Eyeko – Rock Out and Lash Out Mascara in Carbon Black

I did not have high hopes for this mascara, but I was pleasantly surprised when trying it out! The wand is a unique shape, and it did make the product just a little bit difficult to apply. I really loved the way that this mascara made my lashes looked fanned out and it lengthened them pretty well. I had to apply a couple coats, and there was a moment when I thought it was beginning to clump my lashes, but it actually separated them well! I think this is the perfect everyday mascara! I rated this 4/5 stars.

Thank you so much for reading today’s blog post! Let me know what you received in your November glam bag in a comment below! I would love it if you would check out my Instagram, @sacchere14 to see a video I put together where I create a makeup look using these products!

If you would like to become an Ipsy member, click here!

Fitness Update: November 2020

This year, my fitness journey took a turn. It was an unexpected turn, to say the least. We have all had to adapt to a new way of living, and the gym was no longer an option, at least for me. I’m not going to lie, I did not make a ton of progress this year, and that was to be expected once COVID-19 became widespread. However, I did my best to maintain my physique. Today, I’ll be sharing a brief update on my fitness journey. My last update was posted back in June, so I felt that it was time to share another!

Back in March of this year, I was just returning from my trip to France. I was on a high because I had just experienced one of my biggest dreams. As soon as I got back, I realized just how serious COVID-19 was getting in the United States. Not long after that, things began shutting down, and since then, we have pretty much spent the year at home. Of course, my gym closed down, which I think was the right decision to make. A gym is probably one of the worst places to go during a global pandemic.

I really had to get used to at-home workouts, and this was a bit of a challenge for me. I find that being at home means I tend to get a bit more distracted, and I am not as motivated as I am in the gym. It took a few weeks for me to get a little routine down, but once I did, I was feeling good! I don’t exactly remember how many times a week I was weight training, but I would say maybe three. I was doing cardio around two or three times a week as well. I began to enjoy at-home workouts, though I did miss the environment of my gym.

Earlier in the year, I said that I wanted to try a new form of exercise. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but in April, a couple of my family members and I decided to try yoga. We have now been doing yoga every single day for seven months! We typically practice yoga for 10-30 minutes daily. This is something that I am really proud of. I honestly did not expect to enjoy yoga, and I originally had my doubts, but I have seen and felt the many benefits of the practice. If you would like to learn more about the benefits of yoga and mindfulness, I wrote a blog post about my experience recently (click here)!

As the year went on, I felt that I was losing my motivation to lift weights. Yoga became my daily workout, and weight training was something I did once or twice a week. I tried to keep up with cardio, but I would say that I did it once a week.  There haven’t been very many changes in my workout split since. I am doing my best to stay on track, and to not be too hard on myself. While I may not have made a ton of progress this year, I have remained active, and that is very important to me.

When it comes to healthy eating, I have to say, it was also quite difficult. For me, this has always been the hardest part of living a healthy life. I’ve noticed that when I’m weight training, doing cardio, and staying very active, my appetite is bigger. This year, I don’t think that I’ve been eating as much as I used to, or drinking enough water. My meals haven’t been very unhealthy, but they definitely could be better, so I am trying to work on this.

I recently discovered a very small issue with my health, so after speaking to my doctor, I now know what I have to do to keep myself healthy. This has actually sparked some motivation in me, and I am feeling more excited to lift weights, do cardio, and continue with yoga. I am also going to do my best with eating more and eating healthy, as well as drinking enough water.

I know that this year has been challenging for many people across the globe, and we have all been much more aware of our health now more than ever. Some people may have gained motivation and killed their at-home workouts, whereas other people may have struggled a bit more. Wherever you are on your fitness journey, take a moment to say thank you to your body. It has carried you through another year, and (hopefully) you are healthy and safe. It’s ok if working out or eating healthy was difficult this year (it was for me too). As long as you did your best this year, then that is enough. Be proud of how far you’ve come, and continue to live an active and healthy life. I know that for me personally, one of the biggest reasons I stuck with weight training is because of the way it makes me feel afterward. Even when I struggle to take out my weights and put on my workout gear, I always feel my best after a workout. Take a look back and remember why you started in the first place. This is how you will get your motivation back, and this is how you will continue on.

The holidays are right around the corner, making healthy eating and working out even more of a challenge. So please remember to do what you can to stay healthy (physically, mentally, and emotionally), but also spend time with your loved ones, and enjoy the holiday season! Take care of yourself, love yourself, and even through the challenges, continue on your fitness journey!

I hope you enjoyed reading this fitness update. I wanted to be honest and discuss the fact that I was not heavily motivated this year, however I am looking forward to my five year anniversary in February, and beginning my sixth year of weight training! Thank you for checking out today’s blog post! Until next time!

How to Recognize and Balance Your Priorities

As we get older, it is common to have a lot of responsibilities in all areas of our lives; whether it’s with work, our homes, our loved ones, or even ourselves. It can be overwhelming and difficult to really recognize and balance our priorities when we become busy. Everyday life will continue to pass us by, and we may come to find that we are neglecting important people or responsibilities in life.

For me personally, I have a few different things that I have to do in a week. For example, I am a college student, so I prioritize my schoolwork as well as the work that I do at my internship. I also prioritize spending time with my loved ones. I really enjoy being with my people (this includes family, a boyfriend, and friends), and they mean the absolute world to me, so I want them to know that. I also like to set aside time to focus on my passions/hobbies, whether that’s writing, working out, or spending time in nature. And of course, I prioritize self-care. It is so important to show love to yourself, and this is something that I practice daily.

The first step to recognizing your priorities is to write them down (and you can even try to list them from most important to least). By doing this, you will be able to really see each activity right in front of you, and you may even realize that it isn’t as overwhelming as you originally thought. Ever since I started college back in 2017, I haven’t been able to live without a planner. Most of the time, I only write down school assignments in my planner, however it can be very helpful to have a personal planner as well.

Every day is different. Some days I have a lot to do, whereas other days are more relaxed. There are certain things that I like to do/have to do daily, so sometimes I will write down each task I would like to do for the day. You can do this either on your phone, or you can grab a pen and paper. For example, on Mondays, it’s often a goal for me to do some writing/blogging, take some time for self-care, spend time with loved ones, workout, and write down/begin my school assignments for the week. Of course, I may not cross everything off of this list every day, but I do my best to focus on the most important tasks, and that is what matters most.

I may not be the busiest person in the world, but life can get overwhelming and stressful sometimes. There are times when I feel that there simply aren’t enough hours in the day, and I can be hard on myself if I fail to complete every single task on my list. I think that it is extremely important to pause each and every day, and remind yourself that you can handle anything that comes your way. It all comes back to self-care. Take some time out of each day to take a breather and do something that makes you happy, even if that means relaxing and watching your favorite TV show. In order to get things done, you need to be in the right headspace, and you need to feel prepared. This is why I believe planning out your day is so important. Just make sure that you don’t fall into any bad habits, or that you spend too much time relaxing. Balance is key.

The people who love you are going to want to see you at your best, and that is why I always say that you should be your main priority. Taking care of yourself should be a main priority. Only then can you truly make time for other people and other things. If life is getting a bit too hectic and someone asks you do something, it’s ok to say no. It doesn’t mean you don’t love or care for the person, it just means that you need time for yourself, and if that person loves you, they will understand. I’ve always had trouble with saying no, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve really recognized the importance of standing up for myself and doing what’s best for me.

I think that for myself, having a routine helps me a lot. I know that everyone’s lives are different, and for some people, each day can look very different, but if there is even one thing that you can do at a certain time every day, this can help. I’ve always been very self-aware, and this becomes more and more true as I get older. I am very in touch with my feelings, and if I’m being honest, I don’t hide my emotions very well. The good thing about this is that I can very easily recognize when I’m reaching a breaking point, whether it’s emotionally, mentally, or physically. There is beauty in discovering more about yourself. There is beauty in alone time. Utilize this time, and get to know yourself.

I understand that it can be difficult to really recognize and balance your priorities. However, when you stop and think about it, it comes down to your attitude, your values, you goals, your work ethic, and your passions. If you find that you are neglecting yourself, your loved ones, your work etc., take a step back and remind yourself of what’s important to you and go from there. We all have our bad days and bad moments, but you have the ability to turn things around. Remember that difficult days don’t last, and you can and will get through them. Priorities can change over time as well, so take the time to learn what they are, and rearrange accordingly. Just remember that you should be a priority to yourself as well. Never forget that a little self-care can go a very long way.

I hope that you found this post helpful, and that you share it with your loved ones as a gentle reminder. Thank you so much for reading! Until next time!

Sunset Eyes – Fall Makeup Tutorial

Hey everyone! Today I wanted to share a fall makeup tutorial with you all. The focus of this look will be the eyes. I recently received a beautiful eyeshadow quad from Illuminati Cosmetics, and I fell in love with it! I feel that the orange and pink shades can really make brown eyes pop, but of course, no matter what your eye color is, you can still rock this look! If you have been keeping up with my beauty blogs, you would know that I tend to choose neutral colors (golds, browns, taupes, champagnes etc.) when it comes to eyeshadows. Well, it’s safe to say that I’ve been getting out of my comfort zone a bit this year, and I think that translates through this makeup look! In order to create this look, all you would really need to have is the eyeshadow palette!

Let’s get into the makeup tutorial!

  • I always prefer to do my eye makeup before my face makeup, so I like to start by applying an eye primer. I always use my ring finger to gently tap the primer around my lids (remember how delicate the skin around your eyes is).
  • The second step in this look is eyeshadow! I took my new Illuminati Cosmetics Quad Palette in Enlightened. While the colors seemed a bit intimidating to me at first, I decided to try them out anyway. The palette has two matte shades and two shimmer shades. I would say that the shimmer shades are not incredibly pigmented, but they can add a nice sparkle to any eye look.
    • I began by taking the shimmery gold color and I applied this all over my lids.
    • I then used the matte orange/rust shade and blended this into my crease. With the matte shades, less is more, so start by applying a tiny bit and building it up if you need/want to. It is important to blend your shadows in any makeup look, but especially if you are using bold or dark colors, so don’t skip this step. It gets rid of harsh lines and it creates a beautiful smokey effect on the eyes.
    • Then, I took the pink shimmer shade and used this to line my lower lashline.
    • For the last step, I used a white/champagne color and applied this to the inner corners of my eyes and my brow bones. I always do this because it highlights these areas and makes me look more awake.
  • Next up, I decided to use the Big Ego mascara by Tarte in black. This mascara is great for any makeup look, though it is not the absolute best in my opinion. I would say it is the perfect everyday mascara, but it is buildable. I applied a couple coats to my top and bottom lashes.
  • Then, I used my go-to black liner by the brand Essence, and lined my waterline and tightline. I love doing this with pretty much any makeup look because it adds a bit more drama.
  • After, I began my face makeup. I took one of my favorite primers, the Ciaté London Watermelon Burst Hydrating Primer, and applied this all over my face. I love this primer because it does exactly what it’s supposed to. It is extremely hydrating, and it smells great! It is a nice base for my foundation.
  • I then took my go-to foundation, the Maybelline Fit Me Foundation, and I used a beauty blender to apply it. I really love the way that a beauty blender can evenly apply the product all over my skin, and the end result looks very natural. I always skip concealer, and I go back in with foundation over any dark spots I may have. I used the Banana Setting Powder by the brand Bellápierre Cosmetics and lightly sweeped this across my face. I prefer looking more matte than dewy, but if you would like a bit more shine, you can use less powder (or you can use a tinted moisturizer rather than foundation).
  • I don’t always use bronzer, but I felt that it would look beautiful with this makeup look. I took my bronzer by Estate Cosmetics in the color Coco, and used an angled brush to apply this right underneath my cheekbones and on my forehead. Once again, it is important to blend, and to find a shade that works well for your skin tone. This will prevent the bronzer from looking muddy.
  • I used a beautiful blush by the brand Doucce in the shade Daydream. I decided to go for a lighter pink (almost nude) because the eyes are already so busy. I applied this to the apples of my cheeks and blended it out.
  • Then, I used a highlighter by Kaleido Cosmetics in the shade Goddess and applied this to my cheekbones and the tip of my nose to add a golden glow; perfectly complimenting my sunset eye makeup.
  • Next, I moved onto the lips. I always start off with a chapstick to make sure my lip color will apply smoothly. I like to have either a dramatic eye look or a dramatic lip, but never both at the same time. For this reason, I went with a matte, nude lip color. I feel that a nude lip completed the look beautifully.
  • To finish this makeup look, I simply brushed my brows up and over, and the makeup was complete!

I hope you enjoyed this blog post! I highly recommend trying out this stunning eyeshadow quad, and it can be purchased here! Let me know what you think of this look in a comment below. Thank you so much for reading!

Fall 2020 Playlist

Hey everyone! I am happy to finally share another playlist with you all! I always like to start off by saying that I really love so many different genres of music, so my playlists are often random and all over the place. I mostly listen to pop music, but this list includes a variety of songs. Some of these are very upbeat and great for dancing, whereas others a bit slower and perfect for rainy days spent relaxing! I believe most of these songs are pretty recent as well. Here are the songs that I have been playing on repeat this season:

  • Workin’ On It – Meghan Trainor (ft. Lennon Stella and Sasha Sloan)
  • Wait A Minute! – WILLOW
  • my future – Billie Eilish
  • Good Love – The Greys
  • Make You Mine – PUBLIC
  • All the Fu***** Time – Loote
  • Borderline – Tame Impala
  • Please Don’t Touch – RAYE
  • 85% – Loote, gnash
  • Hard On Yourself – Charlie Puth, blackbear
  • Funny – Zedd, Jasmine Thompson
  • Bad Behaviour – Mabel
  • Go Crazy –Chris Brown, Young Thug
  • Dance With Me – Diplo (ft. Thomas Rhett & Young Thug
  • POPSTAR– DJ Khaled (ft. Drake)
  • Come & Go – Juice WRLD, Marshmello
  • Mood – 24Goldn (ft.  iann dior)
  • Holy – Justin Bieber (ft. Chance the Rapper)
  • OK Not To Be OK – Marshmello, Demi Lovato
  • My ex’s best friend – Machine Gun Kelly, blackbear
  • Parachute – AM!R
  • Higher (remix) – Brian Fresco, Just A Gent (ft. Chance The Rapper & Blue Hawaii)
  • Lord Knows – BRIDGE
  • Midnight Sky – Miley Cyrus
  • Rollin – Calvin Harris (ft. Future & Khalid)
  • Dynamite – BTS
  • October – George Ogilvie
  • Who’s Laughing Now – Ava Max
  • Ready to Fall – Boundary Run
  • Woo – Rihanna
  • Put Your Records On – Ritt Momney
  • Tears of Gold – Faouzia
  • Never Stop – Tyler Brown Williams
  • I’ll Never Let Go – Jeffrey Amor
  • Mountain – Boundary Run
  • Perfectly Imperfect – Declan J Donovan
  • Lonely – Justin Bieber (ft. benny blanco)
  • stupid – Tate McRae
  • positions – Ariana Grande
  • Le temps est bon – Bon Entendeur, Isabelle Pierre
  • The Bakery – Melanie Martinez
  • safety net – Ariana Grande (ft. Ty Dolla $ign)

Thank you for checking out today’s blog post! Let me know what songs you’ve been playing on repeat in a comment below!

My October Ipsy Glam Bag

Hey everyone! Today I am sharing what was in my October Ipsy glam bag! As usual, I am going to be discussing each of the products I received and reviewing them for you.

This month, Ipsy wanted their members to find their magic and cast a spell using some new beauty! The theme for this month is very fitting for Halloween, and I absolutely love the bag! The black and gold is such a cool combination and I really like the design, as well as the detail on the zipper. I rated my overall bag 4/5 stars because I was mostly happy with the products I received.

Inside the bag:

  • Briogeo Hair Care – Farewell Frizz Rosarco Milk Leave-In Conditioner (my pick)

This is the product I chose to receive this month. I sometimes struggle with frizzy hair, especially in the warmer months. I have naturally wavy/curly hair, so I was hopeful that this leave-in conditioner would work for me. I sprayed this on my damp hair and ran a comb through to evenly distribute the product (though it’s important to focus on the mid-length to ends of your hair). You can also spray it into your hand to flatten any flyaways you may have! This product is clean, vegan, and cruelty free. It has a great scent that is not overpowering, and I even feel that it enhanced my natural curls a bit! I rated this 4/5 stars.

  • IBY Beauty – Radiant Glow Highlighter in 24k Magic

I own a couple highlighters by this brand, so I knew I would not be disappointed in this product. I love a nice champagne colored highlighter, and this one is perfect! It is very pigmented and gives me that glow that I am always after. This product would also look stunning on the eyes, and it is the perfect shade for any makeup look! Although I really did not need another highlighter, I rated this 5/5 stars.

  • Illuminati Cosmetics – Quad Palette in Enlightened

When I first saw this palette, I honestly was not too excited. The shades are more orange and pink, and I do not typically go for these colors. They are a bit more bold, and most of the time I like to go for neutrals. The colors may not have thrilled me at first, however, after trying them, I fell in love. The shimmer shades are not incredibly pigmented, but they add a nice sparkle. The matte shades are very pigmented and blendable. I think that these colors would look gorgeous if you have dark eyes like me, but of course, anyone can rock them if they choose to! I rated this palette 4/5 stars.

  • TheBalm Cosmetics – Will Powder Blush in Stamina

Once again, I judged the color of this product before trying it out. I thought it was a bit too dark for me, because I often prefer light pink and sometimes hot pink on my cheeks. This is more of a mauve color, and it looked a bit intimidating. When I used this product, I realized that a little goes a long way. I didn’t think it was too easy to blend, so make sure to start off using a tiny bit and then add if necessary. This blush would be perfect with more of a neutral eye look. I ended up really liking this product, and I would recommend trying it out! I rated this 4/5 stars.

  • Tarte – Maracuja Tinted Hydrator in Medium Neutral

I do not receive foundations, tinted moisturizers, or concealers from Ipsy very often, so I was excited to see that this was in my bag. I also love the brand Tarte, so I was hopeful! Sadly, the color is a bit too dark for me right now. It may work for me in the summertime, however I am losing my tan at the moment. This was partially my fault because I hadn’t updated my beauty quiz. I think tinted moisturizers are perfect for the warmer months anyway, so maybe next year I can try it again. I definitely prefer foundations (or bb/cc creams if I want something lighter). It did have more of a dewy finish which I do not really love the look of, so even if it was in the right shade, I don’t think I would love it. I rated this 3/5 stars.

Thank you so much for checking out today’s blog post! Leave me a comment and tell me what you received in your October glam bag, and be sure to check out my Instagram @sacchere14 to see a little video I put together using these products!

If you would like to become an Ipsy member, click here!

Business Casual Outfit Ideas + Tips

Hey everyone! I am very excited to share this blog post with you all! I absolutely love looking polished and put-together, so I came up with five different business casual outfits. Whether you work in an office or you are beginning your first internship, these outfit ideas should spark some inspiration.

Depending on where you work, there may be specific rules when it comes to professional attire. You can very easily add or change certain pieces in each of these outfits if they do not follow your specific guidelines.

I know that I did not include a dress or skirt in this post, and this is mainly because I don’t feel that I own a dress or skirt that is necessarily “professional.” If I owned a simple black, navy, or nude dress/skirt that was about knee length, I definitely would have included it! If you prefer skirts and dresses (as I often do), you can definitely choose to wear them rather than pants!

You will notice that the color pattern I tend to stick with when it comes to business casual is black, pink, gray, nude, and navy. Although it is often best to stick to neutrals, I do like to include a few colors. The ones I chose are professional, and in my opinion, they make the outfits a bit more fun. Check out my Instagram: @sacchere14 to see a fun transition video I created while wearing these looks!

Here are the five outfits I put together…

Outfit #1:

For this look, I went with a navy and white top. These two colors always look so beautiful together. What I love about this top is that it can be worn casually, or you can dress it up. It is perfect for so many different occasions. I added a simple black blazer because you would most likely have to cover up a bit more. I love a nice blazer, and I like to wear them often, even for the most casual activities. I went with a nice pair of gray, patterned ankle pants. The pattern is not over the top or too bold, but it adds a bit of flair to the look. I decided that my nude block heels looked best with this outfit.

Outfit #2:

For this outfit, I wanted it to be a bit more girly yet still professional. I chose this light pink collared top. Collared tops are perfect for the workplace, and this one is a bit more fun with the ruffled sleeves and the zipper detailing in the front. If needed, I would recommend a black of gray blazer as well. I chose a pair of slim black ankle pants to go with the top. For my shoes, I decided on my black block heels (a pair of neutral flats would look great too).

Outfit #3:

This look is for those of you who prefer something comfortable yet still pretty. I chose a black pussybow top. I love the sleeves on this top because they flare out at the end, and I have such a love for big sleeves! It is great because it looks professional and stylish at the same time. If you aren’t a fan of blazers, this kind of top is perfect for you because it keeps you covered without the extra layer. For my bottoms, I went with the same gray patterned ankle pants from the first outfit. Lastly, to complete the outfit, I chose my black block heels (once again, neutral flats would be a great option as well).

Outfit #4:

This look is the most bold out of the five, however I feel that it still gives off a professional vibe. I wanted to include it in case the rules at your workplace are a tiny bit more casual. For my top, I have a long sleeved pink turtle neck. I feel that turtle necks, mock necks, and high necklines in general look very professional and they make any outfit more polished. I then added a patterned blazer. This may be a bit bold, but you can always use a neutral colored blazer (such as black or gray) instead. For my bottoms, I chose a simple pair of black ankle pants. I love the look of a sleek pair of pants, and these are pretty comfortable as well. Lastly, for my shoes, I chose the same pair of black block heels (again, if heels aren’t your thing, you can wear a neutral colored pair of mules or loafers). If you are going to add color to your business casual outfits, try to stick to one item of clothing and keep the rest of the outfit neutral.

Outfit #5:

I think that this last outfit is my favorite of the five! I love that it is simple yet classy and put together at the same time. For this look, I chose a gray, mock neck sweater. The material of this sweater is light, so it wouldn’t be too hot, but it would still keep you warm if your workplace is a little cold. I paired this top with my favorite ankle pants. I adore the windowpane pattern of these pants, and the navy and white look beautiful paired with the gray top. If the pattern is too bold for you, a nice pair of black pants, or a skirt would look just as nice! I decided to go with my nude block heels to complete the look!

Tips for women:

Stick with neutral colors for the most part

Wear heels that aren’t too tall or if heels aren’t your thing, a nice pair of mules, loafers, or ballet flats would be perfect

Wear a blazer or a nice cardigan over a tank top/sleeveless top

Ankle pants/capris are a stylish yet professional choice

Skirts and dresses should be 4 inches above the knee at most (knee length is perfect)

Go for a nice blouse

Nothing too tight or short

Keep the jewelry minimal and simple

Avoid bright colors

Avoid sneakers and flip flops

Tips for men:

Neutral colors are best

Sweaters, button ups, or collared shirts are the best options

Dress slacks or semi-formal pants

Tie-up shoes and loafers

Avoid t-shirts and sweatshirts

Try to stay away from very bold prints and patterns

Avoid  boots and flip flops

There are definitely ways to look fashionable while wearing business casual attire. It isn’t too complicated to know whether or not something is inappropriate for the workplace, however I felt that sharing a few outfits and tips would be helpful, especially for those of you who are just starting out in the workplace.

I hope you enjoyed today’s blog post! Thank you so much for reading!

The Benefits of Yoga and Mindfulness

Hey everyone! If you have been keeping up with the “Fitness and Self-Care” section of my blog, you may remember my post about doing yoga every day for one month. Well, I have continued to incorporate yoga into each and every day since April! Earlier this year, I told myself that I would try to find a new form of exercise, and I am happy to say that I did just that!

As many of you may be aware, I have been weight training for almost five years now. That journey has taken a bit of a turn this year due to COVID-19. My gym closed down sometime in March, and it opened back up in September. I have not gone back because I do not think that I would feel safe to do so just yet. Plus, a gym is probably one of the worst places to be during a pandemic, so I have chosen to continue with my at-home workouts for now. This year, I would say that yoga has become my go-to form of exercise. Though I have continued with weight training, I have not been doing this as frequently.

Initially, I was not incredibly interested in trying out yoga. I remember doing it once quite a few years back but I never stuck with it because I felt that it was “boring”. Things have definitely changed since then. I have been using a program that includes a variety of workout videos, ranging from strength training to yoga. Although I haven’t tried any of the other workouts besides yoga, I plan to do so one day.

I originally thought that only flexible people could do yoga. I did not think that yoga would be considered a workout either. I thought it would be very relaxing 100% of the time (I was definitely wrong about that). I was also not aware of the many benefits that yoga can have on the mind, body, and soul.

I believe that when some people think of yoga, they think of a very hippie-ish way of living, and they even write it off as silly. I think that these people have most likely never tried yoga. In reality, yoga can be intense, challenging, and rewarding in more ways than one. Not only can yoga change your body and appearance, but it can change your entire mindset too.

Some of the physical benefits of yoga include: increased flexibility, weight reduction, improved respiration, and increased muscle strength. Some of the emotional/mental benefits include: an increase in body awareness, relieves stress, sharpens attention, and calms the nervous system. For me, working out has always been an escape from everyday stress. As someone who tends to be very anxious and a bit of a worrier at times, working out has always allowed me to simply focus on me and my body, and it has given me a goal to work toward. Time for yourself is so important, and if using that time involves staying healthy and active, that is even better!

I also wanted to discuss the benefits that I have noticed personally from doing yoga for six months. First, I realized that yoga was helping me to relax and de-stress. This was exactly what I needed, and still do! I tend to hold tension in my shoulders and in my jaw, but now, I can more easily recognize when I am doing this. I can relax my jaw and drop my shoulders and simply focus on my breathing. Also, I am much more aware of my posture. I feel that I’ve always had pretty good posture, but yoga has made this even better. When I am sitting down to do my schoolwork or if I find that I am tilting my neck downward a lot, I try to use books or something tall for my laptop to sit on so that it is more eye-level, and I am not hunching over.

I feel that I am a much more relaxed person. I do not get stressed as easily anymore, and I am much more aware of negative thoughts. If I notice that I am starting to worry or stress about something, I can recognize this and turn those thoughts off rather than letting them take over. I feel that I am much more aware of my thought processes, and I know what is going to help me and what is going to hurt me. I have been practicing mindfulness a lot lately, and it has changed everything. I feel that I have much more control over my mind, and I can lead a happier and more positive life because of it.

I have also noticed that my body is much more toned. Yoga is a full-body workout, and I was not really aware of this in the beginning. It is not just about working your core, it is about working your entire body. I guess I didn’t think I would see changes to my body unless I was using weights or doing cardio, but yoga has changed my appearance. When weight training was what my workouts truly consisted of, my body did look different. I had more muscle and although I did tone up from weight training (and cardio), I feel that I have noticed it a bit more with yoga. Granted, my appetite is different when I am weight training 5-6 times a week vs doing yoga every day. The human body is truly incredible, and it has the ability to change very often throughout life. The choices we make matter, and the food that we put into our bodies as well as the way that we stay active matters. All of it can affect the way that we look and feel.  Working out was never really about looking good for me (that is a bonus that comes from it). The way that it makes me feel is why I truly continue to do it.

Lastly, I feel that I have gained flexibility. I have surprised myself many times during my yoga practices. In poses such as downward dog, I can straighten my legs quite a bit, and when I do wide legged folds, or just folding in general, I can get pretty low and deep. When I first started yoga, I was not the most flexible, so it has been exciting to notice my growth! In the beginning, I struggled to keep my balance as well. Eagle pose and warrior III were especially frustrating. Now, I can stay in these poses a little bit longer without toppling over (of course, this does still happen some days). I am able to keep up with practices that are faster paced, and for the most part, I do not have to modify the poses. I never really took much time to stretch before or after workouts and even in general, so this is something I have been doing a lot more of now. Yoga has allowed me to focus on stretching, flexibility, strength, and endurance.

It is so crazy to think that I began doing yoga six months ago, and I have never skipped one day. I have always been very determined, but I honestly didn’t think that I would enjoy yoga. Once something becomes a part of your daily routine, it is so much easier to do. Even on the days when I am very busy or I simply don’t feel like doing it, I get it done because I know how it will benefit me overall.

I really hope you enjoyed today’s post! What are your thoughts on yoga or mindfulness? Have you ever tried yoga before? I would love to know! Thank you so much for reading!

Emily in Paris Review

Recently, everyone has been talking about the new Netflix show “Emily in Paris”. As soon as I heard about this, I was very intrigued because it definitely sounded like my kind of show! I have such a love for Paris, and just by reading the description of the show, I felt that I was the targeted demographic. I was excited to finally watch a new show, because many of the shows I watch stopped filming due to COVID-19.

“Emily in Paris” came to Netflix on October 2, and it was created by Darren Star, who also created “Sex and the City”. While I never watched “Sex and the City”, I can definitely see that these two shows had similar elements. Today, I wanted to share a brief review of the show for you all. Warning: there will be spoilers included in this post, so I would recommend watching the show first, and coming back to read afterward!

This show is about a girl named Emily Cooper (played by Lily Collins) who is a marketing executive living in Chicago. Her job ends up taking her to Paris and she is determined to bring her American perspective and ideas to a French marketing firm. While this sounds like a dream come true, Emily finds herself struggling to keep up with the language as well as French culture. At work, she is surrounded by disapproving coworkers and in her personal life, a few potential love interests. Despite the challenges, she remains confident and I found this as well as her perseverance to be very admirable. I think that I would have struggled a bit more if I were in her shoes.

Before I get into why I did not like this show, I will first explain what I did like. This show is based in Paris, which was honestly one of the only reasons I liked it. I feel that the setting is a character in itself, and to film and center a show around this beautiful city definitely helped me enjoy it a bit more. I have actually been to Paris before, and it was really fun and cool to recognize some of the places in certain scenes! Paris truly is a romantic and gorgeous city! I also adored the fashion in this show! For the most part, I truly loved what the female characters wore, and as someone who loves fashion, this made the show a tiny bit better. I also liked the roller coaster of a relationship between Emily and Gabriel. While I didn’t like that he was cheating on his girlfriend (who was also friends with Emily) Camille, I did like the two of them together. Lastly, I liked the storyline. Although it was a bit cliché, it reminded me of my favorite early 2000’s “chick flicks” and Emily’s life is basically my dream life.

Of course, the reasons that I liked the show were minor in comparison to the reasons why I didn’t. Let’s start with the characters. I struggled to connect to the characters in this show, and I felt that they simply weren’t very relatable and they lacked depth. Part of what makes a show/movie great, is realistic and relatable characters. We really didn’t know very much about Emily or her past, and she wasn’t the most likable person. As I mentioned, her confidence and perseverance was admirable, but she seemed to be a little ignorant to the culture that she was immersed in. Of course, no one is going to know everything, but when you travel somewhere new, I think it is important to do some research and learn about the culture and its people. She was a bit too cocky, and she always wanted things to go her own way. I also don’t feel that she was a very good friend. She went behind Camille’s back multiple times to be with Gabriel who was Camille’s boyfriend, and she never told her the truth. For this reason, I was not the biggest fan of Gabriel either. It’s somewhat contradictory though, because I did want them to be together, I just didn’t like that cheating and sneaking around was involved. By the end of the season, it was obvious that there was no real character development for Emily (or any of the other characters for that matter).

The next thing that I disliked was the way that the French were portrayed. I understand that stereotypes exist and they are often seen in movies and TV shows, however, I don’t really like it because it gives people a false view of a culture and/or place. I always heard the stereotypes that French people can be rude and stuck -up. I was lucky enough to travel to Paris and Lyon earlier this year, and based on my own personal experience, I can say that every local that I came in contact with was incredibly kind and helpful. Of course, I was a tourist and simply exploring the city, whereas Emily was living and working there, so our experiences were a bit different, however I felt that the creators exaggerated and played up the stereotypes too much.

I found the amount of potential love interests to be confusing at times. There were a few different men who seemed to be interested in Emily. We met Antoine, Gabriel, Mathieu, and Timothee. I knew going into it that there was going to be romance, but I was hoping to see her with one guy steadily throughout the show. In the end, I believe Emily was technically in a relationship with Mattieu, however it was very clear that she still liked Gabriel. The ending made me believe that there will be a season 2 at some point.

Overall, I felt disappointed with this show. I really wanted to like it, but sadly it was not for me. I would say it is more of a fun feel-good show rather than anything serious and long-lasting. Although I didn’t enjoy this show very much and this review is mostly negative, I am interested to know your thoughts! Leave me a comment below and tell me what you thought of “Emily in Paris”!

Thank you for reading!