Sunday Kind of Love xvii

I know what you’re thinking—did she die?? I mean, kind of. I got back from Europe and immediately started a full-time management position working for a huge corporation. It’s not as glamorous as it sounds, and I won’t name-check it, but trust me, you know this place and you probably love it. So my limited free time has consisted mostly of sleep, meditation, and NY Times crossword puzzles.

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the ivy brasserie in bath, uk

So, as an apology for my absence for like, two months, I’m doing a mega-post of favorites!

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rock star // dress // bag // glasses 

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Today is Primary Day in Massachusetts! Get out there and rock the f***ing vote! Find out more here!

I saw The Book of Mormon at the Boston Opera House and it was AMAZING. Buy the original cast recording here!

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Casually met Stacy King aka Sucré at Great Scott the night before my birthday. NO BIG DEAL, SHE’S ONLY MY IDOL. Get her newest single, In Pieces, and while you’re at it, buy “Inside,” Loner, Absentee, and A Minor Bird too.

I started using a tongue scraper and honestly, it’s the best thing that’s happened to me in my adult life. I use this model (it came in the Oui Fresh July Beauty Box!). I recommend copper because it’s a bacteria-resistant metal—and aside from that, it’s cute as hell! My mouth feels so much cleaner and the mouth is the first stop for overall health, so it makes sense to take good care of it, right?

Dear Coquette is back. That is all.

I read Call Me By Your Name and dear god. It’s perfect. Plus, Armie Hammer narrates the audiobook so *salivating emoji*

Just bought a Girlfriend set of this bra and these leggings, because being the cutest girl at the gym is extremely important to me. Next pay cycle I’ll be grabbing the same in Jade (hopefully the Paloma bra will be back in stock!) I currently have this set: bra (in powder blue)/ leggings. I’ve also been rocking this ban.do yoga mat, which people at yoga class think is a riot! Although I will say that in terms of functionality, my lulu mat is far superior.

Younger‘s Season 5 is done, so binge that shit! Catch up on Hulu.

I just read Guy Branum’s My Life as a Goddess (available wherever books are sold), and it was incredible. I couldn’t put it down. It’s smart, hilarious, and moving. I’ll probably break down and buy the audiobook for my eventual re-read—hearing Guy perform it sounds like such a dream. Watch him slay on Conan.

I am currently reading Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan. I’m really enjoying it so far, and I can’t wait to see how they’ve interpreted it for the film!

I’m listening to Kate Nash’s Yesterday Was Forever while writing this post and I’m loving it! Stream it via this link, but also, y’know, purchase it to support our girl!

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the gates at kensington palace

Lykke Li put out an album this year?? I had no clue, but as soon as I found out, I listened to it obsessively. so sad so sexy is just full of bops!

Today is release day for Erin Gibson’s Feminasty! If you don’t know Erin, she’s the co-host of the incomparable Throwing Shade podcast with Bryan Safi. I pre-ordered this puppy on Audible—it was a tough choice between the book and audio but since I’m used to listening to Erin & Bryan every week on the pod, audio won out!

Sherri & Max Bemis launched a Kickstarter! This comes on the heels of Max announcing that Say Anything is no more—some exciting changes are in the works! Pledge to support their dreams and help them keep creating art! Bonus Lucy & Coraline content, too.

JK was sponsored by FabFitFun on I Seem Fun so I finally caved and got a box. I’ll report back once I receive it—I’m excited! I love a subscription box because I am the bougiest.

Just discovered Mitski and I’m so mad none of you told me about her.

Alone Together is one of the best written shows on television right now. I’ve watched the entire series twice—I watched it and then immediately forced my husband to watch it (he loves it).

Have I talked about American Vandal on here yet? I’m way late to the game but American Vandal is a perfect, perfect show. I’m obsessed. Who drew the dicks??

Y’all know I’m obsessed with Madewell, but I went super nuts for my birthday. I got this bag, this bag (monogrammed), this clutch, this wallet, this hat, these jeans, these jeans, and probably way more that doesn’t even immediately come to mind. Take my credit card away.

I started a Depop shop. I’ve tried (and been successful with) Poshmark in the past, but I’m trying something new! Buy my designer stuff! I’ll probably upload these items to Posh as well (I’m open to offers!)

Can’t wait to read In Intimate Detail by Cora Harrington! If you don’t know Cora, you may have seen her viral Twitter thread on thin privilege.

I discovered Fopp while I was in England. If you live in the UK you must go there. I bought 6 books for £3!

I’m sure it’s basic as hell, and I’m a wine peasant, but this Dry Riseling never disappoints. Pro-tip: always make sure to buy dry Riselings, not off-dry (demi-sec), otherwise you’ll basically be drinking sugar-water.

Marmite is GREAT and we need to start using it in the US!

The Lindbergh Candle Co. shop is open for pre-orders! This is my favorite candle company (their reed diffusers are incredible—I have one in my bathroom and I get so many compliments!) I love supporting small businesses (this one’s out of Atlanta, one of my favorite places).

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wadham college at oxford

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Okay. I’m exhausted. That was a lot. I hope some of this tickles your fancy! I’ll just be in my office, diffusing some Stress Away, and enjoying one of my very rare days off.

Adieu!

-c

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Sunday Kind of Love xv

Short one this week because life has been flying by in a blur! But I am DETERMINED to keep broadcasting my opinions into the void of the internet, so here they are!

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We have been blessed. Praise Yoncé. Watch the “APESHIT” video.

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do you think i can get my husband to agree to a couple’s costume this halloween?

Don’t come for me, but I listened to the new Kacey Musgraves album and loved it. My apologies for having a soul!

I am so into REBBL Elixirs right now. The Reishi Chocolate is my jam—it tastes like Yoo Hoo for grownups.

The NY Times Spelling Bee game is THE MOST ADDICTIVE THING ON THE PLANET! It’s a word jumble game—make as many words as you can out of 7 letters, with 1 letter common to all of them. I’ve gotten my entire office on board.

Michelle Wolf is the best and we should all start watching her new show, The Break, right now!

I’m trying Not Your Mother’s Blonde Moment products on my new blonde ‘do this week. They just launched a naturals line! And as far as I can tell, they are cruelty-free and do NOT test on animals!

I’m trash, and I JUST finally watched this video. Shame on me. Donald Glover’s borderline dad bod is threat level: midnight.

Bonus Content:

This video of my brother and Dad. You’re welcome.

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Quick P.S. I want to apologize for my lack of acknowledgment of the current political…kerfuffle. I’m personally staying away from the news for my mental health. I keep apprised of the highlights, and I act with my vote and my dollar. This blog, for the past three years, has been a spot of light and love in my life, and I intend to keep it that way.

Natural Beauty Faves ii

I’m back with some of my other favorite natural beauty products! It’s crazy how much toxic crap we’ve been slathering onto our bodies our whole lives, but it ends now! You can buy most of these through Target or Amazon, which makes the switch to natural products so much easier. Target is actually killing it lately in terms of adding more natural products (beauty & household) to their shelves. Here’s what I’m using lately:

Pacifica, Kale Detox Deep Cleaning Face Wash

This is the perfect daily face wash. 100% vegan and cruelty-free, it’s an exhilarating wash that will wake your face right up. I’ve been using this for a few months (with the Acure scrub listed below) and although it’s good to switch it up every once in a while, I’ll keep this one in the rotation for a long time!

Pacifica, Aquarian Gaze Water-Resistant Long Lash Mineral Mascara

Natural mascaras that don’t suck are hard to find. I’m mixing it with this conventional mascara (dirty but so, so good). At $14 a pop, it’s about twice as expensive as conventional, but worth it for the peace of mind! I am mildly paranoid that my affinity for eye makeup is going to make me go blind, which I know is insane, but either way, it’s time to make the switch!

Pacfica, Mineral Sunscreen Coconut Probiotic (SPF 30)

Probably should have gotten a higher SPF, since I am a fair as the pure driven snow, but this (non-aerosol!) spray smells great and provides awesome coverage. Even though I am so white I often get confused for a vampire or ghost, I HATE putting on sunscreen, so sprays are a lifesaver! I’m not about that skin cancer life!

Acure, Morccan Red Clay + Argan Oil Pore-Clarifying Facial Scrub

This is my favorite gentle exfoliator that I’ve found. The red clay offers just the right amount of scrubbing power, leaving the skin soft and supple.

Oui Fresh, lip gloss in “Lovefool”

This lipgloss is the tiniest hint of pink and packs a huge punch of moisture! It smells like vanilla, goes on like a dream, and most importantly: ISN’T STICKY! I love that these lipglosses double as a lip treatment—you can even put them on before bed at night!

Aila, Nail Polish in “Supernova”

My dream nail color. This collaboration with Oui Fresh is 10-free—as in, free of 10 of the most harmful ingredients found in conventional nail polish! I haven’t actually used this yet (mostly because I have to buy a 10-free top coat to go with it), but from demos I’ve seen online and my own inspection, it’s amazing! I’ve heard so many good things about this brand!

Burt’s Bees, Micellar Water

I tried this at my friend’s house in Florida and it saved my life all week. As soon as my micellar water runs out, I’m running to replace it with this. Obviously, the love affair with Burt’s Bees is real, but this product is exceptional. It made my face feel so clean!

S.W. Basics, Cream

This is a heavy oil moisturizer for those days when your skin feels extra thirsty. It’s not my every day go-to, but it was a great companion all winter. S.W. Basics, fun fact, is the company owned by Adina Grigore, who wrote Just The Essentials!

JASON, Sea Fresh Toothpaste

My friend in Florida also stocked this toothpaste and I’m stoked on it. We’re using this at the moment, but I’m thinking of switching it up!

Schmidt’s, Rose & Vanilla Natural Deodorant

I’m going to try Lavender & Sage next time (the Bergamot Lime made me rashy which SUCKS because it smells amazing), but this deodorant smells soooo good, and doesn’t irritate my skin! I have it in a mini-size, and use it as my travel deodorant.

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Thanks, as always, for stopping by!

-c

Natural Beauty Faves i

I’m doing my best to switch my beauty products over to all-natural, clean brands, and it’s definitely a trial-and-error experience. There are still a few things I’m looking for good clean versions of (BB cream, eyeliner, mascara), but it’s been a joy to experiment and “put my money where my mouth is,” as it were.

Shea Moisture, Daily Glow Priming Moisturizer

Made with 100% virgin coconut oil, this is my FA VO RITE moisturizer EVER. I’ve seen a noticeable improvement in my skin since I started using it a few weeks ago. A tiny dab covers your whole face—I’ve had it for weeks and I’ve barely made a dent. This moisturizer runs you $11 at Target, which is shockingly cheap as both moisturizers AND natural products go, which makes it an amazing value. I plan on checking out the rest of Shea Moisture’s skincare products!

Shea Moisture, Strengthen & Restore Smoothie

 

The. Best. Leave-in. I bought this on a whim at Sally’s when I bought my crazy red hairdye (sigh @ my decisions), and I’ve been using it regularly ever since. I have WILD hair, so I need a fierce tamer. This stuff does the trick! I’m planning on trying the Co-Wash as a cheaper alternative to my favorite “shampoo”…

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Hairstory, New Wash

I switched to New Wash (yes, ditching shampoo and conditioner) recently and I ain’t NEVAH EVAH EVAH goin’ back. It runs $40 for 8 oz., so it’s a little tough to rationalize, but I’m telling you, it’s worth every dang penny. I felt a difference in my hair after the first use, and it keeps getting better. I’m going to look into cheaper options, but I might just be hooked on this stuff.

Shea Moisture, Hold & Shine Moisture Mist

Are you sensing a pattern? This brand is so legit, and so affordable. This is the *best* product for wearing your curls natural. My hair is super coarse and curly (mostly from damage, tbh), so I need as much moisture as humanly possible. This spray smells amazing and doubles as a treatment and a hairspray.

Snag it at Target!

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OY-L, Lavender Body Butter

This stuff smells like HEAVEN! It’s a whipped lotion that is completely free of all of the super scary stuff that lives in normal lotions (formaldehyde, parabens, artificial scents, YUCK). I got a 1oz. jar in my Oui Fresh Beauty Box and I’m in love! A tiny bit goes a long way, which makes up for the fact that this product is a wee bit pricey.

Thayer’s, Rose Petal Witch Hazel Toner

I use this stuff every day. It smells exactly like rose petals (as advertised) and makes my face feel super fresh and clean. Such an amazing alternative to all the terrifying blue toners out there…bonus: it’s alcohol-free!

Oui Fresh, As If Lipstick

Full disclosure: I have every shade of this amazing lipstick, but As If is by far my favorite. It’s non-toxic, super moisturizing, and filled with amazing ingredients. I’m kind of a lipstick connoisseur, so believe me when I say that this stuff is the bee’s knees. It’s a little pricier than drugstore makeup, of course, but as “luxury” lipstick goes, it’s totally reasonable at $20. P.S. New colors coming soon. And 20% off today with code HEYLADY.

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Native Deodorant

So, I’m a hypocrite because I haven’t entirely swapped over to natural deodorant, but Native is by far the best one I’ve found. I tried Schmidt’s, but either the recipe or the particular scent I bought irritated my skin. Other faves are Tom’s of Maine Antiperspirant, but it’s not completely natural (trying to ditch aluminum!) Native is amazing, although, be warned, it takes the body a little while to adjust from conventional to natural deodorants. Conveniently, Native sells multipacks of travel-sized deodorants! Lavender & Rose is my favorite scent, with Eucalyptus & Mint as a close second).

I’m still working through a whole host of products that I need to try (thanks Oui Fresh Beauty Box!), so I’ll hit you guys back soon with a sequel!

Treat yo’self!

-c

Sunday Kind of Love ix

Hi there, just checking in from New England! It’s 46 degrees outside as I write this, y’know, at the end of April. 2018 was certainly not the coldest or snowiest winter of my lifetime, but it sure as hell feels like the longest. Here are a few things keeping me sane (or driving me crazy).

  1. Spring’s not coming. Here is a series of jean jackets that I may not have a chance to wear this year: this one, this one, and this one.
  2. I just started using New Wash and I’m NEVER going back! Pricey, worth it.
  3. Give me overalls or give me death: gimme, gimme, gimme, gimme, gimme.
  4. I think I should do Dry January again…Dry May? I loved the feeling of being free of vices—it’s easier to do in the dead of winter, since everyone is cooped up at home!
  5. Hello, hello, Opalhouse is in the building. I’ve been laboring under the suspicion that Target is trying to bankrupt me for quite some time, but this is egregious. So g-d, m-f–ing cute! You KNOW I bought this dish towel. #EastCoast
  6. Have we talked about the new Decemberists album yet? So good!
  7. I have had this song stuck in my head for a solid week and I think I’m having a psychotic break.
  8. Isn’t it just too predictable that I have this?
  9. Michael and I started watching The Office from the beginning and it is even better than I remembered.
  10. I recently cut all my hair off (it was super dead) and now I’m browsing all of the bobs & lobs!

Peace out, cub scouts!

-c

Kool Things VI

It has been a minute since I’ve done one of these. But one of my major resolutions for 2018 was to get back out there and shamelessly stan my favorite tv shows write! Here are a few of my faves from the past month.

Station Eleven, Emily St. John Mandel

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So—fun fact—I started tutoring this fall! It’s definitely a challenge for me, since I’m not sure I’m the teacher type, but luckily my “student” is a wonderful human with a ton of integrity and maturity for a teenager. Her final project was a presentation on the book Station Eleven, so obviously I had to read it!

It fits squarely within the genre of dystopian YA, but the author attempts (sometimes, too hard) to elevate it with a ton of Shakespeare references (there are characters named Arthur Leander, Miranda, Olivia, Viola—and those are just the references I get). Without spoiling the ending, the climax is a bit, well, anti-climactic, but I still consider the book a worthwhile read. Plus, it’s pretty short, so it took me all of two days to finish.

 

Happy Endings

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I know what you’re thinking—this show ended like 5 years ago. And it did. But I’ll have you know that David Caspe’s Happy Endings is one of the *Kanye voice* best shows of all time. It’s a travesty that it only lasted three seasons. Genius actors comprise the entire cast, but special shout out to Eliza Coupe and Damon Wayans, Jr. Brad and Jane are two of my favorite tv characters ever. This show has some of the best writing I’ve ever heard—it’s inspiring and brilliant.

The whole thing’s on Hulu, so you know what to do-lu.

 

Great, Sara Benincasa

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image via goodreads

Full disclosure: I only bought this book because I love Sara Benincasa and it was super cheap on Amazon. Great is a contemporary, YA, gender-flipped retelling of The Great Gatsby, which should be a recipe for disaster, but was actually a joy to read. The names are a bit cringe-worthy (I’ve compiled a list below), but, beyond that, it’s a smart spin on a classic that you could easily read in a day. I’m reading DC Trip now—keeping the Benincasa binge going!

Great Gatsby

Jay Gatsby – Jacinta Trimalchio (get it?!)

Nick Carraway – Naomi Rye

Delilah Fairweather – Daisy (Fay) Buchanan

Teddy Barrington – Tom Buchanan

Jeff Byron – Jordan Baker

Misti – Myrtle Wilson

Giovanni – George Wilson

 

Leahlani Bless Balm

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I am obsessed with this stuff. Bless Balm by Leahlani came in the December Oui Fresh Beauty Box and I’ve been using it almost daily since it arrived. At first I was a bit skeptical of its texture and scent (it’s a pretty strong jasmine scent and it’s got sort of a Vaseline texture), but after a month of use, I’m in love. It’s so super hydrating and has kept my skin fabulous through the dry winter months. It’s upped my skincare game.

It’s pricey as hell, but after a month of use, I’ve barely made a dent in it. I have no doubt that it will last me the rest of the year. Plus, it’s all-natural and almost 100% organic, so I feel great about supporting this beauty brand.

 

Dry January

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And, last but not least, Dry January! I’m participating in the DJ tradition this month, and I’m feeling great about it! It’s such a nice new year refresh, and a great way to shed some of those holiday lbs! Basically, the rules are: Don’t drink any alcohol for the entire month of January. That’s it! I’m tying in some other wellness practices as well, but no drinking is the main goal. I’ll post a wrap-up in early February all about my experience! Wish me luck!

Let’s Talk About Essential Oils

The first time I ever used an essential oil, I was around 19 and had recently gotten my nose pierced with a friend. Mine (on the right side) never really healed right, so a cursory Google search alerted me to the fact that tea tree oil was anti-bacterial, natural, and promoted healing. I bought a bottle (my broke college butt was mildly appalled by the price tag), and applied it directly to my nose with a Q-Tip (not the smartest move when dealing with harsher oils). But I loved the clean, pungent smell of tea tree, so as the years went by, I sought it out in my products (to this day, I use Paul Mitchell’s Tea Tree shampoo on those rare occasions when I actually wash my hair…)

Beyond my tea tree adventures, I didn’t give much thought to essential oils until a few years ago, when I first heard of oil-pulling. If you’ve been on the internet this decade, you’ve heard of it—swish a tablespoon of coconut oil around in your mouth for twenty minutes, pull out all the gross impurities in your mouth. A blogger I follow posted a recipe for oil-pulling chews, made from coconut oil and peppermint essential oil. I marched to the store, grabbed the peppermint oil and flower-shaped silicone ice molds, and got to work. I keep a jar of them in my fridge at all times!

When I got engaged, I decided (for some incomprehensible reason) that DIY-ing soy wax/essential oil candles would be a great idea for wedding favors. Only problem? I had to make at least 50. I diligently hit the craft store, bought all 50 tiny jars, and chose my scents. Suddenly, I had five or so new essential oils! The candle-making was ill-fated (I think I made all of 6—we repurposed the jars), but the EOs ended up being a good investment. Suddenly, I was DIY-ing counter sprays and reed diffusers. I fell in love, in particular, with Eucalyptus. It’s my spirit scent.

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the jars didn’t go to waste!

And then there was Monq. I’ve written about them before, but Monq makes portable, personal aromatherapy diffusers—mini vapes full of essential oil goodness! My personal fave blend is Active—I always have one on me! I discovered the brand on Instagram years ago, and bought my first set with a sweet promo code. These are great for us non-smokers, but I imagine that they’re a wonderful and inexpensive way for smokers to quit, since it replaces the routine. I can’t wait to try their newer blends, especially Ocean!

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yung chels, hitting a happy monq

It was like the entire earth was conspiring to get me to make essential oils a part of my daily routine. Now I’m something of a devotee, though I’d never use them in place of actual medicine…that’s just cray. They’ve help me clean up my act—and by that I mean kick toxic chemicals out of my home one by one.

 

Here are some of the products that helped me get started:

 

dōTERRA

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DoTerra is, at least in my circles, the most popular brand of EOs. Their product is great, but it’s hard to get (you have to buy through a wholesaler unless you want to pay crazy retail markups. Their branding is on point, and they have a ton of diffusers, accessories, spa products, and supplements. My mother gifted me the lovely petal diffuser for Christmas!

Oui Fresh

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You didn’t think I’d miss a chance to shout-out my ABM girls, right? What I love best about Oui Fresh oils is that they’re available at a reasonable retail price and you can buy them no-strings. My personal fave is Rose Geranium!

S.W. Basics

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S.W. Basics is the Brooklyn-based brand of Adina Grigore, who wrote the book Just The Essentials, and inspired me to actually start workin’ on my oil game. No lie, the day after I finished the book, I was browsing the beauty aisle at Target and spotted a gift set of S.W. Basics on sale, so it felt like a sign that I had to give it a try. My set came with the Cleanser, the Toner, and the Cream. I SWEAR the Toner changed my skin overnight. It’s incredible. Now, if I only I could remember to wash my makeup off and use it nightly…

Young Living

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I read a borderline horrifying article recently re: MLMs and essential oils, but, I will say that the few Young Living oils I have are very pure and smell incredible. They, like doTerra, are usually purchased through a distributer, who becomes a member to get them at wholesale price.

My favorite YL product by far is their Thieves toothpaste. They have a whole dental line that I can’t wait to try out.

I haven’t tried their new clean makeup line, but as I start running out of products, I’ll definitely check it out!

Aura Cacia

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I started off with Aura Cacia. They’re a fantastic brand with a consistently great product. My local Wegman’s (shout out to Wegman’s, the best chain grocer), has a pretty impressive natural skincare selection, and AC is the main brand they carry. They have EOs, carrier oils, epsom salts, roller balls, spritz bottles—you name it!

 

EO Products

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EO Products was a total fluke find! I had seen Everyone essential oils at Target, but the packaging was so mod and cute that I actually doubted the quality of the product (don’t judge wine or EOs by their cover, y’all). After I read Just the Essentials, I checked out Adina’s list of recommended brands in the FAQ section, and lo-and-behold: the spray hand sanitizer that I had been using for months was, in fact, EO Products Everyone label! It’s peppermint & citrus, cruelty-free, and non-GMO. I had picked it up, again, at my local Wegs, because it smelled like a mojito fever dream, and didn’t leave me feeling dried out by chemicals (à la Purell). So far, my hand sani is the only thing I’ve tried from EO, but I have total confidence in their brand’s quality (and its cute design).

 

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I’ve previously blogged about EOs once or twice…check out my cocktail-inspired room spray here!

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Also, here’s an original rollerball recipe that will put some pep in your step!

Bright Sunshiny Day Blend

  • 30 drops bergamot essential oil
  • 8 drops spearmint essential oil
  • 5 drops wild orange essential oil
  • carrier oil (I used sweet almond)

This smells like spearmint gum in the best possible way. It’s refreshing and invigorating when the spearmint top notes hit you, but the subtle, sultry bergamot lingers longer. Great to give you a (caffeine-free!) jolt.

And my all-time favorite EO recipe of all is ABM’s face oil, which I use every day after my shower!

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I’ve definitely made some missteps in the EO game. For some reason, I thought it would be smart to diffuse Texas Cedarwood and Lemongrass together (I’m still haunted by the overpowering smell), and I definitely accidentally poured half a bottle of Peppermint into my diffuser one night…

Nevertheless, this experiment into EO land has been fun. Now that I’m building up supplies, I can DIY my heart out and never have to buy chemical-laden perfumes, cleaning products, or skincare products ever again!