43 blog posts. 2,456 views. Several brand collaborations, & countless inspiring conversations.
I’m so lucky! I wanted to start this blog for years before I finally did it. The idea that I could share my love for fashion & beauty while empowering other women to love themselves seemed too good to be true. Here we are, one year after I posted my first blog post.
If something feels scary but you feel called to do it, you should do it! Don’t let your own doubts hold yourself back. I’ll never regret creating this blog, but I may have regretted it if I never took that first step & just STARTED.
This blog has given me so much. It’s given me inspiration, creativity, & a built-in way for me to process my emotions & experiences, good & bad.
When you’re in my little corner of the internet, I hope you feel encouraged to love yourself as you are. I hope you feel empowered to do anything you want to do. I hope you feel inspired to always be kind & know that to be vulnerable is to be brave. I’m so thankful to you for being here!
Acknowledging my accomplishments isn’t something that comes easily to me. I’m not sure if it’s something women are conditioned (thanks, patriarchy!) or if it’s something else, but I rarely discuss my accomplishments or things I’m proud of myself for. I wanted to write this post, because there is a lot to be proud of this year. I hope it inspires you to take a moment & to reflect on what you feel most proud of this year.
I’m proud of myself. I’m proud of myself for teaching in the midst of a pandemic. For showing up daily & trying to be the best teacher I can be for my kiddos, even when it’s hard. I’m proud of myself for sticking it out through grad school; through late nights of writing papers & discussion posts, on nights I feel like giving up. (Also for getting an A in my most recent course!) I’m proud of myself for adapting & finding ways to cope with an anxiety disorder that has really been amplified in this pandemic.
I’m proud of myself for how I treat people; I’m mindful of how I make other people feel (although maybe a little too much so sometimes!) & I try my best to make others feel valued. I’m proud that I enjoy learning new things & challenging myself. I’m proud that I lift other people up instead of tearing them down. I’m proud that during a difficult year, I found strength I didn’t know I had.
As we wrap up 2020, there is so much to be proud of. I’m proud of you, for getting through a tough year; for reflecting on priorities & making hard choices, for making sacrifices & showing up. Maybe you suffered a loss, whether that’s a loved one, a job, big plans. There is so much to be proud of yourself for!
What are you most proud of yourself for?
Thank you so much for being here; for supporting my blog. You inspire me & I couldn’t be more grateful. Have a happy new year!
I kid you not, one of my favorite outfits in 4th grade was a white skirt with black & white polka dot leggings underneath. In 5th grade, I wore a hot pink blazer with a pink & orange floral top under it. Bright colors, sequins, bold patterns, I would wear it all. I never had an issue wearing exactly what I wanted to wear, no matter how daring or out there it was.
Then, society began to tell me to wear what was “flattering”. I was told to wear dark colors, they were far more slimming. I was told to not wear stripes, they would make me look wide. Don’t wear anything form-fitting, don’t wear anything sparkly. There were so many rules & suddenly, I was only focused on making myself look smaller. On wearing what would “flatter” my body.
I’m starting to see trying new trends that I love as a form of self-care. It’s so easy to get into a rut & only wear what we are used to, what makes us feel the most comfortable, what makes us look the smallest. It’s fun & feels like a way to celebrate my body, to try out a new trend like this utility style jumpsuit. I’ve seen jumpsuits like this on women with smaller bodies, but have been a little afraid to try it out for myself.
I found this jumpsuit on Thred Up, but it’s originally from Old Navy. I’ve seen some similar styles at Target & Madewell too, if you’re looking for a jumpsuit like this. It’s comfortable, HAS POCKETS, & feels just outside of my comfort zone; enough that it feels fresh & fun to style. It’s no polka dotted legging, but it’s a tiny step toward that bold, confident self from 4th grade; before society taught me that taking up less space meant that I was worth more.
Wear what you love, regardless of whether society deems it “flattering”. Regardless of if a magazine told you you’re an “apple” or a “pear”. Maybe I’ll do a blog post soon about categorizing women’s bodies into types of fruit, because I think it’s kinda bullshit. Wear what you love, because your body deserves to be celebrated.
You only get one life, don’t spend it in clothes that don’t feel like YOU.
Something I’ve been trying out lately is embracing my natural hair texture. I have naturally really thick, what I thought was wavy hair (it might be curly? TBD.) with a TON of frizz. My mom used to spend so much time wrangling my hair into tight braids & cute updos, but by the time it was up to me to style it, I felt frustrated. I felt envious of the girls’ whose houses I would sleep over; they’d wash their hair & it would air dry silky & smooth. I could only get my hair to look like that after hours of heat styling!
But that’s the type of hair I thought was “pretty”. So I heat styled my hair for years & years, trying to wrestle my frizz into submission.
I never felt put together or pretty or confident with my natural hair, until John & I went on a cruise right after Christmas. I brought my straightener, but didn’t use it once. The ocean water brought out my natural waves, & I threw some oil in it to help control the frizz. I felt sun-kissed, confident & beautiful; I couldn’t be bothered locking myself in the bathroom to style my hair for hours. I’d rather lay in the sun with a margarita in my hand!
Since then, I’ve been trying to embrace my natural hair more. Quarantine has been a good time to try out new products & see what works for me & what doesn’t. I’m seeing my waves/curls become more & more defined! I’m living for my natural volume that I once hated, & I’m excited to see where this little hair journey of mine takes me!
Something that I wanted in my curly hair routine was simplicity; I don’t want to sit & finger curl each strand of hair or apply ten products. I watched videos & got product recommendations from friends, tried those out, & narrowed it down to what seems to work for me. I have a feeling this routine will change a bunch, but this is what I’m doing currently!
1. I wash my hair; I LOVE trying out shampoos & conditioners, but here is what I’m using currently. This shampoo bar from Target soothes my dry scalp; I alternate that with this shampoo & use this conditioner. Let me know if you have any shampoo/conditioner recommendations you love! (I’ve heard that sulfate & silicone free is best for curls?)
3. I “plop” my hair using a T-shirt, & keep it up in this for 10-30 minutes while I do my makeup.
4. After makeup, I use my diffuser to dry my hair. I do this really sloppily & without much technique or patience.
5. Once my hair is dry (or mostly dry), I put a hair oil throughout my hair, like this one!
Most of these products are super affordable & better yet, effective! I’ll keep you updated if I find any more that I like!
Edit: to refresh my curls, I’ve been wearing my hair in a loose ponytail at night & then spraying it with a misting spray bottle in the morning. After that, I spray this leave-in conditioner & scrunch my hair a bit.
P.S. I wanted to give an old coworker of mine, Josie, a shout out for a bunch of these product recommendations! I’ll link her hair routine video here; she’s STUNNING, so sweet, & really knows her stuff with how to make curls look good!