Monday, November 23, 2009

Life Reminders

A recent article assignment led me to meet some Lafayette-enthusiasts. On this particular day, it was a dreary morning and my lovely cup of coffee just wasn't doing the trick. All I could think was, 'if I was in Florida right now, I would be waking up to sunshine and way happier about it.' Lucky for me, I was on my way out the door to chat with a few women who promote Lafayette to the masses.

It was a Monday morning, which is typical to find people less-than-chipper. But when I walked into this particular establishment, I felt nothing but excitement for the week ahead. Every one of the ladies I talked to (5 in total) was happy to talk to me and gush about our little corner of the world. They reminded me of the quaint, yet busy, downtown that's booming with activities every weekend. They reminded me of the outdoor recreation we have thanks to parks, trails, and festivals. They reminded me that the university provides decent sporting events at the right price. All in all, it was a great reminder of why I moved home.

I've wanted to live in downtown Chicago since I can remember, and that dream hasn't gone away. But that doesn't mean that I shouldn't buck-up and appreciate where I live and the fact that I have great friends and family nearby. And the beauty of living closer to family and friends means I can spend my future vacations visiting those warmer places instead of coming home.

Would it have been fun to go to Indy or Chicago to go out with friends? Sure. But instead, I spent this weekend taking my dogs to one of the parks and strolling around the outdoor Pre-Thanksgiving Market. And after 5 days of rain, it was the perfect way to enjoy a gorgeous November weekend.

Isn't funny how life sends you friendly reminders about why you're where you are?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Get Your Glow On

All Aveda products are 80-95% natural, from the packaging to the fabulous product in the bottle. I've heard from people that Aveda changes you. Any hair or skin issues are rectified with the use of Aveda. So, I figured, while I work for a salon/spa, maybe I'll check out what these people are talking about. I've come to find out it's true.

I've tried many a face cleanser in my day, and come winter, my skin is drying out (which is incredible since I have oily skin, go figure). One of the estheticians pointed out to me that my skin is sensitive if I'm suffering from breakouts. This makes sense because that's how your skin reacts to what you're doing to it. Some folks are lucky enough to have skin that's a bit more mello. For me, I needed a gentle cleanser that doesn't completely strip my skin of it's natural oil. And, I needed a moisturizer that would keep breakouts at bay, but also keep my skin feeling good. So, I tried the Outer Peace Foaming Cleanser, Acne Relief Lotion, and the Tourmaline Charged Protecting Lotion.

The Foaming Cleanser gently cleans out your pores without harsh chemicals to kill the dirt and bacteria. It doesn't leave your face feeling tight and dry. With 2 pumps of product and some gentle scrubbing, your skin feels healthy and clean. Here in Lafayette, you can get it for $25 off the shelf. I know, a little much for those of us watching our pennies, but I purchased the travel size version and that lasted me about six weeks. My guess is that this larger bottle will last a solid 3 months at least.

I use the Acne Relief Lotion at night. It has salycylic acid, which kills the bacteria lingering in your skin. Personally, I've had back reactions to this type of acid, but the kind Aveda uses is derived naturally from a plant. The man-made stuff is what irritates my skin. In the morning, my skin looks and feels refreshed and ready to combat whatever the world wants to throw at it for the day. The lotion is a bit on the pricey side, too, but you use a finger's-worth once a day: it's worth it and it'll last you awhile.

For daytime, I use the Tourmaline Protecting Lotion. My fair skin needs SPF, even in the Midwest (I already have sun-damage according to a recent facial, so you should probably be using SPF too!). And this moisturizer isn't heavy or greasy. It's just the right amount of love to keep your skin feeling great. This bottle is about $40 I believe, and a finger's-worth is all you need.

Your skin is your biggest body organ, and one of the most important. It protects us from damage from the everyday elements. So why not protect it while it's protecting us? Many cleansers are advertised to "scrub away dirt" and "attack bacteria". Instead of attacking our skin, let's show it some healthy love to give us a glow.