Monday, February 23, 2015
It's week #3 for The Beauty Tester series and I am so excited to share what I have been recently testing out.
For the past two weeks I have been using the PMD tool. The PMD personal microdermabrasion is a tool that is supposed to replicate a microdermabrasion treatment given by professionals. I am a licensed esthetician and specialize in microderms so I was beyond intrigued to see if this really did match the treatment you could get done at a spa but at a fraction of the price.
My Expectations Before I Tried It: Since the PMD tool uses the same aluminum oxide crystals as a professional microdermabrasion, I had high hopes for this little tool. I read tons of positive reviews before purchasing and I figured since I am somewhat of an expert in technique etc (poppin collars over here haha) that this would be a breeze to figure out and use. I was however unsure how comparable the suction feature would be compared to a professional treatment, which is a pretty important aspect when it comes to getting results. Either way I knew this was something that I wanted to test and went ahead with the purchase.
Cost: $159 for the entire kit, which includes a variety of disks for all levels of sensitivity, 2 caps (one large for body exfoliation and one small for facial exfoliation), 1 reusable filter and a how-to DVD. I use to charge $90-$120 for a single microderm so I thought this was a great price.
Prep or Directions: I washed my face and opened the box. The first thing it said was to watch the DVD and read all the directions. Well, I got a little cocky and figured I knew what I was doing so I did not watch the DVD or read the directions. I decided to just wing it. I mean how hard could this be to figure out? Bad idea. I placed a random disk onto the head and gave it a whirl. OUCHHHHH! Okay the disk I placed on first was apparently for the bottom of your feet or something because it was rough! I got a nice little flesh wound under my left eye from it. So from that moment on I decided it was best to read the directions ha! Once I had it all figured out and knew what discs to use I tried it again. I held my skin tight with my left hand and used my right hand to swiftly move the tool across my skin. This thing was a dream!
The Results: Well minus the scrape under my left eye (totally my fault), the final results were pretty amazing. The suction feature was comparable to a professional treatment and overall it is a clean and easy to use beauty tool. After only one treatment my skin looked and felt so incredibly soft and healthy. All the little flakes that I have been experiencing were gone and the pores around my nose and chin were visibly smaller. I have now been using the PMD for two weeks and I can't say enough good things about it. It has minimized fine lines around my eyes and has made my skin look so much more refreshed and even toned.
My Rating: I give the PMD an A. I am so thrilled with the results that I have seen so far and I will continue to use this on a weekly basis. If you are thinking of trying this out, do not even hesitate! This is totally worth it.
You can find all the details about what is included in the PMD kit here.
If you have any questions regarding this beauty tester, leave them in the comment section below and I will try my best to answer. Also, if you have any beauty products, treatments or trends that you think would be fun for this series let me know!
Friday, January 30, 2015
Current favorite wedges and sneakers, which are surprisingly equally comfortable...no joke!
Folding little size 2T undies because Ronin is now potty trained! Well, okay he's about 94% potty trained but close enough and I am still celebrating :)
Negative space manicure. Loving this trend for spring!
Molly and Max at her first puppy training class this week. These two little buddies are just the cutest.
This week has been pretty crazy and I am so looking forward to the weekend. Hope you have a great weekend and happy football watching if that's your jam!
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
It's been a little while since I have done any updates on The Highs & Lows of Type 1 Diabetes series and I decided now seemed like a good enough time for a post and an update since I started back on the CGM (continuous glucose monitoring system).
About 2 months ago I went in for my routine blood work where I got my A1C checked. For those of you who are unfamiliar, the A1C is a blood test that provides information about your average blood sugar levels over the past three months. The lower the number the better. My results came back not so great. Was I surprised? Not really. I can be honest with myself and say that I had not been eating as good as I should and guessing when it came to corrections for my insulin pump. I was basically not making my diabetes a priority and my test results reflected that.
I was on the CGM when I was pregnant with both boys and because of it I had the best A1Cs of my life. During my pregnancies my A1C average was 6, which is awesome. The only problem with the CGM back then was I felt like after a couple days it wold give me inaccurate readings and the whole process of the insertion was super painful and left ugly marks when it was time to change it and take it out. So after my pregnancies I got off of it.
My doctor recommended that I get back on the CGM and to be honest, I wasn't too excited about it. BUT he told me the good news is the new updated Enlite Glucose Sensor is supposed to be wayyyy better than the old one in terms of accuracy, insertion process, longevity of each sensor and pain. Plus the new sensor sets off alerts if you go too low and will shut off your pump if you remain unresponsive to the alarm, which I thought was another really great new feature. So I decided to give it a try.
I have been on the sensor for 3 weeks now and it has been night and day in terms of managing my diabetes. My blood sugars have been awesome and I feel so much better. I am pretty sure this is going to be a permeant thing for me until they come out with something even better. I have been wearing the sensor on my outer thigh and it does not hurt nor is it irritating in the slightest bit. I don't notice it when I work out, do squats or any other physical activities.
I can't wait to re-do my A1C in the next month or so.
Monday, January 26, 2015
Week #2 for The Beauty Tester series and I am having way too much fun with this!
This week I visited a Dry Bar for the very first time. For those of you who are wondering what the heck this is, a Dry Bar is a salon where there are no haircuts, no color, just amazing blow outs. It's a brilliant yet simple concept.
My Expectations Before I tried it: I have been hearing about this everywhere and every time I see a woman who has had this done I think, "WOW her hair looks so fabulous!" So the first thing I thought was that it must cost a fortune for your hair to look that good. After I made my appointment and briefly talked to the front desk gal where she went over the various styles they can do I was beyond excited. Right before I walked into my appointment I imagined my hair to have those perfectly beachy waves that seem too good to have happened at a beach but too imperfect to have happened at a salon, if that makes any sense at all.
Cost: $30-$40. A very reasonable price in my opinion and not what I was expecting at all when I first called to see how much it would be.
Prep or Directions: They told me that the service included a full shampoo/conditioning treatment and to come in however I felt comfortable. Well, I feel comfortable with my gym hair in a bun so that's how I arrived. Am I gross? Am I normal? Who knows...When I arrived I was greeted by the nicest gal who immediately introduced herself as my stylist and took me back to the shampooing station. For the next 10 or so minutes she gave me this mind blowing scalp massage and hair wash/conditioning treatment. She towel dried my hair and we walked back to her station where we talked about what style I was going for. Once we were both on the same page about my "boho/beachy/Sienna Miller waves style" she started her thing. She began by spraying something in my hair to help lock in the waves and then started sectioning off little pieces with clips. For the next 30 minutes she worked her magic as she individually dried each section and did this curling technique thing with a round brush. The entire process took about 35 minutes.
The Results: After she was finished she turned my chair around to face the mirror. I loved my hair! I felt so glammed up and it was exactly how I had described it to her. I could not believe that all I had done was a blow dry, it felt like I had done so much more.
My Rating: I give the Dry Bar blowout an A. This was affordable, relaxing and made my hair look amazing. This would be such a fun thing to do with a bunch of your girlfriends before a fun event or before a date out with your man. You know that feeling when you leave the salon and you want to take a selfie because you just can't contain your excitement with how great your hair feels?! Haha maybe that's just me but this gives you that feeling at a fraction of the cost compared to having a full service hair appointment.
Have you done this before? Is this something you would try? I would love to hear.
Also, if you are feeling inspired and want to try out any of the beauty treatments/products that I post about I would love to see your results! So if you want to share with me, upload a picture on Instagram and tag it with #thebeautytester so I can see!
Labels: the beauty tester
Friday, January 23, 2015
Sliders and the best fries ever at our favorite little spot in town. Once a week I like to enjoy foods that I do not normally eat and this was totally worth it.
Molly is getting so big and her little ears are starting to stand up and I think it's just about the cutest thing ever. Okay dog mom brag moment...but she is seriously so smart! She can sit, stay, shake, fetch and walk on a leash like a total pro. We all love her so much.
The invites to my cousin's shower had this inside and I thought it was such a great idea!
An original oil painting of Twin Lakes, California that I found on a recent thrifting trip. It's one of my husband's favorite fishing spots and I thought it would be perfect for his office, which we are finally getting around to decorating.
And on a side note: I am so pumped about my new series and I can't wait to share what I am testing out today (follow along on Instagram for a sneak peak) with you all on Monday! Have an awesome weekend!
Tuesday, January 20, 2015
I am starting a new series on my blog called the Beauty Tester. Over the course of the series I will be testing the latest beauty products, trends and treatments and coming back here to report and give it a grade, A-F. Nothing is off limits when it comes to this series and I will be stepping out of my comfort zone to try new things. With each post I will include my expectations before I tried it, cost, the prep and directions for the product/treatment, my end result and finally my beauty grade.
Consider me your beauty guinea pig. I am starting off this series with something that I have been wanting to try out forever, eyelash extensions.
Here is me with no makeup on right before I went in for my appointment...
So ya as you can see my eyelashes look pretty non existent ha!
My Expectations Before I Tried it: I would say that my eyelashes are average in length and nothing special. With extensions, I wanted my eyes to pop and have that va va voomy feeling that you have when you have your makeup is on point. So my expectations were pretty much that I wanted to walk out feeling like Kim Kardashian. Ha! So maybe I set my expectations a little high... but for the price I wanted to see and feel something drastic.
Cost: Eyelash extensions can range from $99-$200+ for first time clients. If you decide to keep them up you will need fills every 2-4 weeks which range from $30-$70 dollars. Not a cheap beauty treatment by any means so make sure you REALLY explain what you want on your first visit.
Prep or Directions: I was told to come to my appointment with no eye makeup on and to limit caffeine consumption since it can make you jittery and harder for you to keep your eyelids still and closed. I arrived with zero makeup whatsoever but I am not gonna lie I did have my usual 2 cups of coffee because I NEED IT. Plus I figured I am a total pro at acting calm under mass amounts of caffeine consumption so I had that under control. The technician was super sweet and had me lay down on a facial bed. She asked me what "look" I was going for and that is where my original plan went array. I told her I wanted them to look "natural and like I am not wearing crazy extensions." Okay it is true I wear minimal makeup on a daily basis and I tend to lean more towards the natural look when it comes to things but...WHO AM I?!.. I am a confused lady thats who!! So my plan of looking va va voomy and all Kim K went out the window when I gave that description. So I remained there for the next hour with my eyes closed while we chatted about all kinds of things as she applied natural looking "J Shaped" lashes to each existing lash. The whole process was completely painless and easy.
The Results: After she was finished she handed me the mirror....drumroll please! Okay so I LOVED them, I had dark beautiful lashes that looked oh so natural just like I had explained. BUT... at that very moment I realized I had been too conservative (like usual UGHHHH) with my original explanation and my result was exactly what I had asked for. This is a pretty pricy treatment to keep up with so I think I will only do this again if I have a special occasion planned.
My Rating: I give my eyelash extensions an A because my technician gave me exactly what I asked for to a T. But next time I would go a little more drastic and be a little more brave with the length and volume.
I would love to hear your feedback on this series and if there is any crazy (non crazy is totally cool too ha) beauty treatments or products that you have been curious about and would like me to test out I would love to hear about it in the comment section below.
Friday, January 16, 2015
The Wubble Bubble Ball, which has become the boy's latest obsession. It inflates into this huge giant crazy bubble thing that is so much fun to play with!
After school paint sesh in the backyard. I love how much these boys dig their creative time and I am so happy that the days are finally starting to get a little longer so we are able to do things like this outside when Max gets out of school.
We made our favorite snickerdoodle muffins this week, which were all eaten in a flash.
My simple styled mantel. It felt good to get it back to normal after the holidays and my style is always less is more when it comes to this spot.
Some of my favorite flowers brighting up our room...and reminding me that spring is just around the corner. Yeay for that!
This week really has been awesome. I have been making a conscious effort to slow down and make my life simpler (you can read more about that here) and it has been so refreshing.
Have a wonderful weekend!