Favorites: August 2019!

Good Morning and Happy Friday, everyone!

The end (of August and the Summer!) is nigh- but I’m ready for sweaters, leaf peeping, scary movies and pumpkin patches- especially now that I’m living in one of the most picturesque, straight-out-of-a-postcard areas in New England! It’s going to be my first Fall in the Pioneer Valley- and there are so many things I want to do!

But respects must be paid to August and really the entire Summer of 2019, first- which I fully intend to do tomorrow morning for my monthly “In a Nutshell” post where I recap the weeks that were and talk about what I have planned for the weeks ahead. There’s a lot of ground to cover- but it’s going to be a fun trip down (recent) Memory Lane!

Before that, though- I wanted to share some of my favorite things from August 2019. From beauty products, to jewelry, to silly sentimental pieces- all the way to movies, music, television, etc.

This is my usual months-end “Favorites” post- and as always- I’ll be starting with the things I was able to photograph, first!

Starting with the silly, sentimental pieces- I had picked up this pair of silver, glittery sandals for about $8 at Primark a couple of years ago when I was strapped for footwear just hours before I was headed to a beach bonfire- but these have become my default Summer shoe choice ever since. This past August was no different, as I wore these trusty, surprisingly durable beauties during road trips, ice cream pit stops, lazier days at the office- and lounging lake-side.

I’m going to store them in the back of my closet until next Summer- where I’m sure they’ll see more adventures.

Exfoliation is key year-round, but especially in the Summer when I’m all about exposed legs, arms, and the occasional exposed midriff. I want my skin glowing and smooth- so I try to find scrubs that both buff away the dead skin but also conditions without drying me out.  I’m partial to sugar scrubs, and this whipped one from LALICIOUS does the job just right.

Not only does this scrub smell incredible, like a candy shop- but it leaves my skin touchable, soft, and glowing.

The scrub is $35, but a little goes a long way- so one tub of this will last you well over the course of a season!

Of course, I can’t exfoliate my body without making sure my face is super smooth, too- but being that it’s far more sensitive than say, my knees or my elbows- I rely on this gentle microdermabrasion scrub from Mary Kay that a friend turned me onto earlier this month.

I only use this lightweight exfoliant about 2 times a week if that- but the results are instant- and my serums and moisturizers sink into my skin with so much more ease whenever I apply them after gently cleansing my skin with this scrub. Throughout August, my complexion has been clear, smooth, and even.

Finally, my go-to jewelry for August was simple and consisted of two things. One, a moonstone statement ring I had picked up a couple of weekends ago during the annual Massachusetts Tax-Free Weekend.

The other? A throwback to my pre-teen and early teenage years with the return of the cowrie shell craze. While I couldn’t bring myself to wear a choker of these like the guys I grew up with used to do all. the. time.– I thought the anklet was a nice, more subtle choice.

I wore this all during the Summer, but it really made a splash in August when more people noticed and seemed to get on board with the trend making a comeback! Now we just need to bring back those glittery butterfly-shaped hair clips and I’ll be thrilled.

And that, my friends- just about does it for the photogenic favorites. But, as always- a one or two more things made the list this month, too!

– MISCELLANEOUS –

All Things Seafood – I had said that my Summer 2019 bucket list consisted of eating as much lobster, crab and scallops as possible, and in August I rose to the challenge since many of my favorite seaside shacks close up after Labor Day.

With stops at some of my longtime favorite locations and some new finds here in the Valley (including a delicious chowder house- which I’ll be revisiting soon!) I’m pretty sure I don’t even want to look at anything from the ocean again until next May/June at least.

Clowns, Baby! – With “It: Chapter 2” coming out in theaters next week, a new trailer for “The Joker” dropping earlier this week (the movie premieres in October) and a new teaser poster for the next Harley Quinn movie making the rounds recently- Summer 2019 is all about clownery and I am here for it. My apologies for anyone with a clown phobia- but I am so, so excited for all of it!

Aaaaand now I’m finished! Although it’s the end of the work-week, I’ve still got some things to do around the office before I break for the long weekend- so I’ve got to get going!

As always, if you’d like to share your own favorite things from this past August- feel free to drop me a line!

Enjoy your Friday, everyone!

xx

– Ashley –

Beauty Report: Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask

While many of my friends are typically the first ones to try out new technology or discover up and coming bars/restaurants to introduce the rest of us to- I’m almost always the first one trying and reviewing whatever new makeup/skin care/hair care/cosmetics are hitting the market and creating a buzz among consumers and bloggers alike. It’s a pretty great trade-off of information, I have to admit. My friends will tell me where to get the latest cocktail craze popping up in filtered Instagram posts across the city- and I’ll tell them what dry shampoo is going to save their scalp this Summer or what sunscreen is going to give them the best coverage for the cheapest price.

Of course, sometimes the hottest new products sell out- and keep selling out- before I can get my hands on them as quickly as I’d like- so when Glow Recipe’s coveted Watermelon Sleeping Mask was FINALLY restocked a couple of weeks ago- I was so excited to snag a jar of it to see if all the hype I’d been reading and hearing about was worth the $45 price tag.

Glow Recipe, a company that promotes natural and harsh-free skincare products inspired by trends in the Korean cosmetics market- have been consistently selling out of their most Summery-scented product yet- this nighttime repair mask/peel that boasted being able to refresh and rejuvenate my skin while I slept. What’s in it, you may ask? According to Glow Recipe’s website:

“This pillow-proof formula acts as a radiance-boosting hybrid hydrator, formulated with soothing, amino-acid rich Watermelon Extract, hydrating Hyaluronic Acid, and pore refining AHAs that work while you sleep to gently exfoliate and clarify.”

The mask can also be used as a 10-minute hydration booster when applied (in a thicker consistency) to troubled areas and then rinsed off after waiting 10-15 minutes.

I’ve used a few different Korean beauty products in the past that have yielded some amazing results- so I couldn’t wait to give this pretty pink jar a go.

The first thing I noticed about this mask, apart from it’s adorable packaging- was that it smelled exactly like Watermelon Jolly Ranchers candies (my favorite!) and therefore I had to resist the urge to taste test this, too. Believe me- it was tempting!

The second thing I noticed was that the mask’s consistency was much thinner than I expected and was a lot easier to apply as a result. At first glance, the gel-like substance resembled Clinique’s Moisture Surge Moisturizer– but once I used the small, plastic spatula included with the mask to apply it to cleansed and gently dried skin- it spread over my face and absorbed way faster than the Clinique moisturizer has ever done- which means I don’t need to use as much to make sure my skin is covered. Considering the amount of this stuff packed into the 2.7 ounce glass jar- I’m more than getting my money’s worth! This product is going to last me months since I don’t need that much at all each night.

Once applied, there was no sticky or greasy residue. My skin did have a bit of a sheen to it- but it didn’t feel oily or slick. It felt soft to the touch and, like promised, none of the mask came off on my pillow or my sheets while I slept.

Each morning that I woke up after applying this mask- I noticed that the mask had, in fact, peeled- and some trace flakes were left behind along my T-Zone and jawline (but rinsed off easily!) Underneath the dried pieces of mask, my skin looked brighter and felt a lot softer. Minor imperfections and darkened spots from past breakouts eventually started to fade more and more with continuous usage, too!

My one warning is that after the first couple of uses- some blemishes that were hiding out under the surface of my skin came to a head in the form of sporadic whiteheads. I’ve read this is a fairly common reaction with masks/peels and they were easy enough to buff away with my electronic cleansing brush in the mornings- but it’s worth mentioning to those who may panic at the first sight of any type of acne. It goes away the more you use the mask! Mine cleared up in just a couple of short days and hasn’t been back since!

VERDICT: I can absolutely see why this mask sells out as often and as quickly as it does- because it actually works really, really well! After the initial aforementioned minor breakout shock wore off and I continued using the mask consistently (maybe even a little borderline religiously!)– it didn’t take long at all for my skin to look and feel more radiant, softer, smoother, clearer and brighter. A little of this formula goes a long way so there’s really no possible chance you could waste this or run out of it quickly if it’s used correctly and sparingly as directed.

And I mentioned it before but it’s definitely worth repeating- it smells delicious! It’s not very often I get to put something that smells like fruit-infused candy on my face so I’m more than a little thrilled when it happens!

You can pick up Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask at their official website, as well as Sephora– and be sure to add yourself to their mailing list for alerts of when they’re back in stock in case they’re sold out!

Have you used the Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask? Do you know of something comparable? Is there something similar that you prefer, instead? I’d love to hear about it!

xx

– Ashley –