March 20, 2015
by Meg
5 Comments

Skin Simplicity: updated

Hi friends! I had planned on starting off this post mentioning that it was the first day of spring, but I feel a little off-put saying that because I see snowflakes falling from the sky when I look over and out of my bedroom window. Mother Nature is on something serious this year and I think someone needs to lend her a tampon and a box of chocolates or something. I love snow and I think it’s beautiful and all, but not when I’m dropping $20 every other week to get the salt washed off of my car (at least it’s keeping me out of Target..)

Skin is the biggest organ of the human body; it’s also sometimes the biggest pain in the ass, am I right? I realize that holistically speaking, true skin care really generates from within (your skin is basically a mirror of your gut health), but in today’s blog post I want to give you all an update on my current external regime and save the internal factors and what I believe holds true for my skin health in another upcoming post. I have always stuck with minimal products, but I found that when I wanted to try something nifty and new, I ended up just going back to my original favorites anyway. Damn, companies are good at marketing and pretty packaging these days ;)

Winter is usually really harsh on my skin, as I’m sure plenty of you can relate. This year was a bit different, though, because I decided to really pare down my routine, make it super simple and spend the money on products that are really tried & true to me. I used to have serious commitment issues when it came to skin & hair care, but not only was that really halting any progression in finding out what truly works, it was also really pissing off my wallet. Simplicity is best when it comes to the health of your skin from the outside. So here are my top products to use externally that I can recommend to keep yourself in the clear and baby-bottom smooth:

1. Allafia skincare products. I’ve been using their skincare line for years and can absolutely say that not only are their products top-notch (and affordable!) but the whole company is something you can feel good about supporting. Learn more about how Alaffia is assisting people in Africa & how you can help here.

I’ve recently discovered their Secret Multipurpose Skin Cream (ain’t a secret no more, is it?) and I’m in LOVE with it. I use it everywhere, literally everywhere. It takes a few minutes to rub in, so work with it and consider it a free self-massage. It’s kept my hands, face, and otherwise super-dry places so soft and moisturized. I use it nightly where ever I need it.

I also use Allafia’s Neem & Shea recovery facial cream (that I’ve been using for quite some time now).

2. Rosehip oil. I’ve mentioned this before and continue to use it. It’s so good for skin cell renewal and getting rid of pesty red marks, acne scarring and skin “imperfections”. Just note that you need to give this TIME to work. Too many people get discouraged by a product if it doesn’t work immediately. Your skin is not going to change drastically overnight, in a week, maybe not even a few months. Patience and consistency is KEY when using a product that promises something like rosehip oil does.

Rosehip oil is unscented, mild and won’t clog your pores. I apply it every morning & night immediately after washing my face and typically mix it in with my moisturizer.

I use Aura Cacia’s rosehip oil. I buy it from Whole Foods, but you can also find it online & other stores, I’m sure.

3. Coconut oil. If you don’t have a jar of coconut oil in your household, I highly recommend you hightail your tail to the store and pick some up. It’s a cheap, convenient and super multitasking superfood and super skin saver. I use this as my primary body moisturizer. Bonus: it smells like buttered toast when you rub it on your skin. I’m serious, do it and sniff yourself. You’re welcome.

I use coconut oil as a makeup remover, too. You can find it at many stores for $10-$20 depending on the brand. I usually just stick with a generic one.

4. Tea tree oil & salicylic acid. I’m 25 and still dealing with acne, especially right before my monthly gift (which I wish I had a gift receipt for…) and as a preventative as well as a treatment, I apply these two in harmony about every other day. They can be drying, so start with a small amount a few times a week and let your skin get used to them.

As far as cleansing, I switch between a bar or the liquid version of Dr. Bronner’s Unscented Soap and Alba’s Acne Dote Scrub. Again, two products that I’ve stuck with for years.

Simplicity and a gentle touch is key to providing your skin with the best external care. Don’t overdo the scrubs, that will most likely irritate your skin and cause it to overproduce oil. And speaking of oil – don’t be afraid to use oil on your face! Rosehip oil & almond oil are two very safe bets and neither will clog pores. They will provide your skin with a balance and nutrients it needs as well as give it a little sheen & glow :)

I’d love to hear about some of your skin care favorites!

Peace and love!

Meg

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March 17, 2015
by Meg
12 Comments

Oh, hey

Hi friends. Damn, it’s been a while since I’ve blogged and literally every single day the thought crosses my mind that “crap, I REALLY need to blog”…but honestly, I don’t even know where to begin. So much has changed in my life as of lately and I’m so full of grace for all of the things I’ve experienced, learned and moved on from. There’s a lot I need to update on my blog as well, including my bio and pages, etc. But for now, here’s a post of things spilling from my mind at the moment. I think I’m just going to start fresh and if you have anything in particular you’d like me to blog about, let me know.

I have been thinking, reaching out and praying a lot lately about my career path and where I’d like to go with it. I think I have a pretty solid idea-but ask me in two minutes and I’ll deny that fact. There’s always going to be doubts that I’m going to find myself dealing with, it’s up to me to turn my fearful outcomes into positive learning experiences. I’ve learned more recently that being in your mid-twenties and still having no clue what precisely you’d like to do (except for pop open a bottle of bubbly and binge watch Baby Mama & Bridesmaids on Netflix) is pretty normal, and I take comfort in that, but not too much comfort. More than anything I do find it motivating to really go for what I’m passionate about and embrace changes, challenges and opportunities as they arise.

 I really just am striving to live a life that fulfills me and surrounds me with the right people. I have so many wonderful, beautiful people in my life that really have taught me so much. It’s a little overwhelming at times, especially attempting to remain financially, emotionally and even physically stable when you kind of feel like you’re in the midst of so many changes, but I have to remember that ultimately, God has a plan for me that rests in His hands, and His hands only.

For those who don’t know, I got laid off from my full time job back in January (but still worked for Whole Foods part time). That moment right  there was a huge turning point and an ever bigger blessing in disguise for me. I was miserable at that job and treated like absolute garbage, being totally unfiltered and honest. My anxiety was through the roof which is something I had never before experienced and my mind, my body and whole life suffered. I am just now realizing how awful I was doing and am so much happier than I was; I also learned that it’s not uncommon for this to happen at this day & age.  Right now, I have decided that I’d ultimately like to stay with Whole Foods and work for them full time (I’ve been working with supplements and body care at Whole Foods for almost four years now); the company is one that I have a ton of respect for and I love working there. Not a ton of people can say that they genuinely look forward to walking into work each day. I have also been branding myself and doing social media, graphic design work (for new readers, I have a Bachelors degree in Digital Art & Design) and writing on the side (shameless plug: you can email me for inquiries…) as well as studying to pursue my personal training certification. I don’t plan on doing PT full time, but I think it would really fulfill one of my passions as a job on the side. I love being around people, helping people and helping myself and my knowledge base, too. I have so much to learn; just opening and reading the first few chapters of my ACE book made me feel like I got slapped in the face with bodily function overload. I will admit my ignorance in thinking I knew a lot about training and/or working out JUST solely based on the fact that I work out (ha, oh Meg, you have so much to learn). I absolutely do not know as much as I’d like to know and I’m confident that really studying and absorbing this information will benefit me greatly in and out of the gym. Oh, and I cut all my hair off and donated it. That was both exciting and scary. But I like it and wish I had done it sooner – so much easier to manage! Although I do dearly miss my turd buns, I will admit.

So, I basically lied to you all and told you I’d start fresh and just rambled on about my current life/job situation…my bad. If you read that, kudos to you, and if you have any advice or insight, or just want to share your thoughts, you can certainly do so. I’m sure if you follow me on Instagram, you know a lot about my gym life – which has been incredible as of lately and I’m progressing, experimenting and learning what works and what doesn’t work so well for my body. I’ve been incorporating more rest days into my routine as of late because #lifehappens (can I hashtag on my blog? Well, I am). Just learning that life is something you have to live, reality is real (duh…bold statement, huh?) But these unplanned rest days have taught me that the days where I CAN get into the gym and get in a workout, I’m so much stronger, so much happier and feel like I’m there with a purpose – to prove my strengths to myself. I’m consciously trying to stop being so afraid of trying new things and letting go of old habits, it’s harder than Chinese arithmetic to let go of some of my beliefs and routine, but I know my progression will prove to me that I’m ok. My favorite lift as of right now is leg day – I’ve learned so many new exercises to incorporate and things that make me feel like spewing fire from my nostrils during the last few reps. I’m chasing my own burn and embracing it. I feel strong physically but most importantly – mentally as well.

Now that I’ve stuffed your brains with a whole load of word vomit, I’ll reward you with a recipe that I just perfected:

Peanut Butter Cookies & Cream Ricotta Cheesecake

2 cups ricotta cheese

1 cup Greek yogurt

2 scoops Slap Nutrition Peanut Butter Slap Whey (Vanilla works too if you’d prefer that over PB)

2 eggs

Sweetener of choice (I used maple syrup)

1 tsp vanilla

2 Quest Cookies & Cream bars, chopped

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325.

Blend all ingredients except for the Quest bar. Gently fold in the bar after the batter is mixed & pour into a pie or cheesecake pan. Or you can sprinkle the bar on top.

Bake at 325 for 30 mins, then 200 degrees for 45 minutes, remove from oven, pop it in the fridge to set for a few hours and enjoy!

Best when topped with Reddi-Whip (because Cool Whip is gross). ;)

I’ll calculate the macros and post them soon…

Happy cheesecaking!

If you’ve never tried Slap Nutrition products – you can use my discount code MEGMO on anything at WeSlap.com – nothing artificial, just clean protein, preworkout and some cool apparel now too!

Peace and love!

Meg

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