Thursday, May 29, 2014

Health Tip Of The Week - Protecting Your Skin From The Sun

We all know that we should be wearing sunscreen, but what other steps can we take to protect ourselves from sun damage, which can lead to signs of aging or even skin cancer.

-  Cover Up - The sun is the strongest between 10 and 4.  During these times, cover as much of your body as possible or stay indoors.

-  Make sure you wear waterproof sunscreen when swimming or exercising outside.

-  Get regular skin checks.  Early detection is key!

-  Apply sunscreen 20 - 30 minutes before sun exposure, and reapply every 2 - 3 hours.

-  Don't let the weather fool you!  Just because it is cloudy or even snowing outside, it doesn't mean that you can't get sunburned.  I learned that the hard way as a teenager.  I was out for only a few hours on a cloudy day, without sunscreen, and got a very bad burn.

-  Wear a wide brimmed hat to provide extra protection from the sun.  Plus, it also a chic fashion statement!

-  Don't forget your lips!  They can get sunburned just like any other part of your body.  For me, I will get fever blisters very quickly if I don't have something on my lips.

-  Don't forget to protect your hair!  The sun can damage our hair also.  There are sun protectant sprays to help fight the affects of the sun.  Hats are also a great option.

-  There are also certain medications and supplements, that can make us more susceptible to sun damage.  Check with your doctor to see if your medications put you at a higher risk.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Quote Of The Week

The most beautiful people I have known are those who have known trials, have known struggles, have known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. - Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Recipe Of The Week - From Scratch Baked Beans

With Memorial Day quickly approaching, I thought this would be a good recipe to make at home or to bring with you to a party.


-  2 1/2 cups great northern dried beans

-  4 cups water

-  1 1/2 cups tomato sauce

-  1/2 cup brown sugar

-  2 tsp. salt

-  1 small onion, chopped

-  1/2 tsp chili powder

1.  Wash and drain the dry beans.  Combine beans and water in slow cooker.  Cook on low 8 hours or overnight.

2.  Stir in remaining ingredients.  Cook on low 6 hours.  If the beans look too watery as they near the end of their cooking time, you can remove the lid during the last 30 - 60 minutes.

*Per Serving - 350 Calories, 1g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 1170mg sodium, 71g carbs (17g fiber, 26g sugar), 18g protein

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Nails Of The Week

This is a new color for me.  Not one that I am typically drawn to, but I'm liking it.  It's something different, with a little bling on a few fingers.  With the right outfit, I think they will look nice.

Cover Girl Outlast Stay Brilliant - Skylight 147

Monday, May 19, 2014

Quote Of The Week

Let us not be content to wait and see what will happen, but give us the determination to make the right things happen. - Horace Mann

Drugstore Beauty Deals - 5/18/14 - 5/24/14


RB = Reward Bucks

-  Dry Idea Antiperspirant/Deodorant - BOGO FREE

-  Right Guard Antiperspirant/Deodorant - BOGO FREE

-  Natures Bounty Vitamins & Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  Degree Invisible Solid Deodorant/Antiperspirant - BOGO 50% Off

-  Wet N Wild - BOGO 50% Off

-  Neutrogena Hair Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Nivea Body Wash, Scrub, and Lip Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Noxzema Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Suave Men Shampoo + Conditioner, Kids, Keratin, Moroccan, and Rosemary - BOGO 50% Off

-  AcneFree - BOGO 50% Off

-  Olay Total Effects Facial - BOGO 50% Off

-  Crest 3D White Paste, Rinse, and Toothbrushes - BOGO 50% Off

-  Bic Disposable Shavers - BOGO 50% Off

-  Caress Body Wash and Bar Soap - BOGO 50% Off

-  Pond's Towelettes, BB Cream, and Facial Cream - BOGO 50% Off

-  Simple Facial Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Suave Body Wash, Lotion, and Facial Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Axe Body Spray, Antiperspirant/Deodorant, Shower Gel, Shampoo, and Conditioner - BOGO 50% Off

-  L'Oreal Foundation, Powder, Blush, and Concealer - Buy 2, get $5 RB

-  Sally Hansen Cosmetics - Spend $12, get $5 RB

-  Revlon Face, Eye, Lip, and Nail Polish - Spend $10, get $4 RB

-  Maybelline Face, Eye, and Lip - Spend $10, get $3 RB

- John Frieda Hair Care - Buy 2, get $5 RB


UR = Up Rewards

-  Flexamin Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  Irish Spring Bar and Body Wash - BOGO FREE

-  Natures Bounty Vitamins & Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  CeraVe Skin and Sun Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  John Frieda Shampoo, Conditioner, Styler, and Treatments - BOGO 50% Off

-  Suave Hair Care, Skin Care, Body Wash, and Deodorant - BOGO 50% Off

-  L'Oreal Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Maybelline Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Revlon Beauty Tools - BOGO 50% Off

-  Aveeno Skin and Bath Products - BOGO 50% Off

-  Almay Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Neutrogena Lip and Face Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Arm & Hammer Toothpaste & Spinbrush - BOGO 50% Off

-  Cover Girl Face and Lip Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Olay Complete, Age Defying Cleansers, and Moisturizers - BOGO 50% Off

-  Olay Bath and Body Wash and Lotion - BOGO 50% Off

-  Revlon Foundation, Powder, Blush, Bronzer, and Concealer - 25% Off

-  Tresemme Premium Shampoo, Conditioner, and Select Stylers - Buy 2, get $3 UR

-  Simple Cleansers and Wipes - Buy 2, get $3 UR


RR = Register Rewards

-  Natures Bounty Vitamins & Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  Nature Made Vitamins - BOGO FREE

-  Sundown Vitamins & Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  Maybelline Face and Lip Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  L'Oreal Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  L'Oreal Face and Lip Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Revlon Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Neutrogena Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Almay Face, Eye Cosmetics, and Makeup Remover - BOGO 50% Off

-  St. Ives Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Pond's Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Pantene Hair Care & Stylers - BOGO 50% Off

-  Dove Products - BOGO 50% Off

-  Gillette Disposable Razors - BOGO 50% Off

-  Gillette Body, Satin Care, & Series Shave Gel - BOGO 50% Off

-  Tresemme Hair Care & Select Stylers - Buy 2, get 2,000 pts.

-  Suave Hair Care & Stylers - Buy 2, get 1,000 pts.

-  Caltrate - BOGO 50% Off

-  Centrum - BOGO 50% Off

-  Flintstone Vitamins - $4 Off

-  One A Day Vitamins - $4 Off

-  Noxzema Shave Gel, Eyebrow Shaper, and Disposable Razors - 25% Off

-  Eucerin Skin Care - Buy $15, get $8 RR

-  Aquaphor Skin Care - Buy $15, get $8 RR

*These are National deals and can vary from state to state.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Health Tip Of The Week - Keeping A Food Journal

Most people are unaware of what they are eating, and how much they are eating.  Most people don't know how big a serving size should be or how many calories are in the foods they are consuming.  They try to make "healthier choices," but what does that actually mean?  Are you assuming it's a healthier choice or do you actually understand enough about nutrition to make a healthier choice?  These are all valid questions, that most people don't have the answer to, because they know little to nothing about nutrition or how it affects the body.  I was definitely one of those people at a point in my life.  How I made it to 25 years old without knowing the difference between a protein and a carb, is beyond me.

One of the best ways to start when beginning a healthier lifestyle is to keep a food journal.  In my early struggle towards health and nutrition, I did and it helped tremendously.  I kept a small notebook, one that would fit in my purse, and kept track of everything I was eating, including drinks, and I also kept a log of my workouts everyday in the same notebook.  I had a calorie king calorie counting book, that I used as a reference for nutritional values.  I started reading all my labels, for the foods that had them, started looking at serving sizes, and ingredients in my foods.  I also learned about carbs, proteins, fats, and sugars, and how my body reacted to them.  It does seem like a lot in the beginning.  It can get a little overwhelming, but so is feeling sick, ashamed, and unhealthy.

You can start a food journal with just a simple notebook, or you can look online to find ones that are already outlined and ready to print.  There are also many apps that you can download, that do the same thing.  Whatever you prefer.  You will quickly notice that you eat a lot of the same things over and over.  After a few weeks, you will know how many calories are in the foods you are eating, right off the top of your head.  You will also be able to recognize what a normal portion looks like.  Keeping a food journal will educate you on your food choices, keep you accountable, and help you to recognize your eating habits, and where you need to make adjustments.  It's all a learning process.  It takes time, but you will get there.  Just keep going!!

-XOXO Monique

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Nails Of The Week - How To: French Manicure

Products Used - 
Up & Up Nail Polish Drying Spray
Kiss Nail Dress - French Manicure
Zoya Polish - Mia
Maybelline Color Show - Clear

 The Kiss appliqués I found at Target.  One side is a regular french manicure, while the others have little rhinestones around the white tip.  40 appliqués per box, along with a file.

1.  File and buff nails.

2.  Apply 2 coats of a nude color, of your choice.

3.  Spray drying spray after each coat.

4.  Pick appliqué that best fits your nail size, peel, and apply.

5.  Smooth applique, and file off the extra length from the tip of the nail.

6.  Apply two coats of a clear glossy coat, and spray drying spray.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Recipe Of The Week - Tomato, Mozzarella, & Avocado Salad

I love this salad!  It's super easy, healthy, and a great warm weather side!


-  1 container of cherry tomatoes, halved

-  1 avocado, peeled, seeded, and cubed

-  1/2 log or 1 ball of fresh mozzarella, cubed

-  1/4 cup olive oil

-  1/4 cup lemon juice

-  1 tsp minced garlic

-  1 tsp dried parsley

-  1 tsp dried basil

-  1/3 cup fresh cilantro, then mince

-  1 tsp salt

-  1/2 tsp pepper

Combine all liquid, herbs, and seasonings in a small bowl, mixing well with a fork.  Put tomatoes, avocado, and mozzarella in a large bowl.  Add olive oil dressing, mix, and refrigerate.  It's that simple!!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Quote Of The Week

I know where I'm going and I know the truth, and I don't have to be what you want me to be.  I'm free to be what I want. - Muhammed Ali

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Face Of The Day - Winged Liner With Pink Makeup

I was spending the day running errands, and meeting up with my Mom & Grandma.  I wanted to look nice, but have a quick look.  I used no contour or liner on the bottom.  I used lashes, but that is actually quicker for me than applying several coats of two mascaras.  I have to say, perfecting the winged liner has been the hardest thing for me.  I will tell you about my favorite way to get them right, so don't be scared of doing it!

Products Used - 

1.  Pixi Face Primer

2.  Garnier BB Cream for Oily/Combo Skin - Light/Medium

3.  Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles - Brightener

4.  E.L.F High Definition Powder

5.  E.L.F. High Definition Undereye Setting Powder

6.  Milani Baked Blush - Delizioso Pink (matte)

7.  The Balm Mary Louminizer

 8.  L'Oreal 12 Hour Infallible The Super Slim Liquid Eyeliner - Black

9.  Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette - Strange (matte white), Limit (mauve matte), and Nooner (dark mauve matte)

10.  Ardell Lashes - 116

11.  L'Oreal Original Voluminous Mascara - Black

12.  Rimmel Exaggerate Lipliner - East End Snob

13.  Cover Girl Lipstick - 365 Enchantress

14.  Mac Lusterglass - Spring Green

15.  Makeup Remover Cloth

Well, looking at the list, this may be a lot of product for some people, but not me :)  Anyways, let's get started with the application.  Now, when I do a winged liner, I do my eyes first.  I really don't like doing my eyes first, but it makes it easier to clean up mistakes.

First, I applied limit to the crease.  I used nooner on the crease as well, but focused on the outer corner.  Then, I applied strange on the lid and under the brow.  Using the liquid liner, I drew a thin line on my top lash line, making it thicker as it goes towards the outer corner.  I start my flick at the very outer corner of my eye, where my top lash line and lower lash line meet.  I draw it at a diagonal towards my eyebrow.  If you have made a mistake or your lines aren't even, DON'T PANIC!  No one draws them on perfectly every time.  Get a makeup remover cloth, and using ur nail as the sharp edge, wipe away any mistakes.  I use these cloths as my eraser.  Winged eyeliner takes practice for everyone, I promise.  So, just practice and take your time.  I like this liquid eyeliner for a flick, because it has a felt tip.  It is not a traditional liquid liner.  I, personally, don't like to use the traditional kind.  I do really like gel liner for this look, though.  I do like this felt tip liner, but I have to say, I wish it was blacker.  It goes on a little light for me.  I applied my Ardell Lashes, and a coat of mascara.  Eyes are done!

So, then I worked on my skin.  I applied my face primer, BB cream,  under eye concealer, and powders.  I have to say, I really like this BB cream.  It gives a good light coverage, but you have to get the oily to combo one.  The dry skin formula is different. It isn't nearly as good.  For the cheeks, I applied delizioso pink.  This is a new matte blush from Milani.  They have two now, and it is really pretty.  I definitely recommend all Milani blushes!  I topped my cheekbones off with a little Marylouminizer, because I like a little glow.  I love J Lo, so I am always trying out her looks!  

For lips, I used liner, lipstick, and lip gloss as usual.  This color does seem awful bright in the tube, but I really like it in the warmer months.  It is definitely a statement lipstick!  I hope this gave you some ideas and tips to try.  Don't be scared to try new things.  Practice your looks, and's only makeup!  Have a great weekend :)


Thursday, May 8, 2014

Product Review: AVIVA Hair Revitalizer - Advanced Hair Growth System

I was so excited to be chosen to try and review this product!  You may or may not know this, but I have had short to very short hair for many years.  I started growing it out quite awhile ago.  Since doing so, I care for my hair so differently.  I am doing things that I have never done before!  When it was super short (think Halle Berry short), I got it cut every 4 weeks, washed it, and styled it.  That was it.  I wasn't worried about growth or split ends.  Now, I am.  I have been taking biotin for a year or so, I use a weekly hair mask, cleanse my hair with Wen products, use heat protectors, other styling products, and hair tools.  I still go in for regular trimmings, but my hair care has many more steps now.  I want it to be healthy, thick, shiny, and continue to grow.  Before I started taking the Aviva supplements, I stopped my biotin.  Nothing else has changed.  I have to say within 2 weeks, I was seeing growth and added thickness!  Here are some before and after pictures

                Taken April 4th

                Taken April 26th

You can see, not only is my hair longer, but thicker!  I styled it the same way in both pics, and used the same products.  These supplements are the only changes that I have made to my hair routine.  I do take them faithfully.  I have a 2 months supply.  I will show my results again, once my two months is up!

So, how do these supplements provide such great results?  AVIVA uses a proprietary dual complex of Pentaflex HGF and Tetra HHL, that works with your hairs natural cycle to stimulate healthy growth from within - up to 6mm beneath the scalps surface - enriching and enhancing stronger, thicker, and more beautiful-looking hair.  Even if you aren't experiencing any hair issues, AVIVA can help make your hair more beautiful and healthy!  Other beneficial ingredients include, vitamin B5, folic acid, vitamin H (biotin), silica, iron, zinc, and iodine.  AVIVA is all DRUG FREE, all natural, and fish free.

I am so excited to share this product with you!  I know so many woman suffer from thin, lifeless, dull, and damaged hair.  I also know that a lot of women experience hair loss, which causes a lot of emotional stress.  If you have been looking for a product to help beautify your hair, give it a try.  I believe you will see quick results as I have.  I can't wait to show you my follow up pics, once I hit the 2 month mark!

*To receive a 20% discount and FREE shipping, on ALL AVIVA hair products, go to and use discount code AVIVAbstat14!!!

This item was provided for review courtesy of

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Recipe Of The Week - Roasted Asparagus Parmesan

Since we are moving toward warmer weather, a lot of people will be doing more grilling.  So, I found this healthy side dish that is quick and easy!


-2 lbs fresh asparagus spears

-  2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

-  Salt and Pepper

-  1/2 cup finely shredded parmesan cheese

1.  Snap off and disgard the hard base of the asparagus

2.  Place asparagus in a 15 x 10 x 1 baking dish.

3.  Drizzle with olive oil, tossing gently.

4.  Spread out into a single layer, sprinkle with salt and pepper.

5.  Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.

6.  Transfer to a serving platter and sprinkle with Parmesan.

* Serves 6 - 95 cal, 7g total fat (2 sat. fat), 102mg sodium, 4 carbs, 2 fibers, 5 protein

Nails Of The Week

Cover Girl Outlast Stay Brilliant - 165 Tickled Pink

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Quote Of The Week

The truest wisdom is a resolute determination. - Napoleon Bonaparte

Drugstore Beauty Deals - 05/04/14 -05/10/14 CVS, Rite-Aid, & Walgreens

Some great deals this week, but Walgreens is leading with the most BOGO FREE'S!  There are nine in total.


RB = Reward Bucks

-  Nature Made Vitamins & Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  Natures Bounty Vitamins & Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  Wet N Wild Cosmetics - Buy 2, Get 1 FREE

-  NYC Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  L'Oreal Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Arm & Hammer Toothpaste, 1 ct. Spinbrush, and 2 ct. Brushheads - BOGO 50% Off

-  Centrum Supplements - BOGO 50% Off

-  Dove Deodorant - BOGO 50% Off

-  Aquafresh Extreme Clean Toothpaste - BOGO 50% Off

-  Gold Bond - BOGO 50% Off

-  Aquaphor Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  John Frieda Hair Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Nair Hair Removers - BOGO 50% Off

-  Degree Deodorant - BOGO 50% Off

-  Caress Body Wash & Bar Soap - BOGO 50% Off

-  Eucerin Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Sally Hansen Cosmetics - Spend $12, get $5 RB

-  Revlon Cosmetics - Spend $10, Get $3 RB

-  Burt's Bee Lip, Skin, Cold, & Baby Bee Items - Spend $20, Get $5 RB

-  L'Oreal Sun Care - Spend $30, get $10 RB

-  Clear Scalp Hair Therapy - Spend $15, get $5 RB

-  Tresemme Premium Hair Care - Spend $15, get $5

-  Nexxus Shampoo, Conditioner, and Styler - Spend $20, get $10 RB

-  Maybelline Cosmetics - Spend $10, get $3 RB

-  Dove Advanced Hair Care - Spend $15, get $5 RB


UR = Up Rewards

-  Organix Hair Care - BOGO FREE

-  Arm & Hammer Spinbrush & Toothpaste - BOGO FREE

-  Nature Made Vitamins & Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  CeraVe Skin & Sun Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  John Frieda Shampoo, Conditioner, & Stylers - BOGO 50% Off

-  Clear Shampoo & Conditioners - BOGO 50% Off

-  Eucerin Skin & Baby Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Aquaphor Skin & Baby Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Maybelline Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Aveeno Sun Care & Sunless Productgs - BOGO 50% Off

-  Cover Girl Eye, Lip, & Nail Products - BOGO 50% Off

-  Neutrogena Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Almay Lip & Eye Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Wet N Wild Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Neutrogena Suncare & Sunless Tanning Products - BOGO 50% Off

-  Revlon Cosmetics, Beauty Tools, & Colorsilk Butter Cream - BOGO 50% Off

-  Dove Advanced Shampoo, Conditioner & Oxygen Foam - Spend $12, get $4 UR

-  Dove Body Wash & Hair Care - Buy 2, get $2 UR

-  Sundown Vitamins & Supplements - Spend $30, get $10 UR

-  Aveeno Skin Care - Buy 2, get $5 UR

-  Burts Bee & Gud Skin, Bath & Lip Care - Spend $15, get $5 UR

-  Tresemme Premium Shampoo, Conditioner, & Stylers - Buy 2, get $3 UR

John Frieda Precision Foam Color - Buy 2, get $5 UR

-  Invisible Solid Deodorant - Buy 2, get $2 UR


RR = Register Rewards

-  Select Fragrances - BOGO FREE

-  Dry Idea Deodorant - BOGO FREE

-  Natures Made Vitamins - BOGO FREE

-  Finest Nutrition Vitamins - BOGO FREE

-  Osteo Bi-Flex Supplements - BOGO FREE

-  Natures Bounty Vitamins - BOGO FREE

-  Banana Boat Sun Care - BOGO FREE

-  Right Guard Deodorant - BOGO FREE

-  Flintstones Vitamins - BOGO 50% Off

- Citrical - BOGO 50% Off

-  Caltrate - BOGO 50% Off

-  Centrum Vitamins - BOGO 50% Off

-  Neutrogena Skin, Hair, and Bath Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Cover Girl Face, Nail, and Eye Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Old Spice Hair Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Revlon Lip, Face, and Nail Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Aveeno Baby, Sun, and Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Maybelline Cosmetics - BOGO 50% Off

-  Garnier Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Dark & Lovely Products - BOGO 50% Off

-  Clairol Herbal Essences Hair Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  CeraVe Skin Care - BOGO 50% Off

-  Nexxus Hair Care - Buy 2, get $10 RR

-  Crest 3D White Whitestrips - Buy 1, get $10 RR

-  Colgate Optic White Toothpaste - Buy 1, get $2.50 RR

-  Gillette Venus, Mach3, and Fusion Proglide Razor - Buy $25 worth, get 5000 pts added to your card

-  Garnier Hair Care & Select Stylers - Buy $10 worth, get 2000 pts added to your card.

*These are National Deals and can vary from state to state.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

What Is A BMR, And How Do You Find Yours?

BMR is your Basal Metabolic Rate.  So, what does that mean?  Your BMR is how many calories you burn in a day, while at rest.  It is the calories that your body needs to keep it functioning.  So, even if you stayed in bed all day, your body would burn that many calories.

So, how do you figure out what your BMR is?  Here is the formula....

English Formula
For Women - BMR = 655 + (4.35 x weight in lbs.) +  (4.7 x height in inches) - (4.7 x age in yrs.)

I do have quite a few followers in other parts of the world, so here is the 
Metric Formula
For Women - BMR = 655 + (9.6 x weight in kilos) + (1.8 x height in cm) - (4.7 x age in years)

There are also several BMR calculators online.  So, why is it important to know your BMR?  Whether you are wanting to maintain or lose weight, this helps you to gauge how many calories you should be consuming.  You know what you burn in a day at rest, then you add in calories burned during exercise, and daily activity.  It takes a deficit of 3500 calories to lose one pound.  It is all simple math really....calories in and calories out.

You should also know that the more muscle you have, the higher your BMR will be.  It takes more calories to maintain muscle than fat.  That is why I alway talk to women about weight training.  Why just burn extra calories during a workout, when you can burn extra calories during a workout and while doing nothing at all??  Even just simple body weight exercises will build more muscle.  You don't need a gym full of weights to do it.  Push ups, squats, and lunges with no weight, is a great way to start!

I hope everyone is having a great week, pushing to reach their goals, and taking pride in their accomplishments!

-XOXO Monique