High Heels and Training Wheels: March 2013



Look What I Got: Crazy Cheap Finds

So I mentioned previously that I found some crazy cheap prices on some legit stuff at Walmart. Actually I mentioned that quite a few times...but anyway, I went back to check out the clearance rack again and I made out like a bandit!

So for those of you who are like me and hate math, that's a pair of skinnies, a chambray, 2 shirts and 2 nails polishes for 27 chucks. What's up! The nail polish wasn't on clearance but it was cheap anyway and I really like the colors. Very summery. This makes for chambray #3 but with prices like these, I could fill my closet with them if I really wanted to. 

Basically the lesson to be learned here is you can shop at Walmart without looking like you do...if ya know what I mean. Onto the OOTD! Here was my inspiration:

This fabulous young lady is Jenna from Wearable.Fun.Fashion. She is absolutely adorable and has great/affordable everyday style. I was following her blog long before I had my own. She has been inspiring my wardrobe for a while now and is one of the reasons I started this chaos blog. Bottom line: she's awesome and you should definitely stop by and check her out! :)

So here's my take


A Polka Dot Birthday

My baby girl is 5 years old today! Ahh!! Where does the time go? There's just something about 5 years old; they're most definitely not a toddler anymore. She is a full-fledged kid now! (sigh) I don't have any babies anymore! I'm trying my best not to come down with baby fever! Don't worry though, I'm sure my husband will keep me in check! Ha! 

Because her birthday falls on a Wednesday, we're obviously not having her party on her birthday, that'll happen this weekend. So today we went to her BFF's for a play date and then we took her out to eat. And we got her a tiny, pre-made cake from the grocery, which she thought was totally awesome because she wasn't expecting one until her party.


Birthday Princess

Little lady dressed herself, as per usual. She was really going for fabulous today wasn't she?


DIY Honey Face Mask

My very first post ever was on the DIY Orange Juice Face Mask and I did that one first because it was my most recent discovery but this one is my absolute favorite.

I was reluctant to hop on the natural, DIY bandwagon at first because I figured if this stuff really works then there's money to be made there. Why aren't companies using these ingredients in their skin care products? But after spending mucho dollars on all those masks/cleansers in the store with no improvement in my skin I thought what the hell, right? I'm glad I did because this works better than anything!

Honey is antibacterial. It moisturizes and acts as a natural inflammatory, which reduces redness and swelling.

Cinnamon is great for exfoliation. It will slough off dead skin cells and clear pores while being extremely gentle.

Lemon juice is a great astringent and it fades dark marks. It also wards off oxidation; think like the browning of an apple. It does the same thing for your skin.

Uses: soothe, smooth, heal, even out skin tone AND help remove blackheads

1.) Mix 2 tbsp of honey with 1 tbsp of lemon juice and 1 tsp of cinnamon

2.) Apply to your face and rub in gentle circles

3.) Let the mask set for 20-30 minutes

4.) Wash it off with warm water while scrubbing in gentle circles (again)

5.) Finish with your favorite face lotion (I use good ole Coconut Oil)

I never cease to be amazed when I use this mask. My face is always brighter and softer and my dark spots fade a little more with each use. I make this mask in big batches because I use it so frequently (about once a week). If you choose to do this, just double/triple the amount of each ingredient (we're not baking a cake here, just eyeball it and you'll be fine). It is a really runny mask so don't think you've done it wrong. I'm telling you though, it is so worth it to check it out!

So have you tried it yet? Let me know how it worked out!

You can also find High Heels on TwitterFacebook and Pinterest!

Girl's Day and the (not) Green Hair

Ok, you all know I'm the new kid in town and don't know a whole lot about this blogging business yet. I've been doing a lot of link ups lately and of course I add all their 'buttons' to my post to give them the props they deserve for so awesomely hosting. The trouble with that is, all of those buttons add up to be almost longer than the post itself sometimes! I don't know proper 'blogging etiquette' so I hope I'm not breaking the rules; I absolutely want to give them their well deserved shout out. I gave all these lovely hosts their own page up there. Of course, I will still link them in my posts I just thought they deserve a little more than a small text at the end of my ramblings.

Check it out, click around, there are so many fun blogs to be found! (whoa, totally didn't mean to make rhyme, that's not like my catch phrase or anything!) Or who knows, maybe your link is up there! If you know of any awesome link ups/blog hops I should check out, leave me a comment!

Alright, moving along... as I said yesterday, I'm on spring break Holla! So did I leave the house or change out of my sweats? Not a chance. Izzy and I had a girl's day! We did makeovers, DIY face masks (tutorial for that here and here), painted our nails, and I colored my hair.

I color my own hair at home for a number of reasons. My hair grows super fast, so when it says "touch up every 4-6 weeks", for me that means closer to 4 if not 3. Also, my hair is like 50% grey. I know you think that's an exaggeration and boy do I wish it was. I found my first grey hair when I was 17 and it's had 11 years to multiply. At first it was hilarious; 17 years old with a wild grey hair, that's hysterical! Now I'm just bitter. Basically it all falls back on how expensive it is to go get it done as frequently as I need it so it's go grey or do it myself.

I know the thought of coloring your hair yourself with something you bought in a grocery store can be really intimidating. But I'm here to tell you that it's actually so easy it's stupid and any idiot can do it. Seriously. I have tried so many different brands of at-home hair dye. I used the Garnier for such a long time because it had this oil in there that made my hair so shiny. But on one rainy day, I couldn't afford to even buy hair dye. We had dance class tuition due, recital costume to pay for, t-ball fees in addition to all other monthly expenses and I just did not have any extra money. So sad, I know. I didn't have a choice so I just had to buy the cheapest and that turned out to be Revlon at $2.94.

I was just waiting for my hair to turn green. I mean, why was this only 3 bucks?? But I opted for green over grey. The directions are simple and it comes with all the same dye paraphernalia as the others; gloves, developer, color and conditioner.

It's incredibly simple. Add your color to your developer, WEAR THE GLOVES (I'll spare you that story), distribute it evenly and wait. After your time's up, hop in the shower, rinse it well and add your conditioner. DONE! I tentatively looked in the mirror expecting some bright, primary color but it was a brilliant, dimensional color and it was so shiny! My $3 Revlon left my $7 Garnier in the dust!

Moral of the story, if you're trying to save some money, try out the at-home dye. I mean, $80 vs $3? It's a no brainer for me. And you cannot screw this up. Obvi you can't go from black to blonde at home, nor should you want to. If you're making a drastic change, opt for a salon. But, if you're just trying to cover some greys or give your hair a little kick, there is just no sense in spending so much mullah. 


Casual Shopping

Hey guys! I've got some major construction planned for this here blog. Well, it might not be considered major construction for anyone else but I'm learning as I go and it can be time consuming.

This was a really good weekend. Why you ask? Because this weekend marked the beginning of my spring break! Whoo! And it's perfect timing because little miss turns 5 this week!! I cannot believe she's 5! All parents say this but, where does the time go?

Her and I went out party shopping this weekend at Micheal's and The Dollar Store!! It's amazing what you can find when you are actively trying to save money! I never visit The Dollar Store but I am soo glad I decided to check it out because it saved me tons! I have lots of projects planned for her party (thank god I'm off all week to do them) so stay tuned for that! 

Since the day was spent shopping, I dressed comfy. I hate when you're getting in and out of the car and you have to repeatedly pull down your shirt or pull up your pants. You know the feeling! So comfy, casual it was!


Friday Funday and a Mini Guest Post

Ok, so I've been dressing for spring lately. My thought was if I dress like it's spring, maybe it will encourage spring to show it's much anticipated face around here. But you know what my optimistic endeavors have gotten me? Even lower temperatures and more snow! I just can't handle any. more. snow! I know mother nature did it on purpose. She's just trying to prove a point. Dress for spring all you want but spring will happen when I damn well want it to. So I've given up on that strategy and I'm trying reverse psychology. I'm dressing for cold weather today, maybe that'll put a little pep in her step and she'll get it in gear!

Also, if you haven't noticed, today's necklace is the same necklace from Wednesday. I am in dire need of accessories! It was never my thing because wearing jewelry with your sweats is just redundant. It's like sprinkling glitter on poo and calling it pretty; it just isn't. So if anyone knows of any great jewelry for cheap, please tell me where I can find it!

So anyway, here's my cold-weather-embracing outfit of the day (sigh) Big disclaimer here, I wasn't actually just dressing for cold...it was legit freezing. Which required us to stay indoors which then makes for terrible quality pictures. Maybe I should have just skipped today's post...but I really like this particular outfit so just bear with me on the poor photos.


Chambray Part Deux

Happy Thursday! Today's post is another one of those Walmart finds! I don't know why these items being from Walmart thrills me so much. I've gotten way better deals on my thrifting ventures but for some reason these are just exciting to me. Maybe because Walmart has always just been a grocery to me? I don't know but it's irrelevant I suppose; a deal is a deal! This particular shirt is chambray number deux. I just love the look. It will be quite sad when it goes out and I'm stuck with all this chambray. Eh, who cares, it's certainly better than the so-worn-and-thin-it's-like-tissue-paper 'Race for the Cure' t-shirts I have been living in!

I also wanted to touch on the 'mommy side' for a minute. My husband and I have been tossing around the idea of homeschooling. I know I've mostly connected with "fashion related" blogs but if you've got any info or know someone who does, throw them my way! Mama's got to make them babies smart, right? Right.

(Don't let the bright sun and warm color fool you; I was freezing! Mother nature needs to get her sh*t in gear!) So I couldn't replicate entirely but it still set the tone for this particular outfit choice

skinny jeans color jeans fashion budget style


What I Wore Wednesday: Budget Friendly Finds

Hello, lovely people who decided to grace my blog! I'll just go ahead and say thanks immediately just for coming! I have been having so much fun with all of these awesome link-ups; I have found so many great, inspiring blogs! As you probably know, I am completely new to the bloggy world so every last bit of this was completely forgein to me. I have been meandering through and I am so glad I decided to be a part of it all. Every fashion/beauty product I have bought in the last 2 months has been completely inspired by one of you. I don't know if I could have began this journey without all of your wonderful blogs!

I have also been so encouraged by all of the lovely comments and simple page views! I honestly did not know if a single person would ever lay eyes on anything I had to share but my numbers are going up and along with it, my confidence. I find myself actually thinking every night about what I am going to wear the next day and I've been spending a few extra minutes on myself, putting on makeup and doing something with my hair. As a mom who lived in yoga pants and ponytails, this is HUGE! Again, thank you! 

So without further ado here's my budget friendly outfit of the day!


What I Wore: Perfect Polka Dots

I have to say that I absolutely hate this weather! It is insane here! It was a beautiful 70º on Saturday and then yesterday I woke up to the most snow we've had all winter! It's been somewhat washed away today by the rain but it's just as cold and ugly. That's the Ohio Valley for ya! This is one person who really hates the cold. Luckily though, I snapped a couple pics of my outfit on Friday to save for a rainy day (literally!)

On a side note, I went to Walmart today to do my regular grocery shopping and ended up with some great finds! That's the thing when you're trying to save money, you have to think outside the box! I mean, who would have ever thought you would find clothes at Walmart?? But I spent pennies and got some really great shirts. I can't wait to share them with you, you're going to be so surprised at what I found, I was!

Sweater: Abercrombie & Fitch (old)
Shirt: TJ Maxx ($10.00)
Jeans: Old Navy ($7.00)
Flats: Target ($7.50)
Scarf: Goodwill! ($0.99)

Grand Total: $25.49

Once again, linking up with these lovely ladies!
And also first timing over at DC in Style

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Makeup on the Cheap: Base Products

Hey girl hey! I'm sorry for yesterday's absence, I had full intentions of posting this then but the weather here was a beautiful 70º and I just could not make myself come inside! I promise I will try to make it up to you with today's post! I've done style, I've done skin care and I've done hair care so today I'm doing makeup! Yes, it is quite a lengthy post. But, if you're going to trust me for advice, I want to give you a reason why you should!

When I first thought about writing this post....well, when I thought about starting this blog even, I thought 'What information do I possibly have to offer anyone?' But ya know, I know there are people out there who are still where I was a year ago; who are just now wanting to take that step into reclaiming themselves and they have no idea where to start. Shoot, I'm still learning everyday myself! But we all have to start somewhere! 

All of my knowledge and inspiration came from blogs like this and if I can help even one woman on her journey to feeling better about herself, then I've already accomplished my blog's entire purpose. I've been there, done that and let me tell you, it seems a lot more intimidating than it is! I am not, by any means, a makeup specialist (or skincare specialist or fashion guru) but I am a real woman with real kids and a real budget and I know, as much as anyone, how hard that can be sometimes. Especially if you're trying to conquer it on extremely limited funds!

So, I was going to do one inclusive post and cover all makeup products and tips and such but I realized very quickly that would make for a super long read. I don't have a whole lot of tricks in my makeup bag, but I have a little more than I can fit all at one time. So I am starting a makeup series and today I'm starting with some great, CHEAP base products.

Base Products: Coverage
My skin has taken a huge turn for the worse this year. I talked a little about my skin issues in my Orange Juice Face Mask post and how their clearing up...but it's happening very slowly and I've got to cover it in the meantime. My pores have gotten larger, my under eye circles have gotten darker and my break out scars are really dragging their feet disappearing. These products are the ones I've found to work best for these specific needs.

All of these products are drugstore and all of them do the job they are intended for very well. And although drugstore makeup can be great product and save you TONS, it has one drawback. The biggest con with drug store makeup is not being able to test it out before you buy it. But hopefully I can take some of the guesswork out of it. Because let me tell you, I learned what products were worthy through a lot of trial and error. It can get expensive and that's no good! Especially since the entire purpose of buying drugstore is to save you money! So, here is a list of base products in my makeup arsenal that are awesome AND affordable!

Makeup Needs:
  • full coverage, 
  • a smoothing, flawless finish 
  • long lasting, all day wear

  1. I like my for my foundation/concealer to be my coverage, so I really like having a translucent powder. I just need something to set my foundation and control shine and REVLON PHOTOREADY Translucent Finisher is really good. It lasts all day and it has photochromatic pigments. You're going "Huh? What's that?" Yeah, that means it reflects light. So it gives you a really nice dewy glow also.
  2. I kept hearing about this REVLON PHOTOREADY foundation. People were raving about it, so I gave it a shot. At first I didn't like it.... At all! But, I had paid for the dang thing and I was determined to stick it out. Once I found the stippling technique (post on that coming soon!), it fixed the issues I was having and I instantly feel in love with it. And yes, it also has those photochromatic pigments too. This foundation is essential for pictures. Know that ghostly washed out look you get in photographs? Yeah, that's your makeup. This foundation doesn't do that so it's great for a fashion blogger!
  3. Physician's Formula is a little pricier for drugstore makeup, I know. But PHYSICIANS FORMULA Correcting Primer has lasted me so long that it's worth it and it really does the job. If you know anything about the color wheel, you know green cancels redness out and this is perfect for me. Whether you need the redness control or you prefer the standard primer, this one is awesome. My makeup goes on smoother and still looks fresh by the end of the day.
  4. Concealer is a big one for me. If you don't have to use it, I envy you! L'OREAL Visible Lift Serum Absolute Concealer checks all the boxes for me. It has amazing coverage and it blends super easily. It doesn't settle into lines and wrinkles either which is great for my under eye area AND it holds up all day.
Bonus Product

L'OREAL Magic Lumi Highlighter is exactly what it says, a highlighter. It was another product that I kept hearing about everywhere. I don't use this one on a day-to-day basis, only if I'm going out somewhere. If you do highlighting and contouring, this primer is perfect. I use it under my eyes and it really brightens them up. It's also really lightweight and helps your makeup to stay flawless all day. 

That's it for today! (You're saying "Thank God!") I know this was a pretty lengthy post and the rest of the makeup series won't be like this. I promise! I just wanted to elaborate on my purpose and how this information can be helpful to you. Makeup was the most intimidating to me and it really doesn't have to be. Let me know how it goes if you try one of these out! Or let me know if you have any great products I should check out, I love to try new things!

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DIY Coconut Oil Hair Mask

Coconut oil can be used for a whole array of things. It can reduce the appearance of wrinkles, remove eye makeup, moisturize your skin, be used as shaving cream, it can prevent stretch marks and much much more. So, if you're trying to stay on a budget and save some mullah, you can kill like 18 birds with this one coconut stone. Seriously. And I got it at the grocery for only 6 bucks! Think about how money you spend on all of the different products coconut oil can replace for only $6! Wow, I'm starting to sound like I'm a salesman...

Anyway, you can read all about the full benefits here but today, I'm using it as a hair mask. I've tried olive oil because I had heard it was really good but it just made my hair greasy and it strips your hair color. We don't want that! The coconut oil conditions but it is weightless and it will not alter the color of your hair. So DO NOT get olive oil. 

Coconut Oil Hair Mask

Uses: condition, de-frizz and improve your hair's overall health

My hair was in dire need of some help. I haven't had my hair cut in 3 years; not even a trim. Yes, you read that right; 3 years! Plus I have terrible grey hair (yeah, I'm real lucky like that) and I color it every 4-6 weeks. So my hair was definitely in trouble and this mask alone brought my hair back from the dead! For this mask you really only need the coconut oil.  I also use:

a microwave safe container of some sort 
a large clip (or ponytail holder) 
a wide tooth comb 
and a shower cap (optional)
**BONUS for added shine, mix 1 tbsp of honey with your coconut oil

1.)   Coconut oil isn't a liquid like other oils. 76º and below, it is a solid so you have to put it in the microwave. There is no scientific measurements here, I just use a heaping spoonful like in the picture above. I throw it in the microwave in a reusable plastic container for 10 seconds and stir. It won't be perfectly smooth; it will have some chunks in it and that's ok. 

2.)   I divide my hair into 2 sections and literally just start slathering (that's a technical term) it onto my dry hair. DO NOT PUT IT ALL THE WAY TO YOUR ROOTS! I made this mistake the first time and when I blow dried my hair, it was gorgeous and gleaming but the next morning (I shower at night) it looked as if I hadn't showered in a week! Now, I always start at the mid-line and work my way down to my ends. 

3.)   Next, I run a wide tooth comb through my hair just to distribute the oil evenly and then I clip it up on top of my head to set.

Here's where the optional shower cap comes in:
You can use heat to speed up the process. If you don't want to use heat, you're done. Just leave it to set for 30 minutes. If you're feeling impatient or are in a hurry, you can use a shower cap and blow dryer to speed your wait time to only 15 minutes. This step will open your hair follicles for the oil to absorb more quickly. I personally don't like to use the heat because heat damages your hair and it just seems counter productive to me but that's up to you.

 4.)   Once you're time is up, wet your hair and lather with your shampoo. Heard the phrase "like oil and water"? You will have to use shampoo to efficiently break up the oil. Whether you finish with conditioner, however, is your choice. Others say they follow with shampoo only but I still use my conditioner after I've washed because my shampoo in itself can be drying. Again, it's up you. 

That's it! Stand back and admire your gorgeous hair! This really does help the condition of your hair. Yes, it moisturizes But, it really does improve your hair's overall health so the benefits are long term. I used this mask before every shower for about a week to get my hair's health back to where it should be but now I just use as needed when I think my hair could use a boost.

Give it a try! You have nothing to lose! If you have any questions just leave me a comment and I'll be happy to answer. And if you try it out, let me know how it goes!


What I Wore: Copy Cat Closet

It's hump day! And today I'm linking-up at Ma Nouvelle Mode for this week's Copy Cat Challenge. I love this challenge; it is a big reason for starting this little blog of mine. (Oooh that's a cute name! 'This little blog of mine' although I'm sure it's taken) The challenge each week is an inspiration photo or a key theme such as 'stripes'. Then you come up with your own version of that outfit/theme and link up your photo on Wednesday. I've been participating on my own long before I had a blog to link up and let me tell you, it is so much fun. It really does keep you from getting in an outfit rut or a 'funk'. I even went out and bought my leopard print flats just for a challenge! Something I would never ever buy on my own and I am so glad I did because they are super duper cute! You should give it a try!

the Grant life

Now, here I just went on and on about how it challenges you to wear something different and then I go and cheat...on my first week! Here is this week's inspiration photo:

SUCH a cute outfit. But, I am just starting to inch out of my 'mom wear' and I do not own a blazer....or ANY heels! I know, right!? Especially since my blog is High Heels and Training Wheels! I feel so ashamed to admit that! I'm a fraud! Ahh! But seriously, I'm working my way up to this fabulousness and eventually the name will fit. It's a learning process, right? 

So without further ado, here is what I wore today. I finally get to link-up with my new flats from the animal print Copy Cat Challenge. Better late than never!

Shoes: TJ Maxx ($5.00) 
Jeans: Old Navy ($6.50) 
Chambray: TJ Maxx ($10.00) 
Scarf: Goodwill ($ .99) 
Braclet: ? (old) 

Grand Total: ($22.49) 

How's that for savings?? I'm very proud of my thriftiness on this one! If you haven't already, you should check out Ma Nouvelle Mode. It is such a fun blog! Natalia is very inspiring and I love all the fun stuff she posts! Well, that's it for me. Happy hump day!

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Link Up: YOLO Mondays

So today is my first link-up! Hooray! I am linking up with Molly from Still Being Molly and Carly from Lipgloss and Crayons for YOLO Mondays
Today is less of a 'YOLO' Monday and more of a 'really tired, really lazy, don't-feel-like-doing-anything' kind of Monday. It's a Monday for starters, that pretty much speaks for itself. It's also my early class day and it's pouring outside. We're talking tsunami status.

But the main reason for this less-than-stellar Monday is this time change! I love that it stays light out longer but it always messes with me for a while. I just could not wake up and I hit the snooze button five one too many times this morning. This always means I end up wearing one of my boring, mindless, comfy, go-to outfits. So, sadly, my first link-up/outfit post is really pretty plain. But even though it's raining, I was inspired by the beautiful 66 degree day we had yesterday so I did at least wear some bright, spring colors.
Major disclaimer: No one was home today but me and Iz. So she took the pictures. She's 4. And the batteries were dead in my camera so I had to use my phone. I promise, they will get better!

Shoes: Mossimo ($7.50) 
Jeans: Mossimo ($20.00) 
Sweater: Xhilaration ($15.00) 
Scarf: Merona ($10.00) 

Grand total: ($52.50)

Now, I did not buy all of these items at the same time to make this outfit or anything. I just really love me some Target. Ya dig? 

Mondays are also little miss's dance class...
Ain't she darling?


So, who am I? And what is so special about this blog? 

That's a really good question; one I'm still working on. One I can hopefully gain more insight to through my blogging endeavors. But, I'm sure you're expecting something a little more specific than that, so let's start with..

Some Facts

My name is Lindsey. I am a whopping 28 years old now. Gasp! I am a married mom of three. I married my high school sweetheart, (insert 'Aww' here) Justin. He and I have been married for 5 years now. I have two boisterous boys, Alex(8) and Mason(6). And one sassy little girl, Izzy(4). They take up much of my time, as most kids do. However, I did decide to go back to school after 10 years of just being "mommy" because of some awesome friends and family and their profuse encouragement. I've decided to explore Medical Laboratory Technology. I am currently in my first year and I'm (surprisingly) kicking butt! So I'm wearing a lot of hats right now...mom, wife, student, chauffeur, cook, maid, etc. 

The Revelation

After finally rejoining the real world of adults, I realized I'd lost a lot of myself through the journey of parenthood. I didn't have a style. I didn't have a taste. And certainly didn't have any "me" time! Quite frankly, if I had ever gotten any I wouldn't know what to do with it! So I decided I needed to take back a part of myself. I needed to figure out how to balance being Lindsey and being mommy. Dig down, reclaim myself and somehow make all these changes on very limited funds. With a household of kids and only 1 income, I have to figure out how to do it all and be pretty thrifty doing it. 

Why the Blog?

Through this great revelation, coupled with inspiration from some awesome blogs, I've decided to start one of my own. If not to inspire someone else, to inspire myself. Keep myself going; keep myself motivated. Challenge myself to step outside of my comfort zone and think outside of the box. 

So you will not find a model, trendsetter or "fashionista" (I really hate that word) here. It's just a real world mom, on a real world budget trying to balance a world of High Heels and Training Wheels. 

Give me a shout!

I am brand new to the blogging world and can always use advice/tips/tricks on navigating this thing. Please feel free to show some mercy on my newbie blogger soul! Or, I'd love to just hear from you! What inspires you? What is your personal style? How do you stay fabulous and on budget? Let me know! Leave me a comment or shoot me an email!


Orange Juice Face Mask

Hey, guys! Today is Sunday, which is also known as laundry day at my house. Today is my day to stay home sans makeup, in my cozy flannel pants, fuzzy socks, favorite faded t-shirt, and all-too-familiar bun. It's a gruesome sight but I truly look forward to these days...don't you? I like looking nice but nothing compares to those fuzzy socks! So while I'm sitting around looking like the poster for laziness, I like to use some of my DIY face masks. Today I used one of my favorites; the orange juice/baking soda mask.

Everyone always hears how important sunscreen is, right? Well, I look better with a tan (who doesn't?) so I always thought "To heck with that! I want my summer glow!" Now I'm paying the price for it with terrible sun damage; my nose looks like I have a permanent sun burn. Not quite the summer glow I was hoping to achieve. My pores all of a sudden have just expanded within the last few months also; you could park a Buick in those babies! And my entire face has a lot of general, uneven redness. Reluctantly I must admit that all those people who said wear sunscreen, moisturize daily, and remove your makeup every night knew a thing or two! So what do I do about it now? I can see a dermatologist and spend gobs of money (that I don't have!) OR I can try some things at home, DIY style.

 If you look around Pinterest, you'll find tons of natural DIY masks targeting a number of different skin issues. So I took what knowledge I could gain from them and incorporated it into my own personalized regime. I've been using these for a few months now and, as expected, some are only good for making a mess. They can't all be winners! However, some actually do what they're supposed to. I'm going to share with you, one-by-one, those which are worth your time so you don't have to sift through all the flops and messes like I did. Here's what I used today...

This mask's ingredients are meant to exfoliate, tighten up your pores and brighten your skin. Exactly what we need, right? All you need is orange juice (it can be the juice of an actual orange or the juice from a carton but none of that Sunny D stuff, we're looking for Vitamin C here) and baking soda. 

The baking soda is your exfoliant. It's perfect for this because it is abrasive enough to slough off dead skin and remove dirt and oil from pores, but it's gentle enough that it will not scratch or irritate your delicate skin.

Orange juice is good for it's vitamin C. This improves your skin's texture and can help to brighten and rejuvenate it. Oranges also contain collagen which will slow the skin's aging process as well. 

How's that for handy? All this time you had your skin's magic treatment in your kitchen and you never even knew! I got the ingredients at the grocery for like 2 bucks and the instructions are really simple:

  1. Mix together 1 tbsp of OJ and 1 tbsp of baking soda. I prefer to make a bigger batch to have on hand, so you can choose to do more or less. You're basically just mixing equal parts.
  2. Smear (that's a technical term) the mixture on your face. I like to lightly 'scrub' to get maximum exfoliation and to really get it on my skin. You don't want to be too harsh; just small gentle circles. 
  3. Let it set for about 20 minutes. I like to let it set a bit longer just so I feel like it really had time to do it's job but you really just need enough time for it to set up and harden.
  4. Rinse! I like to lightly rub in circular motions again; really getting those exfoliating benefits.
  5. (Optional) I ALWAYS use coconut oil after any mask. I gave up facial lotion long ago and substituted the coconut oil. It has antibacterial benefits and it moisturizes like a dream! If you don't have coconut oil though, just follow up with your favorite face moisturizer.

Now, some people have said that this mask tingles. Some have even said it burns. I didn't have either of these issues but I imagine it all depends how sensitive your skin is. I thought it itched at best, but you should take that into consideration when using this. If you have sensitive skin, I would suggest treating it like any other new product. I would test a small section to see how your skin reacts before applying it to your entire face. 

I saw minimal results right away, but with every application I see it more and more. Like I said, I have made a proper mess of my skin over the years, so I have a much bigger hill to climb and this mask definitely has it's work cut out for it. I do this in regular rotation with my other masks; about every 3rd day. If your skin isn't in quite as bad shape as mine though, you probably won't need it as frequently. 

This mask, along with my other DIY masks, has made my skin breakout free and SO soft! It hasn't looked this good in years! If you intend to make a bigger batch like I do, don't make so much that you can't use it all before your OJ expires. You don't want funky juice slathered on your face! And be sure to store it in the fridge (I'll spare you that horror story). Let me know if you have any questions and good luck!

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