How I'm Ending 2019| I'm Engaged!

If you follow me on instagram or twitter you may already know this, but I got engaged on Christmas Eve! I'm a huge Disney fan, and my fiancé Martin surprised me with a trip this holiday. He was meeting me that week to have Christmas with my family in Florida, but we decided to take a day for ourselves and visit Magic Kingdom on the 24th. My family took trips to Disney almost every year when I was growing up, so I know Disney like the back of my hand and was excited to show Martin around. Martin hadn't been to the parks since he was a toddler, so I was extra excited for his sake.
Find more pics on the gram | @acrueltyfreeme

Current Skincare Favorites & Attempting to Go Zero Waste

It's been awhile since I've done a skincare roundup, and today I wanted to share a few favorites of mine. I've been testing all of these products for the last 6+ months and they are now staples in my routine, some of the products mentioned are re-purchases, which is rare for me since I'm always looking to test out the next best thing.

As 2019 comes to an end I've been thinking about the changes I've made this year and one of them was the goal to be more sustainable. I'm hoping to become more sustainable as time goes on; the first steps I've made towards sustainability have been in my life as a blogger. I wouldn't say I've been doing a 'no buy' but I've restrained myself to only purchasing or accepting PR packages when I'm in need of a particular type of product. Typically I'll wait until something is empty before purchasing something new. When I first started receiving PR packages I would hoard products, and honestly there isn't a need for that. Partially because I live in an NYC apartment with no storage, but also because there just isn't a need for so much product, it was expiring before I had a chance to finish the canister. If you're finding yourself in the same predicament I would highly suggest donating unused products to a local women's shelter or to project beauty share.

2019 Holiday Gift Guide

It's that time of year again twinkling lights, fuzzy stockings, and evergreen candles. With all the hustle and bustle it can be hard to find that perfect gift for the loved ones on your list. As per tradition I wanted to share a few of my top cruelty free picks this holiday season in the hopes that you can check a few people off your list.

Attending the Rabot 1745 Press Launch & First Impressions

On Tuesday I was invited for a sneak peek of Rabot 1745, Hotel Chocolat's St. Lucia inspired skincare line. The line is sustainable, cruelty free, and the ingredients are sourced from the Rabot Estate in St. Lucia, the same estate where Hotel Chocolat sources their cocoa.

Walking into Hotel Chocolat (located across from the Lexington Ave entrance to Grand Central Station) I was instantly greeted by the delightful and inviting scent of chocolate. The lovely Rabot 1745 team shared the brand's history, pointed out some key ingredients, and I was treated to a hand massage and signature drink. I chose the chili coconut hot chocolate and it was delicious, and also impossible to drink without making a mess... which I didn't even mind.

The line, available on both Amazon and the Rabot 1745 site, has a bit of everything! The team graciously gifted me a few items to take home and I wanted to give my first impressions.

Rabot 1745 Coconut Chocolat Lip Balm

I've kept this stashed in my handbag the whole week, and usually I'm really bad at remembering to apply lip balm, but not this week. I've found myself reapplying this multiple times a day. It smells delightful and keeps my lips feeling smooth and soft. I also love the bamboo packaging.

Where in the world is @acrueltyfreeme?

It's been yet another hot minute since I posted here. If you haven't been keeping up with my instagram, I started explaining a bit there, but I thought it was time I gave the blog an update as well.

Sustainability has played a huge role in my decision to be less active these past few months. I was receiving PR packages as well as purchasing so many products that I couldn't possibly get through them all in a timely manner.  I also realized how many products in varying stages of empty were cluttering my bathroom and bedroom. Some products came in recyclable packaging, but others were less sustainable or included an appalling amount of shipping materials.

Eventually I got it together and donated the items I never got to use, or those that I had wayyy to much excess of. I would encourage you to do the same if you feel as if you're drowning in products.

These days I'm only receiving PR packages for brands I know I'll actually get use out of, or fit a space in my current collection. Rather than letting products clutter my space and my mind, I prefer to wait to review products until I have a need for them in my life. This has led to a decline in posts, but I feel better knowing that I'm not contributing as much to the waste and environmental issues on this planet.

Eddie Funkhouser; First Impressions

It's been absolutely ages since I did a beauty review, so I am pretty pumped to publish my first impressions on a few Eddie Funkhouser products. EF kindly sent me a package last month, you can see my unboxing in my highlights. The box was filled with rocking products including the Decadence eye shadow palette, Ultra Definition Eye Lining Stylus, and a multitude of Molten Metal Matte Lip Creams, keep reading to find out which products were my favorites.

For a little context I saw Avenger's End Game while testing out this makeup look lol. So I put this look through a lot.
I used the Decadence palette for my eye look, while I loved the finished look I used a few matte separates to complete it. This palette is filled with shimmer and glitter shades. Lately I've been going for a very bronzed and sparkly look and this palette fits that routine well.

City Girl Skincare Series| 3 | Sweat Proof, Sunshine Friendly Makeup

After taking a few weeks off from blogging due to work changes, family trips, and just a lack of inspiration I'm back to share more tips in my city girl skincare series.

I'm quickly learning that summers in the city are hot, sweaty, and kind of gross. Most days I'd rather forego makeup, but over the last few week's I've been using FRÉ's Glow Me Tinted Defense Moisturizer. I've been using this since the start of spring, as soon as the sun emerged in NYC. This year I'm really trying to take using an SPF seriously and find it super convenient that this tinted moisturizer contains SPF 15.

City Girl Skincare Series| 2 | DIY Mask Recipe for Congested Pores

My skin has been absolutely thriving on The Better Skin Co. products that I featured in my last post, my skin is smooth and deep breakouts seem to clear up quicker than ever.

I asked on my instagram story if you would like to see more of the 'City Girl Skincare' posts and I decided to make a series of it! These posts will be focused on how I combat environmental stressors/pollution as well as congestion.
Katherine Hanlon| @tinymountain
It's been a hot minute since I used my holy grail face mask. I have definitely posted about this before but I love using aztec secret indian healing clay, along with ACV to clear my pores and 'reset' my skin. I used to do this weekly, but that tradition fell by the wayside these past few months.

City Girl Skincare Series| 1 | Anti Pollution Skincare Routine

Originally I planned to write a gym bag essentials post focused around cruelty free skincare I of course keep in my gym bag, but I realized that my skin has changed a bit in the past few months and part of that I think is just that I'm getting older, but part of it also has to do with the change in my environment.

In January I began working in NYC, I still live about 1-2 hours (depending on my preferred transportation method) outside of the city-- but after being there 5 days a week I was starting to see a change in my skin.

My skin started transforming earlier this winter (Hello aging) and I rarely have a breakout, however I was experiencing dry patches here and there, as well as an increase in clogged pores. I love using oils so I recently switched to Herbivore's Emerald oil, and use that in place of my moisturizer.

The Organic Skin Co| First Impressions

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It has been a hot second since I've uploaded a YouTube video, but I figured what better way to show you new products then to demo them and show you exactly how they apply.

I had a lot of fun filming and editing this video, so I hope you enjoy it too! The makeup I did in this video is very similar to my everyday makeup but I subbed in some lovely products from The Organic Skin Co. Previously I had tried their lipsticks, but I really enjoyed sampling a wider range of products today.

2019 Valentine's Day Gift Guide

I can't believe it's practically Valentine's Day already! Whether you're celebrating as a couple, with friends, or exercising some self care I've curated some awesome items for this years gift guide to treat that special someone in your life.

For the sneaker head, street style fashionista, or fitness buff in your life; Adidas Originals has unveiled their line of Samba and Gazelle cases for the latest iPhone models (XR, XS/X, and XS Max). Their iconic 3 stripe design is now available for your phone.

Post Commute Self Care| CBD Living Water Brand Focus

Pour yourself a glass of wine and start a bath, the weekend is finally here!

It's only been about two weeks since my last post but I feel as if I've been away from the blog for months. Please excuse my absence I've been working on a blog schedule now that I've started my new job. The past two weeks have been amazing, and honestly I'm the happiest I have been in a long time. I feel as if this new role is a great start to my dream career. I'm on cloud 9, since this is a role I've been hoping for.

With a new role comes a new schedule, hence my absence from my blog, and instagram. I'm also adjusting to a new commute. Which actually gave me the perfect test environment for today's brand feature.

My first week of work I opted to walk more often than I took the shuttle and it definitely had an effect on my legs (re: sore af). Thankfully CBD Living sent me a few of their pain reliving skincare products, so I put them to the test.