Why I decided to start from scratch…again

Hello everyone,

I have been wanting to write this post for months and months, but I hadn’t felt like I was ready until recently. As many of you might know, in September I moved from the Midwest to Seattle. I decided to make the move for my career, but more importantly for myself.

Moving to Seattle was not the first time I had moved somewhere on my own or without knowing many people. As a little background, my family made three big moves when I was a kid. First we moved out of the city to the suburbs, then to Minnesota, and then to Kansas City. Each move was so difficult for me. At first it was moving to the suburbs, no big deal but this girl didn’t know much English. The move to Minnesota was definitely the most painful, it was just the four of us (my immediate family) which was something we were not used to at all. After a less than two years in Minnesota came the move to Kansas City, which was difficult but for different reasons. My sister and I were at the age where it was harder to make friends and were just getting settled in to our new lives in Minnesota. After I graduated high school in Kansas City, I made the decision to head to Saint Louis University where I did not know a single person. The fall semester of my junior year I studied abroad in Shanghai (with a little extra push from my dad) where I was the only student from the US in my program. I promise this all ties in somehow…

Anyways, so I moved out here a few months ago. I always say it was because of my job, which is partially true but I put Seattle as my first pick. Why didn’t I put St. Louis, the city I had been interning in and going to school in for the last four years? Well, let me tell ya. I needed a change again. All my life my parents have been pushing me and my sister to be better, do better, and to get out of our comfort zones. I couldn’t imagine staying in the same city again for more than four years unless I was starting a family.

Part of the reason why I chose Seattle over St. Louis was because I knew that I needed to be influenced by different people. I knew if I had stayed in St. Louis I wouldn’t have met new people and made new connections at work. I would have continued to see my friends from college and talk to the same managers at work. Its not that I wanted to ditch my old friends and coworkers, its just that I could already see myself becoming close minded. I knew that staying where I was was not the best thing for me to do my first year after college. It was time for me to be uncomfortable again. I played it safe for almost four years in St. Louis and it was time for me to start over again.

This move was a huge decision, but it was one I had to make on my own. I knew that no matter what I chose my parents would have supported me and that I would manage on my own. I think its just very easy to get comfortable with a city, a group of friends, a job, etc. but you don’t always want to be comfortable. If you’re comfortable for too long, you stop growing. I saw this move as an opportunity to make advancements in my career, meet new people, and see a new side of the country (hello mountains!)

We hated that my parents made us move but it made us independent and grow as individuals. If you were to ask us today we would say it was the best thing for us. We wouldn’t have been pushed to meet new people, to learn new things, or to make the best out of a really crappy situation. And that’s exactly what I chose to do when I decided to move to Seattle. I chose to put myself in an extremely uncomfortable scary situation, start working in a different area of my company, move across the country, and live alone for the first time in my life.

Since being in Seattle I have not regretted it once. Of course having to fly home for the holidays can be frustrating, but my family will always be there for me when I go home. Don’t get caught in a job, a city, or a routine because its easy and comfortable. Push yourself to learn something new, meet new people, and do something for yourself and no one else.

 

Xoxo,

Lisa Marie

Top 10 Products of 2017

I know, I haven’t posted in MONTHS. But I want to get back to sharing things I love with you so I thought I would share my top 10 purchases of 2017. These are products that I bought and use regularly!

Top Beauty Products

1. It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In Product : I love this product because it’s not too heavy for my hair. I have naturally wavy hair and need something to tame frizz and add shine to my waves. I use this after the shower on my damp hair and run it through my waves and then let my hair air dry.  On days I’m not washing my hair, I’ll spray some in my hands to add some definition back into my waves. The key to this product is spraying it in to your hands and then working it in to your hair. If you just spray it in your hair, it will just get stuck in that spot.

2. Olaplex No.3 Hair Protector : Soo a few months ago I went to the hair salon and left with a pretty awful hair job. Pretty awful as in most of my head was bleached a coppery color. NOT CUTE. To aid my hair back to health I started using this mask weekly to make sure my hair was moisturized and that the toning I was getting every month would last. I usually keep the mask in for at least an hour or sleep with it in. The next day I’ll just shampoo and my hair is refreshed for the week.

3. Tatcha Revitalizing Eye Cream : Okay, I have mentioned this product before but obviously its because I love it! Super rich but not that rich of an eye cream that I can use day/night and brightens my eyes. For anyone wanting to try Tatcha products I would 100% recommend looking for sets at either Sephora or QVC. The products cost a pretty penny but if they work for you then they are definitely worth it!

4. First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads : I’m usually not one for daily pads because I find them wasteful…however, I tried a sample pack of these and was hooked within 5 days. I use these pads after washing and drying my face at night. In the morning my skin is bright and refreshed. After I use the pad on my face, I work my way down on my neck and chest area don’t forget to take care of those areas too…the skin there is so thin.

5. Bite Beauty : I love all Bite products that I can’t even pick one to lead you to. Before this year I had tried a few lipsticks and of course loved those. But recently I have moved to their multiple sticks for blush and bronzer, their lip primer which I highly recommend because it keeps your lipstick from transferring as well as their agave lip mask (daily product of mine). Basically you can’t go wrong with Bite Beauty.

6. OPI Nail Envy : I typically do my nails (file, cuticle cleanup, etc.) once a week and always put a coat of this strengthening formula so my nails stay super healthy. I have naturally thick nails but sometimes they peel once I apply color, this has helped prevent that. I always have to have a clear coat on my nails (I don’t know why, they just look dry to me!) so this doubles as a base and a clear coat for my sans polish weeks.

7. OPI Drip Dry : Let’s be real, we all love having our nails polished but hate having to wait for them to dry. This product saves me HOURS. After I apply my top coat, I wait a few minutes and add a few drops to each nail, then wait a few more minutes and am able to carry on with my day. Love it.

Top Wardrobe Products

8. Tod’s Loafers : These are not the exact pair I purchased, but are very similar. I have a few other pairs of loafers that I hardly wear after getting these. Plus, the other pairs I have took so long to break in, while these were perfect since the first wear. I got my pair at Nordstrom Rack (thank god), but have seen some on sale at Nordstrom. I think if you are looking for a comfortable, classic, and long-lasting loafer this is the way to go! Also, they are so buttery.

9. Vintage jeans : I bought a few pairs of vintage denim this year and fell in love with each pair. The quality of denim is amazing and I love high waisted jeans more than any other style. While I don’t have a direct link to pairs you can buy, I have routed you to the IG account that I bought them from. When I lived in St. Louis I would go to Mesa Home at least once a month AND keep up on their inventory through IG and Depop.

10. Brooks Ghost 10s : Once I moved, I wanted to start working out regularly and realized I hadn’t bought a proper pair of workout shoes in the past three years. It was definitely time for an upgrade. I figured I would also be more active outdoors since I live in Seattle (hello hiking)! I asked a friend who is a big time runner for their recommendation and Brooks Ghosts were the first thing listed. I went to the store and dear lord how did I ever work out in anything but Brooks?! These are so comfortable and have so much support for all activities. I walk in to work wearing them and once I get to my desk I don’t even want to take them off, that’s how comfortable they are.

After collecting all my favorite products from the year I obviously realized they were mostly beauty related…hopefully you are all beauty junkies too. If you try any of these products or have recommendations let me know!

 

Xoxo,

Lisa Marie

 

 

 

 

Summer Makeup Favorites

At the beginning of this summer I had to start over with my whole makeup situation. Mid-May I realized my skin wasn’t what it used to be and I think it was because I was wearing makeup almost everyday and was ignoring my blemishes. So, I decided I wanted to do without foundation and all the baking and try to go a bit more natural this summer. Along the way I found some new products that I thought I would share with you today.

Tarte Marcauja Creaseless Concealer (Cruelty-free)

Tarte concealer

Since I haven’t found a foundation or BB cream that has worked for my skin I use this concealer under my eyes and wherever else I need to even out my skin tone. I like this one because its easy to blend and a little bit goes a long way. The shade I use is medium neutral.
 

Bite Beauty Multistick (Cruelty-free)

Bite multistick

 I love these multisticks! I like that they have multiple uses. I use gelato as my blush and cashew as my bronzer, eyeshadow, and I sometimes even mix it with a little bit of cream highlight if I want to add some shine to my eyelids.

 

Clinque Chubby Stick Illuminator

Clinique Chubby Stick

 I use this stick on my cheeks, under my brow bone and sometimes mix it on my lids with the cashew Bite multistick. I like that its a subtle highlight that is great for an everyday natural makeup look. Its easy to work with since its creamy and thankfully it doesn’t clumpy when I blend it! This only comes in one shade.

 

Becca Highlight (Cruelty-free)

Becca highlights

Becca highlights are some of my favorites, unfortunately I can’t put them on my cheeks because they cause me to breakout. I know…I’m really sad about it too. TRUST ME. But that doesn’t mean I can let mine go to waste! I use these highlights in the corners of my eyes to brighten them up. The shades I use are moonstone (left) and champagne pop (top right).

Laura Mercier Brow Definer 

Laura Mercier Brow Definer

 I used this product when I was in high school and for some reason I stopped using it. I came back to the brow definer because I felt like I had more control with how much color I put on my brows. I’m going to be real, I definitely went too dark with my brows at times (sometimes still do), but the brow definer is really subtle, but easy to build. I use this in the shade warm.

 

Benefit Roller Lash

Roller LashMascara is something that I love and will always be picky about. I first bought this about two years ago and LOVED it, the only problem was the price tag. Thankfully, my mom bought these in an HSN set. That’s what I suggest you do if you want to buy this mascara. First try out a sample size and make sure it works for you and that you love it and then look for it with other Benefit product sets.

 

A few months later and I feel like I know what causes my blemishes. It was really frustrating looking up the ingredients to everything I use to find out I could continue use only one or two products. But we need remember that our skin is always changing. What worked for us 5 months ago, might not work for us anymore. You should always take note when you have a reaction to something and try to find out what is causing it. We only have one face…we have to treat it well!

I hope you found something that might work for you!

 

Xoxo,

Lisa Marie

 

Styling My JORD During the Summer (JORD Contest Included)

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I struggle with wanting to be be trendy but not wearing and styling the same exact things as all the other bloggers. I like to style myself with a twist or try to truly show my personality when put my looks together.

As I am sure some of you have noticed I like one or two bold items in my day-to-day outfits. It could be my bag, shoes, top, lip color or even my jewelry for the day. I also like to think about what I want to be be the focus of the outfit, do I want my top to make the statement or my shoes? Maybe both? I find myself choosing my statement item first and then styling the rest of my outfit around it.

This is where my new JORD watch comes into play. During the summer months I want to wear lightweight things and keep my accessories to a minimum while still making a statement. My watch is so light weight and goes so well with the latest summer trends (denim, stripes, light blazers, etc.) so I find that it is super easy to style but still makes a statement.

This summer I found myself reaching for my watch when wearing a simple outfit. I felt like it dressed up the look and made it all come together. I loved feeling like I had a unique piece of jewelry on. Check out the photos below on how I styled my JORD watch this summer! I can’t wait to transition it into the fall.

And don’t worry! JORD has both male and female watches, so be sure to enter the contest at the end of my post!

Stripes and JORD

Outfit Planning and JORD

Light Blazer and JORD

Planning ahead with JORD

One winner will win $100 towards their own JORD watch and EVERYONE who entered will receive a $25 code! Enter below before 8/20/17!

Luxury Wood Watches Contest and JORD’s homepage

Good luck!

Xoxo,

Lisa Marie

Daily Skincare Routine AM/PM

For as long as I can remember my mom was telling my sister and I to wash our faces before bed. To this day I still feel so guilty whenever I don’t because I know in the morning I will regret it immediately.

Even more so, during the summer I try to stay on top of my skincare regime because I want to be able to wear as little makeup as possible. Since mid-May I have adapted my regime and have been SHOCKED by my skin! I have never seen it so dewy and clear.

Here are the products I use broken down by morning and night.

Morning Routine

1. Tatcha Polishing Classic Rice Enzyme Powder 

This product is used to cleanse and minimize pores, prevent wrinkles and help with uneven texture of your skin. It seems kind of odd at first since you pour powder on your hands and then wet it, but once you get the water to powder ratio down you’re golden!

2. Skinceuticals CE Ferulic Serum

I use this on my sunspots or areas where I have acne scars/discoloration. It helps lift the dark spots over-time and prevents wrinkles. Since I’m in my early 20s, I only use this as a spot treatment but if I were older I would apply this all over my face and neck.

3. Tatcha Ageless Revitalizing Eye Cream

This eye cream is thick yet absorbs quickly! It helps with puffiness, fine lines and and has anti-aging benefits.

4. Clinque Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion+

This is a good moisturizer if you have a combination of oily and dry skin.

5. EltaMD UV Clear SPF 46

SPF is a must! I wear it everyday and I like this one because it doesn’t leave me white and is super light.

Night Routine

1. Tatcha Pure One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil

This cleansing oil is life changing! It melts all my makeup off at the end of the day without any trouble at all. It is especially good for dry skin because some makeup removers end up leaving your skin dry and this one does not at all!

2. Tatcha Polishing Classic Rice Enzyme Powder 

This product is day and night.

3. Tatcha Ageless Revitalizing Eye Cream

As well as this one.

4. Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Night Concentrate

Okay ya’ll…I have never had such dewy, beautiful skin in the mornings until I used this little pot of magic! This is one of my favorites!

5. Good sleep and lots of water before bed! 🙂

And if I just need to clean my face really quick (when I don’t have makeup on) I use this: Kiehls Cucumber Toner. I love it because it leaves me refreshed without using alcohol in the formula.

And I know what you’re thinking…Lisa is TRIPPIN with all these products but guys, these have truly revamped my skin! If you have been following me on IG (@lavidalisa_) you know that I have been sporting the minimal makeup look all summer and this is why I have been able to do so.

The SkinCeuticals and Tatcha products are 100% an investment but you and your skin are worth it. I found my SkinCeuticals for a deal on Costco (you have to check often and be ready to buy when it becomes available because it sells out FAST). My Tatcha products came in a set on QVC (QVC also has some of the best prices when you buy these items individually).

I hope this helped you in some way and I would love to hear your feedback!

 

Xoxo,

Lisa Marie

Don’t Wish Your Life Away in College

My mom has always told me to never wish my life away. As I got older, I started to say this too. I feel like as a society the majority of us look forward to the weekend or can’t wait until the next vacation we go on. We end up wishing for anything but the present.

Senior year for most people is the combination of wanting the year to end but also not wanting to give up all the freedom that you have. The first semester of my senior year I found myself wishing my life away, something I know my mom told me not to do. I couldn’t wait to be done with those courses, to go on the trips I had planned or even just to have a break from everything. I was so ready for a new experience that I wasn’t enjoying the present.

As second semester rolled around, I was on the verge of tears just hearing the word graduation. One day it hit me that my time was limited. I had already accepted a job offer in another state and knew I wouldn’t be close to friends or family. This is when I started to panic. I had spent a whole first semester not enjoying Saint Louis or the people I was surrounded by. I soon changed my perspective. Of course there were days when I was “over it” and wanted to be done with college. But more often than not I just wanted to hang out with my friends as much as possible.

One of my roommates graduated in December and the differences of a college student and a post-graduate was becoming more and more obvious. Seeing her live her post-grad life was shocking. You think that when you graduate you suddenly have all this free time, think again. You quickly get back into a routine and have your own things to accomplish on a weekly basis.

The days and weeks started flying by and all my friends and I could think about was making the most out of the last few moments we had together as college students, as roommates, as 5M (our freshmen year floor).

When it came to the end of the year, I noticed that the people that I was still surrounded by would definitely be there to stay. I have lived with them, shared so many experiences with them and have been there for them just like they were there for me.

My advice to those who are in college and can’t wait to get that degree and be done is just to enjoy the moment. You don’t realize it at first, but that is the last time you will be in the same place at the same time as some of your closest friends. Never take your time with the people who meant so much to you for so long for granted.

 

Xoxo,

Lisa Marie

Content Creator Community

After sitting around for months thinking about starting my own blog, I finally did it. I did it because I was so inspired by all the bloggers I was seeing express their love of fashion. A few months after getting interested in blogging I realized that every creative thing you can think of is striving due to its online presence. Social media has empowered anyone and everyone with internet access to pursue their dreams and express themselves.

Once I started my blog I couldn’t get over how many content creators I was surrounded by that I had never interacted with before. Some are bloggers, photographers, graphic designers, song writers, and so many other things. Interacting with them on a regular basis has given me so much inspiration and confidence to continue to pursue my passions.

Over the course of the last few months, I have found myself going back to this same group of people. At first I thought it was because I had just found a new group of friends, and then it hit me… I keep coming back to these people because they inspire me and keep me motivated.

After reflecting on all these conversations I have had with these people, I noticed a common thread. We are all more passionate about our side hustles than we are passionate about school and work. It is so hard to sit there and not be able to focus on something other than your passion. It is so hard to sit there and feel like there is this massive barrier between you and your dreams.

I started to think about why I feel so inspired by these people; the people who take my photos for my blog, the people who designed my logo, the people who I am constantly asking how their music is coming along. Then I realized what it was; I am inspired by their passions because they are real. They aren’t afraid to put themselves out there for others to see and hear. They aren’t afraid to invest in themselves and their future without seeing a return on investment immediately.

I think this is why this community is so close. We are always asking each other how our content is going, commenting and liking each other’s posts and its because we get it. We understand the daily struggle of producing content that virtually the whole world could see. We understand that sometimes its hard and can be so frustrating, but also one of the most rewarding things ever.

I never thought that the friends I made due to blogging would be some of the best friendships I have formed. Blogging has not only opened the door to new friendships but has made some of my existing friendships even stronger. I think it all comes down to sharing your passion with people, once you open up to them on what you really want in life the “real talk” slowly starts consuming your conversations.

What is your passion and what are you doing to express it?

Xoxo,

Lisa Marie

Emily Brady Designs Illustration

This is an illustration that @emilybradydesigns made for me! Check her out on Instagram!