My Favorite New-To-Me Beauty Products

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Though I’m a creature of habit when it comes to beauty products, I do try to add a few new options to my line-up every now and again just to keep things fresh.

(By the way, does anyone else get stressed out by samples of beauty products? The idea of Birchbox makes my skin crawl. It’s not that I don’t like trying new products, in theory. It’s just that having tons of samples makes me feel pressured to use them ALL, or keep them tucked away in some drawer until I do use them. Ultimately, I end up throwing most of them away, after keeping them in said drawer for far too long. I’m trying to work on being okay with chucking them sooner if I know I don’t want to use them.)

However, when I get recommendations from trusted sources (such as friends, fellow bloggers I love, my hair stylist, etc.) or when I seek out new products I’ve been reading about, I love trying new things — sample sizes or not.

I know — I’m a weirdo.

So with that craziness in mind, I give you my favorite new beauty products. These are all things I’ve added to my regimen over the last few months and give two big thumbs up!:

  • Two-Faced Tinted Beauty BalmI was excited to try BB cream, because I’m not a huge fan of foundation, but like the idea of evening out my skin tone and such. This BB cream fits the bill. I’ve tried a handful of different kinds, and this one’s by far my favorite. It’s just thick enough (but certainly not in an overwhelming way) and offers just the right amount of coverage, as far as I’m concerned. I apply it with a large, flat make-up brush (and a little goes a long way, which is great news for the lifespan of this product).

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  • Rusk Wired Flexible Styling Creme. This is another product that came recommended by my hair stylist (thanks, Jodi!), and now I use it almost daily. Just rub a bit into your hands and work it lightly into wet hair before blow drying to give your hair great memory for styling.

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  • Maybelline Baby Lips. Since Kevin and I spend as much time as possible at the beach over the summer, a good lip balm with SPF is essential, and this has become my go-to. It’s ALWAYS in my beach bag!

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  • Fresh Black Tea Age-Delay Eye Concentrate. Yes, this stuff is pricey, but it’s worth the splurge if you ask me! First of all, this tiny little jar lasts forever, as a tiny bit goes a really long way. Also, I’ve seen great results from it in the few months I’ve been using the product.

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What beauty product are you loving lately?

Workout Wardrobe Wish List: Summer 2015 Edition

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These Workout Wardrobe Wish Lists have become a bit of a tradition over here at Curiouser & Curiouser. They’re super fun for me to put together, and I hope y’all enjoy these seasonal round-ups as well!

This summer, I’m completely infatuated with florals, and you’ll see that pattern make a frequent appearance in the list below. I’ve included some items I own (and LOVE), and lots I’m just lusting after. Hopefully these pieces will arm you with the motivation you need to keep moving all summer long.

Without further ado, let’s get to the latest Curiouser & Curiouser Workout Wardrobe Wish Lish, shall we?:

  • Women’s Printed Double Strap Tank Top in Classic Daisy (Calia by Carrie Underwood). This is one of the pieces I already own, and I’m OBSESSED. I have to pace myself so I don’t wear it to Pure Barre too often. (I want to get it in the other print just so I have two versions of this top!):

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  • Soffe Dri Capri (Soffe). Soffe’s one of my clients at the ad agency I work for, and I’m happy to report that their activewear is really great. I’ve tried out several pieces, and especially love these wicking capris. (Rest assured: This brand has grown up since you rolled down the waistband on their shorts way back in middle school.):

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  • Mesh Back Tank (GapFit). Crisp and white, this top would be great for a barre class, a run, or a summertime tennis match:

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  • Antigua Bra Cobalt (Albion Fit). Because it wouldn’t be a Workout Wardrobe Wish List without an Albion Fit pick! I have the Antigua leggings  in pink and ADORE the print. This bra gives a fun pop of floral to any workout outfit:

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  • Carefree Cut-Out Cami (Beyond Yoga). I’ve been longing to add this piece to my Pure Barre wardrobe for a while now, and think it might just be time to pull the trigger:

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  • Macy Run Short (Lorna Jane). These are simple, but they look so comfy and their color is so perfectly summertime:

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  • Women’s Essential Printed Tight Fit Capris (Calia by Carrie Underwood). These I don’t have yet, and would love to add them to my summertime workout wardrobe. They come in five adorable floral prints, but this one’s my top pick:

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What are you longing to add to your workout wardrobe this season?

8 Perfect Summer Bras

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(Is it weird to talk about bras on my blog? I’ve become a little desensitized about bra talk, since Kevin works in marketing at Hanes in the bra department. There’s lots of bra conversation in our lives these days, so I’m pretty well desensitized.)

This season of sunshine also brings with it a conundrum: what to wear under those tanks, rompers, and dresses? There are so many adorable summer clothes that require bras that need to be part of the outfit because the straps and/or back will be visible.

Thankfully, these days there are lots of options when it comes to these bras (kind of like a bra meets cami, in many ways). My go-to is the “bralette,” which doesn’t offer too much support for you more well-endowed ladies, but is SO comfy and is the perfect way to solve this summer clothing challenge.

Here are a few perfect-for-summertime bras that have caught my eye:

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What are your go-to summertime bras?

Links I’m Loving

It’s FRIDAY! Wahoo! I don’t know about you, but I feel like it’s been a particularly earned weekend this time around.

Hopefully these links — which I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this week — will bring a smile to your face as well:

  • If you only watch one YouTube video today, please, please make it this one of an owl pooping on his friend and running away. It’s 14 seconds VERY well spent:

  • If you’ve flown Delta in the past few years, you’ve probably seen one of their awesomely amusing safety videos. Well, get pumped: they have a new one out, inspired by all things Internet:

  • As though I didn’t love Chris Pratt enough already, this video sealed the deal:

  • My friend Bethany posted about this letter on her blog today (along with her own version, which is also amazing), but I just had to share it with you as well. So. Damn. Funny.

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  • I’m sure y’all saw this yesterday, but if for some reason you were spending your Thursday under a rock, you’re welcome. (It features Justin Bieber, but please watch even if you’re not a fan of his.):

Happy holiday weekend, friends!

5 Healthy Summertime Snack Recipes

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In North Carolina, summertime is here to stay, and I couldn’t be more excited. Not only do the warm weather and longer days make me oh-so happy, but the spring weather means I can once again enjoy warm-weather foods/drinks like iced coffee, smoothies, and overnight oatmeal. SWEET.

It also means I need to switch up my snack game, incorporating some more seasonally appropriate offerings. Here are five healthy snacks that top my list this time of year:

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  • Peppadew peppers or cherry tomatoes stuffed with goat cheese. So simple, and so very good! Sprinkle with some shredded basil for extra seasonal deliciousness.

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  • 5-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cup Energy Bites. I’ve learned to trust just about everything the lovely duo behind Minimalist Baker suggests, and this energy bite recipe is no exception. Just five ingredients! Healthy and filling! Peanut butter and chocolate are two of the five ingredients! Just grab your food processor and get to snacking.

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  • Greek salad skewers. If you’re a Greek salad fan like I am (it’s my go-to order at many restaurants), give this new, more snack-friendly twist on the salad a try. Just grab the key ingredients of the salad — a piece of cucumber, half of a cherry tomato, a chunk of feta cheese, a kalamata olive, and red onion, if that’s your style — and place them on a skewer or toothpick. Drizzle with olive oil, and enjoy!

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  • Minty Pea Dip. This one’s tasty — trust me! Kevin and I enjoyed it as an appetizer just last night, in fact. Just combine 1/2 cup frozen peas, 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh mint, and 2 teaspoons fresh-squeezed lime juice in a blender or food processor and blend until combined. Serve with pretzels/pretzel thins, pita chips, sliced veggies — whatever you prefer! (Kevin and I had ours with pretzels last night.)

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What summertime snacks are your faves?

 

Whole Wheat Flour, Oatmeal, Coconut Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies With Sea Salt

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Since I’ve now made these cookies two times in as many days, I figured I should share the recipe with y’all. (The second batch is in the oven as I type so.)

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I knew I wanted to try a new cookie recipe to celebrate National Chocolate Chip Day on Friday (my friend alerted me to the holiday and I knew it was one I should honor), and also didn’t have any butter on hand. Not to fear — this recipe fit the bill, replacing butter or vegetable oil with coconut oil and subbing out regular all-purpose flour for white whole wheat flour (which I happened to have in my pantry). Throw in some oats (which are an ingredient in the beloved chocolate chip cookie recipe my mom made for our family growing up), and I was sold. These definitely can’t be classified as “healthy,” but they are a “better-for-you” version of the cookie, incorporating whole wheat, oats, no butter, etc.

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Be sure you sprinkle sea salt onto these cookies before popping them into the oven. It’s what helps take them from good to great. (All about the details, right?)

Whole Wheat Flour, Oatmeal, Coconut Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, softened (not melted)
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 3/4 cup dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Sea salt

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheet(s) with parchment paper or a Silpat. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together coconut oil, brown sugar, and granulated sugar, beating until smooth.
  • Add in the egg and vanilla extract, mixing until just combined.
  • With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture until just combined. Don’t over mix!
  • Stir in the oats and chocolate chips.
  • Form the cookie dough into balls and place on prepared baking sheet(s). Sprinkle with sea salt.
  • Bake for 8-10 minutes (until the cookies are slightly golden around the edges and still look soft in the center). Let cool on baking sheet for at least 3 minutes, then transfer to cooling rack and cool completely.
  • Cookies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two days, and also freeze well.

Enjoy!

Netflix Has Outdone Itself Yet Again With Bloodline

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Back in March, I raved to you lovely readers about the gloriousness that is Netflix’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. The writing! The characters! The music! All so very good.

I have another Netflix original series to wholeheartedly recommend this month, although you’ll have to firmly remove your Kimmy Schmidt hat for this one, because it’s pretty much the exact opposite of that show. Maybe the only things it has in common with Kimmy Schmidt are: 1.) it’s by Netflix and 2.) it’s WONDERFUL.

The show? I’m talking about Bloodline here, folks. The drama/thriller starring Kyle Chandler (who Friday Night Light fans will always revere as Coach Taylor), Sissy Spacek, Ben Mendelsohn, Linda Cardellini, Chloe Sevigny, and Sam Shepard is truly phenomenal. My friend Bethany recommended it to me, and now it’s time for me to pay it forward and let all of you guys know about its amazingness.

Here are just a few reasons why I’m obsessed with Bloodline:

1. Kyle Chandler. (If you didn’t know that was going to be my first reason, you don’t know Kyle Chandler.) I, personally, was introduced to Kyle waaaaay back in the day when he starred in Early Edition (remember that rather terrible show?), and then loved him on Friday Night Lights as Coach Taylor. He’s so well cast in Bloodline as well, playing good guy sheriff John Rayburn.

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2. It couldn’t be set in a more beautiful location. Bloodline‘s plot centers around a family that owns an inn in the Florida Keys, and every episode made me long to visit the Keys more and more. (Anyone down for a visit? Only half kidding here…)

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3. It keeps you on your TOES, man! This show blew my mind. So much so that, now that I’ve made it through all 13 episodes, I’m backtracking and re-watching the season to pick up on subtle things that make sense once you’ve seen the full storyline play out. You get snippets of what’s to come in each episode leading up to “the big event,” but even with those glimpses it will blindside you to a point. I have no idea how they’ll frame things up in Season 2, and I have a hard time believing it can be better than this inaugural season, but they’re definitely laying the groundwork for another interesting season.

4. Like another one of my favorite (and now over — which I’m still devastated about) shows, Parenthood, this plot focuses on a family of grown siblings who are making sense of their pasts and negotiating family politics, etc. The incorporation of flashbacks is well-done in this show, adding helpful context to each character’s past.

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5. Ben Mendelsohn, who plays the black sheep of the Rayburn family, is captivating in his role. He’s Australian (something I didn’t find out until after watching all 13 episodes — his American accent is PERFECT) and has an impressive resume, but he shines in this series as the charmingly creepy and cunning Danny Rayburn.

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6. Kyle Chandler.

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Happy binge watching, friends!

One-Bowl Nutella Fudge Brownies

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There’s just about nothing better than a homemade brownie, am I right? Add some Nutella to said homemade brownie, and you have yourself a chocolatey piece of heaven.

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This recipe was a new one I tried for a party Kevin and I threw last weekend, and I was super happy with the way they turned out. Another bonus? It has all of six ingredients and you just need one pot to make it all come together beautifully.

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Ready? Here are the deets:

Nutella Fudge Brownies

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 stick salted butter (or 1 stick unsalted butter plus about a teaspoon of salt)
  • 1/2 cup Nutella
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs + one egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Optional topping: Nutella + chopped pistachios

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Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and generously spray an 8″x8″ pan with non-stick spray or line with parchment paper.
  • In a saucepan, melt the butter and 1/2 cup of the chocolate chips over medium-low heat, stirring frequently.
  • Once the butter is completely melted and the chocolate chips have completely dissolved, stir in the Nutella. Remove from heat.
  • Add sugar and beat well.
  • Add eggs, yolk, and loosely packed flour, stirring until just combined.
  • Fold in remaining chocolate chips (be sure not to over mix or you’ll get cakey brownies).
  • Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes.
  • Remove from oven, and let cool for at least 30 minutes, then cut into squares and enjoy!
  • (If you want frosting, use some of the leftover Nutella combined with roughly chopped pistachios. Yum!)

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Mother’s Day Ads To Make You Laugh, Cry, & Remind You To Call Your Mom

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Mother’s Day is this Sunday, and I wanted to take a few moments to share some of the ads that have been released through the years to celebrate the holiday. There have been some lovely commercials put together to pay tribute to moms out there. Many of them fall into the “super sappy” category but, then again, this holiday’s a good time for that.

(Note: Not ALL of these are sappy. In particular, please enjoy the hilarious-not-sappy Mr. T “Treat Your Mother Right” ditty. And enjoy his incredible shorts.)

  • First up, the reigning champion of all sappy-in-the-best-way holiday commercials, Publix:

  • I appreciate this spot from Samsung, which is so on-point and hilarious (sorry, moms, but it’s true), yet wrapped in a heartfelt message:

  • We WILL treat our mothers right, Mr. T. Thanks for the reminder. (This isn’t a commercial, and I have no clue where it’s from, but it obviously made the cut.):

  • Nice job, as always, Google:

  • Do you have a #PartyHardMom?:

  • HAHAHA, SNL! (Please excuse the quality of the video. Still worth watching if you haven’t seen this sketch.):

  • This spot from Johnson’s Baby is adorable, and told from baby’s perspective:

  • Okay, so this Minute Maid one’s for parents in general — not specifically moms — but it definitely makes the list. It’s long — four minutes — but it’s worth watching. Such a good reminder of how easy it is to tell the people we love how important they are to us:

Happy (almost) Mother’s Day, everyone! (Get to shopping — fast — if you haven’t gotten Mom a gift yet!)

 

 

Romper Round-Up

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Last year, I was on the fence with the whole romper trend, but I’m here to report that at this point I’m fully on board. They have so many adorable and flattering styles available this year, and those things are SO comfortable. They’ve become my new go-to for spring and summer time. Who’s with me? (I’ve noticed that many of my favorite retailers now have “Romper and Jumpsuit” sections of their websites. It makes romper shopping easy, for sure!)

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All the love for the romper.

Now moving on to a handful of rompers that have caught my eye this season:

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Now here’s the question of the season this year: Jumpsuits? Yay or nay?

 

 

 

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