Archive of ‘Featured’ category

bliss multi-‘face’-eted all-in-one anti-aging clay mask

bliss

A new week and a new mask to test. Clay masks are popping up all over and some are much better than others. Right now, the bliss multi-‘face’-eted all-in-one anti-aging clay mask is winning the clay mask battle over here at the JC Lifestyle beauty arsenal. My skin is still recovering from the holidays. Not just the weather, but the sugar, alcohol, and high fat foods that I consumed.

Reading Pretty: It Was Me All Along by Andie Mitchell

Andie Mitchell

My book reading as of late is all over the place. I go back and forth from fiction to non-fiction and lots memoirs. The latest joy is reading It was Me Along by Andie Mitchell and the writer behind the blog Can You Stay for Dinner. It’s the story of Andie’s struggles with food. It’s fascinating that now she writes a blog about food. I didn’t want this book to end and felt that if I met Andie in real life we would be friends.

This post is brought to you in collaboration with Net Galley. All content, ideas, and words are my own. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that allow me to create new and special content like this for All About the Pretty.

Last Girl Standing with Aveda Stress-Fix

Aveda Stress FIx

This week has been hectic. I’m still in Louisiana and trying to sort through my emotions on losing my brother. Needless to say I need all the relaxation I can get. I’m carrying Aveda’s Stress-Fix Concentrate Rollerball around and sniffing it as much as humanly possible. It’s like my beauty crack. The only thing I’m looking forward to is climbing so deep in a bath tonight with soaking salts and finishing with the body butter. It is amazing how taking time to take care of me feels so right. I have been trying to be strong, but today I had to admit my limitations. I need to sit still and be silent. Thanks Aveda for helping me.

Earth’s Nectar Green Olive & Lavender Scalp Oil

Earth Nectar Scalp Oil

 

If you are feeling the dryness of winter in your hair I highly recommend Earth’s Nectar Green Olive & Lavender Scalp Oil. The scent-obsessed girl in me recommends it for the smell, but the beauty advisor wants me to tell you it really works. I know melted coconut oil works, but sometimes you need a little extra and want to feel the love on your scalp. A big part of my happiness is knowing the spray isn’t spraying all whilly nilly on my scalp. It’s a direct line to the places it needs to go. A little goes a long way, but I wouldn’t know because I’m heavy handed and in my mind the more the merrier.

Gucci Beauty Audacious Color-Intense Lipstick in Iconic Red

1.12.14

I was on the hunt for a new red lipstick. I wanted it to be beautiful, highly pigmented, moisturizing, and look good coming out of my pocketbook. It was going to replace one of my favorite reds, but you ladies know how it is. You just need something new. I give you Gucci Beauty Audacious Color-Intense Lipstick in Iconic Red. All I can say is thank you Pat McGrath. She has created some of the best  beauty products on the market and she hasn’t disappointed with this red. It’s everything Gucci represents – glamour and sexy. When I wear this I only wear mascara and a very neutral blush. That’s it. The color doesn’t need anything else.  Get it in your lifestyle.

Look Out That Window Girl and Live

unnamed

I’m in Louisiana, but not for the reason I planned. On Thursday, January 8, I lost my dear brother Jamie. Needless to say the pain is so hard that I am in a fog. My heart feels like it’s about to break open. I didn’t expect. None of us did. We thought he was on the mend. He was getting better. That’s what the doctors told us. It’s going to take time. Lots of time. Be patient. On September 25 my brother had a massive stroke. I was on a plane the next day. I’ve been flying back and forth trying to maintain a business and a life. It’s been rough.

His birthday is tomorrow which makes this even more heart wrenching. On the flight down I was a mess. I couldn’t have made it without my husband and two amazing flight attendants on United. Those ladies mothered me for three hours on a plane until I could walk into my mother’s arms. I don’t know how she is so strong. She has had to bury a husband and now two sons. I’m looking to her for strength, because I’m so weak. Jamie was not just my brother, but my best friend. He’s one of the reasons I travel. He supported me while I studied in Paris, maintained my car and house when I lived in Houston, and listened to every complaint, frustration, and accolade. He called me every single day. There was no dream I had that he didn’t support. When I told him my ideas he encouraged every single one. Not one hesitation. Not one doubt. He believed in me even when I didn’t believe in myself.

No matter where in the world I was I got a text, voicemail, and email from him. Every Monday we analyzed each NFL game. It’s been hard trying to watch the games without hearing his voice. The last time I talked to him was on September 24. My wedding anniversary when he called to wish me “happy anniversary.” He kept laughing and saying I can’t believe you found someone to put up with you. That was our running joke. Every phone call or voicemail started the same – “Julia, it’s your brother Jamie …” When I called him back I said “Jamie, it’s your sister Julia. Your only sister.”

To not hear is voice is hard. I’ve been playing his last few voicemails to me over and over. Just to hear him say it. He’s taken care of me since I was little. I remember him washing and combing my hair, taking me to school, and always being there even with a family of his own. He came to the house as I got ready for prom, going off to college, taking me to the airport to go study in Paris, helping pack my car to move to DC, telling me “have fun in DC, but come back now, you here!,” go to Spain with that guy because you know what you are doing, and much more.

Yesterday I did something I have never done. I requested a window seat on the plane in his honor. He knew I hate to fly and would never sit by the window or ever look out the window on a plane. But he always told me “look out that window girl and live.”That’s what I did.

I know he’s no longer in pain, but it just sucks. I talked to my family and asked could I write something. My mom said that’s what you do. Write it out. It will help. I’ve received so many calls, emails, and texts in support. Thank you. Life is so short and it’s so precious. I just wish heaven could have waited one more day, one more week, one more month, one more year to make him an angel. I guess they needed him more than me.

Julia

Reading Pretty: Make it Happen: Surrender Your Fear. Take the Leap. Live On Purpose. by Lara Casey

1.9.14

 

I devoured Lara Casey’s book Make it Happen: Surrender Your Fear. Take the Leap. Live on Purpose in two day. It was a particular gloomy Saturday and I wanted something to break the fiction books I was reading. I received a preview copy of the e-book, but I enjoyed the book so much I wanted to support her and purchased a “real” book.

Lara is a major proponent of looking at your life and making the necessary changes you need to make without blaming someone else for your happiness. She goes deep into her unhappy marriage and work and how she turned it around without making any excuses. I know there are a lot of self-help books out there, but what makes Laura’s book great is her desire to discuss the art of not “being perfect.” I’m still trying to figure out when perfect became the ideal. Life is messy, thank goodness. We need stories to tell and perfect doesn’t make good story telling.

I always say Instagram is the highlight real of your life and not the real dirty work. Yes, I consider what a photo will look like before I post, but actually my bed isn’t made, my office is a hot mess, I’m tired, and the past few days made me realize I need to make some shifts. She has a yearly conference and I’m seriously considering going.

Lara thanks for a great book. Keep making it happen.

This post is brought to you in collaboration with Net Galley. All content, ideas, and words are my own. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that allow me to create new and special content like this for All About the Pretty. 

Voya Seaweed Soak

1.8.14

 

It’s National Bubble Bath Day. Can I get an Amen! So, I decided that I needed more bath products in my life. I take a lot of baths, but I tend to keep using the same products over and over. I decided to use the weekends for the true luxury products. The ones that I will not be using during the week because they deserve time. Time to enjoy, engage, and to take me away. I’ve come along way from Calgon and thanks to these interwebs I am able to get my needs delivered right to my door.

I give you the Voya Lazy Days Seaweed Bath. Don’t you need more lazy days? I sure do and this product is all that and a bag of chips. First it’s seaweed so it’s going to be messy. Deal with it because it’s worth it. Voya is an Irish coming and uses the seaweed to create beauty products. This bath is a detoxifying product. It draws out any impurities and perfect at the end of a long week. It’s going to feel weird when you first get into the water. Since the seaweed is in a pouch I get two uses out of it. Seriously, it’s slimy. Just grab a book and a cup of tea, keep it moving, and make sure you have a good bath cleaner.

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